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Brand New Member From Canada
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Hey all,

I'm brand new to this site and also brand new to this gluten allergy. I have suffered from horrible chronic digestive disorders for a few decades. Of course I was told I had "IBS" and that I would just have to live with it. I had seen countless doctors and specialists, had various tests and colonoscopies and tried tons of different things to eliminate my sysmptoms but they never stopped. Blood tests always tested negative for celiac so I never bothered eliminating it from my diet.

2 weeks ago I did some new tests with a Naturopath who specializes in digestive issues. She told me that from samples I had sent that I was severely inflammed in the colon and had horrible malabsorption and that I potentially had a gluten allergy (she said not all celiac blood tests are 100% accurate). Anyways, she told me to completely eliminate gluten from my diet. I said I would but I was very skeptical and uninspired that anything would change, as chronic "IBS" symptoms have been the story of my life without any improvement. Anyways, the first 3 days I didn't notice any difference, then all of a sudden on day 4 I felt like a new person. 1 solid bowel movement a day and that was it. No colon spasms or pain. Minimal bloating. Today is day 6 and I still feel really great.

My question is will this last? I don't want to get too excited as it may be placebo but I can't help but feel completely happy and excited that this may be the answer to my life long problem. Is this really it? Is gluten that bad and eliminating almost instantaneously made me feel better??

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Welcome to the board from a fellow Canadian.

Yes, in many cases the symptomatic relief is very quick, and permanent.

In my own case, although I felt improvement immediately, it took some time for my symptoms to go away. I had severe atrophy of my villi, and they don't regenerate overnight.

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Thanks for the quick reply. And thanks to everyone who participates on this forum, it is such a helpful venue. I guess Celiac or wheat intolerance in my case is a blessing as it seems to be the answer to my chronic problem. Of course it limits me in many ways and makes day to day life more challenging, however the alternative, my previous symptoms were an absolute nightmare. It has only been 3 days of relief versus 20 years of suffering but i have a good feeling about this. I hope I can finally find some relief. Who knew?

Anyone else out there suffer for years with "IBS" symptoms and tried everything with no relief only to go non-gluten and find that it changed you for the better dramatically?

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Yep. I did. I had stomachaches all my life and diagnoses of "gastritis" and "IBS" along with a bunch of other health problems including borderline anemia, canker sores, and psych problems. I felt better within a week on an elimination diet and eventually narrowed the problem to gluten. My stomach functions pretty much normally now.

The diet is a pain, but it beats drugs and still feeling crummy!

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Thanks for the quick reply. And thanks to everyone who participates on this forum, it is such a helpful venue. I guess Celiac or wheat intolerance in my case is a blessing as it seems to be the answer to my chronic problem. Of course it limits me in many ways and makes day to day life more challenging, however the alternative, my previous symptoms were an absolute nightmare. It has only been 3 days of relief versus 20 years of suffering but i have a good feeling about this. I hope I can finally find some relief. Who knew?

Anyone else out there suffer for years with "IBS" symptoms and tried everything with no relief only to go non-gluten and find that it changed you for the better dramatically?

yes, it's permanent. I've been doing it for 20 years and was just happy it didn't require meds. Haven' found it all that difficult and these days it is even easier with more products available in regular markets. Never had much of a problem in restaurants sticking with grilled or roasted things. No fried with breading or sauces.

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Welcome to the site Wing! Lots of people actually have the symptoms for years before being diagnosed. That's actually one of the common grouches around here that the doctors are so clueless seeming and slow to suggest celiac or gluten intolerance.

In my case I felt better within a few days but also still had months of learning to do (set backs) before I really understood how to eat gluten free. Gluten hides in lots of places and it takes some serious effort to eliminate it. There is also the possibility of developing additional food intolerances over time, and that is not rare according to what I read on this board. So don't be surprised if you seem to go backwards sometimes, as it is not unusual.

Anyway, stick around and read, read, read. We all have our stories to tell and axes to grind and we can all help each other by sharing.

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Wow thanks everyone for the positive replies. I will def keep an eye out for any new "intolerances" that may appear. I can't begin to express in words what a relief the last 72 hours have been vs the last 15 years. I'm dying for a slice of pizza and a pint of beer! but the fact that i know now it will make me sick makes staying away from it all that easier. I'll take your advice and continue to read read read as much as I can and learn from everyone here who has been at this longer than me. Wow, again, I hope this actually is permanent. I dreamed of a day like this for so long.

I think all my doctors and the last 4 gastrointestinal specialists I've seen should have a conversation with my Naturopath - they may learn something!

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I'm dying for a slice of pizza and a pint of beer!

