There’s no denying that gluten-free eating is in the zeitgeist. Gluten-free pizza, cupcakes and pasta are all the rage and many celebrities have revealed their revamped diets, rid of gluten and other perceived allergens.
Those with the most profound gluten intolerance suffer from the chronic condition celiac disease, which is diagnosed with blood and bowel tests. That means they have an immune response to gliadin, a gluten protein found in wheat, rye and barley. Symptoms range from chronic fatigue, diarrhea, bloating and headaches to "failure to thrive" in young children.
But what about people who don't test positive for celiac disease, but who still have celiac-like symptoms? Doctors often recommend a trial elimination diet to determine if a food sensitivity is the culprit. Those who say the elimination of gluten helped lessen the severity of their symptoms are often diagnosed with "nonceliac gluten sensitivity" -- something that can't be tested for like celiac disease, but is based on patient reporting.