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No Problems In Prague? Why?

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I am very new to the gluten free thing. I have been having symptoms for about two years, but just in the last few months narrowed it down to a potential gluten problem. I tested negative for Celiacs, but going off gluten has diminished my symptoms. However, at times I still wonder if gluten is actually the problem. One thing that occurred to me the other day that really has me confused is my trip to Prague this past summer. Before and afterwards I had a lot of issues, but it wasn't until about a month after I got back that I got tested for Celiac.

So, that said, while I was in Prague I was not avoiding gluten at all. And their diet consists of breads, heavy gravies, pastries, etc. Also, since I was there for a summer study abroad I cooked for myself as well, and often made cheap pastas. So pretty much a celiac's nightmare. However, I pretty much had no symptoms at all. I believe I had one day where I had very mild symptoms, but the rest of the time I was completely fine!

How can this be? Do they use different flours? Could it be a gluten thing related to stress? The symptoms really started flaring up when I was taking finals/finishing up undergraduate school and when I went to graduate school (which is pretty high stress)and have, at times, seemed worse when really stressed.

Or could it possibly be symptoms of something other than gluten all together?

Unfortunately my normal doctor seems to have hardly any knowledge about celiac/gluten intolerance, and my GI doctor is somewhat hard to get a hold of, not to mention I am about an 11 hours drive away from him while I am at school.

Any ideas or suggestions would be so greatly appreciated. I am utterly confused and frustrated.

Thank you so much!


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That's really interesting. A couple things come to mind. American food is pretty "dirty". Most non-organic wheat in the US is GMO, there is a fair amount of pesticide residue in our food, and it's mostly laced with preservatives and food chemicals. We have people on the board who have mentioned that they can tolerate organic corn but GMO corn makes them sick. Some people also react to whole wheat worse than white flour - if you're eating whole wheat in the states and only white four in Prague that would be another difference. Whole wheat has more of the wheat lectin, called wheat germ agglutinin, to which some people react.

Often people have to eliminate a lot of processed foods when they go gluten-free. If you went from eating processed foods to cooking from scratch when you tried the diet, you could be reacting to preservatives, food colors, hidden MSG (there is tons of it in American food), or artificial flavors.

If I were you I would try making some bread or pasta from scratch using organic white flour. I'd choose a super-simple bread recipe with flour, water, yeast, and salt so there are no preservatives or other ingredients to confuse matters. Organic is supposed to be non-GMO and will not have pesticides. Seeds do hop from farm to farm so you might want to see if you can find flour that is non-GMO verified by the Non-GMO Project.

And yes, all food intolerances can flare with stress. Thing is, if you were gluten intolerant I can't imagine your being perfectly fine eating tons of wheat in Prague. It seems like you would still have some issues.

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