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Sugar Intolerance?


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#1 bridgetm

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 03:46 PM

I finally found the common link between all of the accidental glutenings and inflammation flare-ups I've had this past month... Sugar. That first time was set off by Hansen's soda. The second time I thought CC was to blame, but I think it was the banana bread mix itself and the Udi's muffin I ate that morning. Number 3, just last weekend, I had a "sugar-free" Jello with my sweetened rice cereal.

I spent last week at home (missed five days of classes, two tests and at least 10 hours of work-study) bouncing around between ERs for fluids, my primary doctor and finally a GI. Blood was run twice by two different labs (normal), ultrasound of the gallbladder and liver (normal), upper endoscopy (minor inflammation of the stomach lining, waiting on biopsy results from the intestine). My primary and the GI agree that maybe I didn't get rid of all the gluten and/or have other intolerances or maybe it's not gluten at all and we're missing something else.

Last week I stuck with foods like applesauce (natural, no sugar added), mashed potatoes, chicken breast and some white rice and felt a little better every day. I also started taking bentyl (initially for the D, but now to help settle any/all intestinal spasms) and went back to the Prilosec (20 mg 2x/day). I felt pretty good this weekend and got back to school. I took my pills last night with a couple big swallows of Sierra Mist and woke up with some more inflammation, but little pain. Was able to focus while working through a swamp of homework, made it through four hours of classes today and sat for a test I missed last week. I was hungry all day and tried to focus on the protein.
But the nagging pain I woke up with kept building and now I'm a little nauseous, upper-abdominal cramping, foggy and the start of a headache. So I went back through everything I ate today and found quite a bit more sugar in foods I never thought to check: Udi's bread, Deli Select turkey (I had to take it out of the original package to fit it into my mini-fridge, didn't realize it was honey flavored), Uncle Ben's garden vegetable rice, more turkey and, the last straw, peanut butter.

So I sorted out all my food: absolutely 100% sugar-free on one shelf, sugar on the other shelf whether it's the first or 15th ingredient. Now I'm down to a couple boxes of Minute Rice, rice cakes, rice pasta, quinoa, applesauce, apple juice, tomato paste, raisins and some salt. I have some fruit in the fridge and some roast beef. Just made plans with my roommate to hit the farmer's market tomorrow. But what the heck do I do now? I work, I have class; I can't carry a bowl of rice or a plain rice cake with me everywhere I go. And I have trouble with raw veggies and I have a tiny fridge (no freezer box) which I share with my roommate so there's limited room for leftovers or pre-cooked meals. My lit prof suggested I take a cue from Thoreau and live off of air. If only it were that easy.

Sorry for the long post, but it was a long week and a really long month and I just want to eat!
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#2 realmaverick

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 05:36 PM

I'm new to all this too. Its not easy. Coming to terms with a gluten free diet is hard enough. Let alone the possibility of other intollerances. *bangs head*.

Personally I'd not want to cut something out unless I was certain it were an issue. Sugar of course is a huge thing to try and avoid. If i suspected something, id likely eat more of it for a week and monitor how i feel, then the following week, cut it out 100%, and finally reintroduce it. At least then, you'll have a better idea whether sugar is an issue or not.

Then again, as you have class, maybe total elimination for a week is a slightly faster route. But what if you were due to feel better next week anyway? And you avoid sugar unnecessarily for the rest of your life?

I wish i had a full time nutritionalist working for me, its not easy.

Hope you figure out whether or not sugar is an issue. If it turned out sugar was an issue for me, I think id be screwed. It's hard enough as it is.
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#3 bridgetm

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 07:20 AM

Thank you for your reply Maverick. I'm cutting it out 100% this week and replacing it with whole food since that's really what I need to recover from the last month anyway. I may allow some minor slips; just not 5 in one day like yesterday. I do have a four day midterm break coming up next week and I'm going up to the cabin. Restaurants on the North Shore of Superior are ripe for experimentation :) Of course, I'll be carrying a stock of Pepto, Immodium, Prilosec, Bentyl, Tylenol and whatever else I find... just in case.

