Gluten causing leaky gut


I have read on several posts that Gluten can cause leaky gut, i.e. Gluten allows food particles to enter the blood stream, causing an immune reaction to those particles, which not only causes irritation and other immune response symptoms but can also create sensitivity to those types of foods going forwards.

I was wondering if there was any scientific evidence of this claim?

does anyone here have links to published articles etc that support this?

My brother -in-law has been having issues for years and his sensitivity to certain food stuffs has been tested and he has cut out a number of tings ( dairy, sunflower products,nuts etc) but not gluten, and I feel it might really benefit him to try going without Gluten for a while and then seeing if he can re-introduce some of the foods he has become sensitised to, it would make his life so much easier - however I would like some sort of scientific findings to offer him, and not just my opinion base on post I have read :-)

Hoping someone here can help.

Big Hugs,


6 Replies

  • Hi Mrs_S

    The research on this seems to have been done by Fasano. This article explains intestinal permeability and has references to other papers at the end. Problems with gut permeability have been linked to various medical issues.

    Have a look on PubMed for scientific research papers (although sometimes only a summary is available)

  • You can try Chris Kresser's website or She (Sarah Ballantyne) has a book called The Paleo Approach that goes through this with detail and lots of references.

  • Hi Mrs S, here's a link with a video where Dr Fasano and Dr Osborne discuss this:

    As Penel says it was Dr Fasano who discovered the link between gluten crossing the blood brain barrier in coeliac. I think that many coeliac will agree that gluten affects more than just their intestines which is stated here.

  • Here in the States, it is already mostly accepted that 90% of immunity is in the gut. Dr. David Perlmutter, a neurologist who wrote Grain Brain, is the expert on this ( Gluten is a known neurotoxin, IF you are genetically sensitive to it. One of the theories regarding Alzheimer's is that it is, in SOME people, caused by gluten. Only an antibodies test while you have been eating gluten will show this. The big caveat is that they can only currently test for 3-4 gluten proteins but there are at least 400 gluten proteins! In addition, many people are allergic to the NON-PROTEIN part of grains as well but never find it out unless they undergo an elimination diet with a diary and willing doctor. I suffered migraine headaches for 40 years before I had genetic testing done. Eventually, after eliminating all gluten foods, we started on my medicines and found it was non-gluten Corn that was the final thing left making me sick. It was the cause of the headaches and crippling arthritis pain. But if you ask most people if they would give up bread to be free of the pain, they'll choose the bread! This is because gluten, like sugar has opioid effects. Since my mother died of complications from Alzheimer's which started in her 60s, I am hopeful that gluten neurotoxicity will not get me too. I have to have my medications compounded without corn derivatives now and cannot touch brown cardboard boxes and many other common items BC they are made with corn! Corn is in so many things! Nothing escapes my scrutiny now! I once went into anaphylaxis from biodegradable grocery bags! They're made from corn!

  • Hope the following will help:

    Check Dr Peter Osborne

    Leaky Gut Cure Fastest Way to Cure Leaky Gut Syndrome (can be found on YouTube)

    Check Dr William Davis "Wheat Belly"

    Check Dr Perlmutter "Grain Brain" this latter will give you the connection on how gluten "leak" through the gut to attack the brain

    There are over 400 gluten proteins. Labs test for 3-4; so hit and miss; the same for biopsies. It will not hurt him if he gives it a try for 4 weeks and see how it goes.

  • A big thank-you to everyone for their replies - it is so helpful and I will on the info to my brother-in-law.

    He has had IBS and other symptoms for years and the exclusion of foods is difficult for him as in a business setting for lunches he cannot make a fuss and then suffers for days afterwards but he has also found that the symptoms are getting worse, not better and he is having to exclude more foods.

    I think, if there is even the slightest possibility that gluten is causing some of this, and indeed cutting out gluten could help alleviate even some of his issues - he would be ever so grateful.

    Big Hugs to you all,


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