Guess Who Came to Dinner?

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Yes, that is Dr. Alessio Fasano, of the Center for Celiac Research and Treatment at Mass General. We had the pleasure of having Dr Fasano and his son back in the cafe for dinner this week. I was able to ask him a few questions in between.

I chose the questions that I get asked about the most by customers and those that affect me as well. My questions were about Gluten/Celiac Disease and it’s role in Autism, our Kidneys, our Skin and our Brains. I also asked about Glyphosate (Round Up) and it role, if any, in Celiac Disease.

Autism:

As many of you know, I have two nephews with Autism, so I have always been very interested in the connection between Celiac Disease, Gluten and Autism. Dr Fasano and Autism Speaks have been looking for a connection between Autism and Celiac Disease anf gluten . As of now, Dr. Fasano says that “about 5% of Children with Autism have Celiac Disease and most are Gluten Intolerant.”  Dr Fasano says “we know Gluten is a factor in Autism but we don’t know why.”

Glyphosate (Round Up) Sprayed on Crops:

Over the past year or so there has been a lot of information circulating on the web about Glyphosate, which is the ingredient used in Round Up weed killer.  It is also used on our crops to increase the yield before harvesting. Corn is one of those crops. So, I asked him about the connection, if any, between glyphosate (Round Up) being sprayed on our crops and if it is contributing to gut permeability (leaky gut) leaving us open to Celiac Disease.  He said that “we don’t know enough about it yet”. That tells me there are more studies that need to be done.

Celiac Reactions & Complications; Kidneys, Skin and Brain:

Kidneys: I also shared with Dr Fasano what my Nephrologist has told me about Celiac Disease and IgA Nephropathy (Berger’s Disease); the filters on my kidneys don’t work right and the little doors to the filters are getting the wrong message. So, I asked him what his thoughts were. He said;  “absolutely, it is very closely related to Celiac and sometimes the soldiers (immune cells), leave the intestine and attack other tissues, like those in the kidneys” (gallbladder, thyroid, brain, etc.).

I was telling him about my severe reaction after accidentally getting “glutened” in Jan 2015 and a new symptom I had after this episode. Normally for me, within a few hours I have severe acid reflux, the next morning I have a migraine followed by diarrhea and vomiting at the same time, then I get major bloating and knife like pains in my stomach. Then, within 24 hours I get flu like symptoms, severe fatigue and can not get off the couch.

Skin: On about day 3 or 4 I get a Dermatitis Herpetiformis (DH) rash and that itches and oozes and hurts and then the joint pain kicks in. I told him that I had a bad case of DH on my scalp, buttocks and arms and before I could say it he said: “it took 8 months to clear up”.  He was right on the money, I got “glutened” in January (I did a blog post about this) and it did not clear up until the end of August! (It cleared up because I had no further exposure to gluten. DH is most often misdiagnosed as eczema. It (the rash) can be biopsied for a Celiac Diagnosis, if you have this, bring it to you Gastroenterologist’s attention.)

Brain: By day 4 I had Ataxia (walking into walls, tripping and falling and speech issues).  New Symptom for Me: However, this time, by day 5 or so, I had MS like symptoms in my right arm and leg with heavy twitching. I had to pull over and it lasted for several minutes. He said “absolutely, it’s the inflammation; because it can affect the brain”.

I hope you found this information helpful. It was a pleasure having Dr. Fasano and his son back at One Dish Cuisine Cafe, Deli and Bakery! I know you want to know what Dr Fasano had for dinner. He and his son enjoyed our Eggplant Parm. Also, I know someone will say that the cafe looks different in the photo. It does look different because this photo was taken the last time he was here, for his book signing, in 2014.

 

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4 thoughts on “Guess Who Came to Dinner?

  1. It’s great that you got to talk to Dr. Fasano about all your health issues but I was hoping to hear about what is going on with the research.

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    1. Eleanor, I am sorry I didn’t talk with him about what you wanted to know about. However, many people have similar health issues as a result of Celiac Disease and they are interested. I talked about the research with Autism and Gluten which is still on going. Brain Involvement after gluten exposure, etc. I asked about Glyphosate, which has gotten much attention this past year but needs more research as Dr Fasano said they don’t know enough about it. I talked about DH, the most overlooked symptom of Celiac Disease that is just getting the attention it needs. Many people have severe kidney involvement that is not always acknowledged by their doctors. I don’t want to waste his time on stuff that can be found by visiting the CFCR page or just by googling the latest in Celiac Research; stuff that he has talked about at length in many interviews and publications. Whenever there are new major breakthroughs, I let you all know. Last year, I let everyone know about the lymph system being the connection to the bodies immune system and the brain’s immune system discovered by the Brain Center at UVA. I was not going to waste a lot of time on stuff that has already been publicized or is easy to find out about. Everything I talked about has to do with Celiac Disease and often gets shot down by other doctors, so it is pertinent to the many suffering with Celiac and Autism and un-diagnosed Celiac Disease. Just do a google search for the latest in Celiac Research.

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  2. I think this was a great interview! Is it possible you could provide a link to your post about the lymphatic system? (My daughter has both celiac and a congenital lymphatic issue.) We’ll be travelling through Baltimore this summer on the way to visit family and can’t wait to stop in at your restaurant!!

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