I am hoping I only got this reaction because I didn't allow my stomach enough time to heal. I didn't think I had much damage in the first place, but when school's in session, if it's labeled gluten-free I eat it. I needed to drop some of the junk food anyway; this will be a good kick in the pants to overhaul my diet.
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#4 ksymonds84

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 08:44 AM

Since sugar seems to be your problem, you may want to take a look at fructose malabsorption. Just google it and you will get a ton of hits. Apple sauce and apple juice whether sweetened or not would send me over the edge. Also tomato paste would have too much fructose for me. The two main sugar malabsorption offenders are fructose malabsorption and lactose intolerance. Both worth checking out. Hope you feel better soon!
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Kathy

Gluten free 3/08
Negative blood work/positive endoscopy
Fructose Malabsorption
Soy free

#5 curlyfries

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 09:41 AM

Since sugar seems to be your problem, you may want to take a look at fructose malabsorption. Just google it and you will get a ton of hits. Apple sauce and apple juice whether sweetened or not would send me over the edge. Also tomato paste would have too much fructose for me. The two main sugar malabsorption offenders are fructose malabsorption and lactose intolerance. Both worth checking out. Hope you feel better soon!


I've wondered about this for myself. Can't have ANY fruit. Extremely limited on breads and pastas....should probably omit entirely. I eat whole foods as much as possible, but when I do splurge on something processed, it can only have 2 or 3g of sugar per serving.

Nuts are a good take-a-long snack.
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#6 ksymonds84

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 11:46 AM

I've wondered about this for myself. Can't have ANY fruit. Extremely limited on breads and pastas....should probably omit entirely. I eat whole foods as much as possible, but when I do splurge on something processed, it can only have 2 or 3g of sugar per serving.

Nuts are a good take-a-long snack.


For the bread I have to be extremely careful with ingredients. If it contains fruit juice, applesauce, honey, inulin, agave, chickory or molasses, I can't do it. Plain ol' cane sugar not made from beets is fine. Udi, kinnickinic, and a local bakery are the only ones that I can tolerate. Rice Pasta is not a problem but a ton of tomato sauce on top would be. I always treat tomato like a fruit. If you are not lactose intolerant, fettucini alfredo is a safe bet with fm and I make an awesome sauce if you want the recipe.
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Kathy

Gluten free 3/08
Negative blood work/positive endoscopy
Fructose Malabsorption
Soy free

#7 bridgetm

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 01:47 PM

Fructose malabsorption is looking like a definite possibility. I had one small box of raisins today (that's just a palm full!) and my stomach has hurt all afternoon. All the fructose lists I've seen label bananas as safe, but I'm having trouble with those too. I think I'll be living off of rice this week. And maybe a rice cake here and there to liven things up.
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#8 ksymonds84

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 02:29 PM

Fructose malabsorption is looking like a definite possibility. I had one small box of raisins today (that's just a palm full!) and my stomach has hurt all afternoon. All the fructose lists I've seen label bananas as safe, but I'm having trouble with those too. I think I'll be living off of rice this week. And maybe a rice cake here and there to liven things up.


The more ripe the banana the better. I wait for it to have light spots and can eat half of a medium banana everyday....I share with hubby. Other Fructmals say they can have them only every other day. Dried fruit will always have more fructose. Some can get away with a few dried cranberries in a salad but I usually just stay away from all dried fruit. Rice cakes are a good bet. If you like peanut butter or sunbutter a natural brand with sugar vs. corn syrup could liven them up for you.
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Kathy

Gluten free 3/08
Negative blood work/positive endoscopy
Fructose Malabsorption
Soy free

#9 gf_soph

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 06:54 PM

The more ripe the banana the better. I wait for it to have light spots and can eat half of a medium banana everyday....I share with hubby. Other Fructmals say they can have them only every other day. Dried fruit will always have more fructose. Some can get away with a few dried cranberries in a salad but I usually just stay away from all dried fruit. Rice cakes are a good bet. If you like peanut butter or sunbutter a natural brand with sugar vs. corn syrup could liven them up for you.


I have fructose problems too, and was definitely thinking of that reading your description.
I had a banana the other day for the first time in ages, and I had unusually bad gas a while after, sorry if TMI. Looking at the literature the most recent testing found bananas are ok, but some others have found they are a problem, so I am treating them as suspect for me. I also like to eat them just ripe, which is not a good idea for the fructose.

If it is a fructose problem you don't have to avoid all sugars, just excess or free fructose. There is a lot of information out there to help you work out how to test if it is FM. From personal experience I also get highly irritable if I have too much regular sugar, but I don't get any gut symptoms except from fructose and FODMAPS.
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#10 bridgetm

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 05:29 AM

I have fructose problems too, and was definitely thinking of that reading your description.
I had a banana the other day for the first time in ages, and I had unusually bad gas a while after, sorry if TMI. Looking at the literature the most recent testing found bananas are ok, but some others have found they are a problem, so I am treating them as suspect for me. I also like to eat them just ripe, which is not a good idea for the fructose.

If it is a fructose problem you don't have to avoid all sugars, just excess or free fructose. There is a lot of information out there to help you work out how to test if it is FM. From personal experience I also get highly irritable if I have too much regular sugar, but I don't get any gut symptoms except from fructose and FODMAPS.


