Thursday, August 19, 2010

Gluten’s Effect on Immune System Can Cause Cancer

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A recent study brought home two powerful points about gluten.
1.     The devastating effect is can have upon the body’s immune system.
e.g. development of cancer and autoimmune disease.
       2.    The powerful effect it can have in restoring the immune system when it is removed from a sensitive individual’s diet.

Witness a 3-year old girl who presented with a cancerous lesion in her right eye. Her medical history revealed that she was prematurely stopped from breast feeding although the reason was not given.  She had an intolerance to most baby foods and suffered from anorexia and abdominal distention.

Celiac was suspected and an endoscopic small intestinal biopsy had been carried out under general anesthesia. Her parents (fortunately) did not want their child to undergo general anesthesia for the second time in order to biopsy the eye lesion.

The child was followed up medically and the clinicians learned, quite surprisingly, that the tumor spontaneously regressed with a gluten-free diet as the only form of therapy.

Of course we were dealing with a 3-year old but to say that she had a strong immune system and recuperative abilities would not be correct considering her very rough start in life.  She had clearly been a severe malabsorber her entire life.

I think the take-home information here is the significant effect that gluten can have in thwarting the immune system.  But by the same token, once removed, the immune system can bounce back and do its job – destroy cancer cells, bacteria and other pathogens.

Let’s continue to spread the word in our growing grass roots movement.  It is helping.  I hear from readers almost daily and their stories are quite uplifting.

Please let me know how I can be of further assistance.

To your good health,
Dr Vikki Petersen

Reference: Indian Journal of Ophthalmology. 2010 Sep-Oct;58(5):433-4.
“Regression of conjunctival tumor during dietary treatment of celiac disease.”