Coeliac Disease Cure Concerns - Drugs and More
Current Gluten Free Status of Society
In today's society, many people are developing digestive, skin and even neurological problems upon ingestion of foods containing gluten. A number of these individuals who react violently to this 'addictive' protein (found in wheat, rye, barley and oats) suffer from a condition known as celiac disease (spelled as coeliac in English outside of North American civilisation). This is a condition where CD4+T cells are activated whenever gluten is present in the body. These particular cells (when activated) cause a number of problems. These include major damage (flattening and/or inflammation) to the lining of the small bowel; moderate skin problems (such as eczema), and even neurological disorders in some cases.
As approximately 1 in 100 people have coeliac disease (with at least 1 in 10 having a gluten problem (according to Dr. Rodney Ford)), the number of people excluding gluten from their diets has dramatically increased in the last few decades. Foods that are marked as 'gluten free' (i.e. containing <20ppm gluten in North America and Europe and 'no detectable gluten, according to the most sensitive assay' in Australia) have appeared in almost every western supermarket. While many of these foods provide a safe alternative to wheat-based products (bread, pasta, cakes, cookies, crackers, etc.), the quality, taste and value of these products is often inferior to that of the 'normal shelf versions of these item(s)'. While most of us can easily get by with these foods (as some of us have done for many years), sometimes a croissant or a danish pastry looks so good that it can be hard for some to resist the temptation. For many with coeliac disease, eating out can be a nightmare due to cross-contamination as even 0.6 milligrams (approximately the size of 1/100th of a single unshelled peanut) of gluten that is ingested on a daily basis has been shown to elevate gluten antibody levels.
In recent times, partly as a result of the above but also due to much consumer demand, it seems as though much research is taking place as to how various drugs may be able to be used to "aid or replace" the gluten free diet. Some of the possibilities to aid the gluten free diet that have been outlined on a recent post by the Gluten Free Family include parasites, zonulin blockers, enzymes and of course, a significant development that (may even become a replacement for the gluten free diet) is under development by ImmusanT, a biotechnological company based in Boston, Massachusetts, the coeliac vaccine.
Along with this, however, there seem to be some other "natural" solutions that may "appear" to replace the gluten free diet. Personally, I do not recommend any of these methods to any readers on this page as virtually no evidence exists to support the use of any such products for the treatment of coeliac disease. For the purposes of interest, however, I thought I'd share some findings that both myself and a friend of mine have recently discovered.
Below are 3 scenarios that could be successful in treating celiac disease:
1. Raffael's Mind Power
Based on a topic posted back in September, 2006, it appears as though a woman in Australia who travelled from Melbourne to Sydney to see "Miracle man" Raffael (who was on a visit to Australia from Armenia) was cured of celiac disease. Many say that he "heals" with his "mind power". It is claimed that after her six sessions with this man, she was cured from her celiac condition - or so we're told...
A video was posted on YouTube by her father (pictured right) following the event. Personally I do not recall any mentioning of testing that had been done following this therapy and I would say that even if damage was not occurring at this stage, it is extremely likely that a relapse will occur in future. As coeliac disease is a serious autoimmune condition, it is therefore paramount that the only known safe and effective treatment for celiac disease (i.e. a gluten free diet) is followed at all times.
2. Dr. Naram's Ancient Secrets
Having heard many reviews about Dr. Pankaj Naram, I personally thought it would be worthwhile to investigate who he as and what he does, as he appears to have helped many people through his mastery of Ancient Secrets. His website has further information on how he can help. Many of the reviews seem to have been very good, and from the videos I've watched (pictured right), his heart really does seem to be in the right place.
He also has a Facebook Page, as mentioned in his "Facebook Thank You", minute-long video.
Apart from the short 30-second "celiac cure" testimonial video below the aforementioned "Facebook Thank You" one, I couldn't find a great deal of information on how Dr. Pankaj Naram has "cured" individuals from celiac disease. While of course it does seem as if he has helped many people through times of trial and bitter frustration, somehow I also believe that celiac disease (being autoimmune) is a very different issue altogether. It also seems as though there is very little evidence to support his claims.
I have submitted enquiries to his website, but have yet to hear back so there may also be something very fishy going on. To be fair, however, it may be due to the fact that he's quite a busy man as well. Until he has some data to show how those with celiac disease have been able to safely consume gluten, however, I would not recommend his method to others. It also seems as though the interviewee in the testimonial video has little idea of how inconclusive some of these test results actually are in reality. On the other hand, it does appear as though he has treated this young man's condition with medicine - something I believe is more likely to work than "mind power", as mentioned in the previous scenario.
It is wise to be wary!
3. Dr. Wise's Gluten Relief
And of course, speaking of being wise (pun intended ;)), The Gluten Free, Soy Free Australia blog recently made a post on a particular homeopathic remedy that she'd heard of on YouTube - "Dr. Wise's Gluten Relief". It appears to be manufactured by J&L Health - The Wise Alternative. Upon her discovery, I was immediately notified as were many of her friends and followers. In this video (pictured right) Dr. Block discusses gluten intolerance and introduces the product, "Intestinal Calm", the former name of this particular so-called 'solution'. The product was developed by Dr. Jack Wise, based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, using natural products to treat people who have had gluten problems.
While the price tag is steep at over $130 per bottle,
Here is the official statement regarding the product. In addition, it may be wise to read Dr. Rodney Ford's stance on the matter. I encourage you to make your own judgement. Personally, I myself remain somewhat wary of something that a company is trying to sell - especially a homeopathic product that has no approval by Food and Drug Administrations or National Health Services. I also believe that more testing needs to be done, particularly with IgA, IgG, tTG & DGP levels along with regular biopsies both before and after on a variety of patients. That been said, I personally know people in the US who have used EnteroLab's stool testing services and many who had a negative biopsy as well as inconclusive blood tests have had a positive result using this method. The lack of literature provided by the director of EnteroLab, Dr. Kenneth Fine, does concern me.
On the other hand, many have given their testimonials to the site and seem to have been able to eat whatever their heart desires. So it simply comes down to personal choice at the end of the day. I'd say if one is happy following the gluten free diet, it is probably best to continue doing so. However for others who are having a hard time coping with the harsh realities of a gluten free lifestyle perhaps this may be an answer to a dream.
To conclude, all I can say is "each to their own". Anything that changes the way in which one's immune system reacts to an 'antigen' is dicey business. While I wouldn't particularly recommend tackling any of the 3 scenarios, if I had to choose between them it would probably have to be the third. Who knows, perhaps Dr. Wise's Gluten Relief may be a very wise solution to gluten intolerance. Maybe not. It is up to us as coeliacs to investigate this information for ourselves to determine whether any of these solutions may be right for our needs.