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At What Point After Ingestion Of Gluten?

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Hello all!

Firstly, thank to the providers of this service, it has been ivaluable to me in understanding what I now know is Gluten intolerance in my body.

I'm new here, so please kindly forgive if I cover subjects that have already been visited many times.

I'm a person with A green as green can be Irish heritage. I've been struggling with "slippery" bowels as long as I can remember. Of course back in the day (and i'm only in my late 30's) I've been diagnosed with all the usual bio-suspects... IBS.... Lactose inolerance... so on and so forth it goes. Recently I found a GP who seemed to ask a few different questions. Irish heritage? Check. No real pattern to your symptoms that you can identify? Check. She drew blood and sent it away for Iga (could be wrong about that) antibodies.. And sure enough my score was in the high 70's. She suggested trying to eliminate (pardon any pun) any wheat gluten foods from my diet. I did and finally, a bit of relief! So, as you all know... Living in our Grain-Agro dominated culture it is very difficult to be totally Gluten-Free. Wheat products are lurking in the most annoying and unlikely places. It seems like the glue that holds our modern food chain together. I never dreamed that I might be a person who required a "special" diet. Some part of me on a deep level rebels against that and percieves it as... well, weakness. When I first started exploring these forums I read about a person who toook their own toaster on the road with them so as to avoid any contamination of their "special" food. I couldn't close the page fast enough. Bye. That's not me or is it ever going to be me. Wrong was I.

I love food. I'm struggling. I now know that if I eat that slice of delicious looking/tasting sour-dough that I will pay the price in my own porcelain hell. Two waves of cramps always. First explosive and the second about 20 mins later which lasts from 10-20 mins. I always feel dehydrated. I have now to look forward to my first ever Colonoscopy. So, ok... This is my new reality. It's harder than I thought.

But, onto my question. My Doc can't quite seem to articulate why it is that at times I can eat gluten and have symptoms a day later, and at other times it seems more or less immmediate. If i'm being good, it seems that a Gluten challenge to my body takes longer to cause problems. If i'm actively cramping and such, any gluten at all will just hit the "turbo" button as it were. So.. Do any of you know at what point in the body does this reaction start to take place? Is there generally a delay from ingestion to bent-over-on-the-toilet-in-pain??? Does the body recover, only to be worn down by Gluten?

My latest strategy is to take a "prophylactic" dose of Loperamide (Immodium) before I know i'll be eating the good/bad stuff. I've had mixed results with this approach. At times it seems handle the situation so long as I don't over-indulge. Other times it just seems to cork up the inevitable and I suffer all the more.

I apologize if the following is too graphic.. but, the last time I ate pasta...6 months ago.. I managed to get my first ever Hemmoroid. Heinous thing that was. Two days out of work and geting closer to my anus than I ever thought I would. I have a new appreciation for that part of my body and learned a few mechanical things about being human that I never knew.

I can appreciate that there are different flavors of this condition. I also know that there are no real conlusive findings on celiac disease and there is disagreement within the community of people who are, or think they are afflicted. I'm about 98% sure that celiac disease is my problem. My problem sucks. I'm sure it could be worse though. Any input from folk like youselves would be greatly appreciated. Call this post a reaching out of sorts, as it's not exactly polite conversation in most places. Most people look at you as though they might a person who cliams to be suffering from Chronic-Fatigue ... "yeah... it's all in your mind.. I'd see the shrink before you see a GI." type of stuff.

Also, as an aside, and I find this facinating, but what do you think was the evolutionary challenge that caused this mutation (or lack of mutation) in the (mainly) Irish population? I read a post that seemed to make sense stating that the Romans introduced cross-bred species of wheat into Northern Europe that the indiginous population could not digest and never figured out how to, or at least a subset of that population... And how the heck did it get to Ireland???? Any student of European history will tell you that the Romans really never took root in Ireland let alone introduced any new forms of Agriculture there. So , Did it come and start from England a la' Cromwell? Was it just an inevitable delay in the propigation of these new wheat strains? Is celiac disease an evolutionary mechanism to weed out those that can't adapt?

I know, i'm getting in over my head here.... but I figure that if any one would have an idea it would be you, fellow suffering souls on your bowls. So, in conclusion to my expulsion.. I thank you in advance for any advice or thoughts you may have on my/our subject.

fondest regards,


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Guest cassidy

I realize this isn't your question, but you can't cheat. When you cheat you are causing damage to your intestines. This damage takes 6 months to a year to heal. People who don't go totally gluten-free are at an increased risk for cancer and a whole host of other nasty issues. So, it isn't the immediate pain and discomfort that is the problem but the long-term problems you are causing yourself.

It is normal to be struggling with the diagnosis in the beginning. No one wants to be on a special diet. No one wants to deal with this. I went through grieving steps - denial, angry and then finally acceptance. I think you need to do what you need to do to come to terms with this diet so you stop cheating. It really does get easier. I'm a year into the diet and I have no desire to cheat and gluten filled food isn't appealing because I know how sick it will make me. Sometimes I wake up and just smile because I feel so good and I know I will feel good all day and not have days like I had pre-gluten-free when I had no clue why I was so sick.

To answer your question, symptoms aren't always the same. You may find that different types of gluten produce symptoms sooner or later, or the amount of gluten may make a difference. People who are gluten-free and get cross contaminated with a small amount sometimes get sicker than they ever did when they were eating gluten everyday. Other people who purposely cheat have reported that it takes several days for them to get sick. I think some of it depends on the state of your intestines and how much damage they have.

I hope you will find whatever information or will-power you need to stay on the diet and quit cheating. I know you said that you see needing the special diet as a weakness. Personally, I don't see it that way, but following that line of thinking, isn't not having the will-power to stay on the diet more of a weakness? Good luck & it will get easier.

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Welcome to the board. I don't know anyother place that is such a wealth of information and encouragement for the gluten-free.

To answer your original question... I find that symptoms begin to show about 15 hours later. First I get irritable, then have D and cramps for three days which slowly improves over a week's time - and all along I'm very tired.

I'm not at all tempted to eat gluten, and am very diligent so as not to be accidentally glutened.

I sure wish I had known years ago what I've learned since discovering this forum. I had known about my wheat sensitivity probably 10 years ago, but no one really explained the seriousness of this and I really only cut down on breads and such (had no idea of hidden gluten then). So, after 40 years of struggling with health issues I'm finally getting my heath back. And it wasn't just feeling bad and having constant D - looking back now I see that my irritableness and depressed emotional state affected every aspect of my life and all my relationships (spouse, job, friends), and not for the better.


Enterolab results: ...two genes for gluten intolerance ...casein intolerance

other sensitivities: corn, eggs, soy, potato, tapioca


Sensitivity to high EMFs [electromagnetic frequency] (limits my time in front of the computer)

Living a healthier, happier life.


If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.Psalm 139: 9,10

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How long does it take for symptoms to show up for me? 5 minutes to 5 hours. It varies, depending on how my body is doing.

But you can't cheat. You can't take prophylactic treatment when you know you're going to eat something bad - because you need to avoid eating bad things. (And not just wheat, but rye, barley, and oats as well.) It causes intestinal damage every time you do, and repeatedly causing that damage increases your risks of nutritional deficiencies (including osteoporosis), cancers, neurologic problems (like neuropathy), and - on average - takes 10 years off your life.

It's a steep learning curve, but you *can* adapt so that you don't feel deprived.

Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"

Inconclusive Blood Tests, Positive Dietary Results, No Endoscopy

G.F. - September 2003; C.F. - July 2004

Hiker, Yoga Teacher, Engineer, Painter, Be-er of Me

Bellevue, WA

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