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How Long Till It Gets Better?
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I have been gluten-free since Feb04 . My question is how long does it take to really start to feel like my old self again . I have been sick for several years now and was finally diagnosed with cialiacs in Feb. I lost so much weight I thought I had cancer or something. My really big problem now seems to be my weight . I was heavy b4 so I wasnt bothered by it, but now it has been months and my intestines dont seem to be getting any better. I eat a ton of food but am still losing weight. Anyone have any ideas. I also have lactose, egg,nut,and yeast allergy.

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Try not to fret....it can take over a year to get better. I've been gluten-free since February, too, and I still have symptoms -- and I've been really paranoid about the diet and have been tested in many different ways for other problems. It takes time.

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I've done some research on this since I am wondering the same thing (I've been gluten-free for just over 7 months and still not better). I know how discouraging it is.

There are a number of things that could be wrong if a celiac continues to have problems on the gluten-free diet:

1. There could still be gluten in your diet (unlikely if you're very careful about cross-contamination and reading ingredients).

2. You could have another intolerance or allergy.

3. You could have another health related problem in addition to celiac.

4. It takes some people longer to heal than others (Which can be frustrating, especially if you've been so faithful to the diet and not seeing improvements).

5. And there's also something called refractory celiac (which we hope no one EVER gets) where celiacs do not respond to the gluten-free diet. This is rare though.

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It took about 1 year for me to feel really good. I also discovered a few months in to going gluten-free that I am intolerant to casein and soy as well. I still have days where I'm really tired. But I feel the best I have in my entire life.

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Are you sure you're eating enough as well? If food was making you sick before, you may have gotten into the habit of not enough calories. You might try a food journal (you can use Fitday to do it online), to see if you're getting enough calories. Eating plenty of nutrient and calorie dense foods (avocados, plenty of oil on your salads, etc.) may help there.

(Of course, all of this comes after what everyone else said about other intolerances and giving it plenty of time.)

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    • Hi Beachgrl, It won't hurt anything to go gluten-free now, except the possibility of getting a diagnosis of celiac disease.  When i went gluten-free, it seemed like the initial changes were spread over about 6 weeks.  I had gut spasms for that time.  And other changes, all for the better.  Initial recovery from celiac damage can take up to 18 months, so it can be a slow thing.  Some people get better much faster of course, because we are all individuals and not identical. Going gluten-free for celiac disease is a lifetime commitment though, and some people have a hard time doing that without a diagnosis.  Even minor amounts of gluten can cause us to react, so it is best to eat a very simple diet of whole foods at first.  Avoid dairy and processed foods.  I hope it works out for you.  I know some people with Crohns disease eat gluten-free and find it helps them.  Gluten is a tough thing to digest for all people, but most don't have an immune reaction to it like celiacs do.  
    • Honestly, I would not trust the school to provide a gluten-free meal except for fruit, salads, veggies, etc. I sub in a school cafeteria and I swear everything is breaded or on bread. Utensils are shared. They're very clean but unless you have a very knowledgeable person in there, I just wouldn't chance it. I found a slim Jim type snack that says gluten-free on it. If you want to give me your email or FB account, I can send you some very valuable info on 504's though. They carry the student right through college. I kept a copy of what a friend wrote about her daughter being in a sorority and just how the 504 helped immensely. But, I would definitely get one and still be prepared to pack a lunch. All our meals are delivered frozen and we just hear them up. If your school actually fixes food, that's different. 
    • Oh, I would suggest providing gluten-free goodies (e.g. Candy) or even a frozen cupcake (kept in the teacher's freezer) in the event of a party.  My daughter's classmate is severely allergic to peanuts.  Her mom did that and Abby was never left out!  😊
    • Hi Nobody, Welcome to the forum!  I noticed you said you have been avoiding wheat products.  That's good, but are you avoiding rye and barley also?  Wheat, rye, and barley are the 3 grains that cause reactions in celiac patients.  About 10% also react to oats. If you haven't had the full celiac antibodies test panel, it might be worthwhile getting that done now.  The ttg is just a basic test and is generally followed up by an endoscopy or the full celiac panel. I wouldn't worry a lot about getting cancer.  That doesn't happen often. It is possible some of the other grains you might be eating are contaminated.  A group did a test on several off the shelf products a few years ago that would not normally be thought of as having gluten and found some actually did have low levels of gluten.  Things like corn meal for example.    
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