5 Gluten Intolerance Symptoms to Look out for
It started with the phrase “I just don’t feel right.” While many people ignore what their bodies are telling them, it is important to listen to your body as most of the time it will give you a sign or symptom if something is not functioning at an optimal level.
This advice holds true for those who suffer from a gluten intolerance as well. It is good to note that you may hear the terminology “gluten allergy” used as well, but the correct terminology to describe gluten sensitivity is intolerance.
Symptoms of gluten intolerance
Gluten is a protein found in foods that are processed from wheat, rye and other similar types of grains, which means that after eating these grains you will likely experience some of the following symptoms. If you experience any of the following five symptoms, gluten may be the culprit.
1. Migraine headaches
While the relationship between gluten intolerance and migraine headaches are still murky, there is evidence to suggest that a connection exists. Many individuals report that after starting a gluten elimination diet, their headaches subside in the following days and weeks.
Your migraine headaches may or may not be related to a gluten intolerance, but if you are experiencing mild to severe migraines, it is important to see a doctor that will take an integrative approach and focus on fixing the root problem, not just masking the symptoms.
2. Dizziness or brain fog
Do you have moments where you are dizzy, or maybe just not thinking clearly after eating a meal? Dizziness and brain fog are classic signs that you may have a gluten intolerance. Often times, brain fog is described by our patients as a “lack of clarity.” Brain fog is quite common, but is not yet a recognized health condition. However, that should not stop you from seeking treatment.
3. Chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia
In many cases, traditional doctors will diagnose and treat a patient with chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia because that’s about as far as they can take it. At Progressive Medical Center, we know that your chronic fatigue is likely caused by an underlying issue and that cause may or may not be gluten-related.
However, a large number of people who eventually discover they are gluten intolerant often express that they are always tired and can never get enough sleep. A lot of patients that experience chronic fatigue will also experience mental fatigue or brain fog as mentioned earlier.
4. Digestive issues
Some of the most common symptoms associated with gluten intolerance are a variety of digestive symptoms including excessive gas and bloating, constipation, and frequent diarrhea. If you find yourself with an upset stomach frequently after eating foods that contain gluten, then try a gluten-free diet for a few weeks and see if that helps your condition.
If you find that you are feeling much better, then it may be time to say bye-bye to foods containing gluten for good.
5. Swelling or inflammation in your joints
While there are a myriad of reasons a person could be suffering from stiff or swollen joints, gluten is a possible culprit. If you find yourself experiencing frequent inflammation, especially in your hands and fingers, then you may have a gluten intolerance.
Testing for gluten intolerance
The best way to discover whether or not you have a gluten intolerance is to simply give up all foods containing gluten for several weeks. If during this time you find yourself feeling much better and the symptoms described subside drastically, then a gluten-free diet moving forward may be the right solution for you.
However, it is also important to note that many of the issues above can have more serious underlying causes, which is why you should never ignore what your body is telling you. We encourage you to call your physician if you are experiencing any of the above symptoms.