Gluten refers to a composite of storage proteins known as glutelins and prolamins that are stored in the endosperm’s starch. This part of the plant functions to nourish it during germination. It is found in barley, wheat, rye, and other hybrids such as emmer, spelt, Khorasan, and more. Naturally, it can also be found in products made from these grains.
Gluten is appreciated for the elasticity it gives when flour is mixed into dough. It also helps the bread rise and retain its shape leaving the final product with a chewy texture. In some individuals, gluten can trigger an adverse autoimmune reaction resulting in celiac disease, gluten ataxia, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and dermatitis herpetiformis. Individuals with these issues are recommended to engage in a gluten-free diet.
Gluten intolerance, or gluten sensitivity, is a fairly common issue. It is estimated to affect approximately 0.5 to 13 percent of the population and may result in various issues.
Gluten Intolerance Sign #1: Abdominal Distension
Abdominal distension usually occurs when there is an excessive accumulation of substances, gas, or fluids in the abdomen causing its walls to expand. It can be a symptom of an underlying issue.
Affected individuals usually describe it as an increased pressure in the abdomen, bloating, nausea, pain, cramping, and a sensation of fullness. The distension may reduce when the individual belches or farts. Causes of abdominal distension include irritable bowel syndrome, food poisoning, gluten intolerance, lactose intolerance, and more.