Dr Rodney Ford believes that we are all at risk from eating gluten: any person, any symptom, any time! In his Gluten-Related Disorder book, he presents stories of 50 families severely affected by gluten. He asks: “Is eating gluten really worth the risk?
Available in print for $20
I will not remain silent! With over 35 years of experience as a pediatrician, looking after sick children, I have come to the conclusion that much of their sickness stems from their food, and especially from eating gluten. Every day in my Clinic I see babies, children, teenagers and exhausted parents who are suffering from a wide range of illness. Of course, not all of this illness is caused by gluten. But gluten-illness turns out to be a major contributor to chronic ill health. So, this book is devoted to explain all about gluten and the harm it can cause you, your family and your community.
Everyone is at risk from eating gluten: any person, any symptom, any time. Gluten illness is slowly progressive. Symptoms can sneak up on you. You might not be aware of your deteriorating health. Children feel sick, tired and grumpy. Often they are called naughty, or suffer from behavior or learning problems. Dr Ford asked the parents of 50 families affected by gluten to write their stories. He asks: “Is eating gluten worth the risk?
Gluten cannot be digested by any of us, and causes gut inflammation in everyone. It can trigger irreversible autoimmune disease, cause celiac disease, damage nerves, upset the brain, spark skin disease, and much more. But once gluten-damage has become established, it can remain permanently. So… is eating gluten worth the risk?
As Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter”. It is my belief that gluten-harm matters a lot. Therefore, I continue to speak out about it. I have already written many books about the issues surrounding Gluten Syndrome and eating Zero Gluten. My goal is to increase “global gluten consciousness”.
Dr Rodney Ford has spent his career helping people with food allergy and gluten-sensitivity, gluten intolerance. Author of “The Gluten Syndrome” and “Gluten: ZERO Global”
1. Why another book?
2. Gluten: worth the risk?
3. My first gluten-illness story
4. Naysayers, Cynics & Critics
5. Who is gluten-sensitive?
6. The Mouth
7. The Esophagus
8. The Tummy
9. The Small Bowel
10. The Colon and Rectum
11. The Brain
12. The Skin
13. Growth – Weight and Height
14. Getting Run-down
15. My Clinic Data
This book is also available as an ebook – see http://www.GlutenRelatedDisorder.com
Dr Rodney Ford launched his new Gluten-Related Disorder book in October 2014 with a series of presentations in the USA
This is the Outline of his keynote presentation
With over 35 years of experience as a pediatrician looking after sick children, I have come to the conclusion that much of their sickness stems from adverse reactions to the food they are eating, and especially to gluten. Every day in my Clinic I see babies, children, and exhausted parents who are suffering from a wide range of illness, which often turns out to be food allergy/ intolerance. Of course, not all illness is caused by gluten. But gluten-illness is a major contributor to chronic long-term ill health.
I call these children “the sick, the tired and the grumpy!” Their families who come to my Clinic do not choose to be ill: they would rather be healthy. However, they come to see me because I am seen as the Clinic-of-last-resort, as most medical practitioners are reluctant to link illness to adverse food reactions.
My goal is to increase “gluten consciousness”, globally. By this I mean that every medical practitioner, every specialist, every chef, every food server, every café owner, every food manufacturer, every supermarket owner, every farmer and everyone in the community needs to have knowledge about gluten. I want them to know which of the grains are safe, I want them all to be aware of gluten cross-contamination, about appropriate food substitution, and about the serious harm that gluten causes to so many of us.
Gluten-illness can present with almost any symptom, in any body, at any time of life. Gluten illness is a progressive condition, which can creep up on you slowly.
These things matter, and this is why I continue to speak out and write about it.
Here are the 10 points that I am speaking about.
1) Gluten causes a wide spectrum of ill health
The concept that gluten causes so much sickness to so many people has only been recognized over the last decade. To date, the problem of gluten-sensitivity has not been widely documented. However, the concept of a range of “Gluten-related disorders” has now been put forward and this idea is gaining momentum. The prime reason for the lack of awareness of gluten-harm is because the range of symptoms caused by gluten is so wide. It is a condition that most of the medical world has been unaware of. These people are often sick, tired and grumpy! They are tired and lack energy.
