Gluten Causes Increased Hypochondria
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Medical Scientists at the William Henry Harrison Medical Institute in Charles City, Virginia announced that a 5 year, double-blinded study of 5122 subjects proved that regularly eating gluten causes a statistically significant increase in hypochondria.
Gluten, the main form of protein in wheat, has long been suspected as being the cause of a variety of diseases by the anti-gluten community.
Half the subjects (control subjects) were put on a gluten free diet. The other subjects were forced to eat foods that have gluten including toast or pancakes for breakfast, bread for lunch, and pizza or pasta for dinner.
6% of the subjects were diagnosed with hypochondria before the study began, and they were randomly distributed between the control group and the active arm of the study.
23% of subjects on the gluten-free diet came to believe they were being fed gluten and withdrew from the study.
Among the gluten-free diet group, the incidence of patients with hypochondria remained at 6%.
Among the gluten-fed group, the incidence of hypochondria increased to 11.6%. "Hypochondria almost doubled in the gluten group," said a study spokesperson.
Among the gluten-free group, side effects included loss of weight, skin rashes, excessive gas, paranoia, and drug and alchohol addiction. 2% of subjects, or 33% of those who already had hypochondria, came to believe they were not sick because they had stopped eating gluten.
The gluten group showed no evidence of side effects except for hypochondria. In hypochondria patients mistake minor symptoms for major diseases.The gluten arm grew 19% during the study because people wanted free pizza made with gluten.
However, the study results have already been challenged by outside scientists. Walter Ivanhoe, PhD., of the Mountain Mike Institute for Nutritional Research, was skeptical that such a study could be kept double-blinded. "Gluten-free bread, pasta, pastry and pizza all have textures and tastes that are easy to distinguish from the same products made with wheat. Everyone knew which arm of the study they were in. Also, people don't like gluten-free products, not really, so of course they lost some weight."
The study was sponsored by BigPharmIcon, a biotechnology company that is developing an all-oral therapy to treat hypochondria. "We hope to initiate Phase I human clinical studies some time in 2015," said a BigPharmIcon investor-relations flak. BPICN stock rose 1 and 1/8 point on the news.
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