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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.

When Will I Get Used To This?
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21 posts in this topic

I was diagnosed only three weeks ago and have sincerely tried to be totally gluten-free since my diagnosis. Today I am celebrating Memorial weekend with my family at our cabin in the mountains. I carefully baked gluten-free brownies, brought my own corn pasta and thought I did everything right. I was cooking the wheat pasta for everyone else when I popped a few in my mouth to see if the pasta was done! I never even thought about what I was doing. I feel like an idiot and I'm scared to death that I'm going to suffer for it the rest of the weekend. How long does it take before I can really be used to this enormous change?

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Oh, that sort of thing - takes a while - I mean months. I still have to remind myself when I go to pay the bills not to like the envelopes, and I've been gluten-free nigh on nine months now. It gets easier, but remember, you've had your whole lifetime to learn the habits that you need to break - it won't happen over night.

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Don't worry about it...I made numerous unintentional gluten mistakes, one that was similar to yours with the pasta:

- My first week I only knew that I couldn't eat wheat, oats, barley, etc. I didn't know about natural flavorings, malt, etc. I read the package of a candy thing my brother was eating: "Gushers", didn't see "wheat" written anywhere, ate it, and then found out a week later that ingredients like malt are poisonous.

- On vacation, my family and I brought a gluten-free cereal for my breakfast, so we wouldn't have to eat out every meal of the day. It happens that my brother also wanted cereal, so he got corn flakes (the same cereal I was having, only mine was gluten-free). One morning I decided to have a last handful of cereal before leaving the hotel room. Of course, I grab the wrong box, eat a couple, see the box, flip out, and spit the rest into the bathroom sink. Surprisingly, that poisoning gave me no additional symptoms.

Don't panic...now only 14 weeks in I have little question of what I can and cannot eat, and so far, don't make mistakes like that anymore. My advice, try not to cook "gluteny" foods. That is like an automatic reaction we all make, but after 3 months, or so, you'll be used to staying away from that stuff. Good luck...I hope you don't have a reaction.

-celiac3270

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I wanted to add one other thing...

I don't cook meals with gluten, period. I entertain all the time, but no one gets wheat based pasta, or any sauce that's got gluten, or anything like that. Our apartment isn't totally gluten-free, as my husband is a major bread eater, but the bread is confined to one area, and guests have that, but none of the other cooking has gluten.

I realized, this weekend, when my in-laws were over, how incredibly stressful it can be to keep a kitchen that truely does both. And even once you get used to it, you're on such a state of heightened alertness that ... well, I'm not thrilled with it.

Gluten free food can be just as tasty as any other food, and I don't feel in the least bit guilty about serving gluten-free stuff when I have people over for lunch or dinner. And I've never had a single complaint, though there have been quite a few compliments.

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Old habits die hard. About 6 weeks in to the gluten-free diet we had a birthday party for my father at our house and I was talking to my daughter while cutting a piece of cake (not gluten free) for my father when I picked up a left over piece and ate almost the whole thing. Finally one of my daughters said "Mom do you know what you just did?" That was my last bite of anything with gluten. After three years it has become a new habit, to check everything that goes in my mouth. Of course, I'm a lot older than most of you so it took me longer. Shirley

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For many months, "gluten awareness" was constantly in the forefront of my mind, bordering on obsession. Now, its in the background. When I see gluten foods, I just ignore them, like they were something I don't like to eat. It gets better everyday. You have to grieve the loss and move on to succeed.

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Being a real newbie, I so understand!

I had very good luck over the holiday family barbecue. Daughters made gluten-free food for me, which I so much appreciated! Even had some leftovers to take home. But, when one daughter went to try the gluten-free brownies, she started to use the contaminated knife from the regular brownies, and I said, "Don't use that cross contaminated knife on my brownies!" We all laughed!

But, I had the most stupid day yesterday. I was at the store, trying to find something else to eat, or snack on. I bought fancy mixed nuts, as they should be gluten-free. Unfortunately, they hurt my still very bad gut so bad today. I was trembling, nauseous, dizzy, and felt like I would faint. It passed, and I was finallly able to eat this evening. That was about the worst spell I've had yet. And those things that triggered the worst pain, don't appeal to me at all, now. It's like aversion therapy! I really should have known nuts don't digest. Just one of those really dumb things I wasn't thinking about.

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I'd definitely have to say it all depends on the person as well; how much self control they have. I'm coming up on the my 2 year "anniversary" of my Diagnosis and still have problems remaining gluten-free (especially since I'm at college). Self control is going to help you as much as anything, because you can be totally aware that something has gluten in it, but it happened to be your favorite dessert and you just have to have a bite of it...you know how it is :) Anyways, I wish you the best of luck with adjusting to the diet, and remember that we are all here for you, to cheer you on through the first difficult months.

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I've been gluten-free for six months now and recently found myself sticking my tongue under the kitchen faucet because I had accidently licked an envelope! My family was cracking up! I was, too! I've learned to keep my sense of humor...

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Emily,

Thank you for your support! And after that horrible day yesterday, I think I can do better, much better! I'm likening it to aversion therapy! Ice cream, nuts, and candy are all on my yuck list now. They have given me my last problems.

Dana,

Too funny! I hope I can remember about licking stamps or envellopes! But, my friends think I'm nuts to quit using make-up, skin, and hair products, due to gluten in them. It's partly because of the contradictory results. But, the Dr. said to try gluten-free, and I think it will work, when I get wiser!

