Letter: High Gluten GMO Foods Link To Celiac Disease


In Eric Vance's article about Pam Ronald in the spring issue of Spirit of Change (“Genetically Modified Conservation”), he writes "she frequently notes that there's no record of anyone ever becoming sick from a GM crop."

That statement is untrue. An estimated 3,000,000 people in this country have celiac disease which is caused by ingesting gluten found in wheat, barley, rye and sometimes oats. Although researchers are working on different possible meds for this ailment, at the present time the only effective treatment is to live gluten-free. Celiac disease is difficult to diagnose; the average patient goes seven years before a correct diagnosis is made. About 97% of all celiac patients (of the above mentioned 3 million) have not been diagnosed.

There is a genetic component to celiac disease, but it has become much more prevalent in the twenty-first century because of the increase in the amount of gluten in the genetically modified grains that are part of our diet. Before GM grains were common, a slice of bread might contain 100 mg of gluten; today a similar slice of bread contains 2,500 mgs of gluten.

Celiac is not the only ailment which is exacerbated by high amounts of gluten. There is a lengthy list, too long to mention here, that add to our collective misery as well as our health care costs. A few diseases that come to mind: autoimmune diseases (such as MS, Parkinson's, lupus), depression, certain cancers, rosacea, carpel tunnel, failure to thrive, endometriosis, dermatitis herpetiformis, epilepsy, ataxia, rheumatoid arthritis and miscarriage. Pets are being diagnosed in greater numbers with autoimmune diseases because they are getting much more gluten in their diets, both in pet food and the "person" food they get.

I refer you to books written by Peter H.R. Green, MD of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University in New York City. Also, there is a book called Dangerous Grains, by two doctors named James Braly and Ron Hoggan.

I know that you will want to set the record straight regarding illnesses that are caused at least in part by GM foods. Don't take my word for it! Consult with the doctors who have written these books.

Judith L. Howland,
Hartland, VT