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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      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 Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can 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-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is 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 Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Wheat Field With Crows By Vincent Van Gogh
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20 posts in this topic

Monday this week was the day I became certain that if I don't have Celiac I at least am gluten sensitive. I had bought the book Dangerous Grains and had read several chapters. I put it down for the night and tuned into a PBS series about art. This particular episode was about Van Gogh. Van Gogh ended his life by suicide, in a wheat field, having painted this famous painting after suffering for years with bi-polar disorder. I couldn't help but think there was a connection.

I have believed for the past 20 years that food is among the most powerful drugs we humans use. I have suffered all of my life from bowel problems, energy issues, mood swings, and depression for a while. I stopped eating bread and pasta after reading the Zone. I noticed that when I did the Zone I felt far better than when I didn't. If you know anything about the Zone it recommends controlling your body's two main food related hormones insulin and glucagon by controlling the ingestion of carbohydrates, especially grains and processed sugar.

I haven't followed the low carb diet for the past couple of years and have paid the price with steadily increasing bowel episodes. I am in sales and I travel. I know every great bathroom stop in New England as I am often racing from one to the next. I was up to 226lbs recently. Not obese at 6'1" but not healthy and not happy.

3 weeks ago I began a 30 day Detox diet recommended by a friend. One component is a bowel cleanse with natural herbs and only water and fresh squeezed juices. The bowel detox was a bit rough and I almost quit. I was surprised to see what looked like my intestinal lining come out. The cramping was the worst I had ever had but I stuck to it. After 5 days I felt much better. I continued the detox program now turning to my liver and blood using the same water anf juice and now fruits and vegetables but nothing else. After five days of this my health felt restored and I felt like celebrating. I had two beers with sushi and soy sauce. Next morning I had the bowel issues return after a good 10 days without them. I then ate a large sub for lunch and felt absloutely horrible. The next morning I had severe diarrea more than once (I'm happy to share - thanks!)

This is what finally convinced me of my condition. I bought the Dangerous Grains book, found this website and started calling a couple of people I heard were Celiac. The process has been a revelation.

I lost faith in our medical system years ago and I don't plan on getting tested or evaluated for this condition. For now I am content to eat what our ancestors ate and feel great doing it.

Let this serve as my introduction to the board. I will be reading voraciously through all of the posts. Thanks for being here!

Ken

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Hey, sharing is what we do best here!! :P Nice to meet you and welcome!

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Welcome and Enjoy feeling better every day.

10 years ago I used to dread getting out of bed. It was physically painful to move that much. My stomach hurt even to walk.

It only took a few weeks to notice my discomfort going away along with other things I didn't know were related (hair falling out, bone pain, mouth ulcers).

Good luck to you!

This is probably the best place to get real life advice.

Gina

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I was doing a little more research on Van Gogh. Check out this Wikipedia link and see if you can diagnose his problem. I think I've solved themystery. Celiac

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vincent_van_G...dical_condition

This is an interesting site as well http://www.vggallery.com/forum/main.htm I would bet you a loaf of wheat bread that he had Celiac's!

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I was doing a little more research on Van Gogh. Check out this Wikipedia link and see if you can diagnose his problem. I think I've solved themystery. Celiac

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vincent_van_G...dical_condition

This is an interesting site as well http://www.vggallery.com/forum/main.htm I would bet you a loaf of wheat bread that he had Celiac's!

Ken, did you read the very bottom of that article? :

"Other diagnoses

Van Gogh's primary complaints have also been variously attributed to syphilis and absinthe intoxication. Van Gogh clearly had Celiac's disease. He even knew it. His last painting Wheat Field with Crows is an attempt by Van Gogh to out his killer, namely wheat."

Pretty interesting.

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Ken, did you read the very bottom of that article? :

"Other diagnoses

Van Gogh's primary complaints have also been variously attributed to syphilis and absinthe intoxication. Van Gogh clearly had Celiac's disease. He even knew it. His last painting Wheat Field with Crows is an attempt by Van Gogh to out his killer, namely wheat."

Pretty interesting.

I actually just wrote that. I didn't know that Wikipedia worked like that. I thought somebody reviewed it first and then submitted it to a panel for possible inclusion. Geeze, I could have written anything.

What do you think though? Seems plausible doesn't it?

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I actually just wrote that. I didn't know that Wikipedia worked like that. I thought somebody reviewed it first and then submitted it to a panel for possible inclusion. Geeze, I could have written anything.

What do you think though? Seems plausible doesn't it?

That is the funniest thing I have seen all day. You have just altered history. Well, it's obviously true. I just read it online.

It does seem reasonable. Probably should have laid off the wheat and the paints.

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HI Ken, and welcome.

