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How Soon After Eating It Do We Get Sick?


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#1 Death_Cab_Doll

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 12:52 PM

I have a question. I have been gluten free for about 5 months now, but I still find myself sick about 2 or 3 days out of each week. Most of the time it will happen after I know I didn't eat anything different, and sometimes I just wake up nad am sick that day (and it usually lasts 2-3 days).
I am wondering. How soon after someone with Celiac Disease is exposed to Gluten do they get the symptoms? If I don't get sick within an hour of eating something should I consider it safe? Can it take as long as a day to kick in?
Any info on this would be so appreciated.
A lot of times I just end up suspecting that I am sick just from the anxiety that is created by worrying about getting sick.....
-Melanie
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~Melanie (Death Cab Doll)
Gluten-Free December 2008

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#2 donnal

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 01:06 PM

I have a question. I have been gluten free for about 5 months now, but I still find myself sick about 2 or 3 days out of each week. Most of the time it will happen after I know I didn't eat anything different, and sometimes I just wake up nad am sick that day (and it usually lasts 2-3 days).
I am wondering. How soon after someone with Celiac Disease is exposed to Gluten do they get the symptoms? If I don't get sick within an hour of eating something should I consider it safe? Can it take as long as a day to kick in?
Any info on this would be so appreciated.
A lot of times I just end up suspecting that I am sick just from the anxiety that is created by worrying about getting sick.....
-Melanie



Such an appropriate question to which I can say I"d like an answer too!! I have just been gluten-free (or trying to be) for about 13 days now and was feeling ever so much better for the first 8--not nearly so tired, still feel full quickly after a meal but not "pregnant" or in pain and having better bowel function (have been diagnosed as IBS constipation-predominant) and then two days ago I felt like crud again--like I'd been hit by a truck (extreme fatigue) and pretty severy abd pain again. But I got to thinking about things I'd read and the list on celiac.com of unsafe additives in food. so I went and looked at things I'd thot were OK and lo and behold in my low-fat sour cream is dextrin, which can be wheat derived!! I don't know if that's it and I would like to know, like you, if there is some time frame during which we can anticipate a reaction (would help in knowing how far back to check what we'd eaten) and how long a reaction can linger (I am feeling probalby 50-75% better today, about 36 hrs after initially feeling horrible). Feeling that bad, tho', did make me want to stick with this longer and see if it is, indeed, the problem. I have felt so bad for so long and it was so great to even feel somewhat better. I think I would have a hard time, though, being off dairy in additon to gluten!! Thanks for posting your question--let's see what help we can get from those have blazed the way for us!! donnal
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#3 emcmaster

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 01:08 PM

Reaction time varies person to person. Most of the time I get sick 24 hours after I eat something that had CC, but if I were to actually eat gluten, like a piece of bread, I would get sick within a few hours. For me it has to do with the amount of gluten in something... like it takes my body 24 hours to discover it was glutened if it was CC, but it knows immediately if it was a bigger dosage.

It has taken up to 4 days before, believe it or not. But most of the time it's 24 hours.
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ELIZABETH

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#4 toomuchagony

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 06:56 PM

Hi There, to BOTH - Death_Cab_Doll and donnal

I too am fairly new to Celiac, but fortunately (or unfortunately pain wise ;) I have managed to educate myself, primarily by doing MEGA amounts of "searching & reading on this forum", and by "trial & ERROR" :o In my own case, I found that at first to spite my concerted efforts to "go gluten-free" none the less because I'd both "consumed TONS of wheat/grains" and had further TONS of it within my environment/home for all of my 51 years, that it actually took me several weeks to "root out hidden gluten sources", and really I'm fairly sure that even now there is likely more than a few "molecules" left hiding here :ph34r: somewhere yet awaiting my discovery in days ahead! A'course, I rather dread the discovery being after I've "ingested" it, and I pray occurences of my cross-contaminating myself will be few and far between, BUT that said I am a realist and so I know that there will be occasions when it will happen yet. My last CC resulted due to "licking a mail-reply envelope" which enlightened me to "gluten in some adhesives" at a horrible and painful price! <_<

In my de-glutenizing efforts here I found I had to both completely "sanitize/scrub with bleach" ALL of my kitchen cupboards and counters surfaces, before I even began to "restock my pantry gluten-free". I also had to purchase many new items, pots, pans, baking pans, plasticwares, cooking utensils, toaster, mixer, a wood cutting board, a rice steamer/fryer/slow-cooker appliance, colanders, drink jugs, and well basically EVERYTHING POUROUS OR PITTED OR SCRATCHED that was ever in contact with ANY gluten source. I've also had to be consciously careful around a few things I know can CC me but that I either, "can't" do any replacement of (my pet Ferret eats and LOVES wheat fortune cookies for her treat, so I have to immediately wash my hands after feeding her a piece, and store them in a sealed container OUTSIDE of my kitchen area), OR as in the case of my pet Finch birds, I still need to "replace their cage" even though I have already managed to find a "gluten-free seed mix" which I started feeding them now. I also had to switch both my Ferret's and Dog's daily food/treats to "grain free" varieties. And then too lastly but certainly NOT leastly, in my case I had to "change medications" in some instances as well, ie I'd been "treating my gas/bloating" using Mallox Berry Suspension or Chewables, BOTH have gluten in them so here I was "pouring gluten on my poor sick intestines to try to relief the symptoms and pain caused from gluten ingestion, sheeeeesh eh"! I then found a couple of the meds I used had gluten finally by "phoning the maufacturers with the barcodes". Using them obviously resulted in my "healing being impeded/prevented", even though I was doing "correctly" as far as my "actual diet consumption" all the while.

