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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? - 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 What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes

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Hi, I'm a celiac and have been completely gluten free for two years now. I've been reading a lot of articles that discuss health problems that celiacs are more prone to than non-celiacs.

What I did begin to notice is that none of the articles really say whether or not the celiacs that they mention who are prone to these health complications were maintaining a strict gluten free diet. I know that the gluten free diet does make a celiac less prone to future health problems like cancer and a whole bunch of other problems (I've been noticing more and more instances than not where the celiac is at more risk than the non-celiac), but is a celiac who is maintaining a strict gluten free diet still more prone to health problems such as cancer than someone who isn't a celiac?

I guess I just want to know whether or not the disease has more complications down the road than just maintaining a gluten free diet for life (and, of course, the symptoms from ingesting gluten).

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I personally think that those of us who follow a strict gluten-free diet are less prone to health problems than the general population because we generally eat better.  I know I do not eat the typical American diet and that is one reason so many people are sick. I have 4 autoimmune diseases in total and since starting and following a strict gluten-free diet after my diagnosis, all 4 of these issues have quieted  down and my symptoms are far, far less problematic than they were before I started eating gluten-free.  I do not go to a Rheumatologist because I am doing so well.  I also think there is too much fear instilled in people today with regards to their health.  Eat healthy, exercise regularly and making time for play can go a long way to keeping you out of a doctors office, longterm.  Doctors are very gloom and doom.

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What other illnesses/diseases/etc have you also been tested for?   Where would a doctor even begin?  How long has the inflammation been going on?  The malabsorption of vital nutrients?  Could there be something else along with the Celiac not yet tested for symptoms are similar? 

 

How much time, money - blood can you spare? 

 

A non gluten diet is by far the most helpful for those with issues dealing with gluten.  All forms of gluten must be eliminated.  (Actually, I am to believe no human should digest any gluten.  For there is no benefit and it is just a matter of time before a problem shows in tests)

 

 For instance - my daughter was found to have nodules on her thyroid and the left lobe was removed.  She was placed on thyroid meds.  Her health began a decent downward.  She became ill and I insisted that she get tested for mono.  Her doctor tested her and found she had an "older" case of mono - but she will always have the Epstein Barr virus showing (which is caused by mono).  She was placed on antibiotics and steroids.  Never felt 100%.  No other tests for anything.

 

She came back home after finishing school and a new doctor tested her for sensitivities.  Positive for Corn, Soy, Gluten, Casein, and a few others.  This began the gluten free lifestyle.  Then a different doctor she was seeing for problems found her to have Poly-cystic ovarian syndrome.

 

Which one happened first?  Each new diagnosis was months/years in between.  No new illnesses/symptoms to date after going gluten-free around 2009/10. 

 

What is in her future?  Who knows.  By gluten free she is eliminating as much inflammation as she can that will help immensely.  We are also organic.  Lots of Juicing and Raw Fooding going on.  Medicinal TEAS, too :)  Herbal remedies.  Homeopathy.  SUNSHINE.  But we do supplement with Iodine,  B-12, etc.  We try to find Genetically Modified FREE, too.  Our water is filtered.  Our air is filtered.  Our linens and clothing is organic.  We use NO chemicals in the home or on our body. 

 

Her doctor recently began treating her for YEAST in her stomach.  Hmmmmm - could this be the original culprit?  Is cancer simply fungus?  Remove all those items that get moldy:  grains for sure and keep one step ahead, I suppose. 

 

With each new set of symptoms or complaints come the tests and hopefully the CORRECT diagnosis and treatment. 

 

Which came first tho - the celiac or the others that symptoms took longer to appear?  Who knows.  Diet will help. Always.  Not just for celiac sufferers.  But diet is the cure for Celiac.  Maybe for other diseases/illnesses as well.

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I like to think of things in terms of five years --

 

It takes about five years to completely replace the bones in your body -- if you eat well and move often the new bones will be strong.  If you eat poorly and rarely move, your bones will be weak.

 

Cancer survivors wait for the all important five year mark -- if one remains clear for five years - the likelihood of that particular cancer striking again is far less.

 

There are likely all sorts of timetables we can find that chart both good and bad statistics for Celiac Disease -- Like Gemini - I make strict choices about my food and movement -- and laugh when my doctors scratch their heads at my improvement.

 

I - for one - intend on having a much better second half of life now that I have some of the instructions for these silly bodies of ours.

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I like to think of things in terms of five years --

 

It takes about five years to completely replace the bones in your body -- if you eat well and move often the new bones will be strong.  If you eat poorly and rarely move, your bones will be weak.

 

Cancer survivors wait for the all important five year mark -- if one remains clear for five years - the likelihood of that particular cancer striking again is far less.

 

There are likely all sorts of timetables we can find that chart both good and bad statistics for Celiac Disease -- Like Gemini - I make strict choices about my food and movement -- and laugh when my doctors scratch their heads at my improvement.

 

I - for one - intend on having a much better second half of life now that I have some of the instructions for these silly bodies of ours.

  Good answer!  ;)   Especially the part about instructions..... :D

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    • So, do they just test your DGP like they just test my TTG?
    • The only test I have had done is the TTG because that's what I had done initially after taking matters into my own hands and going to my local health fair. Celiac is so common they do that screening at our health fair. My number was so high that my doctor didn't order other labs and went straight for a biopsy, which showed stage 3b damage. I've had my blood re-drawn (the TTG IGA) at 2 months and then at 9 months, and now. It's always just been that TTG IGA test. He hasn't ordered anything else, and has said it's not necessary for me to get the other panels done. I think that's probably because all he had at first was the TTG and he followed protocol by going for the biopsy since my number was so high. They didn't do the IGA deficiency test on me first, but Gemini said that if I were deficient my test would have been falsely negative, rather than >100. Plus my intestines showed blunting and hyperplasia, so that's how he confirmed his diagnosis. I am going to ask him why he doesn't order me the other tests though, out of curiosity. I know that the TTG tests mostly for intestinal damage and that's likely how he's monitoring my internal healing. He's always said that as long as I feel ok and my TTG is normal he isn't worried about me and said that we can just touch base annually unless symptoms arise. I've always wondered a bit about the DGP because I've never had it done, but Dr. Kim said it's not necessary to have that done (in my case). I'm sure he knows why, but I've never asked. I know others on here have suggested that I have that done, but since my doctor hasn't ordered it I haven't had it done.  The results usually come back within a week so I should know something soon. I'll repost to let you guys know how it's going. 
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