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mom’s consumption of gluten leads to increased autoimmune type i diabetes in her children


Gluten Type I Diabetes

A few days ago the British Medical Journal published a study titled Association Between Maternal Gluten Intake and Type 1 Diabetes in Offspring: National Prospective Cohort Study in Denmark, in which Danish health authorities determined from looking at almost 68,000 pregnancies and following the offspring for an average of over 16 years (January 1996 to October 2002) that the more GLUTEN a woman consumed while pregnant, the greater the chances of her child developing the autoimmune disease, Type I Diabetes.  In fact, women who ate more than 20 grams a day were twice as likely to have children with T1D than women who consumed under 7 grams.

“Risk of type 1 diabetes in offspring increased proportionally with maternal gluten intake during pregnancy. Women with the highest gluten intake versus those with the lowest gluten intake had double the risk of type 1 diabetes development in their offspring. High gluten intake by mothers during pregnancy could increase the risk of their children developing type 1 diabetes.”

Firstly, we can’t be surprised by this on any level because it’s not news that if people become sensitive to gluten, where the immune system recognizes it as a foreign invader and starts mounting attacks against it (HERE); for reasons no one has completely figured out, this predisposes people to mounting immune system attacks against themselves, which is otherwise known as autoimmunity (HERE) — a fact found in peer review decades ago (HERE). 

Secondly, a simple Google search of Gluten Sensitivity Type I Diabetes provided almost 7 million hits.  For instance, a 2015 study from Nutrients (Central America in Transition: From Maize to Wheat Challenges and Opportunities) concluded that, “Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama are in transition from a dietary culture based mainly on maize to a wheat-containing diet. The change permits a prediction of an increase of celiac disease and other autoimmune diseases such as type I diabetes and thyroid disease.”  Allow me to give you two of a myriad of others.

  • “Long term exposure to gluten in celiacs, and celiac disease diagnosis after 16 years of age may induce type 1 diabetes (T1D) and other autoimmune disorders. Increased prevalence of celiac disease among diabetics and their relatives is well documented. Early introduction of gluten to children at high risk for T1D produces T1D associated islet autoantibodies. Similarly, in the absence of overt clinical symptoms of T1D, some celiac children produce diabetes autoantibodies in a gluten dependent manner.”  From a 2006 issue of Gut (Cryptic Gluten Intolerance in Type 1 Diabetes: Identifying Suitable Candidates for a Gluten Free Diet)
  • “Over the last five decades the association between coeliac disease and other autoimmune disorders such as autoimmune thyroid disease or diabetes mellitus type 1 has been well established through many studies and to this day is subject to on-going clinical and scientific investigation worldwide. While no link has been established between celiac disease and type-2 diabetes, coeliac disease is common in patients with type 1 diabetes. The improvement of symptoms in patients with both conditions through dietary intervention, in the form of a gluten free diet, has been widely described within the literature.”  From a 2014 issue of Gastroenterology and Hepatology: From Bed to Bench (Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus and Gluten Induced Disorders)

So, almost five years ago, these authors were saying that the known scientific link between autoimmunity (including T1D and THYROID DISEASE, 90% of which is autoimmune) and gluten was fifty years old.  And while much of the literature talks specifically about Celiac Disease as opposed to Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity, I would suggest you read THIS ARTICLE if you are interested in understanding the difference. 

Bottom line, not everyone is sensitive to gluten (protein in wheat and other similar GRAINS).  If, however, you are, it could mean serious problems (both autoimmune and NEUROLOGICAL) if you continue to consume it anyway.  It’s why an ELIMINATION DIET is so important for anyone with even the slightest inkling of a health problem.  If you know someone who could benefit, be sure and get this information in front of them.  Liking, sharing, or following on FACEBOOK makes it easy.


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