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Gluten Addiction


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#16 julirama723

 
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Posted 29 January 2009 - 08:18 AM

I can definitely relate to this post!

Call it what you may, addiction, cravings, etc. I know that when I eat certain foods, my behavior changes, and I become a different person. I could regale you with stories about baking cookies and eating 3 dozen of them before my boyfriend got home. (I would double or triple the recipe so it wouldn't look like I'd eaten any.)

Or about how I'd eat breakfast at my apartment, then eat breakfast again (a bagel-y sandwich) in secret, then meet a friend for a snack (a scone), then eat lunch, then a snack (pretzels or cookies) then pasta for dinner (then I'd sneak more breadsticks afterwards in secret, while I "pretended" to be getting up to go to the bathroom or something.)

All of my horrible stories have two things in common--gluten and secrecy. I would feast on gluten (I didn't realize it at the time, but now it's crystal clear what I was drawn to) and do everything in my power to keep it a secret. I would lie, I would hide, I would calculate when I could eat next and I would keep a mental list of the people who had seen me eat, reminding myself that I couldn't eat again in front of them that day.

If I didn't eat my secret meals, I'd become a monster, I'd feel deprived and nutty, I'd snap at anybody. I used to think it was mainly a carb/sugar thing, but now since going gluten-free, I am realizing it was the gluten! Hindsight is always 20/20.

I firmly believe that certain foods can cause an addiction, or at least, can cause addictive behaviors to manifest. In some ways, a food addiction is not nearly as serious as a drug-addiction, for obvious reasons. It's not illegal. It won't get you arrested. You won't DIE from withdrawal (though you may feel like it.) But in many ways it's worse. A drug addict has the choice to AVOID the drugs. An alcoholic has the option to AVOID alcohol. We all have to eat.
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#17 LadyCyclist87

 
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Posted 29 January 2009 - 07:37 PM

I firmly believe that certain foods can cause an addiction, or at least, can cause addictive behaviors to manifest. In some ways, a food addiction is not nearly as serious as a drug-addiction, for obvious reasons. It's not illegal. It won't get you arrested. You won't DIE from withdrawal (though you may feel like it.) But in many ways it's worse. A drug addict has the choice to AVOID the drugs. An alcoholic has the option to AVOID alcohol. We all have to eat.

Amen to that!!!

So, out of curiosity, has anyone on this board thought about receiving therapy for this? I have an appt with a new psychologist tomorrow, and I'm going to give it a run...
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#18 minton

 
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Posted 04 February 2009 - 09:52 AM

I did research on addiction as part of a project for school. There are two areas that are triggered from addiction and it normally depends on the individual which area is triggered, or both or none. An example is that cocaine triggers one area, meth the other. Alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana, opiates, all of them trigger one or the other of the areas. No substance has been found to date that triggers both areas. Granted, I am referring only to the mental addiction, not the physical. Some drugs like heroin trip both the mental addiction (again, only one area in the brain, not both) AND they form a physical dependence. But you know what? Bulimia and anorexia also trip one area or another. Ever wonder why some people tend to prefer one substance over another or tend to get addicted to meth but not cocaine? These two areas are the reason. If one person is sensitive only to one area, only the things that trip that area will be addicting to them. If a person is sensitive to neither, they will most likely not be addicted to anything. If both areas are sensitive, that person is likely to be a highly addictive personality. Food, behavior, drugs, pretty much every type of thing that can be done to the body can affect these regions of the brain.

So why not gluten? Why can't gluten, a protein found in FOOD, become a mental addiction the same as cigarettes? I wish I still had those scientific articles saved...
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#19 bjn555

 
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Posted 06 February 2009 - 07:11 AM

As a recovering addict who has experienced narcotic withdrawal (from major narcotics, cocaine, cigarettes) in both hospital settings and at home....gluten CAN be addictive. Check out the research on children with autism who seek gluten and casein. When I began detoxing from gluten, I would eat it in my sleep and find food wrappers all over the place with no memory of eating, only to be sick and glutened. As for the paranoia of celiacs not receiving pain meds during surgery....my doctor knowing I am recovering, gave me all the meds I needed for surgery, and closely monitored my use of pain meds until I recovered. As most cases, it will depend on the doctor. By the way, quitting the pain meds was sooo much easier being gluten-free. Hang in there!
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#20 LadyCyclist87

 
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Posted 07 February 2009 - 02:12 PM

By the way, quitting the pain meds was sooo much easier being gluten-free. Hang in there!

Wow... :blink:
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#21 Gfresh404

 
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Posted 28 February 2009 - 05:06 PM

I can definitely relate to gluten cravings/addiction, whatever you want to call it. And I definitely think I am still going through some withdrawal even though it has been two months already. I have to say it is very tough. I will be full but will still want more. It's very difficult when you are receiving mixed signals: your brain tells you you want more, but your stomach says stop.

What seems to help is eating at set intervals, three meals a day: NO SNACKING. Stop eating when you are full and wait at least 3 and a half hours before your next meal.
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#22 coldnight

 
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Posted 28 February 2009 - 05:48 PM

I can definitely relate to gluten cravings/addiction, whatever you want to call it. And I definitely think I am still going through some withdrawal even though it has been two months already. I have to say it is very tough. I will be full but will still want more. It's very difficult when you are receiving mixed signals: your brain tells you you want more, but your stomach says stop.

