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How Do Some Celiacs Put On Weight?

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Hi!

So I know there are quite a few of Celiacs that put ON weight instead of losing it. One theory I heard is that the body is so malnourished of vitamins that it holds on to every calorie and the metabolism slows down. For those of you who were undiagnosed and overweight, did you deal with anemia issues?

Let me know what you think, it's very interesting to me.

Thanks!

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For me, it was Skittles. :huh: My nutritionist told me I needed to take in more calories so I started snacking on Skittles.. I'm an emotional eater and candy is a comfort food and I overdid it, as I have a tendency to do. But I have a good metabolism so a week or two without them and I'm back to my normal weight.

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It seems that gluten free baked items and snack foods have just as much calorie, sugar and fat content, if not more than regular food items.

Are you talking about celiacs that eat very little but still gain weight?

I was terribly anemic and fat. Poor quality diet. Too many carbs and empty calories from starches and grains.

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I am definitely one that was undiagnosed and gained weight. I gained 30 lbs all at once in one month and no one could figure out why. I gained all this weight AFTER giving birth to 3 children and not gaining, so my metabolism WAS normal once, but no longer. Now I am overweight, diagnosed with celiac, and I haven't lost ONE OUNCE of weight despite eating a LOT less than normal for me, which wasn't a lot in the first place. I might eat a salad and a smoothie made with just fruit and rice milk, and the next day I would weigh 2 or 3 lbs more! I wish I could understand it, it's very discouraging. I'm hoping once I heal things will start to turn around for me. Oh, and yes I am anemic too.

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I'm talking about the ones that gain weight instead of lose weight while eating gluten and being undiagnosed. Not just overeating on gluten free foods. Thanks everyone for your thoughts!

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Just my thoughts, but perhaps it has something to do with what can be absorbed when your gut is damaged by gluten?

We hear a lot about the malabsorption that can happen (iron, b12, protein, vitamins), but my understanding is that simple sugars can be absorbed very early on in digestion. So perhaps the body is absorbing some of the calories in the food but little of the nutrients, and you end up craving extra food to get the nutrients? Sorry if that is badly explained!

For me it happened the other way around - before I gave up gluten the major D i was getting led to weight loss and major malabsorption. When I went gluten-free it was then that I got crazy food cravings and started putting on excess weight -I think that my body was effectively starving, so once I started being able to absorb food it grabs hold of every calorie it can get. Hope that makes sense!

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I was overweight before going gluten-free. Before I went gluten-free I had terrible constipation, bloating and gas. It was as if my body was trying to hold onto the the food forever...perhaps to squeeze every ounce of nutrients out of what I ate....I had no anemia....

Today, being gluten-free for only 6 weeks...I can say that my body feels starving...I am so hungry...I feel like I can eat my own right arm.

I am more hungry now than when I was pregnant !

I am trying to feed my body the good stuff, I am taking a vitamin supplement & Omega Oils. I get worried that I will gain more weight, but I think if I stick to only the good foods and stay away from the "baked" stuff...and then hopefully my hunger will level off..

I do think the hunger is finally starting to slow up a bit...as I get better at determining what my body is asking for...

So although I had constipation and I was overweight, I do think my body was still starved in so many ways....

Hope this answers some questions....

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That's why my doctor wouldn't test me! He said that I hadn't had a significant weight loss.

Reason being... I was HUNGRY ALL THE TIME. I'd eat, then an hour later be starving again b/c (I'm assuming) that my body wasn't getting what it needed and my brain kept telling me that I needed to eat MORE. It didn't really matter what I ate. I didn't gain weight quite so dramatically, but 3 years ago (before I got pregnant with my 2nd), I weighed 110 lbs. Before I started my diet I was nearly 150 (I'm 5 feet tall, so that's a little overweight, but not terribly horrible). And I go to the gym 3-4 days a week. Just no matter how hard I tried, I could NOT lose it. Very frustrating.

Since starting the diet, I've dropped 6 lbs.

