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    Do you have questions about celiac disease or the gluten-free diet?

GravStars

Not Sure What To Do... Suggestions?

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Hi everyone,

I just joined up here and thought I'd tell a little about my situation and get some feedback. I have not been diagnosed with Celiac or Gluten-Intolerance but I seriously wonder sometimes if this could be the problem with me. To begin with, when I was a child (I am told) I had some chronic diarrhea or something along those lines and my parents were told to eliminate certain foods (such as wheat). I'm not sure how strict they were with this but apparently the problem (diarrhea) went away and I went back on all the normal foods. I never had any chronic problems as a child/teenager except some occasional gastric reflux and some emotional issues like shyness.

In my late teens I had started to develop acute anxiety, which has gradually become worse and chronic. When I was 19, I got sick with a flu-virus type thing, doctor put me on meds, but during this illness I developed facial redness which persisted and has come and gone and gotten worse over the years (self-diagnosed as rosacea), and at this same time I developed abdominal bloating, which also has come and gone, but is now persistently and conspicuously present. And over the next few years I devloped symptoms such as: hemorrhoids, heart palpitations (racing heart, feeling heart beating hard), excessive thirst & urination (but with excess saliva), ringing in ears, dental enamal erosion - tips of front teeth becoming transparent (could be due to gastric reflux, although I am not aware of stomach acid comeing up into in my mouth, I only occasionally have a burp-like regurgitation of food into my throat), constipation (and powerful urge to go when I have to - IBS maybe?), weight loss (I fluctuate between 120 - 135, and I'm 5'11"), hungry a lot but don't feel satisfied, chronic fatigue, and chronic anxiety symptoms like muscle tension, inability to relax, headaches, racing thoughts, etc.

Now, I may have nothing more than chronic anxiety (and gastric reflux), since anxiety can cause all these problems, but then again I understand anxiety can be a symptom of Celiac disease. My mom has also had some chronic digestive problems including chronic diarrhea over the last couple years (we are Scotch-Irish descent), and she just got a colonoscopy and some other tests done, but when I asked her if the doc was going to test for Gluten she said he told her she couldn't have that because she doesn't have weight loss (he's wrong of course - don't you love ignorance in a doctor?). Anyway, in my hypochondrical search for "what's wrong with me?" I came across Celiac Disease and Gluten Intolerance, and interestingly a few years prior I had this intuitive feeling about cutting back (or out) wheat from my diet before I even knew anything about it.

The problem is I'm 30, I don't have a job or medical insurance (mainly because I feel so horrible all the time) and I currently live at home and my parents really don't help me out. Not that I expect them to, but it puts me in difficult situation. I am hoping to feel better soon enough to get a job and some insurance to go see a doc, but I wonder if I should put myself through a gluten-free diet first? Especially if gluten is the problem, then I may not start feeling well enough to get work, etc. until I go gluten-free right? And then I could always order a stool test from Enterolabs when I have the money (as I understand, stool tests are accurate up to 6 months gluten-free?).

So anyway, anyone have any suggestions? Sorry if this is long and rambling, but I'm really tired of feeling this way.

Peace

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Here are a couple of choices. The need for a celiac diagnosis may be important for insurance and piece of mind. But what if your tests came back inconclusive or negative. Then what would you think? You should try and get a diagnosis first. However, I can see how this may be difficult without insurance. Then you could try the gluten-free diet after that and see how your body reacts. Listen to your body. You have many of the same symptoms that I do so gluten-free may help you.

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Hi Gravstars--welcome! Your story is a lot like mine! The difference is that I am 50 now, and my symptoms became accute 2 years ago. I (after a surgical procedure) developed weight loss, urgent D, numbness and tingling, worsening anemia and a few other things. I am left with additional food intolerances as well as lingering physical problems almost a year after going gluten-free. I say this because I hate to see a (potential) gluten issue undiagnosed/untreated. It catches up with you! It would be best if you could get a diagnosis--but given your situation right now, that may not be possible. If you really can't go the test/doctor route right now, you could go 100% gluten-free right now. Give it a month--and see if anything changes. If you need help with any of the specifics of the day to day living of the diet, we're always here! And you're right--once you get "on your feet" you can be tested through Entrolab--Best of luck! :)

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Hi Gravstars--welcome! Your story is a lot like mine! The difference is that I am 50 now, and my symptoms became accute 2 years ago. I (after a surgical procedure) developed weight loss, urgent D, numbness and tingling, worsening anemia and a few other things. I am left with additional food intolerances as well as lingering physical problems almost a year after going gluten-free. I say this because I hate to see a (potential) gluten issue undiagnosed/untreated. It catches up with you! It would be best if you could get a diagnosis--but given your situation right now, that may not be possible. If you really can't go the test/doctor route right now, you could go 100% gluten-free right now. Give it a month--and see if anything changes. If you need help with any of the specifics of the day to day living of the diet, we're always here! And you're right--once you get "on your feet" you can be tested through Entrolab--Best of luck! :)

i am seriously considering going gluten-free for about a month but i keep making excuses to myself, like "nah, i don't have it, it's just anxiety and reflux and ibs and so on". but i take it seriously in that i definitely want to find out. it just seems to make sense and add up in so many ways. my diet is mostly gluten-free (& healthy) anyway so it wouldn't be hard to eliminate or replace what little gluten i do eat. still not sure if i should wait for a diagnosis though, but i don't know how long that could be. i'm such a procrastinator. anyway, thanks to both of you for your replies.

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