What seems to help is eating at set intervals, three meals a day: NO SNACKING. Stop eating when you are full and wait at least 3 and a half hours before your next meal.


Do what my parent's always used to say "You aren't hungry, you're thirsty. Drink some water." =]
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#23 Gfresh404

 
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Posted 28 February 2009 - 07:28 PM

You bring up another good point. Sometimes the signal for thirst can be misconstrued as the signal for hunger. SO if you think you are hungry drink some water and see if you are still hungry afterwords.

Do what my parent's always used to say "You aren't hungry, you're thirsty. Drink some water." =]


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#24 one more mile

 
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Posted 03 March 2009 - 02:54 PM

The lack Booze will also cause some big problems if you are addicted to it. DT's can kill.

For me the Gluten was a physical addiction. It was hard for me to stop eating it due to the cravings and the fact that at every single meal or snack time I always ate gluten. I would eat gluten at night till i passed out. I would eat it till I felt numb if something bugged me. I would eat it if it was in the house, or in my car. I would head to the begal store like a crack addict, almost ran someone over once who got in my way. I would mix butter, white flour and sugar and eat that if there was not gluten in the house. Social events were always about what there was there to eat, gluten of course.

As a recovering addict I know the signs. Getting off the stuff was hard for me. but I used what I was taught in a 12 step program. I thought the bite through. I knew what every bite would cost me and that one bite of gluten was not enough.
I also surrendered. Once I put gluten in my body I am powerless over what will happen. Gluten has kicked my butt! I do not fear it or need to save the world from it but I need to stay away from it. That helped me come to peace with something that has cost me a great deal in my life.

I also read an article about it setting up a morphine like addiction in your intestine. That is what got me to this web site. I noticed that if i did not eat it I went a little nuts till I did.

I feel bad for some of you that do not have the tools of a 12 step program to avoid the stuff. And yes for me the first few days of withdraw involved sleeping, and laying like a baby holding my gut and a month of D. But now that I have been with out the stuff for a half a year I am amazed at the difference in me. So Is my Doctor. He wanted to know what I was doing, My BP and hart rate have dropped and so has my weight and my blood sugar is closer to normal My hdl is now out of hart attack range.
After years of him griping at me he said, you are almost there!
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#25 Lilymylove

 
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Posted 08 October 2009 - 10:14 PM

reading all of this is scary! I'm new to Celiac Disease and did not realize the extent of it. I also just caved after going a few days not eating gluten. I did feel better. I feel sick now. Someone please help me!
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#26 klala

 
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Posted 07 November 2009 - 02:03 PM

When I was eating gluten, I used to get regular cravings for pizza. Most people I've talked to crave pizza very regularly, like weekly...which is kind of strange if you think about it. And it's used often to entice people to events they don't really want to go to on college campuses because people just cannot resist pizza opportunities. I thought it was interesting that after being off gluten for 7 months, those cravings stopped. I used to not be able to resist pizza, and recently went to a place that served both regular and gluten-free pizza with some friends and just got a salad because I didn't really even WANT the pizza despite the sights and smells.

My roommate is also gluten intolerant and gorged himself on Cici's pizza last night. Today he's a mess and all he wants is another pizza or a big mac.

Weird.
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#27 Swimmr

 
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Posted 07 November 2009 - 04:43 PM

I totally agree with you on this! I think in today's world, we throw the addiction word around freely and apply it liberally because it removes guilt and responsibility. Now we have people who overeat themselves into obesity but instead of calling it what it is, a behavior issue, we classify another "addiction".
One of the reasons for this is because once a behavior is classified this way, the medical profession can make money from treatments because insurance will cover the problem.

My niece is a recovering heroin addict...that's an addiction, folks! If you don't get the junk when you need it, you can convulse and die. This does not happen with food. Food, cigarettes and alcohol are powerful substances that may affect brain chemistry to a degree but you will not die from withdrawal. It will be terribly unpleasant until you break the emotional bond with whatever substance is the problem but it can be done and it is not an addiction. It's also nothing to be ashamed of either. Personal responsibility and acceptance of emotion as being the root cause goes a long way towards healing. If it were truly an addiction, you would never be able to break it without medical intervention and even then, that may not work. But we all know food, butts and booze can be conquered with hard work and the right mind set. It's natural to be upset about it and have difficulty with it but don't go into that place where you label yourself an addict. It will make a solution all the harder to achieve.


Nicely stated.

It all depends on will-power (for ANYthing, really).

Before I realized I had a gluten/wheat issue, I once forced myself to cut down on the amount of carbs I was taking in...breads and pastas. It was a rough time with cravings.

Now once I went gluten/wheat free, the things I had issues with and could not say no to were pizza, cake, and cookies. I wouldn't buy them, but my ex would. I would get up in the middle of the night with an intense desire to eat. I would look in the fridge...MMmmm cold pizza..."Num num num num num" and down went two slices. Oreo's were another issue. My favorite cookie in the world. So versatile. I could dip them in peanut butter...cover them in baker's chocolate. I could blend them in milk and vanilla icecream. I could even buy the mint ones and cover them in chocolate and have a better cookie than the Girl Scout Thin Mint. Shoot...I would give alot right now to be able to eat some oreos AND be symptom free.

