We have talked many times about gluten and Hashimoto’s. If you have Hashimoto’s it is in your best interest to avoid gluten. We do have people reach out to us and tell us that going gluten free did not help their symptoms. Dr. Rutherford discusses this further.
Hashimoto’s and gluten-free didn’t help.
So I have probably heard this hundreds of times, and the problem is that gluten is the number-one trigger for autoimmune thyroid disease. In fact, it’s not an allergen. It’s not a sensitivity. You can have a sensitivity or an allergen to it and have Hashimoto’s, but it’s something called molecular mimicry, where there’s metabolites on the gluten protein that unfortunately look exactly like metabolites in your thyroid tissue. So once you’ve developed Hashimoto’s and your immune system starts to attack your thyroid, you eat gluten, it’s going to flare up in an inflammatory response and create an attack on your thyroid every time you eat it. So it’s got to go.
And gluten’s in everything. Gluten’s in all the good stuff. I’m half Italian, so gluten’s in the pasta. Gluten’s in the pizza. I used to like to have a beer now and then, or more than now and then, and it was in the beer. It’s in a lot of the alcohol. I mean, it’s everywhere. It’s in the sauces. Gluten, it’s everywhere. It’s in all the good stuff. It’s in all the stuff we love.
So on a semi-regular basis, I get a person go, “Well, I already tried off gluten, and it didn’t do anything for me.” Meaning, “I’m not going to give up all the good stuff if I got off of it.” Now, here’s the problem with that. The problem is Hashimoto’s. So gluten’s one of, now, I think it’s 41 triggers that we know of, that are potentially also affecting your thyroid. Nobody’s got all 41 triggers, but a lot of people have 12, 13, 14 of them. So that’s one trigger. So let’s say you don’t even know what the other 13 triggers are, and most of them don’t, and some of them are, mind-blowingly, things that you do every day or that you may ingest every day or things of that nature.
So when we first started this and we had people, this being treating Hashimoto’s and taking people off the gluten, I was very early on in the groups that were taking people off of gluten for Hashimoto’s. And you would get a miracle case, and you’d go like, “Yeah, we’re bad. We know. These guys, these medical doctors, they don’t know anything. We’re so cool, because we took them off of gluten and they felt better.” And then you’d get a couple of those, and life was good. And then you got the guy. You took him off of gluten, or gal and lady, and nothing happened. Or they felt worse or the gluten made them feel worse, because gluten is not just a trigger for autoimmune thyroid disease, but it is a big fat trashy carb.
So maybe it raised their insulin. Maybe it caused their blood sugar to go up. And then their blood sugar, in turn, made them have blood sugar symptoms, and they felt worse. And then they said, “Well, I’m not going to do that, because it makes me feel worse.” So there’s a lot of nuances to it, and the next step that we took was we said, “Okay, if you are gluten-sensitive, you probably have other cross-re-activities. That was a while ago, and that was mostly grain, so we started taking people off of grains. But now we know there’s 41 triggers that we know of. I have a presentation online that says 39. It’s not a mistake; there’s two more that’s come up since we put that video online. And I think that was last year.
So that’s really a thing. Every day, you might be overdoing it. Maybe you’re drinking alcohol. Maybe you have celiac and don’t know it. Well, if you had celiac, that wouldn’t happen, because if you got off of gluten, if you had celiac, you’d feel better immediately. So that was a bad example. But the point is, there’s so many different things. A lot of people who are Hashimoto’s should be off of shellfish, and so who doesn’t eat shrimp? Like 80% of the country love shrimp, so maybe you’re eating shrimp all the time. Most of my patients are exposing themselves to least two or three or four of these triggers every day.
So that’s really the reason, and so I tell them, “Okay, I know that you didn’t feel any better off the gluten, and I know you felt worse, but here’s the reasons why. And once we start, trust me. Once we get you off of the gluten, we get you through the protocols, you’re feeling better, you eat gluten later on, you’re going to feel worse.”
Martin P. Rutherford, DC
1175 Harvard Way
Reno, NV 89502