Thus given that ya are as I, fairly new to this gluten-free lifestyle change, I just wonder if in fact you too are not perhaps still ingesting gluten which is not so obvious as your "diet"? Certainly, ANY gluten even a "minute trace", say left behind in the metal seam of a spatula used to flip wheat pancakes prior, or say perhaps contained in a lipstick/cosmetic you use or come into (kissing) contact with, WILL be enuf gluten to effect you negatively, (not to mention actually do more physical damage to your intestines!)

As for the queston of "how long does reaction take"... I agree with emcmaster... typically I find if I get a larger dose of gluten then within mere hours I will be literally doubled over with severe cramping & gas! If however I ingest a small trace it seems to take me 24 hrs - 48 hrs to acheive FULL AGONY & D, D, D! Conversly, with a larger dose of gluten I will stay SICK for more days overall than if I get a wee dose I'll usually only suffer for a few days total time before I start back to mending mode.

Anyhoo... just some "gluten-free food for thought" for ya. :P
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#5 Death_Cab_Doll

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 12:04 PM

Thanks to both of you for sharing. It's just crazy. I even find myself having nightmares about eating a donut or a piece of toast and not realizing what I was doing until the last bite! It's kind of hilarious actually. Living a life where you feel like gluten is everywhere and only exists for the purpose of hunting you down and harming you. :ph34r: And it always manages to do so! Even in my dreams!
Do any of you get "GERD" or the feeling of something being stuck in your throat as a result of accidental gluten consumption?? :blink: I have been dealing with that since last night and wonder if it, too, is caused by my intolerance......
Frustrating. It is hard to remember the time when I ate whatever and took food for granted and didn't have to read every label I came across.... ah the good ol days.
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~Melanie (Death Cab Doll)
Gluten-Free December 2008

#6 lizard00

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 12:10 PM

Welcome to both of you!!!

For me, if I get cc'd I feel it the next day. Almost 24 hours exactly. I get extremely tired, serious brain fog, and now,depending on the level of gluten, headaches. In the beginning, the headaches were what got me off gluten.
But it does depend on the person.

I would suggest that you keep a food dairy in for the next few weeks or months. That way, you can easily track a delayed rxn or see if there's something else that may be bothering you in addition to the gluten.

Hope you figure it out soon!!
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#7 silk

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 01:41 PM

Adding my welcome to both of you. I too have been gluten-free for 5 months. Yeah! Happy Thanksgiving huh? I feel well most of the time but it has been a hard road because the toxic stuff hides everywhere! I usually react within 1/2 hour and have also gotten it from 'licking the envelope please!" And I usually suffer major symptoms for 3-4 days but residual effects for up to a week or more depending on how bad the whammy.

A agree that you are most likely getting CC from something in your homes or common environments. I have scrubbed with the bleach. We have gone almost strictly gluten free as a family. The healthy ones do still have their bread and pizza rolls, cereal and cookies, but everything else is gluten-free and they are good about it. I have divided my kitchen into the 'toxic' side (theirs) and the non-toxic side, Mine. We have separate toasters and any gluten food is prepared strictly on their side of the room and they don't contaminate my prep area with their 'stuff'. I also replaced all of my major cooking utensils like ladles, wooden handled knives, cooking spoons and spatulas and anything else that cold hide the nasty stuff in a handle crevice. Also replace my mixer and blender. And other than getting something occasionally from an unexpected source, I can honestly say that I don't think I have gotten it from CC in my kitchen, at least in the past several months.

The gerd feeling...I had that too until I started to heal. It will get better with time. Some wise souls here recommended marshmallow root, slippery elm, and papaya enzymes for digestion. And Pepto Bismol is a god send ! I have it everywhere I travel and am learning that if I take it as soon as I start to feel symptoms that it seems to at least ease the initial ones a bit. Still have the days of dealing with everything but the pepto seems to help with the bloating, gassiness and upset stomach.

