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jasonD2

Still Not Sure Whats Goin On Inside

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Since i went gluten-free i have noticed a change in my bowel habits. when i was eating gluten they were infrequent, very thin and smooth looking as opposed to bulky and fibrous (sorry for the graphic nature of my post). for the past year ive pretty much been going every day, but recently i started getting backed up again and when i do go i always have to strain at first because the initial stool is hard, but then softens up on the way out.

i havent been sticking to a regular schedule as far as eating goes and have been traveling a lot lately, so not sure if the change in habit has affected things. also i still feel like im not absorbing nutrients properly...i also have a problem with fatty foods like nuts an coconuts, but avocados and olive oil i can handle. is it possible im developing new sensitivities? id like to think that ive made some progress over the past year and healed some of the damage that was done, but its like a never ending battle and when things improve for a while, they always revert back. I just dont know what to do anymore. im not even sure if the supplements im taking are helping cause it seems like i react to them as well. probiotics constipate me. my doc gave me some thyroid meds since my T3 was a little low and they constipate me, ive tried taking seacure which constpates me, just started taking vitamin D and its the same thing. i know its awful but i sometimes wonder if im even gonna be alive in 5-10 yrs. if my body is reacting to every single thing i consume that cant be good and seems like it will ultimately lead to serious health problems. any advice would be appreciated. thanks

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Hi Jason,

The first thing you need to do is take a deep breath and relax! I'm not sure how old you are but you are going to be around a lot longer because you are taking charge of your health now. I've been gluten free for about 10 months and still am not regular everyday so to speak. I am on the opposite end though with D being my major problem. Calcium in the form of Calcium Carbonate can consitpate you. I would suggest taking a calcium supplement that also contains magnesium. Magnesium has many health benefits and will also get things going. Another suggestion would be to take Metamucil starting at 2x daily. My doc has me on citrucel because of the D but he says Metamucil is better for those with C. He believes that I have IBS caused by my gluten intolerance and I've haven't had the D in the last 2 weeks that I have started the Citrucel. With Metamucil, All the smooth textured fiber drinks are gluten free and so are the capsules including the one with calcium (Metamucil brand name, don't know about generic). Since you travel alot I would think the capsules would be better for you. But start slowly when adding fiber supplements or you will make things worse. You may be developing new sensitivities, that is common at first but making sure you are gluten free and getting enough fiber (since you are prone to C) with supplements and insoluable fiber foods is the first step. Most times the sensitivities to other foods will go away once your intestines are healed. Also, make sure you are drinking plenty of water daily. Think of a water slide ;), water helps keep you hydrated and everything flowing. If you decide to try the fiber tablets drinking alot of water is a must. Good luck and keep your spirits up...you will get better!

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Thanks for the feedback. Fiber doesnt seem to help my C, in fact it makes it worse & causes a lot of bloat. But i'll try the metamucil again since its been a while.

Just out of curiosity were you tested for Celiac or did you just respond positively to the diet? I too feel I am gluten intolerant even though I have one of the celiac genes, but I really dont want to do the challenge and go for a biopsy at this point.

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Jason, I have the same problem as you. And I agree, fiber makes it worse usually. I believe it is an intestinal motility issue, the smooth muscle just shuts down.

A combo of Vit C and magnesium (very high doses) helped for me; I was gradually able to cut this back. Things have improved but still aren't great. Be sure your water intake is good and you are drinking a pure water source. I use reverse osmosis water unless I am traveling by air.

I have had a sudden and dramatic improvement since this summer since beginning the SCD. Testing showed I wasn't making the enzymes to digest carbs (due to villi damage) and that was complicating a lot of things and preventing healing. So you could try getting stool testing for residues (protein, fat, carb) and see what comes up.

I recently suddenly had a relapse of the problem, and finally traced it to contaminated cinnamon (has flour or starch in it) and possibly flavorings added to my almonds. When I stopped these, things got better again but I am still not as good as I was. I am suspecting gluten in the cinnamon and since I was using it daily for several weeks it will probably take awhile to improve again.

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I am so clueless. I had an extensive GI panel done but I dont think they measured fat, protein or carb residues in my stool. only thing noteworthy was that i had some minor bacterial overgrowth and a trace amount of candida, but everything else was in the normal range. my total stool IgA was normal and pancreatic function was normal. I must confess that i pretty much live every day in fear and have no idea if what i'm eating is slowly killing me. i'm in no position to restrict myself so much that i cant leave the house..i know some folks are really committed and have no problem doing that, but not me unfortunately.

Another question I had is why is it that supplements give me problems? probiotics, vitamins, some herbals...they all constipate me and they are free of gluten and other allergans. does anyone else have this problem as well?

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Thanks for the feedback. Fiber doesnt seem to help my C, in fact it makes it worse & causes a lot of bloat. But i'll try the metamucil again since its been a while.