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Thanks everyone!

From what I gather, the Celiacs that gained weight did so because their body was starving for more nutrients, so this lead to overeating.

very interesting..

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that might be the case with some but wasn't with me. like I said earlier, I gained 30 lbs in one month for no reason, with no change in eating.

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I subconsciously thought I could pig out on the gluten free baked stuff and be ok....ummm, WRONG! lol

If you eat less frequently, your body will hold on to whatever it is regardless if its gluten free or not. Your metabolism slows down and you store fat.

Eat small portions just more frequently throughout the day to build your metabolism back up. A common misconception is eating less meals a day.

I did lose weight when I went gluten free, but after being gluten free it was hard to lose more. I have, finally though after a year of trying.

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that might be the case with some but wasn't with me. like I said earlier, I gained 30 lbs in one month for no reason, with no change in eating.

Yeah, I understand you, another theory I heard, which I mentioned above is that no matter how much you eat the body holds on to every calorie (because it wants nutrients) and therefore slows the metabolism. That's just a theory though.

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Hi!

So I know there are quite a few of Celiacs that put ON weight instead of losing it. One theory I heard is that the body is so malnourished of vitamins that it holds on to every calorie and the metabolism slows down. For those of you who were undiagnosed and overweight, did you deal with anemia issues?

Let me know what you think, it's very interesting to me.

Thanks!

Hi there,

That is how I was diagnosed with Celiacs. I was very anemic and the doctor kept digging and digging and finally found out the cause.

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I was undiagnosed and underweight with anaemia and low Hb i ended up having to have a hysterectomy last year!! so no i don't think my anaemia was dealt with....

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I was one of those that had normal weight for most of my life until about 6 years ago. Suddenly i started putting on unexplained weight. The Dr's just said I was over 40 and it was to be expected. I lived on a diet. For over a year I lived on 1200 calories a day and gained 20 lbs. All told by the time I was diagnosed I was 50 lbs overweight.

My GI said that weight gain during undiagnoses is very common. He believes the body is in constant starvation mode and the metabolizm shuts down and the body clings to every calorie consumed. Since going gluten-free I have yoyoed with 20 lbs. I think my metabolizm is trying to wake up. I'm stabalized and not yoyoing anymore so hopefully I can start to see some weight loss. I still need to lose about 40 lbs.

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I was one of those that had normal weight for most of my life until about 6 years ago. Suddenly i started putting on unexplained weight. The Dr's just said I was over 40 and it was to be expected. I lived on a diet. For over a year I lived on 1200 calories a day and gained 20 lbs. All told by the time I was diagnosed I was 50 lbs overweight.

My GI said that weight gain during undiagnoses is very common. He believes the body is in constant starvation mode and the metabolizm shuts down and the body clings to every calorie consumed. Since going gluten-free I have yoyoed with 20 lbs. I think my metabolizm is trying to wake up. I'm stabalized and not yoyoing anymore so hopefully I can start to see some weight loss. I still need to lose about 40 lbs.

It is so interesting what your doc said about your body "clinging to every calorie consumed". My story is similar I was overweight as well...

..I also lived on 1200 calorie diet and had difficulty losing weight...and it was only when I went gluten free did my hunger hit...as I posted above...

"It was as if my body was trying to hold onto the the food forever...perhaps to squeeze every ounce of nutrients out of what I ate....I had no anemia....Today, being gluten-free for only 6 weeks...I can say that my body feels starving...I am so hungry...I feel like I can eat my own right arm"

My hunger now is beginning to level off...I think as my body realizes that it is going to be getting some good food...It does feel as though my metabolism is speeding up, or at least I sense it is....

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It is so interesting what your doc said about your body "clinging to every calorie consumed". My story is similar I was overweight as well...

..I also lived on 1200 calorie diet and had difficulty losing weight...and it was only when I went gluten free did my hunger hit...as I posted above...

