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Extreme Bloat When Hungry?
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I eat about 5 times a day - breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner - all pretty healthy meals and don't usually overeat. I eat out rarely, and make most meals at home (gluten free of course). My problem is, that for the past several years at LEAST (even before going gluten free), when I'm hungry...really hungry...my stomach starts to bloat up and I'm a mess the rest of the day. I start out by getting the usual hunger pains, but then it turns to bloat that can't be controlled with otc meds or food or anything else. I eat very consistently while at work so I don't typically have a problem during the weekdays. Although, I do feel like I spend more money on food than 'normal' people b/c i HAVE to have my snacks, or my stomach will be in distress long after I've finally had a meal. Does anyone else experience this? Like I said, it's typically not a situation I have to deal with during the week...but it's very embarrassing and uncomfortable when I'm on trips or in a situation where I'm not on my 'regular eating schedule"...(which by the way, it sucks to be on an eating schedule and know you'll be screwed if you get off of it! haha) Just wondering if this is part of celiac..or if I've got another set of issues.

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Hi there! I am new to being gluten-free so I can't say that your problems are due to Celiac BUT I have similar problems since my diagnosis with Crohn's Disease almost 10 years ago. My remedies include Gas-X, flat Coca-Cola, and recently I have been proscribed Librax. I tend to snack a lot and have learned to recognize when my stomach starts asking for food. With me it's unpredictable and doesn't always happen but I *think* that diet soda, gum chewing, and caffeine are all triggers. I've read where the brain gets fooled with foods like that, diet foods, etc. into thinking that it has received a certain number of calories and then comes roaring back with a vengance when it realizes that it's at a calorie deficit. I try to keep my meals full of protein, whole grains and as much fiber as I can tolerate... all things that keep me feeling full longer. Also, staying hydrated helps and I don't know why. I've also learned that I can't eat acidic things (like an apple) or dairy when I'm really, really empty.

I hope that these suggestions can be of some help to you. I have no shame about eating a snack bar while waiting for a table at a restaurant anymore, it's better than 24-hour bloat! Even my GI can't really explain why it happens, but I'm optimistic that the diet changes I've made (gluten-free, cutting out the types of foods mentioned above) will help. Best of luck to you.

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Thank you for all of your tips! They are very helpful :) I think for so long I ate whatever the heck I wanted to, b/c it seemed as If EVERYTHING upset my stomach, and I was too frustrated to try and determine what exactly was causing the problem. Now I've narrowed done my diet something fierce, and yet I think I'm still a little lazy about trying to find the root of the problem. I feel a bit 'deprived' when it comes to food...So i'm a little resistant about having to find out what's wrong and cut something else out. But i also know that I can't live like this. It's very frustrating, as I'm sure you know! Thank you for your help - I'm going to start paying more attn to what I'm consuming, and try to eat more grains. I think you are right..staying fuller longer, is really the key!

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http://www.carbohydrateaddicts.com/cadfnd.html

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Car-bo-hy-drate Ad-dic-tion:

A compelling hunger, craving, or desire for carbohydrate-rich foods;

an escalating, recurring need or drive for starches, snack foods, junk food, or sweets.

Carbohydrate-rich foods include, but are not limited to: breads, bagels, cakes, cereal, chocolate, cookies, crackers, danish, fruit and fruit juice, ice cream, potato chips, pasta, potatoes, pretzels, rice, pie, popcorn, and sugar-sweetened beverages.

In addition, carbohydrate act-alikes (sugar substitutes, alcoholic beverages, and monosodium glutamate) may trigger intense or recurring carbohydrate cravings and/or weight gain.

As many as seventy-five percent of those who are overweight, and many normal-weight individuals as well, are carbohydrate addicted. Though many people may suspect there is a physical imbalance that makes them crave carbohydrates and put weight on easily, the underlying cause of their cravings and weight struggles often goes undiagnosed and untreated.

Carbohydrate addiction is caused by an imbalance - an over release of the hormone, insulin, when carbohydrate-rich foods are eaten. Among its many jobs, insulin signals the body to take in food (it has been called the "hunger hormone") and, once the food is consumed, signals the body to store the food energy in the form of fat.

Too much insulin results in too strong an impulse to eat, too often, and a body that too readily stores food in the form of fat.