I like my bananas a little on the green side. I have noticed in the past that if I eat a more than one of those a day or just one big one I feel a little bloated later on. I have been eating them regardless this week, just because I need the nutrients. I went to the cafeteria this morning to grab some more fruit and found a couple that were just starting to get the brown spots. I'm eating one right now in my buckwheat and quinoa hot cereal (Bob's Red Mill is growing on me, but I can't eat it plain... What it really needs is brown sugar!) and so far so good.

Those of you who stick with whole foods: What do you eat on a regular basis? Any nutrients you focus on? 90% of the food I keep stocked in my dorm is high sugar/fructose. Most of my usual gluten-accident-recovery foods are included in that 90%. This week I have mainly been eating rice, rice cakes, Bob's buckwheat hot cereal (I know it's not the safest option out there, but I needed something more substantial) with a little quinoa mixed in, some lunch meat (Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh) and bananas. I picked up some carrots and green beans yesterday which I plan to steam later and have around to add to my rice.
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#11 EvieLS

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 06:55 AM

I like my bananas a little on the green side. I have noticed in the past that if I eat a more than one of those a day or just one big one I feel a little bloated later on. I have been eating them regardless this week, just because I need the nutrients. I went to the cafeteria this morning to grab some more fruit and found a couple that were just starting to get the brown spots. I'm eating one right now in my buckwheat and quinoa hot cereal (Bob's Red Mill is growing on me, but I can't eat it plain... What it really needs is brown sugar!) and so far so good.

Those of you who stick with whole foods: What do you eat on a regular basis? Any nutrients you focus on? 90% of the food I keep stocked in my dorm is high sugar/fructose. Most of my usual gluten-accident-recovery foods are included in that 90%. This week I have mainly been eating rice, rice cakes, Bob's buckwheat hot cereal (I know it's not the safest option out there, but I needed something more substantial) with a little quinoa mixed in, some lunch meat (Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh) and bananas. I picked up some carrots and green beans yesterday which I plan to steam later and have around to add to my rice.


I also like green ends on my bananas..seeme like the sugar in the riper ones turns to acid for me. My Dr. had me try (no fructose diet) not seemed to be my problem. Hope you find a longer list of food you can eat soon.
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#12 ksymonds84

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 08:38 AM

gh_soph brought up FODMAPs which may be a good diet for you over the next couple of weeks, then slowly add back foods one at a time to see what will set you off.

http://www.healthhyp...ng-and-gas.html

This link give a good description FODMAPs
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Kathy

Gluten free 3/08
Negative blood work/positive endoscopy
Fructose Malabsorption
Soy free

#13 curlyfries

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 08:41 AM

If it is a fructose problem you don't have to avoid all sugars, just excess or free fructose.


I seem to have issues with all sugars, best I can tell. I really need to keep a very detailed food journal, but in order to figure it out, would have to try foods that I've been avoiding. UGH! :(

Those of you who stick with whole foods: What do you eat on a regular basis?


Meats, chicken, fish, tuna, beans, nuts, eggs, cheese, veggies,(although I avoid the higher sugar- containing carrots, peas)I make my own chicken soup with green beans and broccoli stalks (better than celery, IMO), which I will eat for lunch for days.
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~~Lisa~~

"The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it."--Moliere

"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be."--Douglas Adams


Friends may come and go but Sillies are Forever!!!!!!!--Amanda
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#14 ksymonds84

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 10:15 AM

I seem to have issues with all sugars, best I can tell. I really need to keep a very detailed food journal, but in order to figure it out, would have to try foods that I've been avoiding. UGH! :(



Meats, chicken, fish, tuna, beans, nuts, eggs, cheese, veggies,(although I avoid the higher sugar- containing carrots, peas)I make my own chicken soup with green beans and broccoli stalks (better than celery, IMO), which I will eat for lunch for days.


I'm like you, carrots and peas have too much fructose for me. I can't stand peas so no biggie there but I do miss carrots.
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Kathy

Gluten free 3/08
Negative blood work/positive endoscopy
Fructose Malabsorption
Soy free

#15 bridgetm

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 12:42 PM

I always forget that carrots are high in sugar! :angry: They are the easiest, most accessible vegetable for me. I don't usually have a problem with them so I guess I'll just have to test that out tonight. Next time I'm at the store I have to pick up some eggs. I can tell I need the protein and fat and they'll liven up my rice and veggies. I've been holding out on anything that requires a stove or oven (our dorm lounge stove is horrible), but it's time to suck it up and cook.

Thank you all for your help!!
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