Protein intolerance may be caused by psychoactive peptides which are formed during the digestion of proteins. Peptides from casein and gluten are particularly important. During digestion, the proteins are cut into peptides, which are short protein fragments. One single molecule of gluten contains at least 20 opioid peptide sequences, and it's not surprising that reduced ability to break them down causes problems. Opioid peptides are present in other foods also. Opioid peptides have been found in spinach, and several other foods such as soy and quinoa are under suspicion. With exception of the spinach peptides, none of these foods have been studied with regard to opioid peptides.
In the 1960's, Dohan hypothesized that schizophrenia may be triggered by gluten peptides. Further work on this theory has shown that some children with autism and ADHD have increased levels of opioid peptides in their blood. Some peptide is excreted in the urine and can be detected in Neurozym's HPLC analysis. New research indicates that opioid peptides may play a role in a variety of mental disorders.
Even though opioid peptides may play a role in many serious illnesses, it's probably more common to experience less severe symptoms, such as difficulty in concentrating, gastro-intestinal problems, sleeping disorders, lack of energy, depression and anxiety. These are common symptoms of milder forms of protein intolerance of the opioid peptide type.
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