'Tis the season to binge on gluten, and we couldn't be happier about it. We'd argue that the best thing about fall is that the cooler temperatures give us license to indulge our every whim—pasta, crockpot chili, hearty soups, and grilled cheese are all on the menu.
With that said, we don't love the sluggish feeling that comes with eating all those carb-rich meals. But how do you know when that slightly bloated stomach or foggy feeling is a sign of something more serious? Considering the prevalence of celiac disease and gluten intolerance, it's natural to wonder if you could be harboring a slight allergy.
"It's well-documented that people with celiac disease can have a kind of brain fog," said Peter HR Green, MD, the director of Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University, to Business Insider. He references one study out of Australia, which looked at individuals when they were diagnosed with celiac disease. "There was cognitive impairment equivalent to severe jet lag or driving with an alcohol level that impairs your cognitive abilities."
He does admit that diagnosing celiac disease can be tricky since inflammation has so many symptoms. "In adults, it may just cause osteoporosis, iron deficiency anemia, or peripheral neuropathy," he adds. "The results of this inflammatory process can be very, very diverse. The diversity of the symptoms make[s] it hard to diagnose."
See a celiac disease specialist to give you a proper diagnosis, and share your own experience with this immune disorder in the comments below.