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Dru

Should I Try A Second Elimiation Diet?

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Hi,

I've posted here before but it has been a few months. I started having horrible problems around this time last year that eventually led me to do an elimination diet. I have now cut gluten, soy, dairy, corn, yeast, and coconut out of my diet.

I had the bloodwork for celiac disease and it came back in normal ranges. I had been gluten free on the elimination diet for about 3 months when I tested wheat and had horrible D and rashes and headaches. I kept eating it for about 3 weeks and had a biopsy done. He only took 4 samples (despite his agreement with me that he would take 8-10) and they found that my intestines were inflamed but there was no evidence of blunted villi. He suggested that I probably had some food allergies (nevermind that I had already told him about my entire elimination diet).

So, around the end of September I gave up on trying to figure out if I really had celiac disease and just went with the elimination diet results. I have stuck to my diet for nearly 4 months (no gluten, soy, dairy, corn, yeast, and coconut) with the minor exception of 2 weeks in December when I was visiting family and tried to be as careful as possible while eating out a lot bu got sick anyway.

My problem now is that I came down with a horrible sinus infection in late December (right around the time that I was eating out a lot) and it has not gone away despite 2 antibiotics and a course of Prednisone (steroid). I am also having some stomach problems, mild constipation, and headaches. I have been off the last antibiotic since Wed and finished the steroid over a week ago. I have to assume that there was some amount of corn in the pills and corn does cause constipation for me.

My question is, should I try another elimination diet to figure out why things are not going well for me or should I assume that it is all a reaction to the medicines? I have had some very good days since I eliminated all of the foods I reacted to, but I still feel tired all the time and seem to still be constipated a lot of the time (even before I got the sinus infection).

Also, I never gave up chicken or potatoes since my nutritionist said those would be alright to use on the elimination diet from the beginning. I have been eating a lot of potato chips since it is the only crunchy and salty snack I can have and they seem to be making me sick (I think).

Also, what are your thoughts on doing ELISA testing? Have I been off of too many foods for too long to do this? Is it helpful to someone who has done an elimination diet and is still having problems?

Sorry this is so long, I am just really lost and would like some suggestions for feeling better. Any suggestions or advice you might have would be greatly appreciated.

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If I were you, I would try eliminating more - starting w/ potatoes. :(

Wish I could answer the ELISA question.

Good luck

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Thanks for the response, I think I will try to at least eliminate potatoes and see what happens. Fortunately, the Namaste mixes that I already use are potato free, so at least I won't have to give those up unless I find some other intolerance to something in them.

The problem I have now is what to keep eating and what to give up. I know I need to test potatoes. I guess that means that I should challenge all nightshades just to be sure. I can probably just challenge potatoes and tomatoes since I generally dislike peppers and I seldom eat eggplant since I am not very good at cooking it.

Generally I am still having some bloating, some headaches (but not the full on migraines anymore), and I am still constipated. I guess I should mention that I am prone to C and headaches and this has generally been a problem since I was young (I think around 7 or so) but I have had times in my life when both went away.

What else do people commonly find that they react to? I have not given up citric acid (it is in most of the things I drink), sugar, or aspartame. If I should challenge these, what is the best way to do it?

Thanks for any advice you have.

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I would eliminate the potato chips--unless you can confirm they are made on dedicated lines. Maybe try that first, before you cut out potatoes completely. I glutened myself with Lay's chips for months--I can eat potatoes just fine, though.

Go through any and all processed foods you eat--especially on a daily basis ;)

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I second the potato chips and also suggest you re-evaluate all of your existing foods and products to make sure something hasn't changed. I've been feeling poorly for a month and just figured out that the vitamins I've been taking for years changed their formula and oddly my problems began when I started a new bottle :) That one was a hard one to figure out because seemingly nothing changed!

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I would eliminate the potato chips--unless you can confirm they are made on dedicated lines. Maybe try that first, before you cut out potatoes completely. I glutened myself with Lay's chips for months--I can eat potatoes just fine, though.

Go through any and all processed foods you eat--especially on a daily basis ;)

I think my potato chips are safe. I have stuck to Utts who label that they are gluten free and Cape Cod. My nutritionist has celiac disease and she said Cape Cod brand was safe. Anyone have problems with these or know someone who has?

