This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc. Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease SymptomsWhat testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease ScreeningInterpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test ResultsCan I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful?The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-FreeIs celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic TestingIs there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and DisordersIs there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients)Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients)Gluten-Free Alcoholic BeveragesDistilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free?Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free DietFree recipes: Gluten-Free RecipesWhere can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.For Additional Information: Subscribe to: Journal of Gluten Sensitivity
Thanks for the links. I have seen various definitions and descriptions of the term leaky gut depending on the context in which it is being discussed, some of them based on solid science, others wild conjecture, which is why it is a term that I try to avoid using simply to avoid muddying an issue.
In science, the term hypothesis means an educated guess based on observation. The term theory means a hypotheses that is supported with scientific tests and is valid as long as there is no evidence to dispute it. As far as I know, there are studies that show that opiod peptides are addictive while there aren't any that prove they are not.
Again, I'm not disputing that gluten is not addictive in the same way as heroin. This would be such a leap that it isn't even one that I would presume anyone would make which is why I didn't clarify more carefully in my original comment. I didn't realize that I was stepping on such a landmine that would get so many people's feathers ruffled.
But none of the links you shared said that gluten was not addictive or that opiod peptides weren't the cause of the addiction. One said that there wasn't enough study to fully understand, another said that the opiod peptides looked like likely culprits. So we aren't in disagreement.
I'm also aware that many of the claims made in the book Wheat Belly don't hold up to scientific review, which is why I chose not to read it.
Apologies. When I first did my research into opiod peptides in gluten years ago, I didn't realize that anyone had made claims that gluten had the same effects as heroin in the brain. I should have clarified when I made my first comment that just because they fit into the same receptors, doesn't mean the opiod peptides in wheat have the same effects as heroin.
That said, in one of the links Irish Heart provided that debunks this claim, the author does link to this study in mice that showed that one of the opiod peptides in wheat has been found to produce various effects in the peripheral and central nervous systems that facilitates learning, reduces anxiety, and when introduced directly into the brain, produced analgesia (pain killer).
There is another study that found that some of the opiod peptides in gluten appear to be inactive, while the most active were equivalent to a low dose of morphine. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0196978184901803
There was a study that specifically looked at whether or not opiod peptides were addictive and found that they definitely had an effect that involved both dopamine and serotonin. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0026049581901724
And another that relates opiod peptides to addiction. http://www.sciencemag.org/content/205/4404/415.short
But much of the issue that Irish Heart brought to our attention appears to be semantics. Of course I'm having difficulty taking seriously anyone who misuses the terms hypothesis (unproven) and theory (scientific evidence exists). But it appears that opiod peptides fall right in the middle on the scale. On one end, it is not "proven". On the other, it isn't just complete conjecture that hasn't been studied yet, a hypothesis. Rather if falls right in the middle as a theory and that scientific evidence does exist.
I agree that gluten should not be equated to heroin so I should have been more careful in my wording earlier. And though it may not be "proven" that the opiod peptides are what makes gluten addicitve, there is evidence to suggest as much.
And Irish Heart does quote a mention of leaky gut playing a role. I personally am not a fan of the term leaky gut in general because it is so often misused in nonscientific claims. But I'll eagerly await a study of the hypothesis that a damaged digestive system could be more porous, which could be a reason why someone might have a stronger reaction to the properties of gluten than someone whose digestive system is working ideally.
I personally don't care for the pressure that seems to be placed on people to get tested, and then retested to check progress because a certain percentage of that is always going to be doctors finding ways to make money. But I do understand that there are societal pressures.
But if I were in your shoes, I'd skip the gluten challenge for now and hope that they finish developing new testing that requires much less time consuming gluten for accurate results, days rather than weeks.
Gluten is addictive so you could be experiencing the feel good from that. It is an opiod peptide that fits into the same receptors in the brain as heroin, which is why, celiac or not, going gluten free has withdrawal symptoms.
It sounds as if you have been doing a little mini-experiment on yourself to see what your reactions might be. Unfortunately, there really isn't a way to do an armchair diagnosis.
• Bloating and fullness could be celiac, but can be a reaction to lots of different things.
• Rash - can't see the picture, but rashes can also be a symptom of an allergic or autoimmune reaction.
• Diarrhea might only be a symptom if larger amounts of gluten are consumed, but can also be caused by all sorts of food intolerances and digestive problems.
• The stools - tarry and black normally means that there is bleeding somewhere in the digestive tract.
• Itchy, sore throat is an indication of an allergy.
• Stomach aches and cramps - could be celiac-related but can also be caused by ulcers or vitamin deficiencies (B12) and plenty of other things.
For now I'd keep an open mind about possible causes and hold off on doing a gluten challenge until you talk to the GI. He may start with doing some sort of stool test to see if there is blood present. But while there, ask him to test you for vitamin deficiencies as well (They can also help narrow in on possible causes because some are more prevalent in particular health problems). And because of the itchy throat, seeing an allergist may be another appointment to make before considering eating wheat at all. If you are getting a scratchy throat from just a crumb and you do have a wheat allergy, eating an entire piece of bread might bring on a worse reaction.
Note that a gluten challenge requires that you consume the equivalent of two pieces of bread a day for 4-6-8-12 weeks (different sources) to ensure accurate celiac blood-test results.