Good luck. It does get better.
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#8 Death_Cab_Doll

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 04:44 PM

Thank you so much for the great ideas, the advice, and the optimism.... You have no idea how nice it is (actually you probably do!) to find people who have been through this!
I think I will start the diary tonight and I also am going to replace my cooking utensils as soon as I can!
Thanks you guys.
-Melanie
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~Melanie (Death Cab Doll)
Gluten-Free December 2008

#9 bakingbarb

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 07:58 PM

I am just past my 5th month gluten free. I was just thinking about this today. My tummy hurt today and my joints ache and I have no idea what I ate. BUT I do know that I have eaten things other then my usuals. I had some doritios that even though they are ok, DUH I just realized what happens. When people here are eating a sandwhich with gluten full bread and they reach in and get chips they could be getting bread crumbs on my chips. It was my bag of chips and I had them set aside until yesterday when they ate them with their lunch. ARGHHHHHHHHH
I cannot think of any other thing. About 4 days ago I ate a prepared salad with dressing that didn't have anything listed on the label but that doesn't mean anything.

So to answer your exact question, I don't know. Sometimes I can tell right away I ate something but then again I am not sure! :rolleyes:
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#10 bakingbarb

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 08:21 PM

Thank you so much for the great ideas, the advice, and the optimism.... You have no idea how nice it is (actually you probably do!) to find people who have been through this!
I think I will start the diary tonight and I also am going to replace my cooking utensils as soon as I can!
Thanks you guys.
-Melanie



I waited a few months before replacing my cooking utensils. It just seemed so costly and scary at first. Some one on here told me to wait and replace things when I am ready. I didn't replace my cookware, I didn't think it needed and I still don't. I did get a new cutting board asap though. I use one and there is a big pull out one that everyone else uses.
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#11 gfp

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 11:37 PM

Reaction time varies person to person. Most of the time I get sick 24 hours after I eat something that had CC, but if I were to actually eat gluten, like a piece of bread, I would get sick within a few hours. For me it has to do with the amount of gluten in something... like it takes my body 24 hours to discover it was glutened if it was CC, but it knows immediately if it was a bigger dosage.

It has taken up to 4 days before, believe it or not. But most of the time it's 24 hours.

As if to demonstrate how individual celiac disease is I'm almost the opposite. The amount doesn't seem to matter (for me) for either severity or how long to onset.
In most cases it's 8 hours or so but it can be up to a weel or it can be 1-2 hours. Most often the symptoms come at different times... I often start with a fever or just a dissassociative feeling best described as brain fog and the D might not happen for 1-2 days... I might get cramps then D or D then cramps the next day or day after ..

For me general health, rest and sleep etc. seem as or more important than how much gluten.
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#12 gfp

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 11:47 PM

I have scrubbed with the bleach.

Bleach is useless or no better than soap. Gluten isn't alive, it can't be killed and bleach is not an effective cleaner in that it doesn't 'lift' it just kills bacteria.
Neat alcohol is probably the best cleaner if you decide to try and scrub things clean.
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#13 toomuchagony

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Posted 25 April 2008 - 09:56 AM

Bleach is useless or no better than soap. Gluten isn't alive, it can't be killed and bleach is not an effective cleaner in that it doesn't 'lift' it just kills bacteria.
Neat alcohol is probably the best cleaner if you decide to try and scrub things clean.


With all due respect to gfp... regards "cleaning with bleach"... firstly, bleach is absolutely a "hostile" and "destructive" environment for BOTH "enzymes & proteins", and not only just "living organisims like bacteria, etc". Secondly, in cleaning with bleach the "lifting off of the dirt" is accomplished with "effort" I term it the "elbow grease" part of the process, after scrubbing with full strength bleach & a brush, one is advised strongly to "blot up the wet bleach" using "paper towel" (so it can be disposed of rather than just rinsed inadequately perhaps and wrung repeatedly in a rag), and then one further should take a clean rag and hot water and "rinse" the surfaces that were bleached, and finally again "blot the area DRY", in my own humble opinion a process which more than adequately "lifts dirt / germs / and gluten" OFF of the surface being cleaned. I would note personally I do wear a mask and rubber gloves during this process. All that said... lastly, my intended point was really "a need to CLEAN surfaces you store/prepare gluten free foods on which have been in contact with gluten and can not just be replaced, like cupboards", and was not really concerned with what actual "method of cleaning" that any given soul might wish to use to do so.
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#14 donnal

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Posted 26 April 2008 - 07:52 AM

I so much appreciated everyone's input. Because I was blood-tested for celiac over 2 yrs ago and all came back neg, I feel I have to "defend" this "nutty diet" I am doing. People say, well, folks have eaten wheat for centuries--why all of a sudden all this problem. Makes me feel like a hypochondriac! I've been helped by reading the long research article on this site but it is still hard to "defend". I do know that if the misery I had a few days ago was from cc gluten I dont' want to go there again! I will try the food diary thing. Keep up the needed work of encouraging us newbies!!
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Donna Edinger

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Posted 26 April 2008 - 10:01 AM

My doctor said that a quick initial reaction is usually due to a food allergy, not Celiac Disease. He said that it's even possible you're allergic to wheat, but not intolerant to it. usually an allergy reaction happens much sooner than an intolerance, to my understanding. Also, your body could take a while to react to the gluten- even a day or two. So just because you feel sick on X day, doesn't mean you ate something bad on that particular day.... it could be a reaction kicking in from something you ate a few days prior.
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