I have always been fascinated w/ Van Gogh's story, having been a painter most of my life - esp. drawn to the fauvist, expressionist, and post-impressionist periods of art. I was also diagnosed bipolar years ago, struggled like hell with that......and now 1.5 years gluten-free, I don't really struggle with it any more. :)

There is a book I think you'd really like (I haven't read yoru link so if it's mentioned in there, forgive me) called Lust for Life. I read it about 10 years ago, and almost instantly diagnosed Vincent as bipolar. He lived virtually on absinthe, coffee, and cigarettes.....largely malnourished - - and when he went to the asylum for a period, experienced the LEAST prolific time of his life, while eating, sleeping, drinkign less, etc. [it is known that absinthe causes its own peculiar kind of madness - - but I think the urge and craving for absinthe is related to very imbalanced brain biochemistry and physiology.]

I now am more than convinced that he was Celiac, and that a gluten-free diet would have cured his madness.....

BUT - - -

I think we would have been deprived of his works. Strong link to creativity and torture/madness......I am much calmer and more normal now, and hardly ever paint! I used to stay up into the wee hours of morning - painting until the sun rose, so consumed I was not able to sleep.

Life is calmer now....and while I wish I had the dramatic urge to paint and express that I once did, I can honestly say that I choose mental health over the days-in-a-row of no sleep and the tortured brain that went with it.

so anywho.....stay away from the soy sauce and subs! Sounds like you're definitely gluten-intolerant.....

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That is the funniest thing I have seen all day. You have just altered history. Well, it's obviously true. I just read it online.

It does seem reasonable. Probably should have laid off the wheat and the paints.

I think I should step away from the keyboard for a while before I do any more damage :unsure:

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"Other diagnoses

Van Gogh's primary complaints have also been variously attributed to syphilis and absinthe intoxication. Van Gogh clearly had Celiac's disease. He even knew it. His last painting Wheat Field with Crows is an attempt by Van Gogh to out his killer, namely wheat."

:o:lol: oh my gosh - - - YOU just wrote that, and it shows up??? that's a riot. well, since we're on the subject, I'll gently ask you to correct your typo...

it's Celiac disease - - - not Celiac's, not Celiacs (unless you're talking about more than one - as in, "see those two Celiacs over there)......

sorry, just a huge pet peeve of mine. ;)

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HI Ken, and welcome.

I have always been fascinated w/ Van Gogh's story, having been a painter most of my life - esp. drawn to the fauvist, expressionist, and post-impressionist periods of art. I was also diagnosed bipolar years ago, struggled like hell with that......and now 1.5 years gluten-free, I don't really struggle with it any more. :)

There is a book I think you'd really like (I haven't read yoru link so if it's mentioned in there, forgive me) called Lust for Life. I read it about 10 years ago, and almost instantly diagnosed Vincent as bipolar. He lived virtually on absinthe, coffee, and cigarettes.....largely malnourished - - and when he went to the asylum for a period, experienced the LEAST prolific time of his life, while eating, sleeping, drinkign less, etc. [it is known that absinthe causes its own peculiar kind of madness - - but I think the urge and craving for absinthe is related to brain biochemistry and physiology.]

I now am more than convinced that he was Celiac, and that a gluten-free diet would have cured his madness.....

BUT - - -

I think we would have been deprived of his works. Strong link to creativity and torture/madness......I am much calmer and more normal now, and hardly ever paint! I used to stay up into the wee hours of morning - painting until the sun rose, so consumed I was not able to sleep.

Life is calmer now....and while I wish I had the dramatic urge to paint and express that I once did, I can honestly say that I choose mental health over the days-in-a-row of no sleep and the tortured brain that went with it.

so anywho.....stay away from the soy sauce and subs! Sounds like you're definitely gluten-intolerant.....

Look at that painting in my avatar. Tell me that Van Gogh didn't know that it was wheat that was killing him. I think we really are rewriting history.

Tell me more about the bi polar. My friends son developed it recently.

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:o:lol: oh my gosh - - - YOU just wrote that, and it shows up??? that's a riot. well, since we're on the subject, I'll gently ask you to correct your typo...

it's Celiac disease - - - not Celiac's, not Celiacs (unless you're talking about more than one - as in, "see those two Celiacs over there)......

sorry, just a huge pet peeve of mine. ;)

I fixed my wikipedia comments to be less certain and to be spelled correctly. Thanks.

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Look at that painting in my avatar. Tell me that Van Gogh didn't know that it was wheat that was killing him. I think we really are rewriting history.

.

:lol::lol::lol: that is a crackup. I don't think he *knew* at all that wheat was killing him, just as I and many of us didn't know......but it WAS killing him and so the great irony is that he painted his killer while NOT knowing it was his killer. :huh:

When I have more time, I will write a small treatise on bipolar. It took decades of my life....and it really did quite literally take my brother (a bipolar who took his own life). You can do searches on this forum for bipolar, again when I have time, I"ll look them up. I don't have the science behind it all, really, just know that removing gluten brought me out of a fog and depression I couldn't even describe. And the mania during all those years.......holy cow. REally, really exhausting. I have been as many as five - FIVE - entire days without sleep......very hard on a person. :(

the only thing I can say w/ great certainty is that your friend's son should remove gluten right away, and see how he feels in six months.......but it's a huge and dramatic commitment. I came to the point where meds could no longer regulate my depression, and I was too malnourished nad tired to be manic for the last couple of years before dx.

more later!