Also, be prepared to not get all of the answers you seek with just one doctor's appointment. I know, not what you want to hear, but getting a proper diagnosis is often a long-term ordeal.
But glad to see that you're asking questions and looking for answers on your own. And I'm sure someone else here on the forum who has more experience with allergies or ulcers or gluten reactions different from my own can offer different thoughts once they get back from their Fourth of July picnics.
Poorly-researched article, mixing up gluten allergies with Celiac and then claiming that gluten-containing foods are the source of many vitamins when in fact, wheat flour is simply fortified. Unenriched wheat flour contains a little bit of iron and not much else.
I'm curious to know from anyone who has tried both if cornstarch is similar to potato starch when used as a thickener. I've only experimented with potato and not corn. Does it impart flavor, does it clump more or less than flours, etc.?
Thanks for the heads up on Malitol. I don't normally run into these products in the places I shop or in the types of foods that I buy, but I got hit by Xylitol when my favorite gelatin brand went out of business and the store replaced it. Horrible nightmares and insomnia so I ended up throwing away the rest. Looks as if I'll have to do more research in order to avoid them, but most sugar alcohol names seem to end in "ol".
Hope you finally got your rain to cool things down.
I don't know anything about Scotomas, but aside from investigating the foods high in fructans, have you considered that the seasonality of the problem could be related to having more sunlight exposure in the summer? Have you tried to limit your light exposure with the use of hats and darker/bigger sunglasses?
So sorry to hear that you're feeling lousy but good to hear that you're not eating the cat's food. I haven't had a pet since going gluten free so I don't have any personal experience with how much contamination pet food can add to your home.
I'll admit that I occasionally worry about what the long-term effects of gluten damage might be because I went undiagnosed for decades as well. I know I still have thyroid disease but worry what else might be going on or how aging will exaggerate issues.
I personally feel that a diagnosis of IBS isn't actually a diagnosis at all. I know I used a food diary to help figure out additional intolerances but my IBS turned out to be a B12 deficiency.
B12 deficiencies can cause abdominal pain and diarrhea. Symptoms can arise if levels drop below 400 (according to the lab that ran my tests) but the U.S. range for normal dips down to 200. (Japan's low end of the normal range is 500.) Because vitamins and minerals play a role in so many of our digestive processes, if you haven't in a while, I'd get tested for vitamin deficiencies in general and get the results in hand so that you can see how far you might be from ideal levels. Exercise and stress (as well as being vegetarian or vegan) can sap our B12 stores.
Have you changed the way you eat because of the seasons? Are you eating more raw foods or more produce in general as they become more-available in summer? The cellulose in fruits and veggies is difficult to digest, especially as we get older. Cooking does help break down cellulose. And there is some compound in fruits and veggies that disappears as foods ripen that many people are hypersensitive or allergic to. I forget the name of it, but it starts with an S. It didn't used to be a problem back when people were picking ripe food out of their own yards or gardens, but has become more of an issue these days when food is shipped halfway around the world and picked long before ripening. And some people have an intolerance to melons that might also be a seasonal problem. (The chemical they react to is near the surface and in the skins, so watermelon that you only eat the center of might not be a problem, but an unpeeled cucumber might be.)
If not a food intolerance from a food itself, artificial colors also cause some pretty varied symptoms and can cause damage to the digestive system.
The way your symptoms present themselves might help you figure out the causes. Some food intolerances don't cause pain right away, but when the food makes it to the large intestine without being fully digested, it can cause cramping first and possibly D. Then it would be more likely to be a problem of lack of enzymes to help digestion.
Hormone imbalances can also cause digestive symptoms. Or have you taken antibiotics recently or have you tried probiotics to affect glut flora?
Of course, there are plenty of other things that can cause pain or D, but those are some simpler ones that are pretty common.
I hope that helps get you started on researching some topics you might not have already. I'm sorry that we can't really do much other than proffer ideas.
How about recipes that substitute applesauce for sweeteners?
I've also heard of coconut sugar but don't know much about it.
And if it is a mild fructose intolerance that you're dealing with rather than the full-on genetic intolerance that means you can't digest it at all, you may be able to substitute just some of the sugar in a recipe with something like stevia so that you can still use some of your old recipes.
I'll also keep my fingers crossed for you that your intolerances might resolve themselves in time, whether you are able to find a way to get your get flora on track, or benefit from the digestive tract healing.
VERY glad to hear that the BF is starting to get it. I think that he's just falling prey to human nature to not want to be told something, but to learn it for themselves, and something about the group allowed him to switch into that mode. Great job on finding a way to get through to him!!!
Enjoy Life Baked Chewy Bars are my favorite for flavor even before you get into the other reasons why someone might choose them. They are my go-to bar to carry with me when I leave the house.
No Artificial Ingredients
Free of the 8 Common Allergens
Sucralose is commonly known by the brand name Splenda - nasty stuff made in a lab. It is low in calories because the body doesn't recognize it as being food so most of it goes right through you. But what does get digested is recognized by the body as being toxic and gets stored in fat cells. So it could still make you gain fat despite being low in calories. What gets flushed ends up polluting our waterways, showing up in water-quality tests way too quickly after it hit the market, and affecting wildlife now as well.
If you're looking for a low-calorie sweetener, stevia appears to be the safest option we have ... for now.