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Any Celiac Athletes Out There?
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16 posts in this topic

I am going in for my bloodwork and biopsy in a week, and have prolonged doing this since my mom was diagnosed 6 months ago. I am pretty sure the diagnosis will be positive as I have had symptoms for years now...we thought for a few years it was a combination of lactose-intolerance, too much coffee, vegetarianism with high fiber - all probably NOT the problem. For one, all of my vegetarian proteins were hydrolyzed or texturized and held together with GLUTEN.

I wanted to inquire as to if there are any hardcore athletes that are coping with the illness, and if so, what are the challenges to maintaining nutrition and particularly gluten-free supplemention? I'm a fighter, and train hard - aerobically and anerobically. My sport is gruelling physically, and I hope that going gluten-free will improve my stamina and performance. I guess if I have had years of malabsorption, I am optimistic I can only freel stronger. I do worry about gaining weight since fighters compete in distinct weight classes, but hope to contain this.

I've been gluten-free for 4 days since I had been consuming protein bars labeled Wheat-free...but are contaminated in processing. I'm still recovering from that experience GI-wise.

Thanks.

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I have been playing tournament fastpitch softball for 9 years, love to play all sports. We play 5-6 games a weekend sometimes and travel around the US. I make sure I keep my immune system up. I take liquid vitamins, and take enzymes, and probiotics and much more but I consider those especially essential. If you want to gain weight try ensure plus it is gluten-free and give some really easy calories.

Watch out for your "wheat free" protein bar. It needs to be gluten free. Most likely it has rye,barley, or oats if it doesn't say gluten free...so check it before you eat it. Make sure it isn't hidden under anything either.

Good luck :D

And drink plenty of water to keep hydrated or you won't feel your best.

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I play competitive soccer in an indoor (winter) league and an outdoor (spring/summer) league. The outdoor legue is quite intense (Two 90 minute games/week plus 1 or 2 practices/week). Last summer was my first gluten-free summer and I really struggled with my energy levels. I could only play for 10-15 minutes at a time and sometimes I had to sit the whole game. It took awhile for my body to adjust. My energy levels are improving but they are not 100%. Lately, I've found that eating a small-medium meal about 2 hours before I play helps. Also, I find that I NEED to re-fuel very soon after the game.

I find that Rice Pasta is a great substitute for wheat pasta!

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I'm a highly compedative soccer player, and I find that eating a few hours before my games/practiices make me have much more energy, Gatorade is gluten-free and so is Propel, so I drink those religiously at practives and games, like 3 per practice, 5 for game. I bring organic food bars which are high calorie bars that are really good, also (because I eat oats) I eat the Clif Builders bars, they have a lot of protein and are high calorie. Hope you feel better!

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Thank you for your help on this topic. I just bought Emergen C (Alacer Corp) for liquid electrolyte replacement and vitamins. I just need to find a suitable protein/carb supplement in shake or bar form. Endurox hasn't answered me yet, but I read someone's post elsewhere that they told him it was gluten-free...until I hear though, I'm skeptical.

What types of probiotics have you taken, Vote4PresBush04?

flagbabyds -- I checked 3 days ago with the Clif company, since I was eating 2-3 Builders bars a day. They informed me that the rolled oats are contaminated since they are processed from a facility that doesn't separate out the wheat. Check the FAQ page and you'll see that they are "wheat free" but NOT gluten-free...

I spent a month training in Thailand 8 hours a day, and felt fantastic. THere, most of the symptoms I had went away within a week, seeing as gluten there is scarce. I essentially live on an Asian diet and have consumed mostly rice for complex carbs and yams to avoid wheat products, but the hardest part seems to be finding out if products particularly for supplementation are truly gluten-free.

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pisand13- I use enzymatic therapy probiotics. I use a lot of supplements by that brand because they list in their bottle what they are free of. Just work on giving yourself nutrition to give you the strength to be able to play sports.

I'm not sure if this is the kind of drink you are looking for but alot of the Ensure products are gluten free and they give alot of nutrition and calories and so forth.

