12. Depression and Anxiety
It really is hard to think that food can influence your state of mind. There are certain foods that seem to lift a person’s spirits and others that seem to bring a person down. It just so happens that gluten can be a depression-inducing food, even though it might just be a secondary side effect.
Only one percent of people in the US have celiac disease, the most extreme form of gluten intolerance. There are a number of other people who live with non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and these people can experience digestive problems that are related to depression and anxiety. Gluten is also a major allergen that can cause unwanted brain reactions.
A study was done in 2014 where 22 people with non-celiac gluten sensitivity were given a gluten-free diet for three days. After three days, the gluten was worked out. They then received either a gluten-rich, whey rich or a placebo diet to follow for a further three days. The researchers assessed the candidates after the three-day period and calculated their depression scores. The candidates who received the gluten diet showed much higher depression scores than the candidates who had either the placebo or the whey diets. This strong correlation pointed towards how gluten could actually make you feel depressed.
Another study published in 2007 also showed that people with celiac disease were 80% more likely to suffer from depression than those who were gluten tolerant. The study was performed on 1400 candidates. Furthermore, a Swedish study that was done in 2011, showed that people who had celiac disease also had a higher risk of committing suicide. Although the correlation between gluten and depression might not be a direct correlation, the effects are still quite alarming. If you suffer from depression, you might want to consider cutting down on the gluten.