Here’s a reason to try a gluten-free diet, even if you don’t have celiac disease, because many studies point to a new health condition also related to gluten. It’s called “non-celiac gluten sensitivity.”
For those who don’t know, celiac disease is the name for a serious condition where the body can’t process the gluten in wheat. Less than 1-in-100 people have celiac, but this new condition may help explain why so many other people swear by gluten-free diets, even though they don’t have celiac.
For example: Some people say giving up wheat gives them more energy, improves their skin, helps with arthritis, and even makes certain allergies go away.
And the benefits of going gluten-free aren’t all in people’s heads. A new experiment, published in The American Journal of Gastroenterology, tested people who didn’t have celiac disease – but suspected they may be gluten sensitive. Everyone was given bread and muffins to eat for six weeks – but half the group was secretly given gluten-free baked goods, the other half had regular wheat-based foods. Time and time again, the people who ate the regular wheat-based foods said they felt a lot worse.
That study convinced many experts to acknowledge that there IS a new condition, ut the problem is, no one knows what causes it. And there’s no blood test for it, like there is with celiac disease.
So then, how do you know if you have non-celiac gluten sensitivity? So far, experts say the best way to diagnose the new condition is like this: If you try a gluten-free diet, and your health improves, but then it worsens again the first time you eat something made with wheat, like pizza, then you probably have non-celiac gluten sensitivity.