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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 Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  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 What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes

Austin GF Family

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  1. Dairy Free Questions...

    I agree with chamomilelover. I, too, am more sensitive to dairy than to gluten (at least, it seems that way) and it has been much harder for me to give it up, mostly because I love it so much and was eating a lot of it before I realized I needed to stop. My problem is with casein, which means I can't have any dairy from a cow. But, I can have dairy from goats and sheeps. I really enjoy the goat cheeses, because I have always preferred sharp cheeses. Have you tried goat cheese and not been satisfied? I eat goat cheeses nearly every day and with the substitute "milks" and their associated products (coconut milk ice cream is my favorite, too), I have been able to keep these dairy-type products in my diet. Although, I wish they were all enriched (especially the ice cream), as I do miss the calcium I was getting from real milk products. The only time it really is a problem is when I am away from home, because most restaurants and ice cream shops don't carry these non-dairy substitutes. And, it just seems like all the yummy stuff on every menu is either made with butter, served in a cream sauce or has melted cheese on top - even when it is gluten free. To the original question, it's very easy to determine whether or not you need to eliminate dairy from your diet. See an allergist for a full allergy panel. This can be done as a blood test (no need for that skin patch stuff) and can test for all food and environmental allergies. One tube of blood and a few weeks later, you will have your answer. A lot of pharmacies with walk-in clinics offer this panel, if you are not working with an allergist. Or, you can just eliminate dairy from your diet for a few weeks and then re-introduce it to see if you notice any reaction. I recommend the test, because sometimes our brains can trick us into attributing our symptoms to something else, especially if the symptoms mean you have to give up eating something you really enjoy.
  2. Feeling Discouraged

    With these intolerance levels, she will likely never eat these foods again. I have casein intolerance and even the tiniest amount of dairy (from a cow) leads to days of discomfort. I am not a doctor, but I don't expect my intolerance to ever reverse itself - did the doctor indicate that it would? If so, I would work with an allergist, just to be sure. I had a dairy heavy diet, so eliminating the dairy was more upsetting to me than eliminating gluten, but I have made adjustments and primarily use goat cheese as a substitute. I never suspected the dairy was causing an issue - primarily because I was eating so much of it that I could never link a reaction to a food. This may be the same with your daughter and soy, since you say she has always had it in her diet. There are plenty of alternative "milks" out there today, so replacing the soy milk with something else should be easy. Coconut milk is probably my favorite, but the hemp milks are good, too. If she eats a lot of yogurt, there is a coconut milk yogurt on the market and I think that coconut milk is the best substitute in "ice cream" products (Nada Moo is my favorite brand, but Coconut Bliss is also very good). Your daughter's gut is probably not healed enough to introduce these processed foods yet, but it can give you hope to know that she won't go without. You mention soy sauce here, so I will tell you that soy sauce is not gluten free. The best gluten free substitute is tamari, which tastes and looks almost the same, but is not free of soy. Coconut Secret makes a gluten free, dairy free, soy free seasoning sauce that is very similar to soy sauce and can be subsituted in recipes or as a dipping sauce. With so many allergens, I am going to suggest that your daughter works with a nutritionist or dietician to figure out what she should eat and what she should avoid. If you live in a city with a Natural Grocers store, they have a nutritionist on site who will work with you free of charge. They are very knowledgeable and helpful. If not, I am sure that you can find one in your area. Especially since your daughter will be traveling with her team and also will have a number of meals away from home (i.e. at school), she needs to educate herself about what is safe and what is not. She is also going to need to take supplements and these can be a hidden source of all sorts of allergens, so finding safe ones will be key to her recovery. One thing you may not have been made aware of is the possibility of cross contamination that occurs in kitchens - including your home kitchen. Cutting boards, utensils, appliances, mixing bowls and cookware can all "hold onto" gluten and other allergens, even after washing. In order for your daughter to eat safely, you may need to purchase separate cookware or take other precautions to prepare her meals safely. You will find a lot of good information on this forum. You might also considering joining a local celiac or gluten intolerance group, as well. Best of luck!
  3. Confused...hurting...

