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Why Do People Lose Weight After Being Diagnosed With Celiac?

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i don't see how this happens. i see people saying it alot. i'm a pretty serious weightlifter, and after i went off gluten, i just ate other foods. i'm just curious. thanks

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I have lost 4 pounds in the last eight weeks. I think I have lost this weight for 2 reasons. The first is that while I was so sick I think my body thought it was starving and held on to every spare calorie. Now it's not starving and the excess is coming off. The second reason is that I feel well enough to excercise and have energy for all kinds of things (like taking my kids skating etc) that I just couldn't do before. I am not dieting at all. In fact, I am really enjoying food knowing that I won't be sick after I eat!

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I would guess there's several reasons for this:

1. Going gluten-free cuts out a lot of foods people used to eat. This can result in eating much fewer calories until you get the diet figured out.

2. You might be more in-tune with your body and what makes it feel good. This means you're probably eating more natural, non-processed foods which tend to be lower in calories (and salt which will decrease water retention) than processed foods.

3. Your body is healing and working more efficiently. For those with malabsorption, metabolism will increase gradually because your body is finally absorbing enough calories to get it out of starvation mode.

4. For people who have joint pain and fatigue as a symptom, going gluten-free allows them to be more active and burn more calories.

Of course, there's plenty of reasons people can gain, too:

1. gluten-free substitutes are often higher in calories than gluten versions.

2. You're absorbing more food so depending on where you were in the malabsorbtion-starvation mode-metabolism spectrum, this could result in weight gain.

3. You feel better so you can eat without getting sick.

I feel like after going gluten-free, the body is healthy enough to gravitate towards whatever equilibrium it needs to - for some that's gaining weight, for some that's losing.

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I lost a lot before finding out about celiac and in the beginning when eating was a challenge I may have lost a little more or kept the same weight...I forget now.

I have gained it all back, I found some foods that I really like now and I have gained it all back....and then some B)

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i don't see how this happens. i see people saying it alot...... i'm just curious. thanks

I thought it was usually just the opposite.

My story is, I was losing weight for a year or so before diagnosis. Started gaining it back immediately after going gluten-free. Weight loss probably due to chronic diahrea and malabsorption. Weight gain probably due to villi healing.

best regards, lm

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I lost 8 pounds in the first 2 weeks of going gluten free. I think I was holding so much fluid from being so bloated that it just poured right off. When someone looks at pictures of me from 3 years ago they ask how much weight I have lost because it made a drastic difference in my face. I just looked swollen before.

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oh ok, so the majority of weight loss is a good thing (i.e. loss of excess fluid/bloating, etc). i was under the impression that people lost weight because they weren't eating as much, and that the weight loss was a negative thing. thanks for clearing that up.

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I am not sure the validity of this but...I thought/think it happens because your body, when it doesn't know what to do with something strores the excess in your fat cells (calories or toxins or what have you). AND when you start going gluten free, your body heals and starts to really absorb nutrients again so there is less "waste" and such.

I'm sure there's scientivic reasoning.

I know for myself, I've lost 20 lbs this year without even trying...only going gluten free. That's it.

It does help that most, for sure, gluten free foods are also healthier!

I would almost bet alot of it is cutting out all the processed foods from the American Diet!!! :D

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I am not sure the validity of this but...I thought/think it happens because your body, when it doesn't know what to do with something strores the excess in your fat cells (calories or toxins or what have you). AND when you start going gluten free, your body heals and starts to really absorb nutrients again so there is less "waste" and such.

I'm sure there's scientivic reasoning.

I know for myself, I've lost 20 lbs this year without even trying...only going gluten free. That's it.

It does help that most, for sure, gluten free foods are also healthier!

I would almost bet alot of it is cutting out all the processed foods from the American Diet!!! :D

You are very fortunate; most people gain between 20-35 pounds after going gluten free because of all the carbs in the pastas and breads and flours. What is your secret?

Theresa2407

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Who is "most people"? Because most of the people I know lost weight when they went gluten free because it was like going on atkins. They either didnt like or couldn't afford gluten free breads and pastas, so they just cut those foods out.

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I agree with you. It has been 3 months for me and I have lost 15 pounds.

I can't stand the taste of gluten-free breads and other products.

I spent the first month trying to substitute gluten-free products for my old wheat products and didn't like any or them.