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I play indoor and outdoor soccer 4 times a week as well as training at the gym.

Due to my food allergies and celiac disease I am really limited, but these are a few things

that I do to boost my energy:

Drink Blue Sky's Blue Energy drink, it is gluten-free

it has 1000mg of taurine which really boosts my

energy level up. I order it from Whole Foods.

For protein:

I mix sunflower seeds, flax seeds, and shelled hemp

seeds with honey - sometimes I add a gluten-free granola

mix to it too.

When I feel sluggish I also take some extra B-12

and Vitamin C.

I eat smaller meals but more often and I tend to

eat only the food I've prepared for less risk of

contamination.

Oh! I'm an old(er) athlete, but I'm not quitting until

I can't walk and there are those days when my

body doesn't want me to play!

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Hi,

My passion is cycling (road), I ride between 150-200 miles a week and compete. I also run and do a upper body weight work out (though I started a new job two weeks ago and have been balancing my new schedule and workouts). I found that my endurance was still decreased even after I went gluten-free, more a matter of fueling my body than anything, I think. But I have fewer joint problems now (I had been dx with arthritis at 21--not the case, it was the celiac disease [nutritional deficiancies]).

Eating more frequently as someone mentioned is great, I even read a study that suggested that for Celiac athletes. I really like Knudson's natural electrolyte drink and I also drink Gatorade (watered down). I find that I have to drink a sports drink throughout my entire ride/race to keep energized. Larabars rock, they are gluten-free, Cherry Pie is my favorite flavor and Cashew Cookie is good too and has lots of protein. Sometimes I make my own "granola"/Energy bars. I think that eating right all the time is most important. And avoiding any gluten, getting a little accidently at a restaurant can really mess up a training ride and ruin a race.

Best Wishes!

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Thanks all. I'm definitely going to order the Larabars if I can't get them @ Whole Foods first.

I guess the key seems to be in order to maintain high levels of energy to replace all of the previously gluten-laden carbs with those that are gluten-free and to supplement particularly with the vitamins & minerals we are not absorbing.

I'm 34 and a professional thai fighter (avocation), so my career won't be too much longer. but i'll continue to train novice, amateurs and hopefully groom a few pros along the way. It's a pretty demanding style of training and fighting, so I am optimistic that staying gluten-free and supplementing will only help.

BTW - right before my last fight I had ingested gluten and had a horrible day preparing for the fight, so it really does affect performance in that regard. Amazing how gut pains can really kill your day over & over for years.

One quick question -- how long on average does it take once you are gluten-free for the GI symptoms to begin to wane?? I'm still having some problems, but less frequent and severe at least.

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It varies from person to person on feeling better. It took me 3 months to get back to about 85% then a few more months to get feeling normal again. For some people it takes them less time and for some more. Feel better soon :D

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Hey there,

woohooo, I was just waiting for this. I thought, i'm the only one in a martial art here. Professional more or less. Sorry, haven't been here for a couple of days, since I finally got my green card 2nd March and it arrived with the mail yesterday. No, it's not green...lol. But I has a lot to do with getting started with my new business and the martial arts summer camp and the new kids classes and the other classes in the Harrisburg YMCA and blablabla. Oh boy!!!

I'm a kickboxer (female) and have been fighting since 1994 now, since 1995 in the national team. And my weight problems started real bad in 1996, I couldn't keep the 50 kg anymore. I always had about 51 or 52. 1 kg is about a little bit more than 2 lbs. Then the health problems started. I went glutenfree 07/21/2004 and was fighting painfree (except of the punches in the face...lol) December 2004. The strength and balance came back a little bit later than December though, but I still have problems from time to time. We just had a tournament past sunday, March 6th. I glutened myself accidentaly March, 2nd, while on our green card interview trip to Phily. Can you believe it? I ate an ovenpotatoe with sour cream and the sour cream had gluten. Douh!!! Oh, well, but I still wasn't fit sunday. It was terrible.

