First up - What is Gluten?
Gluten, the protein found in barley, wheat and rye.
It is estimated that 99% of the people who have either gluten intolerance or celiac disease are never diagnosed.
A gluten intolerance can leave you with a number of different symptoms:
- Digestive issues such as gas, bloating, diarrhea and even constipation.
- Keratosis Pilaris, (also known as 'chicken skin' on the back of your arms). This is as a result of fatty acid deficiency and vitamin A deficiency secondary to fat-malabsorption caused by gluten damaging the gut.
- Fatigue, brain fog or tiredness after eating a meal that contains gluten.
- Neurologic symptoms such as dizziness or feeling of being off balance.
- Hormone imbalances such as PMS, PCOS or unexplained infertility.
- Migraine headaches.
- Diagnosis of chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia. These diagnoses simply indicate your conventional doctor cannot pin point the cause of your fatigue or pain.
- Inflammation, swelling or pain in your joints such as fingers, knees or hips.
- Mood issues such as anxiety, depression, and mood swings.
As well as all of this - a Gluten intolerance can also cause:
Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) which is an itchy, blistering, burning skin rash,
The rash and itching occurs on the elbows, knees, scalp, back, and buttocks.
This rash indicates gluten intolerance, which may be related to a more serious underlying condition known as Celiac or Coeliac disease.
Some people who have Celiac or Coeliac disease also experience Alopecia Areata (Autoimmune hair loss). This condition affects both men and women and manifests itself as circular balding patches over the head.
Other forms of autoimmune hair loss can cause total baldness and
in even more severe cases, can lead to total body hair loss.
I have found a case study below illustrating the connection between celiac disease and autoimmune alopecia:
The doctor writes:
"A patient with coeliac disease presenting alopecia areas as the only symptom is described. Alopecia disappeared completely after a few months of strict gluten free diet and reappeared after an unintentional prolonged introduction of gluten. After a severe gluten free diet, a new and persistent hair growth in the alopecia areas was observed. The possibility of a direct relationship in some cases, between Coeliac Disease and Alopecia Areata is confirmed”.
How can I test for gluten intolerance?
My advice would be - speak to your doctor, ask to speak to a nutritionist - explain your symptoms
If you have an issue with gluten is to eliminate it from your diet for at least 2 to 3 weeks and then reintroduce it.
It’s important to remember that gluten is a very large protein and it can take months and or even years to clear from your system so the longer you can eliminate it from your diet before reintroducing it, the better.
Fortunately, following a gluten-free diet can help restore any hair you may have lost while undiagnosed or still eating gluten.
Just to point out - It Really Works Vitamins are gluten free - we’re suitable for Vegans. and if you don't have thicker, healthier hair within 90 days, we refund you. Simple.