So my diet changed completely. I began eating only fruits, veggies and protiens...no dairy, very little starches. After a month or so, I tried more recipes, but my body just does not handle "bread" or sweets well, gluten-free or not. (I was told that over time this might change as my body heals)

I also found out that when I was eating Gluten I was craving foods in order to get more nutrition.

Now that I am gluten-free, I eat a few bites and don't want any more. My body can use the nutrition better so it needs less.

Since I am not sick as often (still having a few problems) I can move around and exercise more. My joints hurt less and I have more energy, so I am sure I am burning more calories.

So the combination of all those things (many mentioned above) have created a weight loss situation, at least for me.

One more example. Went to a Christmas party and watched what everyone else was eating.

I ended up with raw veggies, slices of apple, a little cheese and a couple slices of turkey.

The other people had plates filled with little sandwiches, quiches, cookies and cakes, rolls etc.

They had to have eaten 3 times as many calories as I did...and their food was greasier, sweeter, and filled with fat products like mayo.

I used to eat that stuff...no wonder I am losing weight. lol

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Harobed if you don't like the gluten free breads that come already cooked [which i also HATE] you MUST try Glutino's gluten free French Bread mix, it can also be used to make pizza, i have made only bread with it and it tastes sooo good, it is better to use a bread machine but you can also make it by hand. Here's a link to the one I'm talking about http://www.vitacost.com/Glutino-French-Bread-Pizza-Mix you can buy it online, here in Texas we find it at HEB but i dont know where to find it in your state.

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I have gained some weight since I was learned I had celiac disease in March. I had joined weight watchers and was doing great lost over 25 pounds and was looking forward to losing more, but then found out I had celiac disease and with working full time it was hard to figure out what I coud eat and watch weight watchers points so I think I went back into so me old habits, maybe thinking I was deprived or something and I went back to some eat 2nds on food. I can't seem to get back into the way of thinking I was pre celiac disease. Any ideas and help out there?

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I lost the weight before diagnosis. One of my "sypmtoms" was rapid loss. In a matter of months I dropped from size 8 pants, to 6, to 4, and then the 4's were falling off and I couldn't find anything decent in a smaller size. Not that I looked all that hard.....I had no energy to shop anyway.

I took a few months on the diet for my body to heal enough to gain weight and to stabilize. The only good part about not absorbing any fat is that my cholesterol levels are wonderful. I did go through a period of weight bouncing around.....my body was in starvation mode still and thought that it had to keep everything.....just in case I tried to starve it again :P . I guess we all have our own individual patterns with this condition.

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I keep losing weight, especially since I stopped eating soy. I lost so many of the easy low prep foods when I figured out I didn't tolerate soy--yogurt, Tofutti cream cheese, soy cheese, lots of gluten-free crackers and cookies. If work isn't too busy and I have time to shop (celiac shopping is takes longer) and cook I'm fine. If I get busy, or if I have too many evenings out pretending to eat at restaurants or potlucks or parties, or if I travel, I lose weight.

I have also noticed that, now that I am on good supplements, my appetite for sugary junk is much reduced. I used to eat tons of candy before I got celiac. I've read that some celiacs are overweight because they overeat unconsciously trying to get the nutrients they are missing.

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i don't see how this happens. i see people saying it alot. i'm a pretty serious weightlifter, and after i went off gluten, i just ate other foods. i'm just curious. thanks

Hi Weightlifter

When I was diagnosed with celiac disease I was overweight bordering on obesity - which is not a common symptom for celiac disease, anyhow...since changing of gluten-free, 4 weeks ago I lost 15 pounds and still lossing - my diet changed considerably so I put it down to that. I am diffinately eating different types of food to what I use to eat, so that has helped, no processed food at all. My eating happens have changed in that I eat alot more, but less of it, if that makes sense.

Years of dieting without success and 4 weeks of gluten-free and it falls off - but I can honestly say I'm not starving :D

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Hi DebbieAnne,

It is all a mind set. My big issues have always been portion control. I find it easier to diet when attending a support group (like weight watchers) and having accountability. If you have stopped going, get back involved.

My biggest advantage (or at least I'm telling myself) of being celiac is the cheating part. Now when I see foods I use to eat (and cheat with) I can't touch them. No more willpower needed. A choice of feeling good/feeling bad - it isn't even a thought.

I know I feel better when I keep my weight down and overall health is my new journey. Since I'm in the beginning of my healing process I've decided to stay completely away from the pasta and breads. That has helped me more than anything to control my calories.

