Episode 20: Should Everyone Eat Gluten Free? The Health Impacts, Symptoms & Solutions You Need To Know About – with Brigid Titgemeier, MS, RDN, LDN

critical conversations podcast - episode 20 - you are what you eat - diving into all things gluten

Continuing our last conversation from episode 16 with Brigid all about the imperative role our gut health plays in our overall health, mood, and well-being. This week – we’re focusing in on GLUTEN & why so many people are experiencing improved health once going “gluten free”, the right way.

As the saying goes – “you are what you eat”. But, now we know, it’s actually more about what you “absorb” that makes you who you are.

Is gluten affecting all of us negatively, or is it just a small percentage of the population?

Should we all be eating gluten free?

Could you potentially be intolerant and not even know it?

We answer all of your questions and more, in this episode.

Listen on iTunes, +  Spotify, or directly using the player below.

Oh, & lucky for you – i found a link to that book Brigid was talking about 🙂

Kama Pootra: 52 Mind-Blowing Ways to Poop

In this Episode:

Food truly can have power over the way that you’re feeling. In more ways than one. & We don’t seem to understand things on a deeper level until it becomes personal and we get motivated to pay attention to it for ourselves. So we’re hoping this conversation will impact you before that’s the case for you.

  • Americans are predisposed to having increased issues & developing a sensitivity to gluten due to the “Standard American” diet and lifestyle – otherwise known as “the perfect storm” .
  • Only 50% of people with celiac disease will actually experience GI symptoms
  • The second most common symptom will be neurological – seizures, fatigue, headaches, migraine, mood disorders, cognitive decline.
  • Other Issues include: Autoimmune conditions, skin rashes, itchiness, redness and generalized inflammation (joints and body aches).
  • Osteoporosis especially in younger people is a huge red flag for celiac disease (& it may just be the underlying cause no one is aware of.)

critical conversations podcast - episode 20 - you are what you eat - diving into all things gluten


  • gluten is made up of 2 proteins – gliadin and glutenin
  • it’s found in things such as wheat, rye, barley, faro, spelt & even oats unless they’re certified gluten-free
  • wheat is processed differently in America compared to places like Europe & some people seem to tolerate gluten just fine, over seas.
  • can be linked to an inflammatory response that can cause leaky gut, digestive issues, skin rashes, etc.
  • increased levels of zonulin in our blood is a measurable serum marker linked  to leaky gut

Should you get tested for celiac disease if you think you’re sensitive to gluten? – Is there benefit to putting yourself through the testing? … Or is strictly avoiding gluten enough?

  • in order to get tested, you’ll have to start reintroducing gluten into your diet and then undergo a biopsy after 6 weeks of exposure without medications to help minimize the symptoms you might be experiencing.
  • there’s also genetic testing (95% of people with celiac will have at lest one of these markers and it’s something you’ll pass on.)
    • HLA – DQ2
    • HLA – DQ8
  • The Only Known  Solution – avoiding gluten 100% of the time. no matter what.
  • Celiac Disease has been linked to an increased susceptibility to a multitude of autoimmune diseases and chronic diseases
  • Most functional medicine doctors don’t recommend undergoing testing if you know avoiding gluten works for you – but it’s something to consider if you’re looking for answers to additional symptoms or issues you may be having and it may benefit your long term health, especially if you plan on having children.

(NCGS) non-celiac gluten sensitivity/intolerance:

  • caused by antibodies that are produced in your body, creating an immune response when you consume gluten. Ranging from digestive issues to brain fog, migraines, fatigue, skin rashes, and a multitude of other symptoms.
  • affects a large percentage of the population
  • a gluten allergy = celiac disease
  • NCGS can have an improvement in their symptoms after abstaining from gluten for 6 months & will demonstrate changes in IgG, IgA and IgM antibodies (decreased immune response) as well as a reduction in markers of epithelial cell damage
  • There are actual physiological changes happening each time you consume gluten, even if you don’t have symptoms but are considered intolerant or sensitive to the proteins.

Other factors that affect the lining of our gut:

  • Frequent use of antibiotics/prescription medications
  • Sterile cleaners & Overuse of antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers
  • Not getting outside enough or getting exposed to a diverse microbiome
  • Processed, Packaged, Sterile Food
  • Inflammatory ingredients found in fast food and restaurant meals (aka eating out too much – there’s a reason we feel better when meals are made at home.)
  • Stress
  • Artificial Sweeteners or too much added sugar in our diet
  • Imbalances in our microbiome (caused by all of the above).

– Brigid answers it all in this episode. We also discuss:

  • The “correct way” to go gluten free.
  • The “HEALTH HALO EFFECT” you should be aware of.
  • The power of shifting away from current food norms in order to establish a wider variety of nutrition in your daily routine.


Sign-up for Monday Motivation e-mails here:


Read More from Brigid – All Disease Begins in the Gut: The 5 Key Roles of a Healthy Gut

& tune in to listen to her additional episodes:

Episode 16: Is It Willpower, Or Is It Your Microbiome? Discussing The Foods & Lifestyle Habits That Are Effecting Our Gut Health On A Daily Basis – with Brigid Titgemeier

Episode 14: The Power of Functional Medicine & Nutrition with Brigid Titgemeier M.S., R.D.N, L.D aka @beingbrigid

thanks for being a part of the conversation.

It’d mean the world to us if you helped us spread the word. Be sure to leave a rating & review on the iTunes app, take a screenshot of the episode or quotes from the show notes and share it with your friends on social media. Tell your friends and family what you’ve learned.

Be the change you wish to see in the world.


