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Hi Everyone..I am new to this site and was diagnosed with celiac disease (the worst case my gastroenterologist has ever seen) in November 2003. Have been gluten free since January 2004 and am not sure what I am doing wrong. I always had the constipation problem, I eat a lot of beans and vegetables and nothing seems to work. The problem has actually gotten worse since being gluten-free. I have tried laxatives and stool softners and they don't work either. I had a colonoscopy the same time as the endoscopy (which determined the celiac disease) and the colonoscopy was normal. Anybody else out there with this problem. Also severe lower back pain the last three weeks. HELP! Thanks, Christine

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You might try going on a low residue diet for a couple of weeks to give your intestines a break. Google the term for more advice, but the basic idea is that you eat little or NO fiber (or complex carbs) so that your body is absorbing ALL of what you eat, and not having to clear out the waste that can't be digested. I don't suggest this for a long term solution AT ALL (though there are a handful of medical conditions where it's warranted), and probably wouldn't do it more than two weeks AT MOST, but it helped me.

I would also highly encourage you to talk to your doctor about this further incase there is a physiologic problem that needs to be addressed.

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Hey there,

I know the problem - have been living with it for way too long... Over the years I've found a few specific foods that I can eat that basically manage to, er, clear the system out after its been blocked up for a few days. Certain types of yogurt are great - I find Onken in particular works like a treat. If I can't get my hands on that, then cranberry juice does the trick. Another thing, drink loads of water. And someone on this board gave me a great tip a few months back that is useful: if you are constipated, try massaging your 'lower left quadrant' I think they referred to it as. Basically I can feel that my left side is solid and my right side isn't if I massage hard enough. I find that a good twenty minutes or so of massaging at night and in the morning stuff seems to be sorting itself out.

Hope some of the above helps you out - when you've been on the diet longer I guess you'll strike lucky as I have and find certain foods that seem to work for you. Hang on in there...

Take care,

Jasa

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I have to massage all of my stomach, but it does help me. I start at the groin on the right side, massage up to the ribs, across, then down the left. I keep repeating for 15-20 minutes, every night. When I'm really constipated, I feel the blockage, and it hurts. If you take antihistamines for allergies, it could very well be the cause, or at least a contributor.

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I've found that dried apricots can be very moving. Try five a day.

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I've had my problems too and forgot about masaging the stomache. My massage therapist showed me that. Is there something else like eggs maybe that's causing it? Hugs, Carol B (who just got her test results from enterolabs. Positive for gluten sensitivity, milk casein allergy and I have the gene)

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Christine: Constipation was one of my main celiac symptoms (besides pain, bloating and gas), so I've dealt with that one over the years. Are you taking calcium or iron supplements (which also influenced my constipation)? I started taking magnesium supplements for regularity several years ago. That mineral helps with muscle contractions. In Europe doctors often recommend magnesium and Vitamin C for constipation. If you're getting plenty of vegetable/fruit fiber and liquid, you might just need magnesium to help the intestinal muscle contractions and absorb more water into the stool. I second the suggestion about drinking lots (2-4 liters per day) of water. There are also a few great gluten-free high fiber cereals which helped me. Ener-G Foods Rice Bran cereal (19 grams of soluable fiber per serving) can be cooked as a hot cereal. I add a little Quinoa flakes, which makes the mixture look/feel like cooked oatmeal. Also Nu-World Amaranth makes a great cold cereal from Amaranth which is low carb, high fiber (9-10 grams of fiber per serving) and low calorie. It looks like Cheerios and comes in peach, original and strawberry flavors. I have also successfully used dried plums (OK prunes), but who hasn't?? ;) I can empathize with your struggle. So many celiacs have diarrhea as their main symptom, so gluten-free breads and cereals are SO low in fiber. I've really searched for higher fiber cereals and tried to increase my fiber consumption with cereals, fruits, vegies and water. Good Luck! :)

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Hi everyone! I am new to this board (in terms of posting), been checking out the site over the past few months and finally joined in!

I am a Licensed Massage Therapist and when I read this post I wanted to make sure that anyone who applies self abdominal massage is doing it in the correct direction as Dessa describes - clockwise, as this is the normal flow of your intestines.

Going in a counter clockwise direction can only move the blockage backwards, defeating the purpose!

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I also wanted to mention that aloe vera juice is good for constipation as well as coconut. Both of those are great in smoothies. Hugs, Carol B (thanks for the reminder of massage direction)

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    • Thank you for going through my long post and responding. I have been both dairy and gluten-free free for 10 months now. Yes, even I was worried about other food allergies. I mentioned it to my GI doc and asked if I need food allergy test to eliminate other allergens. He said, food allergy tests give a lot of false positives and are not accurate. He said: not everything is because of food allergy and it's refractory celiac which is causing issues as the jejunum biopsy, done recently, is showing villous flattening.

      My doubt: 1. If I have so much damage in my small intestine (villous flattening) then how was I keeping fine for 6-7 months ( eating eggs, soy, rice and meat) - was constantly losing weight though - but was able to work out regularly - not much fatigue. 2. If it is other food allergens ( out of mentioned allergens, I take eggs, soy chunks, almonds only) why does it happen only few times and not always - I keep well for 7-8 days and then fall sick again - this without any change in diet.  
    • Oh, Trish at the GlutenFreeWatchDog tested Planter's honey roasted peanuts three years ago.  The can did not state gluten-free, but showed no gluten ingrediants (per Kraft policy).  Test result: less than 5 part per million which is pretty much gluten-free.  
    • What if it were something else that glutened you?  Maybe you ate too much of a good thing?  I once (three months post dx) ate too much gluten-free fried chicken, vomited, passed out and fractured my back (osteoporosis) in the process.  Paramedics, ER doc and Cardio all thought I was having a heart attack.   No.  It was sheer gluttony and bad bones.  Not good to overload with a damaged gut.    Maybe you did get some contaminated nuts.  Afterall, anything processed is suspect.  What might be well tolerated by some, might be too much for others.  We all have our various levels of gluten intolerance.   The old 20 parts per million is just a guideline, but science does not really know (lack of funding......doe anyone really care enough to find out?)  My hubby has been gluten-free for 15 years.  When I was first diagnosed, I tried to eat the gluten-free foods that I normally gave him.   Problem was he was healed and I was not.  Things like Xanthan Gum in commercial processed gluten-free breads make me feel like I have been glutened, but it is just (and still is) an intolerance.  So no bread for me unless I make it myself using a different gum.   Too lazy, so I do without.   so, ask your doctor if you really want to know or lay off the cashews and test them again in a month using a certified gluten-free nut.  I wish this was easier!    
    • I have intolerances to a few foods now, so I was wondering about that.. I love cashews though, and a month or two ago I was eating them all the time with no problems at all. I mean, could I really have developed an intolerance to them since then? I don't know if they're made on shared lines (it didn't say on the package so I assumed they weren't), but I'll give them a call. I'm really, really sensitive to cross contamination. Even if something is just made in the same facility (but not on shared lines) it will make me sick. If that's not it, then I'm not really sure
    • Research with KP and find a celiac-savvy GI in your area ( read the biographies). and ask your PCP/GP for a referral to that specific GI (not his buddy).  Ask the GI for the rest  of the celiac panel or proceed with an endoscopy/biopsies -- 4 to six.  Keep eating gluten daily until all testing is complete.  Document and request in writing.  Do not worry about symptoms.  There are over 300 of them and some celiacs have none!   Research all that you can about celiac disease.  The University of Chicago has a great celiac website that has testing Information etc.   Poet me know how it works out.  Hope you feel better soon!  
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