gluten is composed of gliadin and glutenin. It has long been believed that only the gliadin portion is responsible for gluten sensitivity. According to a study published in the European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology (2006), “it is highly probable that the glutenin proteins are toxic.” In other words, laboratories are only testing for half of the potentially immune-reactive components of gluten. And for the half that they do test (gliadin), only one-quarter of it is being measured (alpha gliadin).
Gluteomorphins: Are You an Addict?
Many people who go gluten-free claim that the diet actually makes them feel worse. This can be quite baffling if one is unfamiliar with gluteomorphins. Common in autistic children, gluteomorphins are opiod peptides formed during the digestion of the gliadin component of the gluten protein (3). For these folks, getting off of gluten can be like kicking a cocaine habit!
The discontinuance of any addictive substance will result in a period of withdrawal lasting a few days to several weeks. In the case of gluteomorphin withdrawal, symptoms can include neurochemical imbalances, altered mood, and gastrointestinal distress. Yes, gluten can be a drug.
An individual whose immune system is making antibodies to gluteomorphins will have a much tougher time in the early phases of a gluten-free diet.
Traditional gluten testing does not look for gluteomorphin antibodies.