Or is is wheat-sensitivity? Or maybe FODMAPs? Here we go again. This time experts are trying to see if NCGS is really histamine intolerance. My previous post showed them trying to see if it was wheat or FODMAPs.
Non-celiac gluten sensitivity: people without celiac disease avoiding gluten-is it due to histamine intolerance?
I love the way they describe NCGSs as ‘the so-called people without celiac disease avoiding gluten‘. I sort of get what they’re saying, but it does sound very dismissive, doesn’t it?! I did chunter at that a bit! I do get the impression that people just don’t really want it to be gluten, don’t you? There is a definite flavour of people trying to find little boxes to put us in! I can see why – NCGS is a new condition and it may well be masquerading as something else. Certainly NCGS and histamine intolerance do tend to show up together, but my experience so far is that it is never ‘just gluten’ or ‘just histamine’. Or just FODMAPS actually.
I think NCGS is a gluten related disorder which involves hypersensitivity of various kinds, so you see people with early stage issues which might just be gluten or even just wheat, but as the thing progresses, you start to see oxalate sensitivity, histamine sensitivity, nightshade sensitivity and on it goes. Giving up histamine – or oxalates or salicylates or whatever – is bound to help some people and it might only be a histamine intolerance problem in some, of course. Not that that is easy itself to deal with.
The key message, though, instead of trying to work out which sensitivity it is, is why are we sensitive in the first place? Histamine sensitivity doesn’t just come out of nowhere, does it – unless you happen to be one of the people who has a simple case of low DAO – and wouldn’t that make life easy?!
As with all sensitivities, the cause is usually multifactorial and triggered by something. It could be a leaky gut or an immune dysregulation triggered by the most common denominator of those things – gluten. It might not be, but I would always be looking at gluten as a likely trigger given what we know about it now. The other thing I’d be looking at is stress as a major trigger. Often the two triggers go hand in hand. If we did have a case of histamine intolerance, I would look at the DAO level as an easy symptom release, but I would want to know what caused it in the first place and I’d be looking further.
I’m not sure this trying to stick people in little sensitivity boxes is really helping, although I do understand why people try – anything for an easier life and less food avoidance. Or the cynical me wonders if the food manufacturers are getting really worried about the gluten free trend and are funding research!
In short: yes some NCGSs will be histamine-intolerants, others will be oxalate-intolerants, still others FODMAP-sensitives, but why? What triggered it? Look to gluten and stress as the two most obvious ones. And treat for hypersensitivity, leaky gut, immune dysregulation, whatever little box you are in. This is precisely why I spent all that time writing the Gluten Plan and the Healing Plan – to address the underlying causes rather than have us avoid more and more food types.
OK, chunter over 😉