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Rheumatoid Arthritis

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My mom has Rheumatoid Arthritis, and it's pretty bad. She's been doing this "gluten free, dairy free, sugar free" diet on and off for a few years, but when I did my gluten elimination diet (just for a week and a half out of curiosity, but I had to start eating it again so I can be tested), I called her and asked her how she made something and she told me to buy a product that had gluten in one of the ingredients. I think she sometimes has a "what I don't know won't hurt me" attitude and doesn't read ingredient lists or ask about ingredients at restaurants like she should.

Anyways, I'd like her to get more serious about keeping gluten out of her diet, and I think she'll enthusiastically do it if I can convince her that her Rheumatoid Arthritis may improve if she does.

I guess what I'm looking for is input from people with Rheumatoid Arthritis, especially people who tested positive and were officially diagnosed and had x-rays showing damage from it. How has your condition changed since you started a gluten free diet? And how long did it take?

I'd really appreciate any input or information anyone can give. :)

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I have the gene for RA but was not 'officially' diagnosed because I did not show the RA factor in blood testing, of course I don't show up positive on celiac blood testing either. I had severe joint damage in my hands and damage to my knees, hips, etc. I could barely move before diagnosis. When I was diagnosed with celiac I was just happy to have the constant D stop but was really shocked when within 6 months my arthritis was in total remission, unless I get glutened. Nothing of course can rid me of the joint damage that was already done. My hands still look 'old and knobby' and my right thumb has twisted but I have now been 'in remission' for almost 5 years. Before my celiac diagnosis none of the very strong and often toxic drugs did anything at all to rid me of pain. At most they just dulled it but not enough for me to type, button a shirt of hold a cup by the handle. Now I am totally joint pain free. I will say that I had to be extremely strict with the diet before the remission occured. That meant watching for CC, checking all meds (although there are very few I have needed since gluten-free) and eliminating it from any non food source.

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There's a diet for inflammatory arthritis called the no starch diet. By cutting out breads, pasta, etc. they cure their arthritis. I think they all have celiac disease and just don't know it, but anyway they say it works. I think it's also similar to the Specific Carbohydrate diet.

I tried to explain to my aunt her arthritis pain would go away is she cut out wheat but she couldn't do it. Pain is a great motivator for me but not for everybody.

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Well, I explained a lot about Celiac Disease to my mom, and she finally asked how it's treated. I told her that you just stop eating gluten entirely, and she got really excited. :lol::ph34r:

I guess, like me, she thinks it sounds almost too good to be true!

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Oh yeah, and I told her that she'd have to read the ingrediant list on everything she eats (and look up anything that she's not familiar with). She was okay with that. I'll explain cross contamination to her next time I talk to her... I didn't want to throw too much at her at once. She really likes going out to eat, especially with people from her church and whatnot, so that part of the whole gluten free thing may seem more difficult to her.

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Great news, one of the best things you can do, IMHO is to introduce her to this site and the one by the celiac sprue association.


I hope being gluten-free helps her as much as it has myself and others. Many do eat gluten-free successfully in restaurants, if she is a regular at a couple they should be happy to make sure her meal is safe if they know how to do so. I think the biggest thing is to make sure that her food is cooked seperately in a clean pan.

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