12 Gluten Allergy Symptoms

May 3, 2022

Stomach trouble is no fun. Although the exact cause of gluten intolerance isn’t well understood, that doesn’t stop up to six percent of the population from feeling digestive discomfort after eating certain carbs. The good news? Gluten-free ingredienats have come a long way. If an elimination diet is something you decide to pursue, or you just want to dabble in gluten-free baking, there are lots of exciting (and completely delicious) options out there.

The 12 Most Common Gluten Allergy Symptoms

According to the Cleveland Clinic, these are the most common symptoms of gluten intolerance:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Anemia
  • Anxiety
  • Bloating or gas
  • Brain fog, or trouble concentrating
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Joint pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Skin rash

Gluten Allergy vs. Celiac Disease

gluten allergy symptoms

The Celiac Disease Foundation explains this autoimmune disorder “can occur in genetically-predisposed people where the ingestion of gluten leads to damage in the small intestine.” Gluten is a naturally occurring protein found in wheat, rye, and barley that works like glue to hold breads and other baked goods together. When people with celiac eat these ingredients, it triggers an immune response that attacks the small intestine and damages the villi organisms in the interior lining of the gut that are responsible for nutrient absorption. Having a gluten sensitivity, on the other hand, may still cause unpleasant symptoms but doesn’t cause damage to the small intestine or gut.

How to Test for Gluten Sensitivities

Unlike celiac disease, there is no test for gluten sensitivity. If you experience digestive symptoms that might suggest celiac, there are a few options:

  1. Reach out. Make an appointment with a gastroenterologist to discuss your symptoms, potential celiac risk, and to determine the best course of action that may include diet and lifestyle modifications.
  2. At-home tests. Nowadays it’s easy to access at-home food sensitivity tests. Brands like Everlywell allow you to affordably test your body’s immune response to dozens of foods. While the results won’t necessarily offer a definitive answer to whether you have a true sensitivity, it’s a starting point for a potential elimination diet (see below) or a starting point to discuss the issue with your doctor.
  3. DIY. Try cutting gluten from your diet temporarily and see if your symptoms dissipate, as well as how you feel when you reintroduce it.

Best Gluten-Free Products

ThriveMarket.com stocks hundreds of gluten-free goodies, but these are the absolute must-have additions to your kitchen.

To replace your favorite pasta…

gluten-free swaps

There’s no need to say goodbye to your favorite carb-heavy meals. Modern ingredients like gluten-free noodles taste just like the real thing (and often offer additional protein and fiber to boot).

To bake delicious treats…

gluten-free swaps

There are myriad gluten-free flours available to make your favorite desserts.

To indulge in a snack (or two)…

gluten-free swaps

From chips to cookies, there’s a snack with everyone’s name on it.

To stock the freezer…

gluten-free swaps

Don’t forget about your freezer. Stock up with GF appetizers, snacks, and main dishes to make mealtimes extra easy.


10 Easy Gluten-Free Recipes

Making a gluten-free meal doesn’t have to be complicated, especially when you whip up one of these tried-and true recipes. From breakfast to dessert, we have your gluten-free bases covered.

Coconut, Macadamia, and Quinoa Granola

Start your morning off right with a bowl of gluten-free granola made with pantry staples like sprouted quinoa, chia seeds, and hemp hearts.

Gluten-Free Fish Tacos

For a family-friendly meal that doesn’t break the bank, open a can of tuna, warm up your favorite GF tortillas, and load up on toppings like cabbage, pico de gallo, and avocado.

Gluten-Free Pasta alla Vodka

For date-night-in (or just a busy Tuesday night) grab a box of gluten-free pasta for this spicy and comforting bowl made with lots of tomato paste, crushed red pepper flakes, and cheese.

Gluten-Free Banana Bread

Instead of all-purpose flour, this cinnamon-spiced loaf uses almond flour instead—plus bananas, agave, and walnuts for classic flavor.

Superberry Oat Muffins

For breakfast or an afternoon snack, this berry-packed muffin recipe is a must-try made with superfoods like goldenberries and goji berry powder.

Chicken, Cashew, and Lime Stir Fry

This fast and easy chicken dinner works for the whole family. Just add chopped chicken breast, snow peas, and cashews for a tasty all-in-one dish.

Raw Carrot Pad Thai

Instead of rice noodles, this fresh take on pad thai uses shaved carrots to add an extra dose of crunch. Toss with an almond butter-based sauce for the perfect balance of sweet and savory.

Paleo Garlic Oil Knots

Bread is definitely still on the menu. These paleo garlic knots are sprinkled with herbs and baked with a trio of GF flours including coconut, tapioca, and almond.

Olive Oil Cake With Chocolate Ganache

Inspired by classic Italian olive oil cakes, this moist and citrusy version is infused with fresh rosemary and orange zest. The dark chocolate ganache drizzle puts every bite over the top!

Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies

Made with gluten-free tigernut flour, cookbook author Samah Dada (aka @dadaeats) shares her tender shortbread cookie recipe, complete with a decadent chocolate drizzle.

For even more, bookmark our convenient shopping guides to fill your kitchen with all things gluten-free.

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Nicole Gulotta

Nicole Gulotta is a writer, author, and tea enthusiast.

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