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No Idea If I'm Following The Diet Correctly

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So I've been gluten-free (or at least I have tried my best to be) for 15 weeks. I have not deliberated cheated in that time. I am still very much finding my way in terms of food items whos ingredients show no ovbvious gluten but could be manufactured using shared lines. I live in the Middle East where labelling is a joke so it is very much back to basics for me food-wise. I keep a food diary and our home is gluten free 95% of the time.

I'm still not entirely sure of what my symptoms are when I get accidentally glutened. I thought it was diarrhea but now I'm wondering could it actually be constipation.

My main worry is that somehow I am ingesting gluten every day (accidentally) and so am not actually gluten-free so am not experiencing any glutenings if that makes sense at all. I'm afraid that when I go for my bloodtests they were still be as high as they were upon diagnosis.

I suppose my main question is, how did you know you were definitely following the diet correctly?

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Not sure I can really answer your question but just want to say hi, as I am living in Dubai and understand how difficult it is to be sure of products here, plus we obviously don't have the choices that US consumers do. I have been trying to be gluten free since Jan, I thought I had read up so much about the rights and wrongs and that I was well aware of "hidden" gluten, but only now am I realising some of my mistakes. But I do know that overall I am so much better than I was in so many ways, and when I got "glutened" last week I definitely knew it, my reactions get worse everytime.

Do you have other food intolerances? That might explain why you are unsure what your gluten symptoms are. I am certainly struggling with a bunch of other intolerances and I find that as hard to cope with as just staying gluten-free is. I thought being gluten-free would solve everything but instead I now have to also exclude dairy, eggs, fish etc etc. My only consolation is finding this website as the information from fellow sufferers is so extensive and I realise that having secondary intolerances is quite normal. It does take hours though to trawl through the various sections and gluten seems to affect everyone differently so it's not easy to generalise.

I am just trying to go the fresh and natural route but even finding safe grains here is a challenge. Are you in UAE? If so, I guess you are already using the Organic Store as they have about the best range of gluten-free food. But not all of it is "certified" gluten free, for instance the Natures Path cereals are made on shared lines, and the only quinoa grain (not flour) sold comes from a company who process all grains and do not test for gluten. I have been emailing loads of companies for more info on their products (non food items as well as edibles) and am happy to pass that info on if you think it might help you.

At the moment my hubby is still eating gluten foods and I have definitely been cross-contaminated despite going to enormous efforts to avoid this. Last week's glutening was severe enough that hubby has said he too will go gluten free just as soon as we move apartment (possibly end June) so I really hope that will help me. When you say you are 95% gluten free what do you mean, what do you think is the remaining 5%?

Sorry if all this isn't of much help but if you are in my area maybe we can learn together, this condition can feel so isolating.

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