One of the most common treatable factors that we see affecting our patients with chronic pain is non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS). These folks test negative for celiac disease, but they have health problems that go away when they are on a strict gluten-free diet … and return when they eat gluten, even in trace amounts. While there has been very limited scientific research to explain this phenomenon, it is very obvious to every single provider who has used it with their patients that NCGS is very real and very important. I have personally observed improvements in joint pains, muscle aches, fatigue, depression, anxiety, asthma, eczema, thyroid problems, obesity, diabetes, blood pressure, memory, sleep and many autoimmune diseases in patients who have gone gluten-free.
This study provides evidence that people with NCGS have a leakier gut than those without it. It comes as no surprise to me, but it should help keep the skeptics quiet for awhile. I have long believed that true innovation in healthcare has and always will begin with forward-thinking doctors and patients who are willing to try new things and observe the results. It is unfortunate that it has taken a global juggernaut and a multi-billion dollar industry to stimulate this kind of research. There are dozens of other important ‘discoveries’ that are being used by integrative practitioners and these need to be validated by good science. Smart researchers should pay more attention to what these doctors are doing, because there are many breakthroughs that are waiting to be made.
A nice article on the study is here: http://newsroom.cumc.columbia.edu/blog/2016/07/26/columbia-researchers-find-biological-explanation-wheat-sensitivity-2/
How to heal a leaky gut? There are many ways. The short answer is to see an integrative practitioner.