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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.


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Pegleg84 last won the day on December 1 2016

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About Pegleg84

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  • Birthday 04/14/1984

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    hunting for good GF beer and perfecting that GF/DF/SF alfredo recipe
    (Celiac, dairy/soy intolerant)
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  1. Hi all, We are going to Belgium in April, and though I've done tons of research and feel I should be ok as long as I ask all the questions, it's always best to ask here too. Does anyone live there or has visited? Any recommendations for foods to stick to/avoid? Are the frites at frites stands really gluten-free?! Anything that can be easily picked up at markets for snacks? (FYI: also don't do dairy or soy) We will be in Brussels, Ghent, Bruges and a few smaller towns. I know French but not Dutch. I'll get a translation card to show at restaurants, but if there's any good resources for recognising things on dutch menus, that would be helpful too. We're looking for veggie friendly places too (my partner is vegetarian, but will be eating all the cheese and drinking all the beer while I eat all the fries fried in beef fat...) Any recommendations welcome. I don't want to have to rely on my bag full of snacks too much. Thanks!
  2. Hi Taras, Can you give us some more info? I'm guessing you mean what else can you do with your diet other than going gluten-free? (Many of us end up with other food intolerances or find that it helps to cut back on certain things). How long have you been gluten-free? Are you getting bad pains? If it's early days, our guts can still be very touchy. More info will help us give some advice.
  3. Your vitamin levels and the brain fog in general should get better as you start healing (as Cyclinglady said, 4 weeks is pretty early). However, if your iron and b12 tends to be low (even 8 years gluten-free mine hovers around borderline anemic), it's always good to supplement. Be careful with the iron (talk to your doctor about the right amount to take. You also want to make sure to take it with vitamin c or some orange juice to help with absorption). More b12 is always better. Get you levels retested in a few months. If they go up (and if your brain fog improves) that should be a sign that your gut is healing. Good luck!
  4. I used to get pretty bad ones before going gluten-free as well. Now if I get one it's either cause I bit my lip or because I'm coming down with a cold. I've been considering switching toothpastes. I didn't know that Sensodyne doesn't have SLS. Nice. I'll look into that (I want a more natural toothpaste but still with flouride) Glad the diet is working! The fact that you had such an improvement is probably that your body is absorbing more nutrients than before. Maybe you do have Celiac rather than just NCGS? Not sure how much NCSG affects absorption if no villi damage. Just a thought.
  5. There's powdered coconut milk, but most of them have some lactose/casein added (can't remember which). I found some without and it was great, but of course can't find it at the store anymore. So much more convenient than having to buy/use a full can of coconut milk. http://ecoideas.ca/ecoideascoco-natura-organic-coconut-milk-powder.html Of course, you don't always want a thing to taste like coconut. If anyone else knows a gluten/dairy/soy free powdered milk, I'd love to know too.
  6. Thanks guys, I seem to be back to "normal" today, (after a lovely emotional meltdown first thing yesterday. Yet another fun symptom). I have been kinda constipated, so that might be affecting things (the last time I had really bad fibro-like symptoms was during 3 days of constipation. Went away when I was finally able to do my business.) Anyway, I have my thyroid checked about once a year (can't remember if my last bloodwork checked it or not), but it's always been normal (my mom has thyroid issues, so I always check). My iron and B12 tends to be low, so I supplement. I might try the magnesium, thanks. I also supplement calcium (when I remember), since I can't handle dairy (every so often I'll have a teeny bit of cheese and handle the consequences the next day) A suspected trigger for this (especially the fibro pain) is nightshades. Last month I cut them out completely, and while I wouldn't say I felt profoundly better, I didn't have any achy days our bouts of IBS symptoms. I've introduced them back and have eaten a lot of potatoes in the past couple weeks, so I could be feeling the effects of that now. Going to drop potatoes for a couple weeks (until xmas) and see if that has an effect. In any case, the next time it hits be bad, I'll talk to my doctor about whether it could be fibro, and if I should see a rheumatologist. Getting some drugs to handle the pain when it does happen would be great. Same with the IBS pain (which has actually been pretty good lately. Nothing serious in a few months). It's still frustrating not to know what's causing what, though: is it all Celiac doing stupid things? Do I have IBS and Fibromyalgia or is one causing the other? Also considering some drugs for the anxiety attacks when they happen (I've avoided this until now, but if its due to an imbalance triggered by other things, then drugs might not be a horrible idea) Anyway, thanks for the advice/support. Man, if I only had to deal with being gluten free without any of this other mess, I'd be incredibly grateful.