Just out of curiosity were you tested for Celiac or did you just respond positively to the diet? I too feel I am gluten intolerant even though I have one of the celiac genes, but I really dont want to do the challenge and go for a biopsy at this point.

Yep I had blood work done and I was already gluten light so I tested a 5. Negative is 4 and below, positive was 8 and up so I was in the inconclusive range. I didn't want to do an endoscopy so I did the challenge for 3 months, ate gluten again and got miserably sick. My doc is very good and diagnosed me gluten intolerant based on dietary response. I don't call myself celiac because I never had the endoscopy but chances are I am but the same treatment is 100% gluten free for both so I don't think about it.

If you have tried Metamucil in the past and it made you worse, it probably will again. Some people like fibercon tablets saying they are gentle to the system but I haven't tried them. The vitamin c and magnesium combo the other poster mentioned may be a good bet.

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Living in "constant fear" is not living healthy. I suspect that the "constant fear" is the most significant factor in your continuing symptoms. A real physical trigger "gluten" that started the fear....other symptoms....more fear....social settings....more fear.....relationships.....more fear. You are in a vicious cycle. The only way you will get well is to get some help for the fear. You can still work on your physical issues, but a good counselor can help you along the way and teach you techniques to get out of the fear mode. Yoga, meditation and acupuncture can also help. Having a yoga routine every morning can do miraculous things! I know all of this because I spent a good many years living in constant fear. They were the worse years of my life. I thought I was dying. I was a hermit. I lost friends. My family thought I was wacko. Eventually I got help from a wonderful therapist. I only needed her for about 6 months going every 2 weeks. But what a difference it made in my life and my body got better. Not perfect as I still had not discovered the gluten issue. But better. Getting rid of that "constant fear" was key. I also joined a yoga class at that time and practiced my own form of mediation (which I still do everyday to this day).

How Stress Impacts Digestion

Date updated: June 13, 2007

By Martin Rossman, M.D.

Content provided by Revolution Health Group

Have you ever had a stressful experience where, say, you break up with a boyfriend or have a raging fight with your boss, and then feel it

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http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal...=1&SRETRY=0

---------------------------------------------------------------

ABSTRACT

1. Propulsion of digesta along the intestine appears to occur by the action of a series of local reflexes which cause contraction oral to the digesta and relaxation of circular muscle on the anal side.

2. There is now substantial evidence available about the identities of the enteric neurons that mediate these reflexes.

3. The motor neurons and interneurons of the reflex pathways lie within the myenteric plexus. These neurons can be classified electrophysiologically as S-neurons and have distinctive projections and neurochemistries.

4. The sensory neurons may lie in the myenteric plexus, but there is some evidence for sensory neurons in the submucous plexus. A contribution from extrinsic sensory neurons to local motility reflexes cannot be ruled out. Intrinsic sensory neurons are probably AH-neurons and are large multi-axonal cells.

---------------------------------------------------------------

The liver processes choline. Acetylcholine and related cholines are important liver-created chemicals, and are depleted by wheat disease.

Acetylcholine and acetylcholinesterase are responsible for making and breaking nerve impulses along nerves. Cholinesterase is responsible for reabsorbing bile acid in the intestine, for return to the gall bladder. Un-reabsorbed bile acid keeps fats and fatty acids in the digestive system, and burns the lining of the intestine.

Gluten intolerance and gluten sensitivity affect the liver's ability to process these cholines. As Dr. Fasano discovered, the facilitator of wheat-disease is the zonulin dump, where the intestine, in the presence of ingested gluten, dumps all sorts of antigens into the bloodstream.

The body may "zonulin dump" as an innate learned reaction, with no current immune involvement whatsoever.

The antigens attack the liver and digestive nerves. The liver attack inhibits the processing of choline. Poor choline processing further inhibits 1) digestive nerve feedback, and 2) bile acid reabsorption. .........which damages the intestinal lining and associated digestive nerves ......which tends to initiate zonulin dumping.

That said, mftnchn is absolutely correct. The human body does not just start attacking food and the intestinal lining. It does, however, attack digestive antigens. Our problem as victims of wheat disease is that some antigens mimic food ......wheat. Even when the immune system's antigen-killing activity works, the mimicked food makes the digestive immune system think the attack is still ongoing.

So stop eating wheat.

In MANY cases stopping the wheat does not and cannot stop the zonulin reaction. The target digestive antigens thrive on ......sugar. Stop consuming sugar, and stop consuming food which contains sugar.

If that doesn't go far enough, you may have to curtail or stop consuming food which gets converted to sugar .......carbohydrates.

..

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Living in "constant fear" is not living healthy. I suspect that the "constant fear" is the most significant factor in your continuing symptoms. A real physical trigger "gluten" that started the fear....other symptoms....more fear....social settings....more fear.....relationships.....more fear. You are in a vicious cycle.

