BBC and University of Worcester gluten-free trial

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The BBC recently carried out a trial at the University of Worcester to see if being on a gluten-free diet made a difference to how people felt. The Trust Me, I’m a Doctor team signed up 60 non-celiac volunteers to go gluten-free for 2 weeks over a four week period. Not all participants had symptoms which attributed to gluten so the trial was also to establish if participants would feel better without gluten. Prior to embarking on this double-blinded controlled trial, all participants were checked for IgE antibodies. During the trial other immune markers such as those for inflammation were also checked.
Many participants said they did feel better when not on gluten even some of the cynical participant! However, there were no differences in physiological markers. Obviously, this may have been because the markers tested for were not the ones that would have reflected a change. Whilst it is interesting to note that a significant number of participants felt better GF this could have been down to a number of factors including reduction of high FODMAPs and the placebo effect.

What this trial does clearly indicate is that even if we don’t feel we have symptoms caused by gluten, we could benefit from replacing some of the gluten products we consume several times a day with healthy alternative!

If you would like to watch a re-play of the program go to BBC2 Trust Me, I’m a Doctor shown on 8th September at 8pm BST.