According to gluten.org, 1 in 100 people has gluten sensitivity. Gluten sensitivity is not ageist. Gluten intolerance in children can be diagnosed as early as six months old! But with a lot of marketing surrounding "gluten-free," it can be hard to separate the hysteria from the facts.
But if you suspect your child is having health problems, it's smart to consider every possibility. Here are some of the core symptoms of gluten intolerance in children.
Gluten intolerance, celiac disease, and wheat allergy are often lumped together, but they are each very different things. It's important to understand the differences between them to be able to understand how diagnosis works. It is also key to approaching treatment and adapting to a new lifestyle.
Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease, where gluten can be potentially fatal. A wheat allergy, while similar to Celiac Disease is not an autoimmune disease, but an allergy. Just like people have allergies to nuts, fish and other foods, they can be allergic to wheat too, in varying degrees of intensity.
A gluten intolerance, though incredibly painful and disorienting, is not a life-threatening issue. It's simply defined as a child's body having an intolerance to digesting gluten. Unlike a gluten allergy or Celiac disease, gluten intolerance is caused by a child's body having difficulty digesting the proteins found in gluten. In short, a gluten intolerance solely involves the digestive system, whereas the other issues involve the immune system also.
Does your child suffer from blotchy, irritated skin that ointment or medication seems to fix? The problem could be gluten. One of the biggest tell-tale signs of gluten intolerance is skin issues that don't seem to improve with treatment. From eczema to psoriasis, gluten can wreak havoc on the skin. But how does it happen? Research points to the idea that the inflammation that starts in a child's gut, moves outward to the rest of the body, including the skin.
Gluten can also impact hormone levels, which can cause acne. There are two reasons for this. One is believed to be caused by the bloodstream's response to unwanted gluten proteins in the bloodstream. Because people with gluten intolerances cannot absorb all of the proteins in their digestive tract, they are often released into the bloodstream too.
Another reason a gluten intolerance can cause acne is because of the release of toxins from the intestines into the rest of the body when a gluten intolerant person eats gluten. This is due to the cracks in the intestinal lining created by gluten in gluten intolerant people.