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Pilot study of natural therapies to improve gluten sensitivities.


Celiac disease is vastly underdiagnosed. It takes on average 11 years between the first appearances of bowel symptoms until it is diagnosed. Adding insult to injury, it often remains silent in the intestine while extraintestinal problems are occurring. Gluten, a protein found in wheat, is the most common, significant "allergen" known to civilized humanity. Approximately 10% of the human race is sensitive to it. Although not all doctors agree, it is found in beans (dark), oats, and peanuts. Nongluten cereals include, but are not limited to, rice, millet, tapioca, buckwheat, flaxseed, millet, tell, and quinoa. Gluten is not found in vegetables or meat. It is used in 90% of all protein-fortified products.

When this foreign protein is ingested, it not only attacks the intestine, causing inflammation and poor absorption of nutrients, but the gluten antibodies also destroy some other tissue. Gluten intolerance causes malabsorption in the intestine and the partially digested protein absorbed across the mucosa, causing havoc in the rest of the body.

Onset of celiac disease may occur between infancy and senility. In children, neurological symptoms, stunted growth, and anemia can be seen. In adulthood, these issues are compounded with osteoporosis, infertility, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), dermatitis, GERD, arthritis, vitiligo, and other autoimmune diseases such as low thyroid (Hashimoto's disease). Lymphoma and other cancers are also more common in individuals who have this sensitivity and continue to consume gluten.

Gluten intolerance is frequently the result of some preceding damage to the lining of the intestine due to toxic exposure, infection, and overuse of medications, particularly antibiotics. Gluten intolerance, like true celiac disease, is treated by total abstention from gluten. I advise my patients of an easy way to remember what to stay away from with the acronym BROWS: B for barley and beans (dark), R for rye, 0 for oats, W for wheat, and S for spelt. There are three criteria for true celiac disease: a genetic predisposition, consumption of gluten, and a triggering event of a physical or emotional nature. With the loss of integrity in the intestinal lining, the small intestine fails to absorb micronutrients, which then affects bodily function. Rare are the typical symptoms related to just the gastrointestinal tract with abdominal pain and distention, diarrhea, and weight loss.

Human beings have evolved almost 500,000 years without the consumption of gluten. The first wheat was accidently discovered and occasionally gathered around 8000 B.C. Dated archeological remains of einkorn wheat in settlement sites near Karacadag Mountain Range in Turkey confirm the first known cultivation around 7000 B.C. So we as a species have gone from great hunters to canaries in only 10,000 years. Geneticists know that a much longer to period of time is required for our genes to evolve sufficiently to form adequate enzymes to change the gluten protein from being an "enemy" of the body into a "nonintruder." There was no wheat in the Garden of Eden, and Adam and Eve with their myriad of descendants weren't supposed to eat this "food."

At least a third of gluten-intolerant individuals are also lactose intolerant. For example, in pizza, an extremely potent reactant within the dough, along with the cheese can cause acute symptoms within 20 minutes of consumption. A visible trait of celiac was discovered in Poland in 1953 and presented to the Western world by a renowned expert on food allergies, James Braly, MD. The majority of celiacs have a foreshortened 5th finger, designated as Braly's sign. This is to say that the end of the pinkie is shorter than the last joint of the ring finger.

To document the diagnosis, many doctors conduct a few blood studies that are positive only if the patient has terrible bowel disease when the blood is drawn and he/she continues to consume gluten. A stool sample study for antigliadin antibody can be obtained for $100 and ordered online at Your doctor can also order this special test from Intestinal Health Institute, P.O. Box 570744, Dallas, TX 75357. It is positive only when the individual continues to consume gluten. A stool genetic study can also be added for an additional $50 and can be obtained even if the patient is gluten free. In the near future, a finger-stick test for gluten will be available for less than $10.

Individuals who have celiac disease also have the HLA-DQ2 or HLA-DQ8 haplotype, in which markers show a genetic predisposition to the disease. A more complete stool test is the Celiac Plus conducted by Prometheus (888-423-0896), which includes all antibodies with the genetic haplotype test. At a cost of around $700, this test might be the best money spent to pin down this disease, and many insurance companies now pay for it.

Most doctors think that there is no cure for gluten intolerance and often say that the best way to treat the disease is to abstain from eating food high in gluten content. Much research is to be done on potential vaccines and drugs for the disease, with a cure still decades away. We have conducted a preliminary study of over 200 individuals who were clinically and, in most cases, laboratory positive for celiac disease. In almost 90% of the patients there was marked improvement, and in some cases they were able to resume eating gluten without any adverse symptoms. Subsequently, the investigators performed the following double-blinded pilot study.

Patients and Methods

The study was conducted from November 3, 2009, until August 16, 2010, at the outpatient clinic of Integration Medicine of Tulsa. Since only "natural and homeopathic" products were used, no IRB was required. The quotes are in that the FDA does not believe that homeopathics are active. Each individual did sign an informed consent form prior to the study. Included were both males and females ranging in age from 32 to 66 years. All had the positive Braly's sign, gastrointestinal symptoms, and an abnormal antigliadin stool study. These samples were performed by Enterolab of Dallas, a certified laboratory with experience in performing over 10,000 such tests. The laboratory director, Kenneth Fine, MD, was available as a consultant to us throughout the study. In addition to the history and brief physical examination, Jack Wise, MND, conducted an autonomic nervous system test through applied kinesiology (muscle testing).

Throughout the study, participants were encouraged to consume gluten. During the study, of the 27 patients who began the study, 14 were either lost to follow-up or failed to finish the requirements of the protocol and subsequently could not be included in the statistical analysis. Neither the patient, nor the two principals knew which of the numbered bottles contained the active or the inactive product until all of the stool samples and patient histories were complete.