As for the processed foods I eat, there aren't many since there are so many foods I can't have. I have recently tried Cherrybrook kitchen mixes and other than that I stick with Namaste. I use canola, grapeseed and olive oil for cooking. We buy Purdue chicken, both the skinless boneless breasts and ground chicken. I use Enjoy Life brand chocolate chips and snack bars. I bake with Spectrum palm oil shortening. I use DeBoles rice pasta and Classico brand sause (the sweet basil one does not have soy). We buy the farm raised salmon at our local Kroger. I tend to buy rice at Kroger or Trader Joe's and have never been concerned about which brand. I recently bought Peter Pan brand peanut butter to try eating peanuts again. I also drink diet, caffeine free pepsi or coke (nothing with Splenda because of the corn allergy). Other than that, I don't really eat anything pre-packaged.

I take Ribbon Nutrition vitamins and calcium. They are labeled to be free of all of my allergens and I called to confirm that they are gluten free since they only state wheat free on the package. I also take Renue Life Ultimate Flora probiotic.

Please let me know if anything in the above list is something that I should not be eating. I am still very new to this and learning, so I may be eating something that I shouldn't be.

Thanks for the help.

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I agree that you probably want to investigate other foods, but I wanted to say something about the Prednisone. I was under a 7 month course of treatment with it (I'm guessing you were only on it for a couple weeks? ).

Prednisone is pretty serious stuff it took a while for me to feel right after I was off the stuff. It suppresses your immune system & does all kinds of wacky stuff. I just thought I'd mention that it may take just a little more time to get back to normal.

k

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I think my potato chips are safe. I have stuck to Utts who label that they are gluten free and Cape Cod. My nutritionist has celiac disease and she said Cape Cod brand was safe.

Utz chips glutened me pretty badly--they are marked gluten-free, but if you read the statement on their website, they say that the chips are made on the same lines as those that process gluten. They clean in between runs, but can't guarantee that a slight residue will remain.

I emailed them for more information, and never got a response......

Cape Cod chips are the same story--except the Dark Russet ones. Personally, I got sick of being glutened by chips (which I love, by the way) and now eat Lay's Stax--Plain Flavor. They are made on dedicated gluten-free lines and are safe. Not quite the same as a good regular chip--but safe.

The rest of your foods look fine. Vitamins and probiotics are also difficult for some of us....I have problems with both. If you were doing fine on them before your current trouble started, great--if you think they may be contributing to this, maybe try stopping them for a few days and see if there's any improvement.

I'd definately toss those Utz, though ;)

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I think my potato chips are safe. I have stuck to Utts who label that they are gluten free and Cape Cod. My nutritionist has celiac disease and she said Cape Cod brand was safe. Anyone have problems with these or know someone who has?

As for the processed foods I eat, there aren't many since there are so many foods I can't have. I have recently tried Cherrybrook kitchen mixes and other than that I stick with Namaste. I use canola, grapeseed and olive oil for cooking. We buy Purdue chicken, both the skinless boneless breasts and ground chicken. I use Enjoy Life brand chocolate chips and snack bars. I bake with Spectrum palm oil shortening. I use DeBoles rice pasta and Classico brand sause (the sweet basil one does not have soy). We buy the farm raised salmon at our local Kroger. I tend to buy rice at Kroger or Trader Joe's and have never been concerned about which brand. I recently bought Peter Pan brand peanut butter to try eating peanuts again. I also drink diet, caffeine free pepsi or coke (nothing with Splenda because of the corn allergy). Other than that, I don't really eat anything pre-packaged.

I take Ribbon Nutrition vitamins and calcium. They are labeled to be free of all of my allergens and I called to confirm that they are gluten free since they only state wheat free on the package. I also take Renue Life Ultimate Flora probiotic.

Please let me know if anything in the above list is something that I should not be eating. I am still very new to this and learning, so I may be eating something that I shouldn't be.

Thanks for the help.

One thought if you don't do soy...is Peter Pan peanut butter soy-free? I use Skippy Natural and thought it was the only regular peanut butter that didn't have soy. Another wierd non-gluten thing with me - I can't do prepared tomato sauces. I think it has something to do with one of the other ingredients.

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Wow, thanks for all the responses. This is such a huge help. I'm just going to respond to try everyone in this one post.

I guess I just assumed that chips that were labeled gluten free would be (silly me :)) I don't think I can eat the Lay's stacks (I don't remember why but I think they either have corn, soy or dairy in them) but I will look again.

I was fine with the vitamins and the probiotic before, so I think those are safe.

I was only on Prednisone for about a week (or maybe it was 5 days). Not huge dose, but I don't generally do well with steroids of any kind and I still have blood in my mucous when I blow my nose more than a week after finishing the dose. I guess that could still be causing some of my trouble.