  7. Hi guys, I've been dealing with a couple "mystery" problems lately, which have been on and off the past 3 years or so. I've been gluten-free for almost 8 years now, and haven't been eating dairy or soy for at least 4 years. Mystery pain #1 - severe pain in my lower left side, before/during/somtimes after a BM, which tends to be the big C. This summer I started seriously looking into the possibility that I might have IBS in addition to Celiac. Had a colonoscopy to rule anything else out, and it was clean, so my GI says: probably have IBS? I'm not convinced, but it's quite possible. Mystery pain #2 - all-over body aches/tingling/pain, usually starts in my hands and quickly spreads to my entire body. It can last for a few hours to a few days. I'm currently having a bout of this right now. Arms feel all sore and burning, keep having weird twitches in my arms and back. It started this morning (didn't sleep well last night) and has gotten progressively worse. About ready to go home and crawl into bed with some painkillers. Anyway, I've been doing my research and found that Mystery pain #2 sounds an awful lot like Fibromyalgia. When I first started feeling it, I chalked it up to getting glutened, but it normally happens several days to even weeks after a known exposure. I thought it might be peripheral neuropathy of some sort (common with Celiac), but while I get tingly/painful hands and feet, it's not a constant numbness. I also learned that IBS and fibromyalgia often show up together, though if I have one or the other or both, not sure which causes which. This is the first real flare-up in several months. Back in the summer, I had a seriously horrible bout of pain that went on for over 2 days, and spurred me to go to the clinic. My bloodwork was all normal except low iron and B12 (which is normal for me. I've been supplementing and the last test was much better). I also had bad constipation and the pain went away as soon as it finally got through me. I haven't pursued a diagnosis or anything, figuring that body pain was another symptom of the potential IBS. However, I haven't had any real IBS symptoms in a couple months (yay!) I'm currently trying to figure out if there are any food triggers for either of these mystery pains. Last month, I cut out nightshades, and didn't have any incidents. I've reintroduced potatoes (been eating a fair amount of them lately) and peppers (chili powder and sauces). Haven't noticed a huge difference reintroducing them, until today at least. Will drop them again for a while and see if it improves? Anyway, does anyone here have IBS and/or fibromyalgia, on top of the fun of Celiac Disease? Any information or advice? (I checked out an IBS forum, but found it pretty uninviting and useless compared to here) Now to try to get a bit more work done through the fog and tingly fingers before I collapse. Thanks! Peg
  8. I wouldn't worry about other intolerances at this point. Right now your gut is saying "WHAT THE FUG IS GOING ON?!" and is going to be extra fussy for a while until it starts healing up. If in a year you feel mostly better but not quite, that's when it's time to look for other issues. That said, oat protein (powder) might be ok, but whole oats might not because they are hard to digest. Eat what you can, but fried food and over-processed stuff will not be helpful right now. Also, not sure if anyone mentioned digestive enzymes and probiotics, which can help make up for the damage in your gut. It can take a couple weeks to start noticing a difference, but taken daily with meals it can make a difference. My partner is a strict vegetarian. He eats dairy but not eggs, and is just as careful about meat as I am about gluten. It's nigh impossible for us both to find a place we can eat out at happily. Of course, he hates to cook and eats a lot of frozen processed crap and I worry about him in that respect, but there is NO WAY I would ever suggest he start eating meat again, just as I would never want anyone to suggest I start eating gluten again. Of course, for him it's a moral choice not a necessity, but after 20 years, his body probably can't process meat anymore anyway. Stick to your convictions. It's going to be harder, and you'll have to expand your protein sources a bit (beans, legumes, lots of greens, nuts and more nuts, etc). Hopefully the dietician can help with that. If you have a favourite place you used to eat, talk to the chef/management, and see if there's anything they can do for you. Unless it's a dedicated gluten-free kitchen, there's always a risk, but good communication can help. If you don't want to make a scene at the restaurant, go in when it's quiet or call ahead and ask all the questions. I find this saves a lot of hassle. It is possible to eat out safely, but it might become a once a month thing instead of an everyday thing.