Jennifer

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I gained weight when my gluten intolerance started. I went from being most of my life a rather skinny girl to a pretty chunky girl lol in a matter of months. It was really bizarre because I wasn't eating anything different and I wasn't eating more often. I seriously thought my metabolism had just slowed down. As soon as I went gluten free I lost a lot of the weight I had put on. It just melted off once I stopped eating gluten. I am pretty happy because I hope I can look like my old self within the next six months or so.

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This is one of those threads that just won't die. Every few months someone brings it back to life.

There are many symptoms of Celiac disease. Not everyone shares the same symptoms. Some gain weight and some lose weight after going gluten-free.

I lost weight before being diagnosed and gained weight after. It seems more logical to me, that one would lose weight as their villi were being destroyed, thereby becoming malnourished. And then to gain weight as their villi became healed, and also to be forced to quit eating unhealthy fried foods, pizza, donuts, cheeseburgers, etc.

best regards, lm

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When i first went gluten free I lost 5 pounds in 2 weeks. I only weighed 105, so dropping down to 100 was a big deal for me because I didn't need to lose any weight. After being misdiagnosed for 29 years, it took by body almost 2 years to completly heal. Since having a baby a little over 1 year ago, I have since gained 15 pounds and look so much healthier. I do find that I can't binge on cookies and chips like I used to and have found that eating healthier keeps the extra pounds from creeping up.

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Howdy! I looked this topic up specifically because I have lost weight on the diet. I lost about 3 lbs in a week of being gluten-free. I do want/need to lose weight, so I feel like it is a benefit and if even makes me more convinced that I have an issue with gluten. I have ALWAYS had a really weird appetite. Ever since I was a kid, I have had some days where I just wasn't hungry at all and others where I was ravenous and couldn't get enough. It was like I was a bottomless pit. I think that for me, the gluten not digesting and all has made my body think it is more hungry, so I would eat more. In about 2-3 days of starting the diet, my appetitie almost disappeared...no joke. Like, I could still feel hungry, but not at all ravenous like before. It was more like "oh, i guess i'd better eat" instead of "omg, if i don't eat now I am going to strangle someone."

Anyway, I have my blood tests this Wednesday, so I hope I can figure something definitive out. I have been eating gluteny stuff for the past 2 days to get ready for the test...I hate it. I was feeling so good and watching the weight fall off with no gluten --I am definitely going back to gluten-free after the blood tests. No doubt.

Bye for now!

Kitt

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I've also lost weight since I went gluten-free. I'm three weeks into the diet and I have lost almost 9 lbs. I was 30-40 lbs overweight pre-diagnosis and couldn't lose the weight no matter what I did. I started running in May and was up to 6 miles at a time, but despite all the training, I was gaining rather than losing.

I also found that I was ravenously hungry before going gluten-free...and now I am hungry, I eat a reasonable amount of food, and then I am full. I'm not stuffing myself silly anymore!

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I lost a little bit of weight, mostly because I'm less hungry, and therefore consuming fewer calories.

Pre-diagnosis I had an almost insatiable appetite (even when I felt sick to my stomach), probably because my body was having trouble getting enough of certain nutrients. I was absorbing more than enough in terms of calories, though, so I was 10-15 pounds over my recommended weight.

I'm sure less bloating and having fewer junk food options contributes too, not that I was terribly junk-foodie pre-diagnosis.

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I gained weight when I was the sickest and have lost like 15-20 LB's since I started to feel better. I am now at the weight I was when I was 19 (110 lb's). I think this is where my body wants to be (I am only 5'3").

I do eat better in general too. Much better I guess I should say. Not that I ever ate that bad, but still.

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    Oh yes, it could, although to be honest I never got myself so wet with sweat that it would have been a serious situation.  However, I can remember one time when I got caught in a cloudburst while going to my car in a large parking lot, though, and got soaked to the skin, and of course had to wear those soaking-wet clothes while I drove the 45 minutes it took me to get home --- I will NEVER forgot the misery and agony of that drive!  I could just barely keep the car under control, in fact.
    Thanks for your response, Squirmingitch, but I have to almost laugh, as at this point I am not really stressing over these questions at all --- just curious.  I have always been an insatiable question-asker, so please don't take my frequent questions as a sign of my obsessing over celiac disease or DH.  Yeah, admittedly I was rather stressed out for a couple of days two weeks  ago or so, but I am significantly settled down now, even while negotiating the nutritional maze of trying to manage two
Water?! That's… unreasonably inconvenient. Did it happen with sweat?
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