No matter what they tell you after the study, if it were ME, I would wait to act on their advice until I had been gluten-free for a few months. I say that because I had terrible insomnia all my life. (A good night was five or six hours, but most nights I got three or four hours! Talk about bags under the eyes!!!)
Within three months of being gluten-free, I was sleeping like a baby. Three years later, I still sleep well. The only time I get insomnia now is when I go to a good music show and come home so inspired I stay up playing my guitar for half the night!
You've gotten a lot of great suggestions here. I'd like to add another: explain your illness to your friends, and if they are truly friends they should be happy to eat at any restaurant of your chosing, especially since it's your birthday.
It's yard sale season. If you can't afford to buy all of the things folks have suggested, see if you can find a hot plate/burner at a yard sale. You might be able to get one for five bucks or so. Just ask them if you can plug it in first to make sure it works, and examine the cord to make sure there is no fraying.
With that alone and a pan to cook in, you can make yourself some nice meals. If you can find a double burner that would be even better. Meat in one pan, some rice in another. Add some veggies to the rice and they will heat up nicely. Keep your food and condiments in a plastic tote in the communal fridge. Put your name on it so no one will get into it.
I'm sorry you are going through this. (((((HUGS))))) to you.
I don't want to get into the middle of a disagreement, but I will say that I read here on this site, that not everyone who tests positive for celiac tests positive for the genes. I know I have read it from several different posters over the years. I looked it up and the first one I found was from back in 2011.
You'll notice in the sixth post, there is a quote from Dr. F. made in 2009 in which he says ALMOST 100% of people with celiac have a gene for celiac. Now, that was a long time ago and the research may now show that EVERYBODY with celiac has one or more of the genes, but I DO understand why some folks question that since there have been so many posts right here (including this one that quotes Dr. F.) on our favorite website that say otherwise.
I guess the moral of the story is, we are still learning every day and what research shows to be true today may be disproven by the research of tomorrow.
And we shouldn't be getting mad at each other over it. (I haven't been glutened in a long time and my grouchiness is in remission. It has been replaced by a "group hug" condition.)
W8in, you also MAY have gotten "corned" from the lining in the foil packet. They have stopped making that and the lining in most cans out of that BPA plastic, and now very often the plastic is made from the protein in corn. I know corn bothers you as it does me. Although if I stay "clean" I can tolerate corn starch (because there is little to no protein in it), I can't safely eat anything out of a can or foil pouch. (Nor a clear plastic bottle either.)
MissHealthNut, you said: "2. You can educate your place of employment about what it means to be gluten free (which really means no grain-NO GRAINS AT ALL)"
Not trying to be a hard case, but that is not true. Wheat, rye, barley, and non-certified gluten-free oats, are the only grains that will damage the villi in a celiac. While it's true that some of us develop intolerances to other foods, most celiacs can eat things like corn or rice with no symptoms, and more importantly, no damage. I'd hate to see any newbies mislead into thinking they had to give up all grains because the truth is, they don't.
Yes, after remiving gluten the reaction can be swift and severe. But I'm wondering if perhaps you should get her tested. Yes, she would have to go back on gluten for the tests to be valid, but if you take this list to the doctor and insist he perform these test, or better yet, find a new doctor for her, I think it would help in a lot of ways.
tTG IgA and tTG IgG
DGP IgA and DGP IgG
total serum IgA control test
For one, you could set up a plan at the school to take care of her dietary needs. Also, when she goes to college she will need an official diagnosis in order for them to provide food she can eat. And besides that, celiac runs in families. If it turns out she does have it, the rest of the family should be tested, as well as any children she may someday have.
But in the meantime, go to the coping section here and read (and have her read) the Newbie 101 thread. It will help you both tremendously.
I am the member Lisa is talking about. Mom was diagnosed by blood testing and biopsy. I had the symptoms. I went gluten-free and my symptoms resolved. Even my doctor agrees that I don't need to be tested. If my "self diagnosis" is good enough for my doctor, it is good enough for me.
And it's true that when talking to waiters or others who I don't know well, I will say things like, "I've been diagnosed with celiac disease so I can no longer eat gluten." I say it that way so people who might otherwise feed me gluten will take it seriously. My friends who know the whole story are like my doctor. They see the change in me and they KNOW gluten makes me ill.
Maybe you could defuse the situation with a bit of humor, but pointedly enough that they would take it seriously. Something like, "Come on guys, it's getting old. I'll make you a deal - I won't make fun of your (name the illness, weight problem, family problem, whatever), and YOU stop making fun of my illness. Because when you make fun of my medically necessary diet, that's what it amounts to.)"
Welcome to the forum. Are you in the US? If so, wheat will always be listed in the ingredients. Rye is pretty much only in rye bread. Barley is the one you have to watch for (it's often in things like malted vinegar, for example.)
Cross-contamination is a bigger problem. MOST things made in the "same facility" are usually safe for all but the supersensitives, but things made on the same line can be a problem. If they don't clean the machinery really well chances are there will be contamination. Personally, I won't eat anything made on the same line as gluten items.
Some companies will label all gluten (wheat because it is the law, plus they will label rye and barley too.) Kraft Foods is one of them. Con Agra Foods does it too. There are others. But if you check you will find that even just Kraft and Con Agra encompass SO many brands. Planter's nuts for example, are from Kraft foods. Marie Callendar's is Con Agra. There are LOADS of products in the grocery store from these companies.
Now, just because they are from these companies doesn't mean you don't have to read the label. Some of their stuff DOES contain gluten. But they will tell you clearly in the ingredients list. All you have to look for are "wheat", "rye", or "barley".
It's also a good idea to stay away from oats. They bother a lot of us. They are usually cross-contaminated unless they say, "certified gluten-free", but even then, a lot of us can't tolerate them.
The good news is, there are so many foods that are naturally gluten-free. Unprocessed meats, fresh fruits and fresh veggies. Most frozen fruits and veggies are too unless they come with a sauce.
One of the biggest dangers to a newly diagnosed celiac is her own kitchen! Toasters, mayo and butter that a gluteny knife has dipped into, scratched plastic, old strainers, crumbs in the silverware drawer...
So to avoid that, go to the coping section here and click on the Newbie 101 link. Then come back and fire away with any questions you may have.