The reaction of gluten proteins in the gut creates a substance called gliadomorphin. This morphine-like compound causes you to become physically addicted to the gluten that is creating so many problems! This is the reason why you crave carbohydrates. You actually become “addicted” to them much the way an alcoholic becomes addicted to alcohol!
Specific cells lining the intestinal tract create enzymes to digest food and these, too, are damaged in this process. If you can’t secrete the enzyme lactase, lactose can no longer be digested and you become intolerant to milk as well!
And to top it off, the undigested dairy protein, called casein, reacts in your gut to make ANOTHER morphine-like substance called caseomorphin. So you become intolerant and addicted to dairy as well!!
So, at this point, if gluten sensitivity is left untreated, you will crave wheat, milk and sugar - exactly the foods that are the worst for you!!
The above basically describes me to a T. I’m pretty sure I’m intolerant of casein as well – I had a test done long ago that suggested it. I certainly crave dairy, despite my intolerance, and use lactase supplements to allow me to eat it often but do nothing about the effects of the casein in milk. I also tend to crave “comfort food”, which to me is generally carb-tastic like cereal and pasta.
While looking through a list of possible symptoms of gluten intolerance, I see that I have a few including:
- acid reflux (that was markedly better when “dieting” in the past, when I often curtailed my carbs in an effort to cut calories),
- psoriasis on my scalp,
- lower digestive issues (fun TMI!),
- fatigue (or general “laziness” when put through a judgmental filter in my head),
- mood swings, and
- hello! weight gain.
Sure, many of these things could be completely unrelated and attributable to other things. But I can’t ignore the fact that this is a real possibility. I owe it to myself to put my big girl pants on and try a gluten free diet for awhile to see if things improve. I’m not too fearful of trying this out, mostly because I try to eat a varied diet anyway so I’m already familiar with many of the alternatives to wheat products that are out there. I’m more hopeful that this change might actually help me feel better, which would make it worth it.