If It’s Not Gluten Per Se, Might It Be the ATIs in Grains?

grain iconFascinating studies starting to come out about different non-gluten proteins possibly being (one of) the causes or at least exacerbators of gluten related disorders.

The latest suggests that ATIs (amylase-trypsin inhibitors) – the stuff we’ve known for yonks block effective absorption – may yet turn out to be a major cause of NCGS (non coeliac gluten sensitivity). It may not (just) be the gluten in other words.

They found the ATIs in wheat (and possibly other grains):

can lead to the development of inflammation in tissues beyond the gut, including the lymph nodes, kidneys, spleen and brain. Evidence suggests that ATIs can worsen the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, asthma, lupus and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, as well as inflammatory bowel disease….

…Further to inflaming chronic health conditions outside of the bowel, ATIs may contribute to the development on non-coeliac gluten sensitivity.

Interestingly, they also pointed out that these ATIs are present in commercial gluten products:

we demonstrated that ATIs from wheat, that are also contaminating commercial gluten, activate specific types of immune cells in the gut and other tissues..

Anyway, it’s good that we’ve actually got some studies going on (and being paid for!), but this is not exactly news. There have been many murmurings about ATI being the initial trigger for wheat sensitivity and coeliac disease for years. One interesting article I read was this one, written actually in 2014:

Celiac, Gluten and Trypsin Inhibitor

And this study was done in 2012:

Wheat amylase trypsin inhibitors drive intestinal inflammation via activation of toll-like receptor 4

They even end by saying:

Moreover, ATIs may fuel inflammation and immune reactions in other intestinal and nonintestinal immune disorders.

I feel the coming-on of a ‘gluten related disorders SYNDROME don’t you, where there are multiple factors and triggers causing an inflammatory and immunological reaction in the body? I would also not be surprised to find the same protein in the other grains has the same effect (it’s just that they’ve studied wheat here) and that they are cross-reactive, which could be a reason for why we need TGF (grain and dairy free) rather than traditional gluten free in NCGS sufferers and non-healing coeliacs.

The thick plottens…Have a read here of the report anyway:

New study links protein in wheat to the inflammation of chronic health conditions

Conclusion: lower/remove the inflammatory triggers, repair the barriers and support the immune system and health generally. See the Gluten Plan here.

2 Replies to “If It’s Not Gluten Per Se, Might It Be the ATIs in Grains?”

  1. Very interesting. I wonder if the ATI’s are what the Weston A Price Foundation are talking about when they say it is important to soak nuts and seeds in order to start the sprouting process and detoxify the plant enzymes which are there to protect the seed. I wonder if soaking would convert the ATI’s?

    1. I thought the same thing Terry, but was a bit confused between their use of the term ‘proteins’ in terms of the ATIs. I assume it does mean the same as or a different fraction of the enzymes, but I don’t know.

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