The scientific term for this condition is post-prandial reactive hyperinsulinemia which means too much insulin is released after eating. Over time, people who are hyperinsulinemic become insulin resistant, that is, the cells in their muscles, nervous systems, and organs start to close down to the high levels of insulin in their blood. Insulin is no longer able to open the doors to these cells and allow food energy (blood sugar or glucose) to enter. At this point, one may experience symptoms of low-blood sugar levels (hypoglycemia) including irritability, shakiness, tiredness, intense cravings, confusion, and headaches. Since the blood sugar cannot easily enter the muscles, nervous system, or organs, much of the food energy gets channeled into the fat cells and weight gain comes easily. Over time, however, as high insulin levels continue, even the fat cells can shut down and the blood glucose gets trapped in the blood stream bringing on the condition known as adult-onset diabetes.........

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Let's just say I have a close familiarity with people like you. Your incessant "requirement" to have a "meal" drives the people around you absolutely crazy. You are a genuine burden on them. No, it is not normal.

Stop eating sugar ........completely. Stop getting most of your calories from carbohydrates. Only a small portion should come from carbohydrates. For "meals", eat meats, eggs and veggies.

If you do it, your cravings will subside. If you don't, you're in for a world of pain.

..

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If you first two posters are on the celiac diet, you should not be eating wheat, barley, rye or oats. Acceptable grains would include corn, rice, millet, teff, sorghum..... The other "grains" you say you're gonna start getting your proteins from, essentially have no proteins.

Your understanding of carbohydrates is incorrect. Your digestive system converts most ingested sugars to blood sugar rapidly. Carbohydrate starches include the non-gluten grains listed above plus things like potatoes and sweet potatoes. The only food value in carbohydrate starches is sugar. Your digestive system converts carbohydrate starches into sugar at a regulated rate.

Depending on exertion and metabolism, Your body requires only a small amount of blood sugar. Any more blood sugar causes big problems. If you don't eat sufficient carbohydrates, two things happen:

* Your liver manufactures blood sugar in the *proper* amount from fat, either stored or ingested.

* Your body reverses all the harmful processes which the previous oversupply of carbohydrates caused.

If you don't want to hear it from me, seek out a nutritionist schooled in carbohydrate reduction. Google "Atkins diet" and "paleolithic diet", and go from there.

..

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Not to stir up any trouble here...My situation centers around feeling extremely bloated when hungry...I am not hungry all the time. I eat a very healthy diet, and the grains that I think we (at least I) was referring to meant quinoa (which is extremely rich in nutrients and protein), rice..more starchy foods perhaps. I'm not consuming these foods as it is very often right now, so I'm fairly sure there's no carb addiction here! I eat very little sugar...there's hardly anything with sugar in it left that I can eat, considering I don't eat meat/dairy/gluten products. I suppose the most sugar I consume would be in a glass of soy/rice milk that i might have once a day or fruit. I haven't consumed anything with caffeine in it since I was 10 yrs old or so. I drink decaf tea and water, and that's it.

My problem is the bloating that comes along with being a little or alot hungry. This generally happens on trips, when my eating schedules change slightly, or even sometimes in the evenings if I have to wait awhile before I eat. I eat as regularly as possible, but I sometimes get extremely bloated if my schedule is slightly off. I almost always have this happen as a result of traveling, even when I bring snacks on the plane.

In any case, there is no carb trouble here..nor sugar addiction..I'm just wondering if anyone else experiences this type of bloating, and what can be done about it?

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Not to stir up any trouble here...My situation centers around feeling extremely bloated when hungry...I am not hungry all the time. I eat a very healthy diet, and the grains that I think we (at least I) was referring to meant quinoa (which is extremely rich in nutrients and protein), rice..more starchy foods perhaps. I'm not consuming these foods as it is very often right now, so I'm fairly sure there's no carb addiction here! I eat very little sugar...there's hardly anything with sugar in it left that I can eat, considering I don't eat meat/dairy/gluten products. I suppose the most sugar I consume would be in a glass of soy/rice milk that i might have once a day or fruit. I haven't consumed anything with caffeine in it since I was 10 yrs old or so. I drink decaf tea and water, and that's it.

My problem is the bloating that comes along with being a little or alot hungry. This generally happens on trips, when my eating schedules change slightly, or even sometimes in the evenings if I have to wait awhile before I eat. I eat as regularly as possible, but I sometimes get extremely bloated if my schedule is slightly off. I almost always have this happen as a result of traveling, even when I bring snacks on the plane.

In any case, there is no carb trouble here..nor sugar addiction..I'm just wondering if anyone else experiences this type of bloating, and what can be done about it?

Fruit is sugar. If you have found a "grain" without gluten, it contains very little protein, and LOTS of carbohydrate starch.

I didn't expect a different answer from someone like you, but it was worth a try.