    Diagnosis of celiac disease can be difficult and even having a diagnosis and going gluten free may not solve all of your health problems. In addition to the tests your doctor and others here have recommended, I suggest you meet with an allergist and have a complete allergen panel done (food and environmental). Most people with celiac or other forms of gluten intolerance / sensitivity, will have other food allergies / sensitivities - corn and dairy (lactose and / or casein) are the most common. Until you eliminate all allergens / contaminants from your diet and environment, you will not start feeling better and will continue to be frustrated with your health situation. Trust me - I am speaking from experience. It is no fun learning that you have to avoid foods that you enjoy, but it is also no fun to suffer from mystery ailments all the time. Hope you feel better soon.
  4. Tigi Hair Products

    Thanks for posting. One of the products I am using is not on the list - oops! I guess I will be switching Thanks, again!
  5. Can anyone recommend a doctor in Austin, TX or surrounding areas (could go to San Antonio or Houston) that is knowledgeable about treating the secondary conditions related to Celiac disease (skin rashes, Sjogren's, nutrient deficiencies, etc.)? After eliminating glutens and other allergens from my diet, I just need help diagnosing and managing other conditions and symptoms. Unfortunately, I have had a few bad experiences with so-called specialists who are completely uninformed and make me feel crazy when I suggest my symptoms may be related to Celiac disease or start asking if whatever medication they are prescribing contains gluten or other allergens. Thanks for the help.
  6. After diagnosis, I have been strictly gluten free for several years and would never consider bringing gluten back into my diet. However, sometimes I grow weary of preparing all of my own meals and would like to occassionally dine in a restaurant or even just try a prepackaged gluten free meal for convenience sake. I am very sensitive to gluten and have gone to great lengths to eliminate it from my diet and environment. When I have tried dining in restaurants, I have had a few bad experiences, so am nervous. I don't believe that the risk of cross contamination can ever be eliminated, only minimized. So, I am wondering if there is any advice regarding what can be done to prepare for or protect against the effects of possible cross contamination or other minimal, accidental gluten exposure. I have wondered if taking an antihistamine beforehand might prevent some of the inflammation. Also, I have seen some products on the market that claim to contain digestive enzymes that will digest the gluten before it reaches the small intestines (CeliacAid is one example). Has anyone tried any of these products? Socially, I am finding celiac disease to be very awkward, because of this restriction on dining out. I am always bringing food with me everywhere I go and when I travel, I get a place with a kitchen and do all of my own cooking, as well. I feel comfortable doing this because it's the best choice for me, but I know that people think I'm weird when they see a gluten free menu and I pull a sandwich out of my hand bag instead of ordering. But, if my fun evening out is ruined or my trip ends early just because of one mistake in the kitchen, it hardly seems worth it. If there is a safe way to dine out and protect against cross contamination, I'd like to hear about it. Thanks!
  7. My husband's experience was similar, in that after diagnosis and going gluten free to the extreme (we replaced all of our cookware, utensils and small appliances, the home and kitchen were rid of all glutens, any pre-packaged foods were prepared in a gluten free facility, he did not eat in any restaurants, all supplements and medications were clearly labeled gluten free, etc.) he felt better, but not completely well. After more than a year of him telling me that things like fresh corn that I was picking up at a local farm must be contaminated with gluten somehow, he had a comprehensive allergy panel, which included food and environmental allergens. It turned out that he had additional food allergies \ sensitivities that were preventing his gut from healing and also some environmental allergies (dogs, mold) and was reacting to them more severely because his immune and histamine systems were already aggravated and working overtime to combat the effects of all of this. Once he was able to eliminate the remaining food allergies from his diet and minimize his exposure to certain environmental allergens, he began to heal and feel much better. Any allergist should be able to perform this test, which just requires one vial of blood and takes a couple of weeks for the results. If you aren't working with an allergist, places like Any Lab Test or RediClinic offer the test, as well. Your situation sounds pretty serious, so this may not solve the entire problem for you, but I would recommend having this test performed ASAP, if for no other reason than to rule out the possibility of other contaminants. Also, look for possible sources of cross contamination in your own home or possible hidden gluten in what you are consuming. For example, some wineries use a flour-based "glue" to seal their barrels, as do some tea producers to seal their tea bags. Since this is packaging, it wouldn't be listed on the ingredient label. Your cosmetics and toiletries may also be a source of hidden gluten (lotions, lip balms, etc.), so don't forget to check them. And, you probably know that some meats (in particular poultry) are injected with broths, preserving agents and other things that may contain glutens or may be processed on a shared line with glutens, so check labels and contact producers for their allergen statements. If you are still handling glutens (I had a celiac friend who would sometimes make non-gluten-free cookies and other baked goods for her kids, but would get violently ill every time), you may be too sensitive to do so. And, the cookware, utensils, small appliances are another possible sources if you have not replaced them. This was probably the hardest part for us, as it's just so darn expensive to replace all of that stuff and you feel foolish getting rid of a perfectly good cutting board, pizza stone, wooden spoon, cast iron skillet, blender, cake pan, toaster and the like. But, this is a necessary step and can be done a little bit at a time. I do hope you find some help and begin to feel better soon.
  8. Don't be discouraged. Plenty of hotels have full kitchens (Residence Inn and Candlewood Suites are two that we prefer and are just about everywhere). Depending on the city, you may need to bring some food with you (gluten-free bread, pasta, cereal), but fresh meat, fruit, veggies, cheese, herbs and milk can be found just about anywhere. With a kitchen you can eat just like you do at home. I also recommend keeping a small cooler in your car to carry food you have prepared at the hotel (most of the hotels with kitchens are also equipped with some containers for food storage, or just buy the disposable kind sold in grocery stores). Salads and sandwiches are good ideas, because you won't need to heat them. But, if you are driving between cities, most gas stations or truck stops and many grocery stores have microwaves available for customer use in the store. So, when you stop for fuel or a drink, you can pop your prepared meal in the microwave and actally enjoy a hot meal on the road. If you are sensitive, I would avoid restaurants, but if you are travelling for work, you may need to dine with clients. If this is the case, you can always discretely ask for a gluten free menu. If they don't have one, just order a garden salad with no meat or dressing or croutons. Politely explain to your companion that you are not very hungry or on a diet, and when business is concluded, you can have your own food back at the hotel. I have a friend who has taken her own food into restaurants with her when she is dining with friends, but I would not recommend this if you are dining with clients, unless it is a client whom you consider to be a friend, of course. Here is one tip if you do stay at a hotel with a kitchen - run all the pots, pans, plates, utensils, etc. through the dishwasher when you first arrive (before using any of them) to reduce your risk of cross contamination. Also, don't use the toaster, as it will be contaminated with gluten from previous uses. I sincerely hopes this helps. It's an adjustment, but manageable.
  9. First Time On Plane Celiac

