For people suffering from Celiac disease or gluten intolerance, a gluten-free lifestyle is a necessary prescription. In order to develop an understanding of the differences among Celiac disease, gluten intolerance, and wheat allergy, this information is provided.
Gluten provides an elasticity and glue-like capacity to hold flour products together and provide them with a chewy texture. Gluten exists in the grass-like grains wheat, barley, rye, kamut and spelt.
Adapting a gluten-free diet requires more than just removing wheat products from your lifestyle. Gluten can often be found in sauces, flavorings, flavor enhancers and even as a binder or filler in vitamins and supplements.
Three categories are used to separate and describe gluten intolerance: (1) Celiac disease, (2) Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity and (3) wheat allergy. A wheat allergy is not gluten intolerance technically, but it is listed here since the terms are often used interchangeably and create confusion.
(1) Celiac disease occurs when the proteins in gluten trigger the immune system to overreact with strong antibodies. These antibodies wear down little hairs, called villi, that line the walls of your intestine over time. Villi also absorb nutrients as foods pass through the lower digestive tract. The body becomes less able to process any nutrition from food as celiac disease progresses.
(2) Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity (NCGS) is more difficult to pinpoint. The symptoms for individuals who suffer from NCGS are similar to people with Celiac disease, but the blood test which identifies and diagnoses Celiac disease returns as negative. NCGS is only able to be diagnosed through a gluten-free diet.
(3) Wheat allergy symptoms are different than gluten intolerance or Celiac disease, but some refer to them as gluten allergy symptoms. Wheat allergies are very similar to a peanut allergy or hay fever in which there is a histamine response to wheat. A variety of ways exists in which wheat allergies can manifest themselves for different people. Some people experience stomach pain while others might experience hives.
No, they are two different responses in the body. Although Celiac disease occurs as a reaction to a protein in wheat, it is not a wheat allergy. A wheat allergy is considered a traditional allergy in which the body develops antibodies to an allergen. An individual can have a wheat allergy and not have Celiac disease (or gluten intolerance), and vice versa.
Time also plays a factor in the difference between gluten intolerances and wheat allergies. Symptoms of a wheat allergy will manifest themselves more like a typical allergy - quickly and with a single exposure. Gluten intolerance symptoms in most cases will be systemic and a result of consuming gluten over a period of time. Symptoms of a wheat allergy will manifest themselves more like a typical allergy - quickly and with a single exposure.
Please do not mistake the information here for medical advice. Always consult a medical professional for a thorough and professional analysis. New packaging for Spangler Candy will have information and symbols noting our products are free of the top common allergens. While gluten is included in this listing, we show wheat and gluten separately due to the differences as explained above. Please see further information on re-bagged items.
Purchase gluten-free Saf-T-Pops online.
(1) gluten-intolerance-symptoms.com, 2011.