We’re here for you.


your host, Briana Reesing @CriticalConversations

Brigid Titgemeier, MS, RDN, LDN @beingbrigid




Episode 10: Added Sugar, YOLO & It’s Hidden Effects on Your Long-Term Health

critical conversations podcast episode 10

YOLO (you only live once). It may be a ‘fun’ common way to say ‘live a little’ – but we actually take it’s meaning – Quite Literally. As nurses, we’ve seen too much. & We’ve seen the long term effects poor lifestyle choices can have long-term.


critical conversations podcast episode 10


How much sugar have you eaten today? Truly take a minute to think about it.

Google it – Look into it. Use that information & go from there.

Information is Power.

& we want to give you your Power back.

What you do with this information is up to you.


Continue reading “Episode 10: Added Sugar, YOLO & It’s Hidden Effects on Your Long-Term Health”

Episode 9: Got Gut Health? Signals, Symptoms & Simple Solutions

DISCLAIMER: Everybody poops – but no one is talking about it.

So, we’re taking the liberty of opening up the conversation around digestive health to a much deeper level today. Do you poop often enough? Do you pay attention to what it looks like?

More on this (diarrhea and constipation), along with a multitude of other symptoms that may be silent symptoms of poor gut health that you’ve been ignoring. Psoriasis, Eczema, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Diabetes, Weight Gain, Fatigue, Brain Fog, Hypoglycemia, ADHD, MS, headaches …. You name it . It’s all connected.

In this episode we dive deeper into the importance of your microbiome as well as the simple solutions that are in your hands on a daily basis.

Why do we care so much?

We truly believe – Understanding the microbiome is going to be a game changer for western medicine and current medical research is proving that there’s so much connected to the gut and digestive health that no one was talking about – UNTIL NOW.

Know that what you’re doing on a day to day basis – is adding up.

It’s in your hands to utilize the knowledge you gain from this episode and any other podcast you listen to, book you read, or article you discover & do your best to implement powerful change in your life – slowly, mindfully & when you’re able to.






MINDBODYGREEN: Want To Prevent Inflammation & Autoimmune Disease? Here’s Where To Start


22:00 –  If it’s at your house and you have the power to get rid of it, get rid of it. (Canola Oil)

23:17 – There are much better (packaged food ) options available to us now – with much cleaner ingredients

23:38 – If it has to be microwaved you probably shouldn’t eat it.

24:00 – If you see a food commercial for it you probably shouldn’t eat it – EVER. (It’s those products with the most money behind them that are most likely the worst for you.)

29:30: Real food is truly the starting point to ease versus dis-ease

If you really stop to think about it – you’re eating 3 times a day, every day of your life, 365 days a year – FOOD IS THE THING that we are exposed to the most & it’s also the thing we have the most control over going back to the daily choices we make

A lot of exposures – over a long period of time – the convenience factor of making food easy to grab – has pulled us away from our true intuition of “what to eat and when”

Food desserts exist – we understand that. However, knowledge is power & we want to arm you with the ability to do what you can with what you have while learning how to make the best of it, for what works for you in this moment in your life.

Food – BAD inflammatory fats – Stress – Antibiotics – Medications – Cleaning Products – Antibacterial Soaps – Bleach – Chemicals in the air (perfumes, body spray, air freshners) – hormone disruptors and microbiome – triclosan

Things you may think you need because it’s what you’ve been told to buy and advertised too – are not necessarily necessary at all (antibacterial soap – perfume, most cleaning products)

34:00 Being aware of the chemicals in your products is huge . – That doesn’t mean go throw everything out right away (because that’s expensive) but, it’s a reminder to start becoming more aware of what your buying & slowly introduce new products into you’re home

38:30 “If the problem centers around being too clean – then the solution must be the opposite.” – Dr. Josh Axe


41:05 – Increase the variety of your microbiome by increasing the variety of the types of (real) foods you’re eating – which will introduce bacteria from a variety of different types of soil & environments.

know your farmer – talk to them – ask them what they use on their crops and whether or not they pay attention to the quality of their soil

43:30 – seasonal is key

44:25 – fermenting our foods was the first method of preserving our foods – which in turn built up a good bacteria microbiome within us. Now, with refrigeration and shelf stable preservatives – fermentation is no longer part of our American culture.

46:10 – FOOD OVER PILLS always. (referring to purchasing prebiotics & probiotics versus eating fruits, vegetables and fermented foods.)


Did you enjoy this episode?

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& Join our community on instagram for daily motivation @criticalconversations


We truly appreciate YOU.

Laura Gluck & Briana Reesing


& PODCAST EPISODES WE LOVE: about the microbiome:


Bulletproof Radio: Dr. David Perlmutter: Autism, Alzheimer’s & The Gut Microbiome – #250

Bulletproof Radio: Eat Dirt: The Secret To a Healthy Microbiome – Zach Bush – #458

Cabral Concept 418: The Weight Loss Gut Microbiome Connection

Lewis Howes : EP 616 Dr Mark Hyman: Heal Your Body with Food

Chris Kresser: RHR: Practical Steps for Healing the Gut—with Michael Ruscio



*LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The information in this podcast is to be viewed as general knowledge and is not a substitute for professional medical help. Our opinions are our own and do not reflect that of our employers. We are registered nurses, not doctors, pharmacists or nutritionists.

We are providing general information and are here to open up conversation on heath care related topics. The content found here is our educated opinions and, should you require medical assistance, we urge you to seek medical professionals who are equipped to give you the personalized care you need.



Episode 8: Is our Microbiome & Gut Health – The Root Cause of most Diseases?

Leaky Gut.




Food Sensitivities.

Probiotics …

There’s a chance you may have heard these words mentioned in recent conversation with your doctor, coworker, friend or possibly even on social media. But, do you truly understand why “gut health” is such a hot topic of conversation lately?


Continue reading “Episode 8: Is our Microbiome & Gut Health – The Root Cause of most Diseases?”