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


Hi From S. Fl

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Hi, I've been lurking around for maybe a couple of months. I registered on the 1st of Dec. but didn't get around introducing myself so here I am now! My name is Raquel, I'm a 55 y.o. single mother of two now adult children (but we still live together). I live a rather boring life because due to still ongoing health problems I stopped working 7 1/2 years ago and gradually went out less and less so I also have no friends here.

I deal with depression quite a bit and sometimes I don't know if it's due to my allergies which interfere a lot with my sleep or more like a combination of everything. In any case, I do know that my diet plays a big role in how I feel because many years ago I was diagnosed with hypoglycemia and whenever I really stuck to my diet I felt fine - but the trick is staying on it...

I've never been officially diagnosed with celiac but I know I am at least wheat intolerant. I also know celiac is herediatary and my late father had it, also I'm convinced his mother died as a result of it and possibly one of his brothers did too. When years ago I read "Eat Right For Your Type" which discourages eating wheat for almost every blood type, it seemed to confirm what I'd noticed while on the Atkins Diet, that wheat made me retain water; eventually I discovered it also contributed to my nasal stuffiness which at first seemed to have been due to a mold allergy. Like a lot of people here, I'm also lactose intolerant and several years I cut off most forms of dairy when I realized they also made my stuffiness worse.

Since I always loved sweets and craved them whenever I was under stress, I've always had trouble staying sugar-free for long. The same has happened with wheat/gluten and dairy, whenever I feel better I tend to cheat, sometimes I cheat anyway simply because I feel deprived but then in the end I'm always sorry... I decided to join this forum hoping that being surrounded by people who have to deal with similar limitations would make me feel less "different" and encourage me to stick to what's really good for me.

Other than the above related weaknesses, I've been very nutrition conscious for many years, my diet is generally healthy and I take a variety of supplements every day. I enjoyed a period of time in which I felt much better at the end of last summer, but I was away in another country under different circumstances and upon my return home I gradually began to regress and eventually found myself feeling my usual miserable self. It was during last November that I finally realized I had to take staying gluten-free seriously. I began having constant digestive problems even though I often take enzymes, I had a lot of bloating so I began suspecting that I had developed gastritis but then I also began having stomach pains that radiated to the left side of my chest, after a little research I was pretty certain I'd developed an ulcer. Because I don't believe in the "traditional" medical approach for its treatment I just modified my diet and took home remedies and, luckily, I was free of pain very soon but that was my wake-up call and I knew things had to be different from then on.

I thought that in order to commit myself to the gluten-free life I'd have to find suitable substitutes to my "temptation" triggers and since my food budget doesn't allow me to buy high-priced prepared gluten-free foods on a regular basis I'd have to bake my own. In reality it should only be an occasional thing since I still have to avoid eating excessive carbs. But my first attempts at baking some gluten-free treats in the past had been very disappointing so I soon gave up. However, a couple of failures don't mean much so I decided I needed to try again. Also, I figured here I could find some support that would help me stay committed.

My next step was to look for recipes on the "net" so I could try my hand at gluten-free baking once again. Let me say that for me it's been pretty challenging and still quite frustrating. First, I have a very small kitchen with nearly NO counter space and a lot of gluten-free recipes require a large amount of ingredients which is a big turn-off. In the past I'd already noticed there was no single all-purpose substitute for wheat flour that would work equally well for every recipe - and when I did a search for "gluten-free flour mix" I was flabbergasted at the seemingly endless amount of different combos, and I found that really scary! :o But I had to start somewhere so I began gathering up a few flours that I'd seen in Latin and Indian grocery stores - i.e., rice, chickpea, tapioca and potato starch - and decided that for now I'd only work with those (and cornstarch which I always have at home).

My next challenge was to find recipes that I could use. I found no shortage of glowing testimonies on line for recipes that were "just as good or better" than their gluten-containing counterparts but almost invariably for one reason or another they were not practical for me. So far I've only been able to make 3 things successfully (old-fashioned gingerbread, pancakes & brownies) and they required adapting/combining several recipes I found. At this point I'm grateful for each success and try to learn from my failures. I'm planning to make bread soon and if it resembles ANY type of wheat bread/rolls I've eaten I'll be really happy.

Hmm, before I go I think I must confess that a few days ago I broke my diet. I made a turkey dinner for my son and me and on impulse I baked a tube of biscuits that had been sitting in the fridge for months, they smelled so darn good I ate like 3 of them. :huh: I had a couple of "Gluten-zyme" caps (which I buy for my son because I suspect he doesn't handle gluten too well either...) and crossed my fingers (as they say they may not work...) and felt guilty almost right away. I thought I didn't have any obvious ill effect but the next day I was more depressed than before <_< Well, I know I won't be buying those again! What bothers me is that I've been having trouble fending off all kinds of temptation lately and that contributes to the "vicious circle". I know dwelling on the negative doesn't do anything so I've been doing my best to forgive myself telling myself I'm only human after all and I'll continue with my affirmations because sooner or later like planted seeds they'll produce a good crop.

Thanks for "listening" everyone! :D

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Hi and Welcome to the Board!!!

I am not anywhere near FL but thats ok! I hear Publix carries alot of gluten-free stuff.

Thanks! Regarding Publix I wouldn't say they carry "a lot" of stuff but, yes, I've been able to find some Bob's Red Mill products, breakfast cereals and Nut-thins (crackers).

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Kareng, I am a bit concerned by your statement here.  I no longer have "out of control" DH, but smaller, more scattered, and more readily resolving (for the most part) flareups.  And it may be that I am just having what would be "normal" for a person in my situation, being 'only' 13 months into the gluten-free diet.  I will readily admit, and perhaps should stress, that the situation is very much better than it was before I went gluten-free, including the fact that my former GI symptoms have tot
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