Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Celiac gate-keepers reluctant to accept gluten syndrome

I have read these comments with interest. So far, all comments support my position that gluten syndrome is common, and usually not associated with coeliac disease. Nobody has yet made a contrary statement.

I am a paediatric gastroenterologist. In my clinic, I look for coeliacs every day - I find a few, but for every coleiac, there are another 10 children with gluten intolerance. All you have to do is look at pubmed and put in the search words 'gluten sensitivity' to find the medical research that documents the gluten syndrome. I gave Matt Philips (the author) lots of these references, however he chose to mostly ignore them (so that he could write a 'balanced' article.

Most gastroenterologists do not want to accept gluten intolerance as this would be inconvenient for their on-going practice. Currently they wield the power of endoscopy as the gate-keeper of the coeliac diagnosis. So best to pretend that the gluten syndrome is a placebo effect (nonsense!) and that these gluten sufferers are deluded. Crazy. My purpose is to help my patients get better, and often this means seeing if gluten might be causing them harm. Coeliac disease is not the only condition that is triggered by gluten.
Dr Rodney Ford. http://www.drrodneyford.com


  1. The vast majority of those undergoing 'routine' endoscopy (upper and lower) in the UK, suffer from what I call wheat-related disorders: 'GERD' or esophageal reflux, and IBS or irritable bowel syndrome. These two disorders contribute an astronomical amount of the daily workload of our 'gastro' colleagues.

    My contention is that the majority of these individuals would notice radical if not complete improvement in their symptomatology if they switched to a restricted carbohydrate, wheat-free diet. In my patients (rheumatology) who try this (at my advocacy), a significant proportion report striking relief, to say nothing about the improvement often seen in energy levels, arthralgia, mood and weight loss!

    How many gastroenterologists recommend such and approach for their patients with these conditions? My guess...definitely less than 5% and probably less than 1%

  2. Thank you for pointing out the difference between celiac disease and gluten sensitivity. For people with mood disorders, they may very well experience no gut- or bowel-related symptoms, but their moods are acutely affected when they eat wheat and gluten. Many patients with severe psychiatric diagnoses actually find that their "diseases" lessen and even disappear when they eliminate wheat from their diets. http://cprfordepressives.wordpress.com/2011/05/31/it-aint-neat-to-eat-wheat/