Sorry if this is a repeat. I looked online but I only found things from 2008 or 2009 and I wanted to get some fresh insight.
This is a somewhat personal story for me, so when responding please try to keep that in mind. I do welcome everyone's opinion though. And sorry for the length.
My story in short is that I went to college when I was 18 in the fall of 2005 as a normal human being and came home for Thanksgiving break with an eating disorder. From August until Thanksgiving I had basically starved myself unbeknownst to my parents and lost 1/4th of my body weight. They reluctantly let me return to college but my mom and dad would alternate living with me. I quit school that December and as soon as I was home for Christmas, something triggered me to begin to binge on thousands of calories at night and starve myself during the day by eating zero calories. To get rid of the bloated stomach during the day, I began to take laxatives. This horrible cycle went on for four months until I was dragged to treatment.
I had 'successfully' completed treatment by August of 2006 and while I struggled that first year, I did manage to eventually bring my eating to a more 'normal' style. However, no matter what I ate I almost daily had mild diarrhea. To be honest, I never told anyone because I wanted it. In my still warped ED thinking, I wanted it to help my stomach stay flat. Slowly, the diarrhea became worse, and it was accompanied by mild gas and cramps.
In the fall of 2007 one day I developed a severe bacterial infection from eating undercooked meat and was hospitalized overnight. I got better quickly, but even though my stomach was fine according to my doctor, the constant diarrhea continued and actually got worse. By the fall of 2008, I had gained a considerable amount of weight and felt just bad all the time. The symptoms were worsening. I was gassy, bloated, and just sick but I was afraid to say anything because while I was suffering from my eating disorder I told everyone I had an ulcer and they believed me and I even believed it, even though it was a lie. I didn't want to have to convince my parents or doctors that this time I was telling the truth.
The summer of 2009, I moved to Brazil where I was fed by a host family. Violent bouts of diarrhea ensued and everyone told me it was just the water. Because of the sudden increase in severity, I believed them. About this time, joint pain began to surface, dry skin, and brittle hair.
I returned to the U.S. after three months and shortly after moved to Korea. In Korea, the symptoms continued until March 2010 when I made a decision to give up western food, buy a bike, and give up alcohol (and men for that matter ;> ). I felt amazing. While I did still have mild diarrhea, I lost weight and no longer felt sick. I made no connection with anything really at that time.
I moved to the Republic of Georgia in January 2011 for six months (I'm an ESL teacher btw). My symptoms returned almost immediately and much more severely. I stopped being able to walk up stairs easily, I had to rest after standing for more than twenty minutes, I would have bouts of cramping where I couldn't stand up straight. I threw up in the middle of the night, I missed school, I just felt awful. And I gained weight again. Again, people and doctors claimed it was from the water so I just took what medicine they would give me and put up with it. Some days it were better than others. I then moved to Iraq for six months where the symptoms ameliorated slightly but the joint pain in my knees and hips had gotten severe enough for me to quit and return to the U.S. My life of teaching and traveling had ended in my mind. I had no idea what was wrong.
After numerous doctor's visits over three months, I was diagnosed by a blood test. I got x-rays on my knees and hips, and the joints look fine. I got gum grafts because my gums had receded. But the doctor left me with just "don't eat gluten."
1) If I hadn't developed my ED, would I be diagnosed right now? I have this distinct feeling it was a trigger, although I'm really scared to say this aloud. I feel like some people might think I'm crazy.
2) I went gluten-free in November 2012 and felt 80% better in two weeks. However, despite the fact I try my best, the suffering continues. I stupidly ate from an almond butter jar from a non-Celiac friend and I was suffering for a week. Furthermore, dairy makes me terribly sick now and even nightshades (especially potatoes and tomatoes). After reading many posts on here I have started to take a pro-biotic and I'm reluctantly dairy free and night-shade free. Is there a chance I will win those two back?