The Difference Between Celiac, Gluten Intolerance, and Wheat Allergies

Do you wonder what the difference between Celiac, Gluten Intolerance, and Wheat allergies is?
The above three conditions, although they have very similar symptoms, are very different from each other.

There is a lot of misunderstanding between the three, and what these conditions do to our body. So let’s clear the air surrounding these conditions once and for all.

This article is a perfect opportunity for you to learn more about these conditions extensively. More prominently, we’ll also discuss what you can do to ease the symptoms that accompany Celiac, Gluten Intolerance, and Wheat allergies.

Celiac Disease

Celiac is an autoimmune condition and can develop at any stage in life. It is genetic, so a person suffering from this condition will be born with the genetic predisposition of Celiac disease. A person affected by this condition can go many years without ever displaying any symptoms, or without the celiac disease, even being active.

More than 300 symptoms that can be associated with celiac disease. Surprisingly it’s not always gastro or digestion related. Not everyone will exhibit the same signs when down with the celiac disease. The symptoms may be neurological, like brain fog, memory issues, and migraines.

Celiac can be associated with other symptoms as well like:

1. Damaged Motor Skills
2. Anemia
3. Low levels of vitamin and minerals.
4. Stomach Problems
5. Trouble with digestion
6. Constipation and Diarrhea


In kids, celiac might show different signs. A lot of these symptoms might not signal to traditional celiac symptoms like:

1. Tooth enamel deficiency
2. Stunted Growth
3. Behavioral problems

Unfortunately, most of these symptoms go unnoticed in the doctor’s office. Doctors might not consider testing you for celiac disease. So it is essential to educate yourself on the possibilities of celiac, to be prepared.

Now one way to beat the celiac disease is by going gluten-free. A lot of people, when they hear gluten-free, the first thing that comes to their mind are gluten intolerance and gluten sensitivity.
Those aren’t necessarily associated with celiac disease.

The Difference Between Celiac and Gluten Intolerance.

So how exactly do the two conditions with very similar symptoms differ from each other?  Celiac, as we mentioned, is an autoimmune response, whereas gluten intolerance and sensitivity are not. There is still a lot of research and studies being done on gluten Intolerance, as it is also still not thoroughly understood what happens on a biological level in a body with gluten intolerance.

However, someone who is suffering from gluten intolerance and gluten insensitivity still have symptoms that have a lot in common with celiac disease. Now the significant difference here is that the person who has celiac disease will have damage in his/her small intestine that is near the celiac.

It is essential to get the diagnosis appropriately done so these issues can be addressed before they get worse for both children and students.

Wheat Allergies

Wheat allergy is, in fact, allergy to wheat, and not necessarily to the gluten. So the symptoms of a wheat allergy will be different.
The symptoms may include:

1. Itching
2. Hives
3. Closing of the throat
4. Trouble breathing
5. Anaphylaxis in extreme cases.


As you can see, the symptoms for a wheat allergy will be very different from that of celiac disease or gluten intolerance. It’s important to know this difference. For a lot of people, severe allergies can be life-threatening, and educating yourself on the above conditions can help people achieve respite from more severe consequences of these conditions.

The similarities Between Celiac, Gluten, and Wheat Allergies

So what is it exactly that makes people scratch their heads when it comes to distinguishing these conditions?

Well, the obvious one is their connection to wheat. If you are a celiac, then you have to go completely gluten-free. So avoiding gluten like wheat is absolutely essential for that.

For someone who is gluten sensitive or gluten intolerant, it is uncomfortable to have gluten. This may lead to other symptoms and other problems down the line.

When it comes to wheat allergies, the situation is a tad bit different. You don’t have to consume wheat in general, which does not mean you cannot have gluten in other forms. People with wheat allergies need to avoid products like wheatgrass or other wheat products to avoid an allergy attack.

The Bottom Line:

Getting proper knowledge on conditions like Gluten intolerance, celiac, and wheat allergies help in managing the conditions before it can get ugly. People with Celiac and Gluten intolerance need to avoid gluten at all costs, which also includes food like rye and barley, whereas people with wheat allergies only have to avoid wheat in general.

When you do decide to go for testing of celiac, it is crucial to have gluten before you undertake the task, as there is a good chance that test is not going to be accurate. Celiac disease is diagnosed with the help of a blood test, followed by an endoscopy to assess the damage done to the small intestine.

Another thing to note about celiac is that it is genetic. If any of your family members and close relatives have celiac disease, chances are the celiac is part of your genetic disposition. If your family members are exhibiting signs of celiac, it is good to advise them to get checked for it.
Diagnosing the condition is crucial beforehand as later it can morph into severe fatal diseases like colon cancer, Hopkin’s lymphoma, etc. while also making life miserable.
If you are a celiac, it is beneficial to take the gluten-free diet seriously and continue to maintain that lifestyle consistently.

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