  9. Jumping in a little late, but just want to say welcome to the club! Glad you'll have a firm diagnosis and can start looking forward to feeling BETTER! You had already started feeling better when you went gluten-free the first time, so it's all up from here. It might feel like an uphill battle for a while, and your body is going to do all kinds of weird things for a few months, but it's just readjusting. As others have said, stick to natural, unprocessed foods. Yes, you will have to learn to cook, but make a big batch of something simple and eat leftovers for a few days. One evening of prep could feed you for a week. Making the time and effort to do that is much better than wandering the streets hungry. And traveling is do-able too. It just takes a lot more advance planning. Eating out is definitely the hardest. Find out where in your area you might be able to get something safely. If there's a spot you love to go, talk to the chef/management and see what they can do for you. If you're invited out with (non-jerk) friends, either suggest a place you can eat safely, or eat beforehand, or bring your own. You can easily go out for coffee or a drink or a walk or whatever. And yes, if someone doesn't want to go out with you because you can't kiss them at any moment and have to be careful about what you eat so you don't get horribly sick... then they are definitely not worth it. You will find the person who doesn't care about that, and who will be supportive. they are out there. There's lots of them. Oh, and since no one said it, the "cross-reactivity" thing is more or less bullshit, meant to sell a useless test. Yes, many Celiacs end up developing temporary or permanent intolerance to other things, but it has nothing to do with other proteins being mistaken for gluten. As far as research stands, if you have another intolerance (dairy, soy, etc), it can cause inflammation and indigestion and other fun, but it won't trigger the same immune response/intestinal damage as gluten will (someone back me up on this!) Also, this is still one of the best places on the internets to get experienced and informed and compassionate advice. I've been at this for almost 8 years, and couldn't have done it without this forum (which is why I'm here trying to pass that on a little). You will get better. It will take time. It might never be 100% again, but 90% isn't bad. Much better than feeling horrible all of the time. Anyway, we've got your back! Peg
  10. Hi James, Welcome to the forum. I am so sorry to hear the grief and pain you've been through trying to get diagnosed, and after. Celiac Disease can do crazy things to our bodies and brains. No two people have the same symptoms, and it can take a long time to heal. There's lots of trial and error, and you might feel like things are worse before they get better, but they WILL get better. As others have said, right now you should be eating just naturally gluten-free food: veggies, fruit, unprocessed meat (no sausages, sorry), fish, nuts should be ok too if you can eat them. Avoid dairy and grains for a while. Your body needs to heal, and that could take months or a year. It sounds like your family is trying to help (new dishes, etc). I also recommend cooking for yourself when you can, then you have control over everything. I have to say that the anxiety was the worst symptom I had before going gluten free, and even now it's the worst part when I accidentally eat something I shouldn't. One thing I've learned is to try not to focus too much on your symptoms, because our minds have a tendency of making them feel worse (this is a hard thing to do, but good to remember). Also, realizing that while you'll start to feel much better, you might never get to 100%. For me, realizing that has helped. I might not be 100% better, but I am 90% better, so feel not good sometimes, which is much much better than feeling horrible all the time. Most Celiacs have problems with a few other foods. For me it's dairy, soy, and maybe nightshades (trying to figure that out now). Only you can figure out what makes you feel better or worse. These are intolerances, and there aren't any medical tests for them. You have to not eat them for at least a month and see if you feel better. My motto: if it makes you feel like crap, don't eat it! Anyway, know that we're on your side and always here if you need advice or just want to vent. Everything feels weird and horrible and hard at first, but it will get better. It might take a year or two to see a big difference, but I think you will. Hugs! Peg