I completely agree with this.

Yes, you have a chronic illness...but the constant fear and worry is undoubtedly greatly exacerbating the symptoms that you have. Emotional stress is just as damaging as physical stress....what you have been going through (worries about relationships, diseases, eating out, etc) are all very real concerns....however, if you dont find a way to break this cycle the stress is going to continue to take a toll on your health.

I have many of the same issues that you are dealing with...and I'm not suggesting that if you overcome your fears all of your health problems will resolve. I *can* tell you that in my experience avoiding stress and negativity can make a HUGE difference in how you feel, how you function and how you deal with your health issues.

I was totally stuck in this cycle for a period of time...and it was very damaging to my health and to my mental state. The less you worry, the better you feel, the better you feel, the better you can function, the better you can function the more capable you are of enjoying life. The cycle can definately be turned around.....and alot of good things can come out of eliminating stress from your life (as much as possible).

Its not a bad idea to talk to someone about it. During the times that I felt most frusterated and stressed out...I did seek counseling.....and it does help to just let things out. If you are bottling things up and each day is filled with worry.....its only going to burden your body in a way that makes it very difficult to recover.

I probably would not understand how important relieving stress is if I hadnt experienced it myself. I feel good now.....but the minute that any stress comes into my life.....it sets me back. My body takes it very hard. I hope you can find a way to work some of these things out so that you dont have to be constantly worrying about what might happen down the road. Try to take each day as they come.....and try to focus on some of the more positive things in your life right now.

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Good advice- unfortunately i'm programmed to stress out about everything and when i'm actually feeling happy I stress out cause i have nothing to stress out about - lol

I am definitely considering therapy and maybe even meds just to normalize my emotions a bit

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Thanks for the feedback. Fiber doesnt seem to help my C, in fact it makes it worse & causes a lot of bloat. But i'll try the metamucil again since its been a while.

Jason if you do go with the Metamucil please make sure it is not the wafers, those are not gluten free. You may want to consider adding a serving of sweet potatoes to your daily diet for a week or so and see if that helps with the C. You can bake them like a baked potato or cut them into french fries. My favorite is to cut them up and boil them then I drain and add a bit of butter and honey or sugar and a touch of McCormicks cinnamon. I had awful problems with C until I realized that soy was a no-no for me but the sweet potatoes helped a great deal and helped with the first 'dose'. No cramps or digestive woes resulted but things were always pretty 'normal' the morning after.

Does Metamucil contain gluten?

All Metamucil Powders and Capsules are gluten-free. Metamucil Wafers, however, contain gluten (Apple 0.7g/dose; Cinnamon 0.5g/dose) because they have wheat flour as an ingredient

http://www.metamucil.com/drmetamucil/faqs/index.shtml#faq14

You mentioned in another post that you are considering some talk therapy and perhaps some meds. I just wanted to give you a quick caution that if you do go with meds please be sure to pay attention if you seem to get worse or start to feel depressed. For some folks these meds are great and a real help but for others they can cause some undesired and at times dangerous side effects. If you take them stay in close contact with your physician during treatment and do get talk therapy also as that will actually be the most helpful in getting to the root of the problem. Many times doctors will just toss us a script and not give a referral to a good psychologist and just the meds are not going to solve the issues that are making you need them in the first place. You also have to take into consideration that for some of us anxiety and depression are part of the gluten picture and until we get completely gluten free they will not resolve. I hope you feel better soon.

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Jason I really hope you do get some help. I know it is much harder for men to seek help than women. Women are talkers by nature. :lol: But once you make that step and start benefiting from it, you will wonder why you didnt do it sooner.

I was Dx with PTSD due to childhood abuse. Trust me, I know what living in fear is like. I would not be surprised if my fear wasnt what triggered all of my health problems at an early age. There is no doubt in my mind that if I had not gotten help, that I would be FAR WORSE than I could even imagine. Perhaps no longer here.

So wishing you the best and hoping you can get some calm soon. :)

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A big problem is that things that should help me stay regular dont work at all. fiber, prune juice, sweet potatoes, increasing water, etc...they do nothing but bloat me up and make me constipated. its not like a situation with a healthy person who gets constipated..they just have some raisin bran or prunje juice and it cleans them out. Nothing works for me at all and this is the biggest puzzle that im trying to solve after 7 years

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A big problem is that things that should help me stay regular dont work at all. fiber, prune juice, sweet potatoes, increasing water, etc...they do nothing but bloat me up and make me constipated. its not like a situation with a healthy person who gets constipated..they just have some raisin bran or prunje juice and it cleans them out. Nothing works for me at all and this is the biggest puzzle that im trying to solve after 7 years

Try something like this. Take a fish oil pill and a teaspoon to a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil before bed every night. When cutting back on carb-based flow, it helps to complete the switch to an oil-based flow. You could be stuck in between.

..

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