I know ingesting the things we aren't supposed to over long periods of time eventually cause lots of issues...my anxiety attacks for one thing, migraines at least once a week...heart palpitations, mood swings, brain fog, eye sight probs, irregular menstrual cycles and then autoimmune problems that lead to susceptibility of getting viruses and respiratory infections. This is what I dealt with for a very very long time. Now everything is better.

So then when you GO gluten free for any amount of time, if you happen to just have one or two things here and there, imagine what you are doing to your body! It's confused...first you let it have this and that, you take it away, then you give it back....then you take it away, over and over. I would act crazy too if I were a body and was teased like that :blink: as crazy as that sounds, lol.

If you try really hard, eventually you'll be able to say no to things all the time. It took me a year to willingly NOT buy things I couldn't eat, or willingly eat things I knew was bad. I was only good sometimes. Then since august 07 I've done even better. 6 months ago I became better at NOT eating out.
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-Self-diagnosed gluten/wheat intolerance 2007. Negative (basic) blood test for celiac disease March 2009.
-Diagnosed positive for Celiac 5/11/2010!!
-Vitamin D low (last year was deficient), Iodine low, Protein S low. Balance/dizziness not related to Celiac.
-Elimination diet 11-4-2009 and ended 02-28-2010. Tolerating dairy again. Highly intolerant to soy, sensitive to green peas and corn kernels.
"Oh CRAP! Are you SERIOUS??

#28 Swimmr

 
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Posted 07 November 2009 - 05:19 PM

I can definitely relate to gluten cravings/addiction, whatever you want to call it. And I definitely think I am still going through some withdrawal even though it has been two months already. I have to say it is very tough. I will be full but will still want more. It's very difficult when you are receiving mixed signals: your brain tells you you want more, but your stomach says stop.

What seems to help is eating at set intervals, three meals a day: NO SNACKING. Stop eating when you are full and wait at least 3 and a half hours before your next meal.



Ummm I guess it depends on the individual...I won't say it works for everyone, but knowing from personal experience and being a former personal trainer and bodybuilder that it's proven that more than three meals a day is better for a person's over-all health. I don't have a nutrition degree, but aside the Celiac stuff (because I'm still learning), I would say I have way more than just a general knowledge of diet.

Three full meals a day with a snack in between each is best. Snacks consisting of something healthy like yogurt, veggies or fruit. Full meals should have a protein and a good side like vegetables, potato, or rice...small seving of pasta. NOT eating till you're full either...eating 6 oz of meat and 1 to 2 cups of veggies. Keeping carbs at their lowest from 4 or 5 through bedtime is better. If you workout, have a snack before-hand leaving your meal for afterwards (but not more than one hour after stopping exercise).

Not only is this a good way to keep or metabolism up and energy levels up, but it also keeps you from wanting, whether it be a craving or whatever, more food. If you plan what you'll eat each day or stay close to it as possible, your cravings for other things while waiting for your next meal won't be so bad. Train yourself to eat a healthy snack and not grab something from the snack machine. If you readily have something available, you're less likely to throw that aside and grab something else. Mind over matter. Going hours between meals is kinda hard. You get bored, you think about food/sugar...next thing you know you want a honeybun...but wait..."oh yeah, I have yogurt in the lunchbox/cooler/office fridge...I think I'll eat that instead." And most people don't even eat breakfast, so think about how many hours THAT is before lunch. Your body will crave sugar/salt...carbs.

I am no expert, but just ask the people I've trained and wrote diets for and helped with reaching their goals physically and food-wise. Also, I know it works for me :) So to each his own...
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-Self-diagnosed gluten/wheat intolerance 2007. Negative (basic) blood test for celiac disease March 2009.
-Diagnosed positive for Celiac 5/11/2010!!
-Vitamin D low (last year was deficient), Iodine low, Protein S low. Balance/dizziness not related to Celiac.
-Elimination diet 11-4-2009 and ended 02-28-2010. Tolerating dairy again. Highly intolerant to soy, sensitive to green peas and corn kernels.
"Oh CRAP! Are you SERIOUS??

#29 Glamour

 
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Posted 07 November 2009 - 07:08 PM

I cried and could not sleep for the first 5 days I tried to go gluten-free. At first I thought it was just mental, I like cookies, toast, biscuits, fried food, french bread. But it was real craving


I also got mad because of hidden gluten.



There is a connection to the craving that is just physical. I tried to give coffee and dairy up 100% at first and that was just too much. I have now cut most of that out.
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#30 GusMck

 
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Posted 08 November 2009 - 10:26 PM

I just signed up, and im glad im not the only one who has these killer cravings........ I love doner kebabs, and burger king...... all of my favourite foods.... I know now that im not going nuts from not just eating a gluten free diet... never even thought it was possible to get withdrawal symptoms....

the smell of a bakery makes me so hungry,
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