  11. I have reached Nightshade Challenge December (really doesn't have the same ring to it). Last weekend, I was away for a wedding, and while I didn't deliberately seek out nightshades, I definitely ended up eating some potatoes (some really good ones!) and a bit of tomato/pepper in salads and seasoning. This past week I've eaten potatoes a few times (roasted and some chips), and last night I broke down and had some chili pepper (hot sauce). I haven't had any distinct symptoms. Did have a really weak/anxious/bad day on Sunday, but was PMS-y, tired, recovering from a party the night before, so that wasn't a big surprise. Any gut pain this week I blame on my lady time doing it's thing. I have been feeling a bit weaker this week though. Not achy, but my muscles just not working at full capacity. (also, pretty sure I didn't get glutened. Everywhere I ate was super careful and there was nothing suspicious. I would have been hit by usual symptoms by now. Possible I got into a bit of dairy, though) This morning though, things are happening! My right arm is twitching like crazy (not painful, but driving me nuts), hands are very cold, a bit tingly. Nothing horrible but definitely a symptom I haven't had in a while. I think I'll stop the nightshades for a few days and see if it gets better/worse, and try again. Have to say, the challenge might be the hardest part of this. Always difficult to tell exactly what causes what. Any advice for testing all this properly? Thanks
  12. Hmm, I have no idea. the bag is still sealed. I knew I had a weird flour hiding in the back of my cupboard. though it was going to be sorghum or something but SURPRISE! I guess I'll have to start looking up recipes...
  13. Hi guys, I rarely bake, and was thinking I should do some because a: it's getting cold out, and b: I've got a bunch of random flour I should use up before it goes off. Discovered in my cupboard: a full bag of AMARANTH flour?! What ever possessed me to buy amaranth flour? So, what do you do with amaranth? I read it's better for savory things? Also in my cupboard/fridge/freezer: buckwheat flour, brown rice flour, coconut flour, maybe oat flour (or can grind some into flour) ... that's about it right now. Also, flax meal, tapioca starch, egg replacer, baking powder/soda, etc. I think I'm out of xanthan gum. Any suggestions? I'm dairy/soy free too. I want to get this stuff used up, and hopefully have something tasty to show for it. Thanks!
  14. on week 4 and sticking to it! I've had japanese sweet potato before. Yes, they're more red/purple on the outside and lighter on the inside. Also, if you slice beets thin and roast them, they also make great chips. This weekend I'm going away for a wedding, and will try to avoid nightshades but definitely defaulting to "if it's gluten-free, I'm eating it". Next week, I'll start the "challenge" part, and reintroduce chili peppers/powder/sauce and OMG I CANNOT WAIT! Hardest part has been not reaching for the jar of chili garlic sauce that I use on many many things. fingers crossed i'll be ok on that front. Then comes potatoes, which might result in me crawling around with body aches. We shall see. Let's keep this thread going until the end of the month, at least!
  15. No lactose or cassein for me. I've gotten to the point that I can handle a teeny bit of cheese every so often, or at least am willing to have a cheese hangover. I think it's definitely possible that damage from gluten (even getting glutened once or twice a year can indeed have long-lasting consequesnces) is causing IBS symptoms, but the jury's out on that. For now I'm treating it like I have both, and being a: super duper extra careful about possible gluten exposure, b: staying away from my know intolerances, dairy and soy, c: trying to identify other problem foods and things that might trigger IBS symptoms (foods, stress, etc). I've actually been feeling pretty good in the gut department lately, so that's nice, though it doesn't help me solve the mystery. Oh, any recommendations for good probiotics that won't break the bank?