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Gluten and Brain

The scientific community is well aware that gluten can be toxic to the brain. Much of this and other gluten research continues to be from Europe so most doctors in the US are not up to speed on this excellent research. I will give a few examples in this brief essay. -A 2010 study in Denmark (Whitely et al) shows that a significant number of autistic kids show a measurable improvement on a gluten and casein free diet when compared to a control group. -A 2010 study in England (Hadjivassiliou et al) found antibodies to glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) in people with movement disorders that responded favorably to a gluten free diet. GAD converts glutamic acid to GABA or an powerful excitatory neurotransmitter to a powerful inhibitory neurotransmitter. -Hall et al report a case of dystonia in Colorado (2007) that showed complete remission after beginning a gluten free diet. -Hadjivassiliou remarks in a 2002 journal article that " It has taken nearly 2000 years to appreciate that a common dietary protein introduced to the human diet relatively late in evolutionary terms (some 10,000 years ago), can produce human disease not only of the gut but also the skin and the nervous system." - Mittelbronn et al report in a German 2010 published study on the strong relationship between ataxia, dementia, seizures and peripheral neuropathy and gluten sensitivity. -Zelnik in a 2004 Israel published article discusses the incidence of cerebellar ataxia, epilepsy, myoclonic ataxia, chronic neuropathies, and dementia in adults and children related to gluten. They also add that children as well as adults are also subject to increased learning disabilities and headaches from gluten.

Bottom line? Gluten is a potent poison. Diagnosis rate for these conditions is less than 1%. We hope this changes soon to eliminate needless suffering and disability due to a simple grain storage protein.