Gluten-Free Casein-Free Diet

An increasing number of adults and children with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are expressing food sensitivities to gluten, found in wheat products and casein, found in milk products. These two sensitivities create an inability for the body to digest large protein molecules. These partially digested protein molecules can take the shape of molecules similar to gliado morphine in the case of gluten and caseo morphine in the case of casein, creating a similar affect on the brain. Symptoms can include chronic inflammation, sluggishness, sleeplessness, an inability to concentrate and fatigue. By following a gluten-free, casein-free (GFCF) diet these large protein molecules will be eliminated, allowing the body to regain its equilibrium and alleviating the symptoms.

Many behavioral disorders and learning disabilities that special needs children are expressing can be directly linked to food sensitivities. Hyperactivity, tantrums, mood swings, and brain fog are all symptoms that can indicate gluten or casein intolerance. Infantile colic -- prolonged, inexplicable and inconsolable crying in infants -- can be caused by casein sensitivity.

Persons with Celiac disease, a genetic disease that damages the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from foods, have zero tolerance to gluten. Symptoms may or may not be present, and may include depression, anxiety, seizures, infertility, weight loss, constipation, and skin rashes. Left untreated, Celiac disease can lead to other health problems such as diabetes, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune liver and thyroid disorders, and Addison’s disease.

There are a few ways to determine if you are gluten or casein sensitive. One method that is useful, but not foolproof is a blood test. The “gold standard” for determining food sensitivities is the allergy elimination diet. The allergy elimination diet removes all possible foods from your diet that you may be allergic to for a period of time. After that time elapses, we reintroduce foods that you may be allergic to and look for reoccurrence of the symptoms that you have experienced, such as fatigue, bloating, headaches, diarrhea, constipation, brain fog, etc. Once sensitivities are identified, we can help get you on the path to optimal health by providing guidelines for implementing a specialized GFCF diet and teaching you how to maintain a GFCF lifestyle.

For further reading visit:

Celiac Sprue Associationhttp://www.csaceliacs.org/
Gluten-Free Societyhttp://www.glutenfreesociety.org/