Gluten and Sjogren's

Several studies have shown that many people who have celiac disease, an abnormal immune response to gluten, also have Sjogren's syndrome. 
For example The findings show a close association between Sjögren's syndrome and celiac disease. Even among nonceliac patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome, an ongoing inflammation is often present in the small bowel mucosa. 1999 research (See RESOURCES below)

I was diagnosed with an intolerance to wheat, at the Prince Alfred Hospital Allergy Clinic in Sydney, over 10 years ago. This does not mean I am a celiac but I am finding that I feel so much better when eliminating all gluten, sugar and dairy.  I discovered when trying the paleo diet that most of my aches and pains disappeared and I had more energy too. I think my eyes and mouth also felt less dry , but can't really remember. I also found it hard to maintain in western society and I have unfortunately lapsed.

Gluten is found in grains: it is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, oats and triticale and I find it sneaking into my diet in so many ways unless I prepare every single piece of food myself.  Many thickeners used in gravy, sauces, mayonnaise and stocks contain wheat starch, soy sauce can contain wheat, icing sugar sprinkled on desserts even when requesting grilled fish and chicken dishes they may be floured before cooking. Some prescription medications and vitamins can also contain gluten.

It needs a concerted effort from me, especially as 4 other members of my household love bread and pasta, but it is definately worth it to be mainly pain free.

All proteins and all veges both of which should make up the basis of my diet.
Fresh and dried herbs.
I can eat fruit but only about 1 piece a day (this is another issue, not gluten).
All beans and legumes.
Rice, tapioca, amaranth, arrowroot, millet, quinoa, sorghum, and chia seed. I have not tried all of these but I guess I should try.
Have I forgotten anything?
Do you have a problem with wheat or gluten? Have you tried an anti inflammatory diet or the paleo diet or Dukan Diet and found your symptoms improved?
1999 Celiac disease and markers of celiac disease latency in patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome. Iltanen S, Collin P, Korpela M, Holm K, Partanen J, Polvi A, Mäki M. .  Institute of Medical Technology, University of Tampere, Finland.

2004 Coeliac disease in Sjögren's syndrome--a study of 111 Hungarian patients.
Szodoray P, Barta Z, Lakos G, Szakáll S, Zeher M. Division of Clinical Immunology, Third Department of Medicine, University of Debrecen Medical and Health Science Centre, Hungary.
Lidén M, Kristjánsson G, Valtýsdóttir S, Hällgren R. Department of Medical Sciences Rheumatology, University Hospital, Uppsala, Sweden.

Coeliac Australia has helpful information on this condition


  1. This article is amazing!!! In March 2012 I was diagnosed with severe intolerance to wheat protein (gluten) and since that occasion I'm trying to elimminate all gluten from my diet... But it's very difficult, 'cause I guess the world is completely impregnated with wheat!!! Well, my life's quality today is much more better without gluten! I'm using corn flour, tapioca, rice, quinoa, amaranto, chia, araruta, potato fecula, so... is a great fight for my welfare!!

    1. Hi,

      I also have Sjogren's and a few other issues. One is with wheat. My tests are inconclusive, but I tested positive for one gene of celiac. Also, after eliminating wheat gluten, dairy, and refined sugar, I have been able to not use a wheelchair. It is hard, but worth it. I have a blog also, and yours is great! I want to share mine, but there is only one post there. It tells part of my journey. I am going to share the fundraiser my husband started for me, because it has more info about my medical situation. I am trying to spread the word also, and I thought it would be a good place to do that.

      Thanks for the informative blog.

    2. Hi, C.K. So fabulous you are not relying on your wheelchair. Many people are getting great results with this kind of Paleo Diet you are doing. (Hard in western society but worth it) Your blogs are cool, hope you will tell more of your story soon, when you can.

    3. Hola Keila Lucy, so happy you posted here as it is great to find others doing the same thing. Also I have never heard of araruta and potato fecula. In Australia we are only having chia and amaranth and quinoa in the stores quite recently. Quinoa seems very popular here. Do you have any recipes on your blog or know of any we could post here to share?

  2. I finally found a blog! I'm newly diagnosed with Sjogrens. My problems are in my hands - I thought my fingers were broken, followed by x-rays, blood work, etc. I'm wanting holistic response instead of medication. Dryness is not a significant problem, it's my fingers. I am actively exercising with a trainer, and feel so much better. I'm sticking to the paleo diet most of the time. Need input on holistic response to significant finger / hand pain. Thanks, Nancy

    1. Glad you found us too, but sorry to hear about the hand pain - sounds severe. I had some finger and wrist joint pain and that lessened condiderably on the paleo diet. Also do gently hand exercises in warm water at hydrotherapy has helped. Nancy can I post your question on facebook without using your name and we might get a response that will help? There seems quite a few of us trying to battle this without too many drugs.

  3. You have some really good ideas in this article. Thanks for sharing.
    Check this out too:
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  4. hello, after years of thinking my constipation was from sjogrins, I find that it is from gluten. I had a pancreatitis attack and had to get off all meds, food, and only water for two days. I shed my small intestinal tar rope buildup. Now for the first time in 3 years, I am absorbing vitamin D. I began juicing for a solid week. I felt like a million bucks, until I cooked a lasagnia I had in the freezer and had pizza that night. The next morning, the joint pain came back fierce. My broken foot that has healed but still hurt for a year, began to hurt again when I relapsed on gluten. It took a week to get the pain away again. I find now that small mistakes with gluten cause me pain. Once you are off of it, it doesn't take much to relapse your conditions. I am having my grandchildren tested for gluten intolerance, I cannot imagine them growing into the pain that my mother has and that I have lived with.

    1. This is very useful information that you have shared - thank you. More and more people seem to be discovering, through trial and error, that gluten intolerance plays a big part in their symptoms getting worse.

  5. My sister found your blog and shared with me as I too have Sjogrens. I've been dealing with it for 20 years. My biggest battle has been the dental, with the lack of moisture, my eyes also tire easier with less moisture. I am curious to know how you discovered you had this auto immune disease, as mine was discovered when one of my parotid glands developed a bacterial infection with the lack of moisture.

  6. IDK for sure if I have the intolerance. My niece does. I have had tests for gluten intolerance but the doctors say I do not have celiac disease. So I recognize that I have diarrhea sometimes after eating some things like milk, spaghetti, pizza, some gravies, and MSG. Can you point me to a elimination diet? I have had others suggest one before but I was in denial due to Dr. Tests. Uh, I do have Sjogrens really bad and did not know they are related.

  7. All your comments are very helpful. God bless each of you. I'm waiting for test results. What is confusing Sjorgens and Lupus are so much alike. You can get false neg/ pos. From. We are each different and unique. As the websites say. So why place us in same cog and say we can't have. Drs? I've lived in this body longer than most practiced medicine. I know when it's not working right. I'm a well educated person, who researches, questions.when a Dr. Says...that's rare, I say..that doesn't mean impossible!

  8. So it is important to know about the symptoms and possible herbal treatment options, such as extra Natural Herbs for Sjogren’s Syndrome, such as rheum rhabarbarum, ginger, vitamin E, and others.


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