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If It Isn't Just Gluten, What Is It?

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 09:44 AM

I have been suffering from various weird symptoms of what I think must be various vitamin deficiencies – constant gum infections and loss of bone density in my teeth, constant rashes and allergic reactions, sleeping 12+ hours a night, terrible GERD, foggy mind, sores in the corner of my mouth [angular cheilitis] depression and anxiety, frequent burping ‘sessions’ so bad that I would vomit, sciatic pains, dry skin, poor circulation, hair loss and weak nails… all kinds of little things that I had been considering to all be separate issues. A lot of these problems would go away temporarily if I took like 3 one-a-day vitamins for a couple of days.

Quite by accident I ended up on a website describing some of the symptoms associated with celiac disease and noticed that they matched up with a lot of what I was experiencing. I was starting a new diet anyway so I cut out most gluten from my diet. I also cut out most dairy (everything except for mozzarella cheese) and baked goods. A few weeks later, I ate a home-made bread roll (stoneground wholemeal flour, yeast, butter, honey, salt, nuts) and within half an hour I had some pretty extreme stomach pain. Then I started burping every 30-50 seconds. A few hours later I developed a rash across my wrists. The symptoms continued for about 24 hours. I concluded that my body clearly didn’t like gluten and cut it out.
Today (around 5 days later) I baked some gluten-free bread. I used a gluten and wheat-free flour blend, yeast, butter, honey and water. After eating it, I had no stomach pain but I did get loads of burping (though less than with the other bread) and a very short-lived headache. I am a little confused by this. I do not eat butter, flours or yeast anywhere else in my diet. Is it possible this is an allergic reaction to butter? If so, why isn’t mozzarella making me sick? I eat a caprese salad almost every day LOL. Since I didn’t experience the pain I did before, I have to assume that leaving gluten out of my diet isn’t a bad idea, particularly since I eat such a strict diet anyway that all it basically means is switching to gluten-free pasta and bread. I don’t eat processed food or eat at restaurants much, so it’s not really a big deal. But I am now really confused. I don’t think I have ever demonstrated any kind of allergy to butter before, although that squirty whipped cream that comes in a can used to give me a lot of digestive discomfort… but then again, it’s squirty cream that comes in a can, I don’t think optimum digestive health is either its aim or anything I can reasonably expect after eating it :P

Can anyone offer any advice? I would really rather not avoid butter if I can, though I will if it seems sensible, but it it and mozzerella are the only dairy left in my diet. May I just have developed a lack of tolerance to dairy because I have stopped eating it in my day-to-day diet? Could it be the yeast? Do people get allergic reactions to yeast?

Many thanks!
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Posted 02 October 2012 - 10:15 AM

It is quite possible that if you used your same utensils and same bread pan that you cross-contaminated your gluten free loaf with gluten crumbs which are very hard to get rid of. Porous utensils (think wooden and plastic), cutting boards,etc., can all harbor gluten.
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Caffeine free 1973
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(Mis)diagnosed IBS, fibromyalgia '80's and '90's
Diagnosed psoriatic arthritis 2004
Self-diagnosed gluten intolerant, gluten-free Nov. 2007
Soy free March 2008
Nightshade free Feb 2009
Citric acid free June 2009
Potato starch free July 2009
(Totally) corn free Nov. 2009
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Posted 02 October 2012 - 10:17 AM

Burping can be a side effect of GERD - are you still having other GERD symptoms?

Celiac or gluten intolerance could be causing your GERD, but it would take a while to clear up after going gluten free. GERD or GERD-like symptoms can also be caused by some medications.

Do you have other gastro symptoms when you eat dairy, like diarrhea?
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Posted 02 October 2012 - 10:56 AM

Aqua, you need to read the thread, "Newbie 101". It'll teach you all of the places gluten can hide. As Mushroom said, it could very well be cross contamination. Pans, utensils, your toaster, all of these things can hold gluten.
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It took 3 !/2 years but my intolerances to corn, soy, and everything else (except gluten) are gone!

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 11:09 AM

Thanks for all your replies :)

I do not think it can be cross-contamination since I have used all the equipment for other things since I last used them with gluten and have not become ill - I use the same pots and pans for everything and cook 3 meals a day with them, none of which have made me sick.

I also have not had any other gastro symptoms from dairy, just burping and pooping a little more often. I still get GERD symptoms from time-to-time, but they didn't really accompany the burping from the bread today. Belching is at least fairy minor - socially awkward but nothing that is going to cause too much pain!
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Posted 02 October 2012 - 12:33 PM

i'm putting my money on the flour blend. Have you used it before?

Also, vitamins and whatnot can occasionally contain gluten.
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Posted 04 October 2012 - 07:54 AM

Are you still experiencing gum infections and loss of bone density in my teeth, constant rashes and allergic reactions, sleeping 12+ hours a night, foggy mind, sores in the corner of my mouth, depression and anxiety, sciatic pains, dry skin, poor circulation, hair loss and weak nails? Or have these symptoms started to show improvement?

Something to consider if you have only improved in some area is eliminating Sodium Laure Sulfate (SLS) from your environment. It is in a lot of stuff and will overwork your immune system (check tooth paste, hand soap, shampoo, bubble bath, and even some prescriptions). This may help with dry skin, the sores in your mouth, increase the strength of your hair (maybe nails, not sure) and decrease the overall inflammation level of your body and help decrease fatigue.

Insofar as loss of bone density, if you are having trouble absorbing calcium then you may have damage to the upper part of your intestine, where celiac does the most damage. Supplementing calcium may be a good start as well as digestive enzymes to help your system break down any fat soluble vitamins you might not be absorbing as well (Vit D or magnesium shortages can also cause decreased bone density).

Hope this helps.
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Posted 04 October 2012 - 09:59 AM

It would be good to get the blood testing for celiac disease done before going gluten-free. The antibodies start dropping off after you go gluten-free and are harder or impossible to detect. The gluten-free diet is not an instant cure though, it can take months (or years) for the GI system to heal and symptoms to go away. In the beginning of the gluten-free diet it is not unusual to have somewhat random reactions to foods that may not be gluten reactions at all. Your digestive system is irritated and raw inside and things just don't work right in that condition. That doesn't mean you shouldn't be careful and try to eliminate all traces of gluten though. A whole foods diet with no processed foods is a good way to start the gluten-free diet.
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Proverbs 25:16 "Hast thou found honey? eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it."
Job 30:27 My bowels boiled, and rested not: the days of affliction prevented me.
Thyroid cyst and nodules, Lactose / casein intolerant. Diet positive, gene test pos, symptoms confirmed by Dr-head. My current bad list is: gluten, dairy, sulfites, coffee (the devil's brew), tea, Bug's Bunnies carrots, garbanzo beans of pain, soy- no joy, terrible turnips, tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, and hard work. have a good day! :-) Paul

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