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JustStartingOut

How Long Should I Try A gluten-free Diet? What About Oat Bran?

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I don't have celiac disease--I tested negative while on a regular (well, dairy-free) diet.

BUT I thought I might still have a gluten sensitivity. I'm trying to figure out if gluten is causing my "IBS" symptoms.

And I'm CONFUSED.

Because although my doctor thinks I should try a gluten-free diet just to see if that is what is causing me problems, there are only two things that I have found make my "IBS" or whatever it is less terrible: a dairy-free diet (which I am still maintaining) and fiber supplements.

The one fiber supplement that I've found that works for me cotains oat bran. I've heard mixed things about how oat bran affects gluten-sensitive people, so I haven't been taking the fiber supplement.

So far, I've been on a very strict and careful gluten free diet for a week with zero improvement in my symptoms. In fact, I think I do much better (although still not all that great) when I just take a lot of fiber supplements (although I do NOT see improvements when on a very high fiber diet--it has to be the supplements).

Has this happened to anyone else? Does my improvement while on fiber supplements containing oat bran mean I'm NOT gluten senstive?

And most importantly, should I be seeing results already from a gluten free diet or should I maintain the diet for longer? How long should I try to maintain the diet?

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Well, there's a lot of discussion on oats these days. Many celiacs do react to oats, probably because 1) they are likely cross-contaminated with wheat as they are grown on the same fields and processed on the same mills and 2) the protein in oats is molecularly similar--though not identical--to gluten.

However, there is a study listed on celiac.com that says that celiacs don't have measurable damage from oats.

It would seem logical to me that oats would not bother you nearly as much as gluten, at least not at this stage, although many celiacs do have severe reactions.

As far as IBS is concerned, IBS is not a real disease, it is a syndrome--a collection of symptoms. THose symptoms are identical to those of celiac, and most US doctors don't even know to rule out celiac. So kudos to your doctor for suggesting a gluten-free diet and not bothering with expensive tests, and also to you for being so aware of what does and does not trigger your symptoms!

Why don't you try a gluten-free diet for a couple of weeks, and see how it goes? But I am curious what kind of high fiber diet you are on? There might be gluten in your high fiber diet that would contribute to your symptoms, and that might be why your supplement seems better for you.

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But I am curious what kind of high fiber diet you are on? There might be gluten in your high fiber diet that would contribute to your symptoms, and that might be why your supplement seems better for you.

I'm not currently on a high-fiber diet because a lot of it consisted of gluteny stuff. But I was eating a whole lot of beans and some whole grains--a lot of brain and whole wheat. Also, fruits and veggies, which I am of course still eating. The high fiber diet doesn't seem to affect me negatively--it just doesn't clear up my symptoms. Only fiber supplements seem to make a dent in my symptoms.

The whole oat thing seems very complicated! I suppose I will just keep it out of my diet until I figure out if the gluten-free thing is working for me.

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