Brain Fog, Headaches, Migraines, Insomnia, and ADHDMany people with brain health issues like celiac disease as well as gluten sensitivity or intolerance understand the risks of consuming gluten. But, if they do eat gluten, many people report feeling that their brains “cloud up” and they feel less efficient, even clumsy. This brain health issue, known as brain fog, requires further research studies, however, it’s another common symptom associated with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity or intolerance. Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is yet another common brain health issue in both adults and children. Headaches and migraines are also commonly reported as celiac disease symptoms and gluten sensitivity or intolerance symptoms. These symptoms may ultimately cause insomnia.
Anxiety and DepressionResearch studies demonstrate that people with celiac disease experience anxiety and depression. People that don’t have celiac disease but who do have gluten sensitivity or intolerance also report experiencing anxiety and depression although the connection between the brain health issues is unknown. Researchers believe that gluten-related intestinal permeability, or leaky gut, may cause nutritional deficiencies that cause anxiety and depression. However, that doesn’t necessarily explain why people with non-celiac gluten sensitivity or intolerance also experience anxiety and depression. Several gluten sensitivity or intolerance experts like New Zealand pediatrician Dr. Rodney Ford have hypothesized that gluten directly affects the brain and leads to the development of these brain health issues. Regardless, you’re far from being alone if you experience gluten-related anxiety and depression symptoms.
Schizophrenia and Bipolar DisorderMany research studies suggest that gluten may be associated with two very severe brain health issues: schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. In schizophrenia, decades of research studies have shown that eliminating gluten from the diet of schizophrenics can help with the brain health issue. Research studies have ultimately demonstrated that a gluten-free diet can be beneficial for people with schizophrenia, but further research studies are needed. In bipolar disorder, research studies have shown that people with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity or intolerance may experience the brain health issue. A research study on the levels of antibodies to gluten in the blood of people with bipolar disorder found increased levels during a manic episode.
Autoimmune DiseaseWhen gluten consumption causes your own body to attack its own cells and tissues, you suffer from a gluten-related autoimmune disease. There are three common gluten-related autoimmune diseases: celiac disease, dermatitis herpetiformis, and gluten ataxia. In gluten ataxia, the immune system attacks the cerebellum, the region of the brain responsible for coordination. In many circumstances, the brain damage is irreversible, however, a strict gluten-free diet can help stop the progression of the autoimmune disease. Many people with gluten sensitivity or intolerance may also experience similar symptoms. Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity or intolerance can ultimately lead to a wide variety of brain health issues and neurological diseases. However, in many circumstances, people can tremendously reduce or even resolve their gluten-related brain health issue symptoms by following a strict gluten-free diet.
Gluten intolerance or sensitivity is described as the human body’s inability to digest or break down the gluten protein found in wheat and a variety of other grains. This health issue can ultimately range from a mild or moderate intolerance or sensitivity to full-blown celiac disease, a severe autoimmune disorder related to gluten intolerance or sensitivity. Additionally, research studies have demonstrated that people with gluten intolerances or sensitivities may also develop brain health issues or neurological diseases. Talking to a naturopathic doctor or functional medicine practitioner can help determine if you have a gluten intolerance or sensitivity. Avoiding gluten altogether can ultimately help improve your overall health and wellness. – Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T. Insight
Neurotransmitter Assessment FormThe following Neurotransmitter Assessment Form can be filled out and presented to Dr. Alex Jimenez. Symptoms listed on this form are not intended to be utilized as a diagnosis of any type of disease, condition, or any other type of health issue.
The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, and nervous health issues or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health protocols to treat injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.Curated by Dr. Alex Jimenez References:
- Anderson, Jane. “How Gluten Can Have a Damaging Effect on Your Brain and Nerves.” Verywell Health, Verywell Health, 20 Nov. 2019, http://www.verywellhealth.com/gluten-related-neurological-symptoms-and-conditions-562317.