"It was as if my body was trying to hold onto the the food forever...perhaps to squeeze every ounce of nutrients out of what I ate....I had no anemia....Today, being gluten-free for only 6 weeks...I can say that my body feels starving...I am so hungry...I feel like I can eat my own right arm"

My hunger now is beginning to level off...I think as my body realizes that it is going to be getting some good food...It does feel as though my metabolism is speeding up, or at least I sense it is....

I too was never hungry, would have to remind myself to eat. I was not anemic and regular blood testing showed nothing irregular. Yet nothing explained the terrible pain I was experiencing (constant migraines, debilitating back, leg and arm pain). Since diagnosis and more indepth testing it's been uncovered that I have Pernicious anemia and totally void of Vit D. I did know I have reactive hypoglycemia and hypokalemia which in themselves should have triggered something in the Dr's heads.

When I first went gluten-free I suddenly experienced hunger like never before. It calmed down after about 6 weeks of a strict gluten-free diet. And I basically stopped all grains (which meant all the baked goodies) for about 3 months then started reintroducing them. I don't drink soda (never did) except ocassionally. My addiction is pure clean cold water! AND HOT COFFEE (black)!!!!!! :D

I kept a food diary for 2 years and my regular Dr would just shake her head and at one point told me I was lying to myself and not writing down the truth of what I ate. I fired her and found a new Doc <_<

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Maybe they are neurological celiac. As for me since I went gluten free, I am addicted to cheese popcorn from Smart Food so I am not really losing weight.

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Huh interesting. Just to throw out my experience. I've always been thin. The first few months of going gluten-free, I got thinner, maybe lost 2-4 pounds. I think there's no mystery though...I was still in college and suddenly thanks to the diet, over half the stuff I used to eat I could no longer eat. So I had to scrape around for corn tortillas, and could no longer snack on breadsticks and Sbarro's and cookies and whatnot that I used to eat around campus.

I've gained it back now that I'm eating better, know more of what food I can eat, have more things in the kitchen to prepare food with, etc...

But I didn't gain or lose a mass amount.

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I gained about 40 pounds before being diagnosed with celiac. I was already trying to lose weight so I was basically eating granola bars and fiber one bars, of course the things that I thougt were good to eat to help lose weight but all the wrong things for a celiac. I basically broke down in my doctors office asking why am I gaining all this weight when I eat such a small amount and that I was doing all the wrong things. She decided she wanted to test me for the disease. I also am anemic and have had problems with that before being diagnosed as a celiac. Now I am trying to follow a gluten free diet. Haven't noticed a difference with the weight yet but I am working on it. It will feel good to lose some weight.

Hi!

So I know there are quite a few of Celiacs that put ON weight instead of losing it. One theory I heard is that the body is so malnourished of vitamins that it holds on to every calorie and the metabolism slows down. For those of you who were undiagnosed and overweight, did you deal with anemia issues?

Let me know what you think, it's very interesting to me.

Thanks!

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I was anemic. I'm a human yoyo and I think it was due to undiagnosed Celiac disease. In 1998 I was a size 4. In the Fall 2001 (age 26)I was a size 8. By Spring I was a size 2. I started gaining in the Fall of 2003 and got up to a size 12 before losing again. Spring 2007 I was a size 4 again but by Fall I was once more a 12 then I slowly creeped up to a 14. Since going gluten free in November I've dropped back to a size 8. Sorry I didn't keep up with the actual weights I know prior to 2001 my weight had always been between 117 and 128. (to give you a sizing frame of reference I have always worn Victoria Secret Jeans.)

This last gain I was always very hungry. I often ate Cereal for breakfast, a box of Shells and Cheese for lunch and two grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner, not to mention cookies for dessert.