    I am curious to know for how long you were in Europe and what you did about food while you were there. My husband has multiple food allergies in addition to being a celiac. He is very sensitive to even the smallest amount of contamination, so when we travel, I will reserve a hotel or condo with a full kitchen and we typically bring all of our food with us (except for fresh meats, fruits and vegetables). We tack an extra day onto our trips so that we can spend a day cooking, providing meals for the duration of the trip. I have an insulated picnic pack and we carry food with us for the day. We really don't trust restaurants after several bad experiences. So far, all of our travel has been in the U.S., but we have been discussing a trip to Europe. I figure we will need an apartment while we are there, to have access to a kitchen, but am not sure about how we can bring food from U.S. into another country. I am thinking we may need to ship it to our first destination ahead of time. We would like to see France, Germany and Italy. If it would not be too personal to share some of your experience, I would appreciate it.
  10. Lanap \ Laser Periodontal Surgery

    Leli - Thank you so much for sharing your personal experience. Your reply was exactly what I needed.
  11. Has anyone had periodontal surgery? Periodontist claims it will help to restore bone and slow progression of periodontitis, but that some teeth may not be able to be saved. I think the periodontitis and resulting bone loss is related to celiac disease; not quite 2 years from diagnosis and being totally gluten-free, so wonder if the procedure should wait. If you have had this procedure, what do you think of the results? How long was the recovery period? Also, what liquid diet did you follow? Very sensitive to gluten contamination and have additional food allergies (egg, lactose, corn, nuts, peanuts), so prepare most meals without prepackaged ingredients. Thanks for any information or advice.
  12. Awesome Pizza In Austin, Tx

    According to Gluten Free Registry, Gatti's only has the gluten-free pizza at 6 locations. My husband is very sensitive to cross contact, so I have been hesitant to try any. Gatti's has their handling procedures on their website, so we were feeling a little more comfortable about trying it. http://www.gattispizza.com/pop_glutenFree.php Do you know about handling procedures at the other places you mentioned?
  13. Awesome Pizza In Austin, Tx

    Have either of you tried the gluten free pizza at Mr. Gatti's?