How to Determine if You Are Allergic to Wheat
Wheat is an ingredient that is found in a wide variety of foods. Many of these are not so obvious; for example, baked beans, soup bases, mustard, salad dressing, and many other foods contain wheat.
The ubiquitous nature of wheat as an obvious and hidden ingredient in the modern diet has led many people to realise that they have wheat intolerance or allergy to wheat.
Proteins in wheat, such as gluten, cannot be processed properly when consumed by individuals with wheat allergies. There are varying degrees of wheat intolerance. For instance, people with Coeliac disease experience intestinal inflammation or damage after consuming wheat products. Those with gluten sensitivities will not experience such severe symptoms, but may have reactions such as skin rashes or digestive upset after eating food that contains wheat.
If you are experiencing unpleasant symptoms after eating a meal and suspect that you may have an intolerance or allergy to wheat, it is worth investigating further so that you can eliminate these symptoms and, if necessary, prevent the long-term consequences of eating wheat.
Begin by writing down your typical dietary habits. Do you tend to consume a significant amount of wheat? If so, eliminate wheat products from your diet for at least two weeks. There are plenty of gluten-free, wheat-free products on the market these days that will ensure that you maintain your health while experimenting with a wheat-free diet.
After staying away from all wheat products for two weeks, consume about one cup’s worth of 100% whole wheat product such as whole wheat spaghetti (important note: people with severe allergic reactions to wheat should not go back to consuming wheat products). Then, go back to your wheat-free diet. In the following days, be aware of any symptoms returning. If symptoms return, it is likely that you do have some level of intolerance to wheat. If not, another area of your diet or another underlying cause may be the culprit of your symptoms.
If you have questions about wheat intolerance contact your local doctor, who will arrange for you to see a dietitian and nutritionist.