Edit: Since your answer got technical, my low-carb explanation needs revision.

The statement "* Your liver manufactures blood sugar in the *proper* amount from fat, either stored or ingested." is overly simplistic.

Most cells have mitochondria, and manufacture their own energy from blood sugar, blood fat and stored fat. A portion of central nervous system cells must consume blood sugar. Actually the liver can manufacture blood sugar from ingested protein.

Excess ingested sugar, from table sugar, fruit, and carbohydrates is extremely harmful and addictive. Meat protein is not. Meat protein is a healthy alternative to carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are extremely unhealthy, and are incapable of substituting for protein.

You based your choice of food on other factors.

..

Edited by veggienft
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I think I might know what you mean about "the bloat" when hungry. I get this sensation as if my stomach is trying to digest itself, and I get gassy and bloated if I have not eaten. I always carry a snack of some kind in my purse to alleviate this kind of situation. It could be related to carbs, but it can be alleviated with a piece of cheese (or anything, including carbs) that my stomach can work on, instead of itself.

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Thank you mushroom for your reply. It's good to know (although I'm sorry!) that someone else experiences this strange sensation. It stinks for your stomach to hurt even when you haven't put anything in it! Haha...Hopefully my next traveling experience goes well..I'm going to have to make sure and stock up on snacks and just keep them handy.

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How long have you been gluten-free? Has your weight stayed stable or have you lost? I'm wondering if it could have something to do with malabsorption. Have you been checked for other problems (liver, parasites, etc?).

Not trying to scare you, just problem-solve. If you haven't been gluten-free long, you may not have healed enough to be absorbing protein, nutrients, etc.

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I like to eat small meals and usually eat something every couple of hours. I don't really have any bloating eating this way but if I skip breakfast I'll feel bloated later in the day. I think it's because my digestive system needs food regularly to keep things moving along. My breakfasts are all protein and vegetables and I think that helps too.

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"Fruit is sugar. If you have found a "grain" without gluten, it contains very little protein, and LOTS of carbohydrate starch. I didn't expect a different answer from someone like you, but it was worth a try."

"Let's just say I have a close familiarity with people like you. Your incessant "requirement" to have a "meal" drives the people around you absolutely crazy. You are a genuine burden on them."

Well, veggienft, that's kind of rude. Givingupgluten is asking a question about our personal exeriences, hoping to learn from similar situations we might have. A lecture is not warranted, and neither is a "someone like you" generalization. If this type of problem does not affect you and you cannot offer any tips, or if you can't do it in a respectful manner, please do not post. My nutritionist had quite different advice from what you stated, and who's to say that mine is more qualified than yours. I still eat carbohydrates but have given up many processed sugars for natural ones, whole grains for refined, etc. I do think these changes have helped me, as well as other things I previously mentioned.

I think we're all pretty well versed in what grains are allowed on a gluten-free diet. There are plenty of grains that contain protein, such as quinoa, buckwheat, and teff. Not as much as a steak, mind you, but good choices besides rice and corn.

Givingupgluten, best of luck! Please post again as you experiment and find what works for you, as many can benefit.

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"Fruit is sugar. If you have found a "grain" without gluten, it contains very little protein, and LOTS of carbohydrate starch. I didn't expect a different answer from someone like you, but it was worth a try."

"Let's just say I have a close familiarity with people like you. Your incessant "requirement" to have a "meal" drives the people around you absolutely crazy. You are a genuine burden on them."

Well, veggienft, that's kind of rude. Givingupgluten is asking a question about our personal exeriences, hoping to learn from similar situations we might have. A lecture is not warranted, and neither is a "someone like you" generalization. If this type of problem does not affect you and you cannot offer any tips, or if you can't do it in a respectful manner, please do not post. My nutritionist had quite different advice from what you stated, and who's to say that mine is more qualified than yours. I still eat carbohydrates but have given up many processed sugars for natural ones, whole grains for refined, etc. I do think these changes have helped me, as well as other things I previously mentioned.

I think we're all pretty well versed in what grains are allowed on a gluten-free diet. There are plenty of grains that contain protein, such as quinoa, buckwheat, and teff. Not as much as a steak, mind you, but good choices besides rice and corn.

Givingupgluten, best of luck! Please post again as you experiment and find what works for you, as many can benefit.

There's a slight sequence problem to your attempt to paint me as an anti-vegetarian bigot. I could not have known the original poster was a vegetarian before I used the term "people like you". So your contention is essentially BS. I will however point out that this sequence was apparent when you made up your own facts.

So who's the bigot?

