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Gluten Withdrawal & Severe Illness?

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Hey everyone - I am new to the gluten free world. I have many symptoms that could be related to gluten intolerance (headache ALL the time, skin issues, belly issues, brain fog, fatigue, neurological problems), but have not been tested. I just decided to try a gluten free diet on my own to see if it helped. I am one week in and have gotten very sick. I read that gluten withdrawal can cause flu-like symptoms. I have a confirmed ear infection and strep throat. What do you guys think? Could this be related to the gluten withdrawal or is it by happenstance that I picked up strep (I am a teacher, so this is not impossible, however I have not had it for years...immune system of steal thanks to teaching)?

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Hi Sarah,

Any change in symptoms on going gluten-free means that gluten is somehow affecting your body.  I suggest you start eating gluten again right away though.  The testing for celiac disease requires a person to be eating gluten on a regular basis.  If not a person can get a false negative test result.  The test is either a ttg IgA or a complete celiac disease panel.  It's best to get the complete celiac panel as some people don't "pass" the ttg IgA but they still have celiac disease.

The initial testing for celiac disease is just a blood draw for the antibody testing.  If the antibodies are positive, then an endoscopy is done to check for damage to the gut lining (villi).

I didn't get sick much before I went gluten-free.  I still don't for that matter.  But some people are just the opposite and get sick fairly often (colds, flu etc).  We are all individuals and our bodies react individually.

Welcome to the forum Sarah! :)

Edited by GFinDC

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Hi Sarah, Welcome to the community! I agree with GFinDC, I would return to eating gluten until your able to get testing done for Celiac. If you are going through withdrawal symptoms you don't want to have to go through that twice if you end up being intolerant :(  I had horrible withdrawal symptoms when getting off gluten from brain fog, bad headaches to feeling shaky and dizzy for close to a month. I was someone who got sick often in general from Colds to Strep but that actually got significantly better after removing gluten. I hope you are able to find answers to your symptoms so you can feel better! Keep us updated :) 


IG: iFitCeliac

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