This post took me a few days to do the research, and here it is! I know you’ve all been waiting. I am not a doctor, nor do I have any medical training; my posts are based on research and personal experience.
Hashimoto’s Disease is a type of hypothyroidism where the thyroid function is reduced. It was one of the first autoimmune diseases ever discovered, and it was discovered by Hakaru Hashimoto in 1912. Blood tests can be done to see if you have it, although it is often misdiagnosed as depression, PMS, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, or an anxiety disorder. These tests haven’t really evolved yet. The only way it really shows concern in a blood test is when it’s in an advanced stage. Stool analysis is said to be a much more sensitive test in it’s ability to detect a problem. Dr. Kenneth Fine used this method and concluded that 35% of Americans are gluten intolerant, that’s 1 in 3! A horrible statistic for a country where refined flour is consumed in huge amounts.
The tie between gluten and Hashimoto’s is this…”the molecular structure of gliadin, which is the main protein of gluten, closely resembles that of the thyroid gland.” So when you eat gluten, it permeates your intestines and leaks into your gut. The immune system then goes into defense mode and attacks it. If you suffer from a thyroid disease and you consume foods with gluten, your immune system will attack the gluten and your thyroid. The consumption of any gluten can lead to a 6 month long attack on your thyroid! It will be more than necessary to eliminate gluten 100%.
Celiac disease and gluten intolerance are undetected quite often. There is a huge misunderstanding as to what these issues actually do to the body. It’s more than just a digestive issue. In previous posts I address other issues that gluten intolerance can cause. Based on personal experience, I believe that we would all be better off going Paleo, or completely gluten free, at the very least. Try it for 30 days. Eliminate as much as you can: gluten, dairy, grains, legumes, processed foods. After the 30 days you can start reintroducing things and see where you stand.
Beware! A lot of products contain hidden gluten. Do your research and be pro active when food shopping or going out to eat.
Here’s a few examples:
- Soy sauce – fermented wheat
- Sauces and soups – often thickened with flour
- Condiments – gluten is used as a stabilizer and thickener
- Asian food – sauces contain gluten
- Licorice – contains wheat (there are gluten free options)
- Seitan or “fake” meat products – contain wheat protein – seitan is pure gluten
- Vegan cheese – many contain gluten
- Oats – naturally gluten free, but more often than not, cross contaminated
- Barley and malt – sweetener in chocolate, carob, candy, coolers, and hard lemonade
I read that wheat flour can actually stay in the air for up to 24 hours. It is recommended that you should be careful when using shared kitchen utensils and appliances. Also, wooden cutting boards are porous and the gluten can actually get trapped! Terrible for someone who may suffer greatly from consuming even the smallest amount of gluten.
Read your labels, ask your questions, and use logic! At first, your transition to gluten free or paleo may be rough, but stick with it! You will eventually be more aware of the benefits of not eating gluten. Feel empowered by the food choices you make. They are good for you and make you feel good!
Paleo was, and still is, one of the fairest choices I’ve made for my body. I know some people can’t conform to saying they have gone Paleo, but you can just consider it – morally, ethically, spiritually, physically, positively, absolutely, undeniably and reliably (name that movie!) – 100% gluten free!!
“You can’t out-exercise a bad diet.”