2) One in ten of the population is gluten-sensitive
Up until recently, a gluten-free diet had been medically restricted to people the diagnosis of celiac disease (also previously known as gluten-sensitive enteropathy). However, celiac disease is now recognized to be just a small part of the spectrum of gluten disorders. Celiac disease is estimated to affect about 1-in-100 people. By contrast, accumulating data indicates that gluten-sensitivity affects at least ten times this number: alarmingly, this means that 1-in-10 adults and children are being harmed by gluten. If all of these people can be identified and put on a gluten-free diet, then their wellbeing would be hugely improved.
3) Diagnosis by Anti-gliadin antibodies (AGA)
The spectrum of illness and disease that gluten causes is so wide that it is hard to believe. I think that this is the main reason for skepticism. Also, gluten is such an integral part of our western diet that few people are willing to give it up to improve their health. Therefore, until reliable blood tests are available, it will be impossible to confirm that all of these symptoms could be a consequence of adverse reactions to gluten.
However, the Anti-Gliadin Antibody (AGA) test, also called the IgG-gliadin antibody test, is a specific test for gluten-sensitivity. But it has a low sensitivity (meaning that if you have a negative test, then it does not rule out a gluten health problem). More accurate tests are currently under development, but it will take many years for widespread adoption and confidence in these new tests.
4) Evidence that going gluten-free helps so many people
My book “Gluten-related disorder: sick? tired? grumpy?” has been written by the children and parents who have been adversely affected by gluten. They tell about their experiences in their own words. Their stories have not been modified in any way (other than minor editorial changes). This is a book full of hope and amazing life changes. By telling their stories, these children were excited to be given the chance to make a difference to someone else who was also experiencing their problems.
5) Whole families can be affected
Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired? Are you irritable and grumpy? There are a number of stories about whole families. Gluten might affect every family member, but in different ways. Any ongoing health problems should be investigated to see if gluten is the culprit. Gluten-sensitivity is a gigantic health problem.
6) You can’t tell unless you test
The idea of testing everyone with chronic symptoms for gluten intolerance/ celiac disease is new. Symptoms from gluten-sensitivity are wide-ranging. From my work, it seems that almost any chronic symptoms can be caused by gluten. This means that it is difficult for you to know if your symptoms are caused by gluten until you get tested for it. So, it is very important to get tested. It is also very important that any previously underlying celiac disease is discovered. A strong recommendation is “do not go gluten-free until you get your blood tests”.
7) Elimination and challenge
Despite the availability of blood tests for gluten sensitivity, the only real way to find out if gluten is causing you symptoms is to completely eliminate gluten from your diet for three months or more, and see if you get better. And then reintroduce it back into your diet to see if you relapse. The problem with this approach is that it is difficult to be committed to a strict gluten-free diet without the evidence of an abnormal test result.
8) The importance of ZERO gluten
How strict should your gluten free diet be? I recommend gluten ZERO. Even tiny amounts of gluten can trigger illness. It is also likely that the antibodies that your immune system generates against gluten are harmful, particularly to the brain and nerves. Currently, with FDA ** commercial enterprises are accepting a definition of gluten-free of less than 20 ppm. This is a commercial compromise, which will not serve the community well in the long run.
9) It is not “normal” to be sick
We are so often told that our symptoms are within “normal” limits. The parents telling about their experiences say they felt fobbed off. They felt that their concerns were not being taken seriously. Unfortunately, many medical practitioners consider grumpy, rundown children, who have tummy pains, to be “normal”. These people had often struggled for years for an answer. Calling sick children “normal” is not helpful. Categorizing a whole list of common childhood ailments as “normal” denies them any treatment. The labeling of children’s behavior disturbances and their learning problems as “normal behavior” is a disservice to their family.
10) New nomenclature
The concept of being gluten-sensitive is still a new idea. This is also the view of group who wrote the paper “Spectrum of gluten-related disorders: consensus of new nomenclature and classification” (Fasano et al). Although this nomenclature is new, the disease is old. One of the problems is to find an adequate name to describe gluten sensitivity. To adequately investigate this problem in the medical research arena, a stringent definition is needed. However, in day-to-day medical practice, all that is needed is an awareness that gluten can cause significant harm to your health, and after appropriate testing, a trial of gluten-free can be offered.
Gluten-related disorder: sick? tired? grumpy?
The Kindle ebook version can be viewed at this link: http://www.GlutenRelatedDisorder.com
by Rodney Ford