Identical capsules were produced for us by the Energique herbal company:

"active" ingredients:

1. Lycopodium clavatum 12X

2. Pulsatilla 12X

natural ingredients:

1. aronia berry

2. L-carnosine

3. capsule (gelatin)

4. DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid)

5. RNA (ribonucleic acid)

6. rice flour

7. vitamin D3 (from cholecalciferol)

8. folic acid

Of those patients given placebo, only 2 had a drop in their antigliadin titer and less than 30% reduction in overall symptoms. Of the 6 patients who took the active product, all had a marked decrease in titers, with the majority of participants having more than a 500/n reduction in symptoms. While 3 out of the 7 individuals given the placebo improved, all individuals given the active product showed major improvements in the reduction of symptoms and they all had a reduction in antigliadin titer. There were no adverse effects from either product to the participants.
Before and After Treatment Antigliadin Study Results

Participants Receiving Active Product

Patient  PreRx  Sx#   PostRx  Sx#   %[DELTA] *
J.B.       142   3+        9   2+        -1477
D.C.       134   3+       51   2+          -61
A.M.        38   3+       18   1+          -53
D.F.        38   3+        7   1+          -82
R.T.       >20   3+        6   1+          -70

Patient  PreRx  Sx#   PostRx  Sx#  %[DELTA] *
G.B.        50   2+      288   4+        +466
C.D.        96   3+       60   2+         -37
J.O.        30   2+       23   1+         -23
M.T.        33   2+       36   2+          +9
A.T.        12   2+       11   2+          +8
D.L.        42   3+       57   3+          +7
S.S.        15   2+       26   2+          +7

*+ indicates worsening of antigliadin test

#+ Gastrointestinal symptoms worsening

*- Indicates improvement of the antigliadin test

#- Gastrointestinal symptoms improving

The P-value of the placebo group was only 0.5%, a 50% possibility (50 out of 100) that these results were by chance alone. In the other group of active product, the P-value was > .001 in that it was more than 1 in 1000 these results were by chance.

At the end of the study, those patients receiving the active product who did not show a marked improvement in symptoms and failed to display a reduction in titer were found to be low in digestive enzymes, magnesium, and omega-3. These individuals were prone to have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) when eating genetically altered (GMO) wheat, but lacked these symptoms after eating organic wheat. They were able to consume altered [GMO] without displaying IBS symptoms when provided with adequate amounts of omega-3s, magnesium, and digestive enzymes.


We chose the following ingredients for the active product because we thought that when given in this combination, it would "cure" celiac disease.

Lycopodium clavatum 12X: A homeopathic remedy widely used as a remedy for digestive symptoms, which include dyspepsia due to farinaceous and fermentable food (i.e., cabbage, beans), excessive hunger, desire for sweets, weak digestion, and bulimia with bloating. Immediately after eating a light meal, the abdomen is full and bloated. It has also been shown to help in alleviating diarrhea.

Pulsatilla 12X: A homeopathic remedy widely used to aid in digestion. It is used to improve heartburn, painful distended abdomen, and gas.

Aronia Berry: Considered a "superfruit," it contains what may be the highest concentration of the antioxidant anthocyanin. High concentrations of anthocyanins are well documented in many fruits; for example, resveratrol, found in the skin of red grapes and as a byproduct of red wine, offers almost supernatural benefits. They work by boosting and assisting the body's immune system.

L-Carnosine: This double amino acid can extend the average lifespan, offers protection from oxidation and free radical damage, and as a strong antioxidant offers anti-aging nutrients, aiding wound healing.

DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid is a double stranded helical nucleic acid containing the genetic instructions used in the development and function of all known living organisms. Contains information coding RNA molecules for their role in protein synthesis.

RNA: like DNA. It is composed of smaller nucleotide units but is a single stranded nucleic acid central to protein synthesis.

RNA-DNA Nucleotides: are involved in the storage of genetic information and are essential for other biochemical reactions in the body. They are especially essential for cell division. During times of stress, which can include injury or illness, they are needed to increase nucleotides in the body necessary to form new cells to replace the damaged ones. Nucleotides have been shown to improve gut health, enhance immune function, and aid in healing tissue.

Rice Flour: Used as a binder or anticlumping agent in the capsule in the product.

Vitamin D3 (from cholecalciferol): The essential function is to increase the absorption of calcium and phosphorus in the intestine. It ensures the optimal mineralization of mineralized fabrics, particularly in the preservation of bone, cartilage, and teeth, contributing in the maintenance in the plasmatic concentrations of calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D also closes the "zonulin gate," which decreases the permeability of the gut to partially digested protein.

Folic Acid: promotes the healthy and rapid division of cells in the intestine. It facilitates cell maintenance and repair; the synthesis of DNA and amino acid.

Gelatin Capsule: pharmaceutical capsules used to make the product easier to swallow.

Although there are rational decisions based on research, many cures are serendipitous.

Almost by intuition, some practitioners arrive at a treatment that works. Dr. Wise is one of those clinicians who believed it his calling to try this combination to help those seeking a cure for celiac disease. Much to the surprise of his colleagues, this combination has proved not only to increase the overall health of the bowel, but end this malady which has been so poorly diagnosed. It has also shown to be an alternative to the total and complete removal of gluten from the diet.


Although much more work needs to be done to prove the efficacy of this remedy, this pilot study indicates that some, if not all, ingredients in this preparation may be useful in helping the estimated the 20 million people in the US who have gluten intolerance. At $140 for the one-time treatment, it is certainly economical for all classes of people who endure not only bowel problems, but the negative effects that occur later in life such as thyroid disease, fatigue, skin problems, headaches, liver dysfunction, and even cancer.
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Author:Wise, Jack; Block, J. E.
Publication:Townsend Letter
Article Type:Clinical report
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 1, 2012
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