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Did You Have Gluten Withdrawal?

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I've just been diagnosed as being Celiac by biopsy. I've been Gluten Free since January 4th. Is is just me or am I really having some weird withdrawal symptoms? I used to eat a lot of pasta, maybe 5 times a week, and would get these weird prickly/crawly sensations on my skin. I thought it was mites in the bed. I was washing those sheets like crazy! I can laugh at it now, but it's a little sad I never put 2 and 2 together to figure out the whole gluten connection.

The funny thing is, I got so sick eating gluten containing foods when I was pregnant (5x) that I would go on a "natural foods" kind of diet with no processed foods or preservatives to be able to hold my food down. I always told my husband, "I feel so great when I'm pregnant. Maybe I should get pregnant again!" (Ha, ha) I would have had the children regardless since we wanted more little blessings, but it was just a bonus that I was unknowingly doing what was best for me. I just didn't know to go entirely gluten free.

I've definitely been feeling better though. One morning I woke up with a lot of energy for a big change. My husband knows I am NOT a morning person. He took one look at the happy, smiling, bouncy person singing in the kitchen at breakfast and said, "Where is my wife, and what have you done with her?" I hope it continues. I like the feeling of getting my energy back after feeling like I was a washcloth all wrung out.

Anyway, I've been having these extreme mood swings and crying easily and hormone issues. I am by nature very easy going and do not cry over little things or are overly sensitive, but I cried 3 times this week! I never do that. My cycle just came 2 WEEKS from the last time I had it, and since I went gluten-free. That has never happened to me before! The only thing I can think of is the gluten connection.

Did anyone else have that? Is this just a period of adjustment that will hopefully pass quickly? What are your thoughts?


~H Squared

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I had withdrawal, but it was nothing like that. I was quitting gluten and casien at the same time. The second day I was pale w/ sunken eyes, and then i was dizzy, spacy for over a week. I definitely had more energy - til i got glutenned 2 days ago, that is .. . hubby isnt glad to see me back lol

but everyone is different .. .

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For about the first week I felt like I wanted to punch somebody! :huh::D

And I am so not a punching kind of person!

Good luck and be healthy


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I don't think I had any withdrawal symptoms. But my youngest daughter sure did. She was awfully nasty and moody for about two weeks after going off gluten. She was fine after that.

Of course, I was so sick for months before giving up gluten that I was hardly eating any before going gluten-free. And my daughter was eating it many times a day - in fact, she hardly ate a meal without tons of gluten, she was so addicted to it!

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I don't think it was really the withdrawl of not having the food as much as not having an easy way out with fast food and convienence meals. Those were the rough times. I still sometimes get the little pangs of withdrawl yet...but it has gotten much better.

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You're absolutely not alone. It was so difficult at first, and all I wanted was a big pizza! I was moody, depressed, happy, and sleepy all at once.

However, it's been nearly a year for me now, and everything is fine. Except when I get absolutely glutened, all of the mood swings are virtually gone :).

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I am not sure I'd call what I went through all withdrawal, but I certainly went through weeks and weeks of adjustments. I felt like my whole body was readjusting. Skin, digestion, elimination, periods, and then just hard to describe feelings of things shifting.

So yes, I think what you are going through is related to gluten.

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Now that I think of it, Since going gluten free, the first 2 months, I was more emotional. I am not a cryer, or a fighter, I am a pretty mellow person, but for the first 2 months I was up and down, here nad there. I just figured that i was stressed, or i dont know what I thought, i couldnt come up with a reason for it. But now I am doing better, and evened out nicely, still not felling 100% but getting closer.

I would def. say that it is withdrawels....

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I personally didn't go through withdrawal. But some do, and it is a documented phenomenon. Gluten and casein can create a bit of an addiction due to their biochemical effects on the brain -- explained here:


Wow, I thought I was going crazy until I read this and everyone else's posts. Thanks a lot!

I have been avoiding milk since as a new celiac I get a terrible stomach ache from my damaged villi not making any lactase, but I still can tolerate sour cream and cheese.

Should I not be having those due to the casein in the milk? The article in the CorePsychBlog said those proteins were incompletely digested by a celiac and that's what causes part of the withdrawal. Hmm, did I just answer my own question?

But I don't want to give up milk products! Oh,no, that sounds eerily familiar. That's what I said about wheat 3 weeks ago in my doctor's office.

Well, thanks everybody for your help!

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When I first went gluten-free, I was so tired....all I wanted to do was sleep. I could sleep better than I had for a long time, but I never felt like it was enough.

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