I specifically use Peter Pan because it is the only type of peanut butter that I have found that does not contain soybean oil. It does have sugar in it. I may also have a problem with peanuts, but I seem to do fine with them in Pad Thai. I prefer the sugary processed peanut butter to the all natural kind but I may have to give it up and go with something sugar free.

I'm glad to know that the rest of my food list looks okay. Thanks so much to everyone who looked at it for me.

Any other ideas for foods I should eliminate and then challenge? If I'm gonna go through this process all over again I want to test out anything else that might be a problem and be done with it.

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I would double check the Renew Life Ultimate Flora. I didn't buy it because it said "could contain traces of milk" and I'm dairy free. I didn't want to take the chance. I now take one called Flora More by Renew Life which lists the common allergens on the label as not being in there. Hope this helps.

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You should really try a Neti pot for your sinuses. Beats the heck out of taking antibiotics and upsetting your stomach bacteria balance.

Milk and sugar are known to aggravate sinus conditions.

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You should really try a Neti pot for your sinuses. Beats the heck out of taking antibiotics and upsetting your stomach bacteria balance.

Milk and sugar are known to aggravate sinus conditions.

I know I should try a Neti pot but I'm a wimp and I hate the feeling of getting water up my nose, which is what I assume that it would feel like.

Also, I know dairy aggravates sinus problems (and I am dairy free) but I haven't really heard of sugar being directly related to sinus problems. I have a huge sweet tooth. Are there any websites with info on this? I would love to read more about it.

At this point I am so sick of my sinus problems (which have been going on since around 1991) that I would be willing to try cutting out sugar if it helped. Heck, I've already cut out almost everything else in hopes of improving my health :)

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I would double check the Renew Life Ultimate Flora. I didn't buy it because it said "could contain traces of milk" and I'm dairy free. I didn't want to take the chance. I now take one called Flora More by Renew Life which lists the common allergens on the label as not being in there. Hope this helps.

Thanks, I was taking the Renew Life because it was the only one at my local health food store that seemed remotely safe. The 15 billion strenght adult formula (yellow box) specifically lists that it is dairy free. However, I just went to look and the 50 billion strenght that I bought to take with my antibiotic does not say it is dairy free! It never occurred to me to look since I had been fine with the adult formula. Wow, I guess I was really sick when I bought that because I definitely know better than to make blanket assumptions that one product will be safe just because it is similar to one that I know is safe. Each of them says to take one capsule a day. Do you think it would be safe to just take 2 or 3 of the 15 billion strength capsules (the ones that say they are dairy free) in order to get a stronger dose?

I don't know if you have a problem with corn or if corn is ever in a probiotic, but do you happen to know if Flora More is corn free as well? I will have to look for that brand.

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I second the "get a natural peanut butter" idea - ideally the ingredients should just be "peanuts, salt" (or just "peanuts" if you're avoiding salt) - most large supermarkets even have such items now, and thankfully peanuts usually (but check!) seem to be processed in plants with nuts but no other listed allergens/cc's

I am sensitive to vit C and citric acid, always have been - affects my skin (itchy or hives or rash @ deodorant depending on which decade & how much vit C I get). Okay, I only really acknowledged this in the last 5 yrs. Can't say whether you are or not, but might test it for a short time.

Good luck!

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You mentioned that many of your drinks contain citric acid; one of the other threads mentioning citric acid stated that it CAN be made from corn, but doesn't necessarily have to be. If you're as reactive to corn as I am, you'll definitely want to try eliminating the citric-acid type drinks. Hope this helps!

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You mentioned that many of your drinks contain citric acid; one of the other threads mentioning citric acid stated that it CAN be made from corn, but doesn't necessarily have to be. If you're as reactive to corn as I am, you'll definitely want to try eliminating the citric-acid type drinks. Hope this helps!

I have been wondering how badly I react to corn. I thought I was as corn free as I needed to be, but I have been considering trying to give up the last few corn related things I eat. I think that it is mostly citric acid. I have also heard that caramel coloring is a problem (I only get this in my caffeine free diet coke that I am ADDICTED to). I also have been unable to find Guar gum to bake with, so I have been using the Bob's Red Mill brand Xantam gum and I think this is grown on corn. I think that this is all the corn in my diet.

I guess I will try to eliminate these things and see how I do. I don't eat a lot of prepared/prepackaged food, but there is a list in one of my earlier posts of the most common things I eat. Thanks so much for the suggestion. Any suggestions on other possible hidden corn in my diet?

Also, I think that I have determined that potatoes are only okay in very small amts but thankfully, Namaste mixes are potato free and I can sub something for potato flour in the rest of my baking.

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