Has the “G-word” begun to wear on you like it has for many of us? That’s right … gluten; the polarizing word that, in recent years, people either embrace, fear or roll their eyes at. While gluten has been discovered to be at the root of many health issues and discomfort for millions who suffer from celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS), some dismiss the condition as merely a trendy dietary avoidance. But while only about one percent of the American population has celiac disease, a whopping 21 percent include gluten-free foods in their diet (Gallup, 2015).
Why such a discrepancy? A gluten-free diet is imperative for those who have been medically diagnosed with celiac disease, but for those who have NCGS, it is also a prerequisite for a healthy lifestyle. At least 18 million Americans have gluten sensitivity; that’s six times the number of Americans who have celiac disease. This makes up some of the difference between those with celiac disease and the nearly one quarter of Americans who make attempts at eliminating gluten-containing foods from their diet.
In the last few years, a large group of individuals have chosen to “go gluten-free” due to some perceived symptoms like stomach issues, brain fog, and weight gain. Some other people simply link gluten to all things that are generally wrong with the standard American diet.
What if it’s not only gluten that is problematic for your system, but rather something else is to blame for your ongoing symptoms? Even with the Internet at our disposal for research and information, self-diagnosis and treatment of our health ailments is never a great idea.
One of the best ways to take the guesswork out and really know what’s going on is through physician-ordered testing. If you suspect you may have food sensitivities to gluten or other foods that you can’t pinpoint, Cyrex Laboratories, a clinical laboratory specializing in functional immunology and autoimmunity, offers advanced, innovative tests designed to detect food sensitivities and monitor autoimmune reactivities and their possible triggers. The Array 4 – Gluten-Associated Cross-Reactive Foods and Foods Sensitivity™ test is a comprehensive, gluten cross-reactivity, and common food immune-reactivity screening that would help you identify if you have immune reactions to foods that can mimic gluten.
For some people, going gluten-free can be life-changing, and for others it can be an unnecessary burden. Current laboratory technology allows us to test immune reactions to foods for individuals and help determine which foods need to be eliminated and which do not. We are in the era of individualized medicine and laboratories like Cyrex are paving the way to make this happen.
Dr. Chad Larson, NMD, DC, CCN, CSCS, Advisor and Consultant on the Clinical Consulting Team for Cyrex Laboratories. Dr. Larson holds a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine and a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Southern California University of Health Sciences. He is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. He particularly pursues advanced developments in the fields of endocrinology, orthopedics, sports medicine and environmentally-induced chronic disease.