But I prepare with cereals, fruit and vegetable, tea, water, sometimes a little bit meat or chicken in my meals with rice. Most of the time I eat asian, too, actually. The day of the tournament I take bananas with me, gatorade, water and some other little snacks. I don't like energy bars though. Ugg! Never liked them before going gluten-free either.

Hey, that is so awesome, finally somebody to talk about our "special" sport. I already have a question though. With me it was like that, that the last past years before going gluten-free, my body was so worked out cause of all the malnutrition and all, that I was really played out at times. I had a fight, and sometimes was already done, when only warming up. Or I went in to the fight, made one punch or kick and already felt my condition and everything go down. And after the second action I was pretty much "dead". It was so bad sometimes, that I just went down sometimes and couldn't stand up anymore, because I had the feeling, I throw up immidiately. What was absolutely not normal with my very good and conditioning preparation. All other students of my trainer didn't have problems with that training as well. Just me. Well, and now after almost being gluten-free for a year it's so perfect. I go into the ring and do my stuff and after it's done, I think "one more time, one more time". Or "what, it's already over???" I'm like turned inside out. Is that normal? Did you have the same experience?

Hugs, Stef

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I think what I've noticed with the performance is that I'm usually prepared conditioning wise and don't notice the effect, but that could have been my denial that I had celiac disease. I don't ever seem to fatigue and that's what the opponent and his corner usually say too...which is nice. It could be mental preparation that overrides the physical though. I keep repeating that I'm not tired, etc.

What has happened though is the hidden gluten a couple of times on the day of the fight...eating that protein bar or energy bar and running to the restroom 20 times that day. THis does take energy away though as it's like a fight with my body's shock. Sweating, cramping, etc.

I actually felt best in a fight in Thailand this year after being gluten-free for a month...the only gluten I could find there was in processed foods imported from China, japan and the west. I actually gained .85 kg and had to cut weight the day of the fight. I guess I absorbed some more nutrients than what I had been. I was probably eating more too since I wasn't have the reaction to gluten too.

I hope to feel even stronger and more fit with some upcoming fights and am staying vigilant on the diet.

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I know that problem with running to the toilet :lol: . Ironically I ate more gluten, when having a competition day, cause of all that pasta salad, I made sometimes. Or the pancakes, which are awesome cold, too. Well, actually they are even better cold. You have to try that. Or pretzels and stuff, just little munchie-stuff, while waiting for your fight(s). And then I was wondering, why I had diarrhea all day. Hm, now I'm smarter. But yes, it does take away a lot of your energy.

So, when do you have your next fight? When my sore throat and cold is gone I'll go on preparing for a three day competition in Rhode Island from April 8-10.

Hugs, Stef

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And it gives you tremendous anxiety over needed to take a timeout during a fight...this is more of a fear than the fight itself!!!

I fight in Pittsburgh April 23, then in Glasgow, Scotland June 18th.

Hope you get over the cold symptoms fast and are prepared for RI.

Thanks & GOOD LUCK.

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And it gives you tremendous anxiety over needed to take a timeout during a fight...this is more of a fear than the fight itself!!!

Hey, wow, you speak out of my heart. Couldn't have said it better :P . I was so anxious all the time to need a time out, that I was cramping and THEN I really needed a time out. It was like a vicious circle. But most of the time I was thinking, that my trainer sure thinks how lazy I must be. Because it looked like I'm doing nothing for my condition, which wasn't true. I worked out like nuts every day.

Now I'm still testing myself, how that works with my "new" condition and everything. And I still can't get over how fit I am suddenly since I went glutenfree. And I do the same conditioning program than I did before going glutenfree. Suddenly it works. So this year is more of a "get used to being fit" and "work away the anxiety"-year... :lol: .

Hugs, Stef

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And I forgot one thing. Because of that anxiety that I might break down, I was holding back most of the time to "safe" energy. My problem now is, I've gotten so used to hold back the last 7 years, that I have to learn now, to go and get my points. I've become into a real defense fighter :lol: .

Hugs, Stef

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