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Looking For Some Reassurance
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3 posts in this topic

Hi there

I am looking for a little reassurance. I come from a family where digestive problems are rife...we have IBS, reflux and all sort of problems on that front and we have always had issues digesting bread and pasta.

For the past 10 years, I have been ill for at least 50% of the time. Lots of sore throats, fatigue, poor immune system, digestive problems, indigestion, reflux, nausea, the big "D" on a daily basis, hypoglycaemia, bloating, gas, itchy skin, gum problems, I eat very little (less than my 8 year old child) but I am a bit overweight despite this, I have also had problems with anxiety and constant issues with headaches and "brain fog". I thought for a while I was going mad, because the doctor kept telling me there was nothing wrong with me and it was all in my mind.

Recently, my sister was diagnosed as celiac. I decided then to try stopping gluten myself after reading up on the symptoms, which I seemed to have. I was initially worse for 2 weeks - almost like all my symptoms were magnified, with night sweats, hives, bloating, gas, major mood swings. Then after that I felt much better. Lighter, more vital and stronger.

After six months on this diet, I feel MUCH better. My toilet habits returned to normal for the first time in 10 years after only 48 hours on the diet, the bloating and gas went, my reflux went, I don

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Yes, this is because of your exposure. You are almost definitely celiac. What happens is the longer you are off gluten, the more you heal, the stronger your immune system becomes. All those colds and viruses you used to get? That was because your immune system was too busy attacking your intestines to be bothered fighting off germs. But now it has reccovered, it is no longer constantly distracted with gluten, and so it is like a vigilant soldier, patrolling your bloodstream for offenders! And because it is basically unnoccupied, save for the occasional germ that gets in, when even a teensy weensy particle of gluten gets is WHAM, full fledged attack. All the troops are called in to kill it. Of course, gluten isn't a germ, so the real attack is on your body tissues, which happen to be in proximity to the gluten. And so now you get much sicker, much faster and much more violently then you ever did in your pre-gluten free world.

What you described is very, very typical amongst us celiacs. And while I wish I could say you will feel better tomorrow...probably not going to happen. For the lucky, a gluten reaction lasts a few days, for the majority, you feel lousy for a week to 10 days after, and slowly return to normal. For a few, the reaction can last for weeks.

From here on out, consider yourself a celiac. Be very vigilant about everything you come in contact with, even when it seems you are overreacting. It is necessary to not only save your life, but also to prevent you from a continual low-grade lousy feeling.

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Thanks very much for the reply, I really appreciate it.

After 9 days I started to feel better. Now almost 3 weeks in I feel closer to normal.

It

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    • I have intolerances to a few foods now, so I was wondering about that.. I love cashews though, and a month or two ago I was eating them all the time with no problems at all. I mean, could I really have developed an intolerance to them since then? I don't know if they're made on shared lines (it didn't say on the package so I assumed they weren't), but I'll give them a call. I'm really, really sensitive to cross contamination. Even if something is just made in the same facility (but not on shared lines) it will make me sick. If that's not it, then I'm not really sure
    • Research with KP and find a celiac-savvy GI in your area ( read the biographies). and ask your PCP/GP for a referral to that specific GI (not his buddy).  Ask the GI for the rest  of the celiac panel or proceed with an endoscopy/biopsies -- 4 to six.  Keep eating gluten daily until all testing is complete.  Document and request in writing.  Do not worry about symptoms.  There are over 300 of them and some celiacs have none!   Research all that you can about celiac disease.  The University of Chicago has a great celiac website that has testing Information etc.   Poet me know how it works out.  Hope you feel better soon!  
    • I react to both wheat and barley.  I've opted to just go completely gluten free, for the sake of simplicity and my sanity.  I don't have a diagnosis of celiac disease, but I strongly suspect it.  Unfortunately, I'm not willing to endure the misery of staying on gluten long enough to pursue further testing.  I just know I need to avoid the gluten grains, so I do.  
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