(PS I think I left one gain and loss out somewhere)

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I was the opposite of overweight and anemic. I was underweight and by the time I would have developed anemia I probably would be knocking on death's door. In the past 2 years I'd put on about 15-20 lbs, putting me in the "healthy" weight range (even though I felt worse than ever!). I didn't eat that much, and I worked a job where I was on my feet all day, so it made no sense. Within a month of going gluten-free, that weight completely disappeared. While I'm probably consuming fewer calories (not intentionally, mind you), that generally doesn't promote such rapid weight loss (and I'm not sure my metabolism would have magically picked up that quickly...). I think for me the weight gain must have been some kind of bloat or inflammation or something. I do *look* thinner (unfortunately...) though. My digestive system seems (seemed?) to be rather sluggish, so maybe the lack of proper digestion had something to do with the weight gain while I was still eating gluten.

Maybe I will eventually gain *proper* weight.

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I was anemic. I'm a human yoyo and I think it was due to undiagnosed Celiac disease. In 1998 I was a size 4. In the Fall 2001 (age 26)I was a size 8. By Spring I was a size 2. I started gaining in the Fall of 2003 and got up to a size 12 before losing again. Spring 2007 I was a size 4 again but by Fall I was once more a 12 then I slowly creeped up to a 14. Since going gluten free in November I've dropped back to a size 8. Sorry I didn't keep up with the actual weights I know prior to 2001 my weight had always been between 117 and 128. (to give you a sizing frame of reference I have always worn Victoria Secret Jeans.)

This last gain I was always very hungry. I often ate Cereal for breakfast, a box of Shells and Cheese for lunch and two grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner, not to mention cookies for dessert.

(PS I think I left one gain and loss out somewhere)

Perhaps the times and sizes are a bit different, but this is very similar to my whole gain/lose history, too.

I was anemic the last blood draw, with no niacin in my blood the last time it was tested (and many other things were really low).

I have stopped weighing myself for the past few years, but I have had to keep a range of clothing sizes, from 6-14. One time, I got up to a size 16. My weight started fluctuating so much from month to month that I have started wearing elastic waisted floor length skirts all of the time as it helps to hide the fluctuations (and then I realized that I like skirts much more than I ever liked jeans).

At one point, I was SOOOO hungry all of the time, and I ended up binging for the better part of a year, at least a sleeve of crackers, a whole box of cereal, mac and cheese. I was also sick to my stomach all of the time. Before I went gluten-free, I had endured over a decade of throwing up at minimum 2-3 times a week. Since going gluten-free, I haven't thrown up once.

My stomach has been distended for many years, and I'm sure that it is related to how malnourished I've been. It's not gone down as quickly as I'd hoped after going gluten-free (but I've only been so for around a month), it is somewhat smaller. My joints aren't as swollen, either.

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i too was about 30lbs overweight too or sometimes just 10lbs overweight and always bloated.

From what ive read- Wheat consumption can lead to insulin resistance in some .. Seperate issue from gluten/gliadin intolerance.. But doesnt mean u cant have issues with both.

Ontop of that i have 2 theories- 1. I think because your body is in a state of inflammation and stressed-maybe your body creates more cortisol causing u to puff up. And 2. I think a great deal of us intolerant to gluten ALSO end up with Hypothyroid- which slows down ur metabolism and constipates u

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i too was about 30lbs overweight too or sometimes just 10lbs overweight and always bloated.

From what ive read- Wheat consumption can lead to insulin resistance in some .. Seperate issue from gluten/gliadin intolerance.. But doesnt mean u cant have issues with both.

Ontop of that i have 2 theories- 1. I think because your body is in a state of inflammation and stressed-maybe your body creates more cortisol causing u to puff up. And 2. I think a great deal of us intolerant to gluten ALSO end up with Hypothyroid- which slows down ur metabolism and constipates u

I was 172 at the doctors office on November 2nd (when I diagnosed) and on February 2nd I was 137. 35 pounds came off in 3 months, My belly distention which had caused several family members to think I was pregnant disappeared completely after only 3 weeks. I think I was tested for Hyperthyroid just a couple years ago because my doctor suspected it to be the problem. I worry about the insulin resistance because my older brother developed type 1 diabetes when he was my age now.

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