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Itching-Seeking Stricter Diet Tips
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3 posts in this topic

I'v been gluten-free for about a month, same time since official diagnosis. I'd give myself an A for sticking to the diet with the only risk of contamination being from a small amount of accidental foods that do not directly contain gluten, but may have been processed on the same equipment as gluten-containing foods.

After doing more than my share of homework and reading the forums, it's obvious people with Celiac can have other food sensitivities. Mine are onions, garlic, eggs and occasionally soy. I also have a mild dust-mite allergy that acts like it's major. I actually thought I was allergic to the foods, but after passing the allergy tests, I had to keep hunting. Celiac now seems to have been cause all along.

I've had a history of mysterious itching that comes and goes like an old friend. It started back up a few weeks ago and it's relentless. I've been to two doctors who each adamantly swear itching is common in Celiac Disease. None of the over the counter antihistamines do a thing. The prescription Atarax takes a while to work and the itching only keeps coming back. (I have no other symptoms at this time that I know of, no intestinal problems, no joint aches, nothing.)

I suspect that as I elminated gluten, I increased something else, possibly eggs, food additives, and dairy. I'm going to try going on a stricter gluten-free diet for a few weeks that's just brown rice, fresh fruits and vegetables (steamed or stir fried in olive oil), nuts, peanuts, and fresh herbal teas. I'll add a variety of beans, but no soy, and fish over time. No processed foods, dairy/eggs, or sweets, restaurant foods. (Though I do use artificial or natural sweetner in tea or on bitter fruits.)

I'd appreciate websites or books referring to diets and recipes recommended for anyone doing an elimination diet for the same reasons. ;)

I'm also crossing my fingers I'll feel healthy for the first time in my life within about a year of sticking to the gluten-free diet. If not, I'm pretty sure I won't be on this forum, 'cause I'll be on the forums for looney people.

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Just recently had the same problem. Take a look at the list of foods high in salicylates and see if they are what you have been eating. That was my problem. It took a few days off them for the itching to stop but it did the trick.

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I'll admit, finding a book for this is REALLY hard, and the best I've done is find some that work partially. Most of the allergy/elimination diet books I come across seemed aimed at finding substitutions for the eliminated food, and usually it's a processed food that I'm also trying to avoid (like all the xanthan gum for those avoiding gluten, as an example).

Here's what I've seen that might have some use, however.

1. Raw food diet cook books. They are some interesting recipes that can be useful with your type of elmination diet, as they primarily use veggies and fruits, with some nuts and seeds added. Sometimes a little meat. Ani Phyo may have some that would be right up your alley: http://aniphyo.com/blog/category/recipes/

From her, I learned the idea of peeling a zucchini into strips (the whole zucchini), letting it sit in the fridge, uncovered, until the strips got soft - a few hours - and then cooking it in a tomato sauce for zucchini noodles. Works well. I'm looking at one recipe of hers right now that is just sunflower seeds and dates that she puts together in a food processor and molds into little cakes. She does have some cookbooks out, as well.

2. Paleo diet - a protein heavy diet that usually doesn't have potatoes, legumes, or grains in it. Littls to no processed foods. But lots of meat, veggies, and fruits. Here's a popular site: http://paleodietlifestyle.com/paleo-diet-recipes/

3. The Africa Cookbook by Jessica Harris had a lot of simple recipes in it that would work well on this diet, from garlicky, spicy sauce to use on salad to falafel like creations from beans. I never had a chance to try any of the recipes, but many of them looked quite nice.

A word of caution on the elimination? You may want to investigate your nuts, beans, and teas - many beans and nuts are processed in facilities that process wheat, and they do NOT have to put that on the label. That's voluntary. Some herbal teas have barley or oat grass mixed in, or in the facility where the tea is being made, so it might be worth growing your own herbs or just calling to check with the tea company, you know?

The sweetener might be worth checking too, just to see if anything is made in the facility that could be a problem.

If you're trying to avoid more additives and such, you might want to double check your salt to see what has been added to that, too. There is usually an anti-caking agent added to salt, and a corn derivative added to iodized salt to stabilize the iodine (if it's lower than a certain % of the product, some of these don't even have to be on the label).

EDIT: oh, and nearly forgot! If you look for recipes for those on sulfite free diets, they're typically onion free, so that might be able to give you some ideas. Sulfites can also cause itching, too, so it might be worth looking into that in any case.

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    • Thanks Stephanie & Gemini for the info. that the 4 of 5 doesn't apply to children. I wasn't aware of that until now. 
    • I think the posters above have given you very good information and I will throw in my 2 cents worth.  I am surprised that they did not test her DGP IgA also.  I am sure that would have been positive.  They switched off with antibody classes and usually they do both tests for both antibodies.  IgA is more specific to Celiac but the IgG is also useful.  The testing shows your daughter is producing antibodies to the gluten in her diet. (DGP IGG). THe tTg shows positive for some damage or inflammation. You know........your daughter is only 4.  She hasn't been on the planet or eating gluten that long. It can take years for enough damage to occur for it to be able to be found on biopsy.  I would say it is highly likely that this is Celiac, especially with her symptoms. But because the damage hasn't graduated to bad enough yet, they won't diagnose her. I think you need to do what others have said and get all copies of testing and find someone else who will take a look and give a diagnosis, especially if they have you do a dietary trial and her symptoms go away.  That might be the only recourse if you want faster proof. I know I would want faster.  I would not really be happy if I thought I had to keep feeding her something that was making her sick.  If you keep her on gluten long enough, the diarrhea will probably show up. BTW.........the criteria mentioned regarding diagnosis does not apply to kids.  I know it's silly and stupid but most leading Celiac specialists do not go by this criteria for kids.......adults only.  Keep that in mind because it might come up.  You could recognize it but they might not. Have you considered gene testing, to help bolster a diagnosis? As far as false positives go, it's the other way around. False negatives happen more frequently than many people think.  It's a recurring theme here.  With her symptoms, which is what I had, a bloated belly and tummy aches are telling.  Have they tested her for lactose intolerance?  That can cause similar symptoms, although it sure won't raise those 2 blood tests.  Keep looking for Celiac because there are many red flags here.
    • This 4 out of 5 criteria does not apply to children. I was never given a reason why, but it isn't.     That said, you may try to get a second opinion from another GI who may be willing to give her a firm dx.  We were in your boat 6 years ago and while I'm sure I'll get slammed for it, I wish we had kept gluten in our kiddos diet till he scoped positive for a variety of reasons.  Again, even family is different and you have to find what is best for you!
    • Mnoosh, I had swollen lymph nodes prior to celiac dx and for a while after going gluten free. My neck as well as groin. The groin ones were the worst. Guess what? All gone! It's hard to recall a time line & consider that everyone is different but I think mine completely resolved within a year.  You've been given great information. Just breathe and then again, breathe. You're going to be fine. 
    • It is the only thing you have eaten, so it can't be anything else?  I eat it with no issues so I am not sure how you can be certain that is the problem.  All I am saying is that its sort of "your word against mine and the company's word".  
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