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Thank you so much for this post. I really feel like being a celiac is more than a diet. I have shared about feeling nervous around stalks of wheat people decorate with as well as having a disdain for the social studies lesson I have to give about wheat being the "seed of life". Thank you!!

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I think I should step away from the keyboard for a while before I do any more damage :unsure:

Luckily for you he's dead and can't sue you like Fuzzy Zoeller did to that lawyer....

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I think I should step away from the keyboard for a while before I do any more damage :unsure:

Luckily for you he's dead and can't sue you like Fuzzy Zoeller did to that lawyer that posted the bogus wiki excerpt on him....

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:lol::lol::lol: that is a crackup. I don't think he *knew* at all that wheat was killing him, just as I and many of us didn't know......but it WAS killing him and so the great irony is that he painted his killer while NOT knowing it was his killer. :huh:

Don't be so sure. I've "known" for almost twenty years but never really knew until now. Can you see the distinction? When I look at that painitng I see ghostly images, nothing in focus. A path that leads to nowhere. Crows symbolic of death. The afterlife in the heavens. The giant wheat field enveloping him on earth, drawing him in, killing him. I think he knew. He might not have been concious or aware but if he had listened to his gut...who knows? It's a fun theory anyway. Don't take me too seriously.

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Hi Ken,

I know this is an old thread, but I am truly fasinated by this, and you also have me wondering and asking questions.

Van Gogh has always fasinated me, his life and paintings. And I see a strong link between celiac and his mental and physical life.

And I tend to agree with your theory.

It is very strange also that he did paint so many pictures of wheat.

links to other wheat paitings

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...in-a-Field.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...Near-Arles.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...eat-Fields.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...h-a-Reaper.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...th-Peasant.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...at-Sunrise.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...er-Millet).html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...th-Cypress.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...eat-Fields.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...s-of-Wheat.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...ields,-The.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...eat-Stacks.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...hite-House.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...louded-Sky.html

http:/http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Painting/756/Wheat-Fields-with-Auvers-in-the-Background.

html/www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Painting/745/Wheat-Field-with-Cornflowers.html

http://www.vangoghgallery.com/catalog/Pain...with-Crows.html

As he drew closer to his death, he did paint more pictures of wheat and also they appear darker and erratic, and I am sure if I study these pictures further I will make other discoveries.

I also believe you, when you think that he may have been a celiac..

As we all know, not a real lot of people know about celiac, and nothing at all was known back in them times.

But many of his symptoms do relate...

examples

they blame sun stoke?

Because Van Gogh strived for realism in his paintings he was often painting outdoors especially during his times in the South of France. Some of his episodes of hostility and the nausea and "bad stomach" he refers to in his letters may have been the effects of sunstroke.

Thujone poisoning

In order to counter act his attacks of epilepsy, anxiety, and depression, Van Gogh drank absinthe, a toxic alcoholic drink popular with many artists at the time. Thujone is the toxin in absinthe. Unfortunately, the Thujone worked against Van Gogh aggravating his epilepsy and manic depression.

Due to Van Gogh's extreme enthusiasm and dedication to first religion and then art coupled with the feverish pace of his art production many believe that mania was a prominent condition in Van Gogh's life. However, these episodes were always followed by exhaustion and depression and ultimately suicide. Therefore, a diagnosis of bipolar disorder or manic depression makes sense with the accounts of these episodes in Van Gogh's life.

(source http://www.vangoghgallery.com/misc/mental.html

van gogh quote

"The diseases that we civilized people labor under most are melancholy and pessimism."

Ken you have given me a thirst to investigate and learn more on this subject.

Thank you!

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I think we would have been deprived of his works. Strong link to creativity and torture/madness......I am much calmer and more normal now, and hardly ever paint! I used to stay up into the wee hours of morning - painting until the sun rose, so consumed I was not able to sleep.

Life is calmer now....and while I wish I had the dramatic urge to paint and express that I once did, I can honestly say that I choose mental health over the days-in-a-row of no sleep and the tortured brain that went with it.

....

I appreciate this observation greatly. The sicker I became the more desperate my composing became. I couldn't sleep at night, I think at times to avoid the pain of having to wake up with not only rheumatoid arthritis but also what I now undersand as the pain and brain fog of celiac.

Now that I have been gluten free I have no desire to compose although the clearheadedness has allowed me to write much more clearly.

I was also struggling through near impossible physical obstacles to maintain what was left of my operatic voice as it was becoming harder by the day to find the strength to do what was necessary to overcome the physical problems that were shutting my voice down. Once I went gluten-free I found the road to vocal wellness but, I no longer have the desire to sing. Maybe all the pathos involved in role prep is just too much for me too live through after what I have been going through for the last 2 decades. Lots of adjustments to be made.

I also note that there are mental health issues in my family that I now begin to see as a manifestation of celiac as they are from the side of the family I suspect I have inherited this from.

CS

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