A poster related symptoms which are classic carbohydrate addiction, and asked what to do. She did not say she was a vegetarian. She did not ask that only people who disagree with eating meat respond. I gave my opinion based on my knowledge and my experience with "people like you" ........people who display symptoms of carbohydrate addiction.

And my opinion stands. If the original poster has an adequate useable protein-to-carbohydrate intake ratio, the symptoms she complained about would ........not - exist.

For my part, your demand that I stop posting is rejected, as is your attempt at demonization.

..

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Directing all back to the member's original post, and reminding all members of the board rule #1

Do not be abusive or otherwise out of line towards other board members. Show respect for each board member, no matter what you think of their views. This is not a place to quarrel.

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Thank you to everyone who posted re; the original post :) I think what I'm experiencing is like one of the other posters said...if I skip a meal, or delay a meal...i'm off the rest of the day. (Sometimes even the next day...grrr) I have been gluten free for 21/2 - 3 months...should i be healed by now do you think? I sometimes wonder if I just haven't had enough patience with this diet, or if I should be feeling better, and maybe something else is wrong? My dr's have done every kind of test to check for parasites and things of that nature, and so far..everything looks normal. So I'm hoping this just needs more time. I hope to one day be able to travel like a normal person again. Travel stresses me out b/c I rarely feel good during my trip - bloated, stressed..it's a mess. I guess b/c my schedule is slightly off, my digestive track is rebelling! How long does it take on average for a person to feel better on this diet?

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I don't know what the cause of it is, but I have similar feelings... I don't know if I would call it bloat, exactly, but it feels, as someone else called it, like my stomach begins digesting itself if I get too hungry.

Before going gluten free, everybody in the world laughed at how I ate, was never overweight at all, but I ate tons and tons more than anybody around me, and was ravenous all the time, to the point where I constantly complained about it. It was sort of a joke around anybody who knew me at all.

Now, gluten free for over two years, I really am not nearly as hungry as I used to be, and my eating has slowed down, but, if I do get too hungry, I get very distressful feelings in my gut; as I said, I'm not sure bloat would be the word, more like everything churning in on itself and trying to digest when there's nothing there to digest... like the process begins even if there's no food to work on... very uncomfortable and I HAVE to eat, and eat enough to make that feeling go away.

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I'm almost a year into gluten-free and feel lots, lots better - but pretty sure that I'm not completely healed yet.

Lots of folks here who are long-term gluten-free mention a watershed at 2 yrs.

For me, I started feeling better almost right away gluten-free, but it was a good 4-5 months of roller coaster on 2 counts - 1, learning not to get cross-contaminated (as many others have mentioned, once gluten-free my reactions got much stronger) and 2, as my body was de-toxing I would sometimes feel strange (tingly, mostly) when I ate especially cleanly, then I would worry about what I ate that cc'd me, then...well, you get the idea. That seems to have subsided, though.

Hang in there, good luck.

I too used to be ravenous while skinny, but didn't do any bloating until just before (6 mos or so) figuring out I need to be gluten-free. My weight went up about 5 lbs with the bloat, is now back to normal. For me, I do much better with a snack about 4:30/5 o'clock between lunch and dinner, the easiest for me is a boiled egg. I have learned to travel with some food (rice crackers, boiled egg, maybe some veggies or last night's leftovers) - not too much of a hassle, nothing the mother of a toddler doesn't do every day. Hey, I am my own toddler ;)

My body does not do well without meat, but I have many friends who listen just as carefully as I do to their own bodies who have discovered they do better without meat. I also have friends both meat- and non-meat-eating friends who don't seem to listen much to their bodies at all! As for non-gluten triggers, for me caffeine is a really bad idea, at least at the moment (maybe someday I'll be able to go back to chocolate!).

Good luck in your healing journey!

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As others have said, it will take time. Hopefully you will be able to see measurable results with the gluten-free diet, (nothing radical, no fads, just clean and simple gluten-free), tweaking as needed for your own reactions. Experimenting can be frustrating, especially with so many factors involved AND of course you're trying to have a life. I would estimate that I gained and lost 5-8 pounds (on a small frame) between periods of bloat. My doctor told me this was the result of the inflammation which caused the body to hold in water, sort of like you get a stuffed up nose with a cold. Occasionally it still happens, but I have the Librax if I'm out on the job and I do contamination recon when I get home.

And lastly, you are NOT a burden despite what others may say. If your friends/family are giving you a guilt trip, or just not being supportive, then I would recommend surrounding yourself with folks who are more understanding and willing to help. You'll be surprised how tough you can be!

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