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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.

apprehensiveengineer

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  1. This has happened to me so many times and it is the worst. I was at a potluck dinner (didn't plan on eating anything, ate beforehand) and a friend brought me a store-bought gluten-free cake from a reputable company. It looked fantastic and I was so grateful because I am a poor grad student and don't often indulge in such luxuries. Then it got plonked on the serving plate with the regular glutenous cake. Super awkward. Can't say I can offer any advice, but my deepest sympathies. I think the trouble is that many people think that celiac is like lactose intolerance, where consuming a bit (or even a lot) of lactose is not ideal but not really all that harmful. I try to educate people as I go, but it's definitely an uphill battle. I live in the PNW, and lots of cafes have "gluten-free" cookies unwrapped, sitting beside regular baked goods, likely made in-house in a shared bakery facility. I think these sort of situations add to people's confusion too.
  2. I think others have covered most of your questions, but I thought I would chime in on the sports part. I am a fairly elite level distance runner and ran on my university team throughout undergrad. Retrospectively, it is obvious to me that having undiagnosed celiac disease had a huge impact on my ability to train and compete consistently, but I still managed to achieve quite a lot during this time. To be honest, when I accidentally gluten myself and take stock of how bad I feel, I am completely shocked that I was even able to train seriously at all. I think the key is respecting recovery for endurance training - with celiac and without. Even before I knew what exactly was wrong, it was obvious to me that my capacity to recover from hard training efforts was unreasonably low. For a while I tried to push through this, but this ended with me essentially lying in bed for weeks at a time because I was so sick, which was frustrating. After a year of this, I figured out the bounds of intensity that my undiagnosed celiac self could tolerate without implosion. I seemed to be able to handle the same training volume, but high intensity efforts and races left me crushed. This "speed limit" strategy was not ideal, but it was what I did to survive the situation - varsity sports are a high pressure environment, and despite trying to get answers from doctors, I got none (because apparently being able to run for more than 30 minutes consecutively means that it's impossible to be seriously ill according to most doctors :| ). Anyways, flash forward to what happened when I started the GFD and recovery. It took about a month for me to notice a huge difference in my running. I still wasn't entirely healed by any means, but it felt as if someone has lifted a weight from my back (this was not literal as my weight didn't change). It was the most encouraging feeling. Despite feeling a lot better, I maintained my previous protocol because I knew that my body needed to focus on healing itself from the years of damage. I tried to focus on having fun during workouts and not timing myself. I also began training by myself to remove any comparison I might have inadvertently made between myself and my teammates. I would definitely recommend continuing with triathlon. I think that continuing with running and racing has been one of the few joys I've had since diagnosis. It allows you to feel safe, normal, empowered and keeps your body in better condition to fight the disease. Best of luck.
  3. I thought the style of your post was funny I've recently been dealing with a similar situation and have finally gotten to the bottom of it (I think). I like you, live in a shared kitchen. Although my roommate is very considerate and doesn't eat much overtly glutenous food, I've developed a few strategies that seem to work: separate everything buy small plastic basin that fits in sink, wash dishes in this (avoid any residue/crumbs/whatever that might be stuck to the sink) wipe down all counters, handles and taps that I'm going to touch before cooking I was still having some small problems with CC after this, so I turned to my own food. I got rid of everything that wasn't certified gluten-free (or from a very reputable company), excepting unprocessed fruits/veggies, plain dairy, rice and shelled nuts. I think this was the most key part, as I think that a lot of naturally gluten-free grains that are used in supposedly gluten-free products have enough contamination to cause problems unless the company is specifically monitoring this (as required by the gluten-free certification). Previously, I had been purchasing a lot of food items labelled as gluten-free, but with from smaller local companies that I presume would not actually test their ingredients or final products. Although many celiacs do have other digestive issues with different foods, I really think that many of people's problems with other grains or other ingredients are related to this. I also replaced all my shower stuff with products that were certified gluten-free. Previously I had been using products that didn't contain gluten explicitly, but were from companies that couldn't guarantee their products were gluten-free because they didn't test them. I know a lot of celiacs are not concerned by this sort of product, but I guess I eat a lot of soap when I shower as I noticed a big difference within a few days... Hope this helps.
  4. I am also allergic to soy and have problems with beans. At first I thought this might be because I had problems with other legumes - I originally tested positive for pea protein via skin prick (soy was not on the panel), but found that soy made my mouth/throat itchy after doing an elimination diet protocol. However, more recently I've been using a canned brand that is labelled organic/gluten-free (same brand also has non-organic beans that are not labelled gluten-free, so presumably there is a difference that they know about). These beans do not seem to cause me any issues. I've tried other canned brands to poor results, but have had ok results from some other USDA organic labelled beans (without any gluten-free claims). I have not tried dried beans because I don't have time for that. I always rinse my beans before eating/cooking. As an aside, pre-packaged foods like hummus sometimes causes me problems depending on the brand, but I never have problems with products that are certified gluten-free, which gives me the impression that this is an issue with ingredient sourcing as opposed to just my system not appreciating beans. My best guess is that the organic beans are sourced more selectively (ie. from the US/Canada/Europe), meaning that they might have had less chance of being cross-contaminated during packaging/processing. Most cheap canned beans don't say where they are from, so they are likely from China/India, where there is even less concern for CC with soy and/or gluten... especially soy. I am sure that the majority of celiacs need not concern themselves with this, but I am quite sensitive and the soy thing makes me leery of food products coming from countries where this is a staple food. Not sure if this comment helps, but you are not alone!
  5. Not sure if this will be more confusing than helpful, but thought I'd add my two cents. Prior to my diagnosis I tried Aveeno moisturizer and it seemed to make my dermatitis worse. I am aware that gluten is not supposed to cause a reaction in this manner, but I am wary of this lotion because of this reaction - it seemed to match the locations I applied it to. I have no idea if it was the oats (cannot tolerate them) or some other ingredient. The reaction as I recall was quite strong, strong enough for me to pitch it. At the time I was not gluten-free in any way, so it's hard to imagine that the extra trace ingested oat from the moisturizer being on my hands/mouth area would have made a significant difference. It is however, possible that the bad reaction was just coincidental as my symptoms were very erratic at this time. At any rate, I avoid such products. There are lots of inexpensive, good quality moisturizers that do not contain oats or gluten.
  6. Thanks! That's what I had thought. I will be using gluten-free flour as the base ingredient in the cookies and was not planning on grinding up the oats. I've never seen Pamela's where I live, but I've had good baking success with most of the flours I've tried so far. I have some dedicated items at my parents' place, but will be using their cookie sheets for this one as I don't want to contaminate mine .
  7. I've been a lurker here for a while, but had a question I couldn't find an answer to. I am planning on making some Christmas cookies for my non-celiac family. I am aware that cooking with regular flour is a bad idea, but was wondering about how concerned I should be about using oats for their cookies. I have a bunch of gluten-free oats leftover from when I tried the oat challenge (it did not go well unfortunately), so I was going to use those. I will obviously not be eating the cookies, but was wondering about how/if I can safely prepare cookies with oats if I have a problem with them. Although I can certainly modify my cookie recipe, this is something I'd been wondering about in general as well and was hoping to find an answer re: oat CC risk in sensitive individuals. I was thinking I would wear some disposable gloves and line the pan with parchment paper but am not sure if there is anything else I should do. I am currently staying at my parents' house, so it's not as if I'll be contaminating their baking stuff as all of it has seen wheat previously (house is temporarily gluten-free for my sake though). Thoughts?