You can have both of those. Gluten-free pizza is available at some outlets, and there is gluten-free beer as well. It is late. I will post details tomorrow. :)

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You can have both of those. Gluten-free pizza is available at some outlets, and there is gluten-free beer as well. It is late. I will post details tomorrow. :)

Thanks psawyer - looking forward to it. I live in Toronto and am in Markham often for work, so any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

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I live in Markham (Unionville), but own a business in North Toronto (Yonge/Lawrence area).

There are three gluten-free beers available in Ontario, although I have yet to find a restaurant/bar which stocks any of them. I usually drink wine when dining out.

Two are made by a microbrewery in Quebec and the other by a brewery in Wisconsin. All three are listed at the LCBO, but inventory varies by location. Use their web locater, or you can order at any store.

Messagere from Nouvelle-France The red ale is available in selected Beer Store locations.

New Grist from Lakefront Brewery

You can get gluten-free pizza from Pizza Pizza and Pizza Nova in medium size, and from Boston Pizza in personal size. Il Fornello is a chain in the Toronto area that has gluten-free pizza and pasta. In every case, the pizza crusts are made elsewhere and delivered to the pizzeria ready to bake.

We make our own pizza crusts from the Gluten Free Pantry mix and love them.

You can have beer and pizza while on the gluten-free diet.

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I think all my doctors and the last 4 gastrointestinal specialists I've seen should have a conversation with my Naturopath - they may learn something!

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Yup..I've been up and down with the gluten elimination...but more up which is great. I know this will just take time as I have been eating gluten for 31 years so I know it will take a bit to get completely better. Patience.

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    • I figured I would update those who were wondering.  I have gotten the appt. so far moved up to August 30. I am waiting to have gene testing done via swab for all 3 of my kiddos tomorrow. My daughters celiac antibodies came up negative but her IgA is low which the ped said could cause false negative antibodies for celiac so she will need to see a GI dr. also. The pediatrician is going to call the GI to try to get them in sooner. I am keeping them all on a gluten diet until the GI dr. decides what to do. I am on the cancellation list already for my son, however I am not going to be persistent with my phone calls to them until I have the results of the gene test. I really want that result in my hand before going to the GI dr if I can. Maybe if he is positive, along with his bloodwork and my history they can forgo the endoscopy. But he will eat gluten till then.  My husband and I have been very honest and upfront with him as to what is going on and the possibility of the endoscopy and what that entails and although scared in general he seems ok after assuring him that since I have it he has me to help him every step of the way.  Going through his current diet with him I realized that he is truly on such a low gluten diet that I am actually surprised his bloodwork shows antibodies at all!  So I told him to make a list of allllll the gluten he could possibly think of eating and he needs to pound it until the GI visit or endoscopy. Funny thing is everything he keeps thinking of to want to eat...is already gluten free!  The other night we were at a friends and he asked if he could be done with his hotdog. I made him finish just the bread 😂 Thanks for your help and advise and I will keep y'all posted on both kids!  My oldest is a ok as far as all his antibodies. Just actually had a follow up for other immune issues and all his levels are now normal!
    • I like your plan Cara, I may have to include it in my sons.    Poor little guy is still very very sick. I think he is resisting and cheating, despite having the support of two other siblings and a 100% gluten-free home. 
    • Despite it being a nightmare, I did wait for my kids to get biopsies. At one point I had one severely ill child gluten-free and two more waiting having to eat it. It was worth the wait though and I think long term a biopsy may be worthwhile, especially for school. I have already had issues with schools and camps so having a firm diagnosis has been helpful. 
    • Knowing that the reaction to gluten in celiacs is an uncalled for immune system reaction, I was thinking of how a cure would be possible. Maybe a medicine that somehow turns off the immune system. The only thing that i've heard do that... HIV.  obviously that's way worse than celiac. Just some food for thought.
    • Well, you can probably get an apple or something.  You might be able to get someone to boil you some eggs.  But be careful of things like nuts that should be naturally gluten free.  They have almost always been soaked in a flavor solution that usually containes caramel coloring, "soy" (wheat) sauce and other aditives.  If I am really hungry and must eat in a Chinese restaurant, I order plain white rice and steamed vegetables.  But even so, you must monitor it carefully.  The rice sometimes has other substances added to give it a better texture, and very often the vegetables have in fact had "just a little bit" of soy sauce added.  To be fair, celiac disease is hardly ever found in East Asians, so understandably people are not tuned it to it.  Also, culturally, with the exception of fruits, it is generally thought that the flavor of foods needs to be enhanced, so it is had to find anything natural even in the "western" gorceries. Even in the western restaurants, be careful.  Fish and meat and often vegetables are usually pre-marinated. I will not even attempt to address the issue of cross-comtamination, since that is a whole higher order of things. I do know what I am talking about; I have celiac and have worked here for nearly 7 years.  
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