BTW, I feel a lot better today! And vow to try harder with gluten-free and more easily digestible foods!

Thanks ladies! :)

Nita

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Nita, you are trying so hard, you deserve a medal! Your posts are always upbeat and you maintain your enthusiasm even when we give you more "no-no's"!!! Believe me, you will be glad you went gluten-free on the cosmetics--I never had gluten sensitivity skin-wise until I went gluten-free, now I react severely to it, so much so that I almost freaked out at the hairdresser's from having a headful of hydrolized wheat-protein shampoo! I just wasn't thinking about cosmetics being a problem, and I learned the hard way. Contact dermatitis is a real threat to all of us, apparently it can happen at any stage of recovery, cause that's what happened to me. People who don't live with celiac disease often don't have a clue...get used to the blank stares and discouraging comments. (They do mean well, they just have no idea what you're talking about. My sister asked me if I could still eat meat.) You know you are on the right track, and so do we!

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OK Dana, one medal for me!!! THank you for the encouragement, I appreciate it! I actually had a very good day today. I guess it'll show me how good I can feel, just being gluten-free. I've only been trying for a week, with a couple of mistakes. I CAN do this!

I have to say, this board and posters like you, have been a blessing. I would've never gotten any help otherwise. The whole thing is amazing to me, so guess I should realize others won't have a clue, as I didn't so recently. I'll try to be patient with the blank looks from now on! :)

Nita

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Thanks for all the encouragement and advice from everyone. My pasta tasting episode gave me a DH flare up. Just from a couple noodles! But now I understand why my dermatologist told me I had to go gluten-free. And I can totally relate to the envelope incident because I did the exact same thing a few days ago. My family thinks I'm nuts! (My 17 year old daughter has a peanut allergy and SHE understands perfectly!)

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Pegster,

I have had sores on my elbows and knees off and on for over 8 months. I didn't have a clue what they were, seemed like infected hair follicles, or ingrown hairs. I still haven't been to a dermatologist, as since I've been diagnosed, haven't had as much gluten, and now none, I hope! So, unless I have a flare-up, I won't know for sure that's what it is. I'd sure bet it is! But, in this case, I need a 2nd opinion!!! :D

Good luck with your gluten-free diet! Are you only doing gluten-free because of the dermatitis kind? Have you had an endoscopy?

Nita

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I only had a positive biopsy for DH- and some blood tests, too, which I will repeat in a month or so. My DH disappeared after just a few weeks gluten-free and my stomach problems have gone away too. Who would have thought a dermatologist could figure out why I've had digestive problems since I was a teenager? Now if I can just stop licking envelopes and tasting pasta....

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Well, if only I had been more concerned about my sores! I even mentioned them to my Dr. last fall, but she didn't look at them, just said one can get ingrown hairs on their elbows! I see her on Tues, so will show the scars to her this time! And discuss what the GI Dr. and I have done and my doing a gluten-free diet. I would see a Dietician here, if one was very good at gluten-free. If not, I won't, as I have to pay for that. This board has been of the utmost help with celiac disease and gluten-free!

I'm feeling good again today! Third whole day in a row! I will get the hang of this!!! I have party today and a baby shower tomorrow. Both challenges, but I'm sure my last painful mistakes are still with me, so will be very careful!

Thanks!

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Well, after a week of eating right, and almost crying on the way home from the baby shower, because I couldn't have cake, I have been feeling well.

Until today. This eating out is such a challenge. Thurs. I had to leave a diner at the mall, because I couldn't find anything on their menu to choose from. Then yesterday I met friends for lunch. We went where I could get a baked potato with bacon and cheddar. Wrong, not on the weekends. One had already ordered, so I had salad bar. Unfortunately no gluten-free dressing. I used very, very sparingly, but had a bad rumbly, grumbly stomach last evening. Now I'm tired and sluggish, sort of down feeling. No energy, a bit puffy, achey joints, for whatever reason!

Does anyone know of a gluten-free dressing to buy in packets, to be carried along, for this purpose? It sure would help, as then I could eat something, most anywhere.

Nita

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One of the web sites has Annie's dressing in packets for traveling. Try the Gluten Free Pantry or do a search. Annie's may have a website of their own. Shirley

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I looked up the salad dressings on glutenfreepantry.com and they have several of Annie's dressings in packets at 79 cents a packet. Shirley

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Shirley,

Thank you so much for the info! I just looked it up and was going to order the dressing packets and another item, until I saw the shipping! It sure makes it expensive! I will try to get one of the local stores to carry some, first! If not, I'll check to see how much I can order, with the lowest shipping price. I wouldn't mind ordering more, if I knew I'd like the products! Any other suggestions, anyone????

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Okay, after a bad day at home, just from a tad bit of dressing yesterday, I bit the bullet and ordered the dressing packets! I just perservered on the glutenfreepantry site, until I figured out how much I could get for the minimum shipping! It appears that for me, it was $6.75 for under $25 worth of product. The next amount was $8.25. So, I just adjusted the amount of packets I wanted, with 2 other items to try. We'll see if I like it all! I better like the Ranch dressing, as I ordered 23 packets! I already have Annie's buttermilk Ranch, so hope I like the Cowgirl Ranch. I imagine I will!

Thanks to this board, I get help again! What would I do without all you kind folks???

:)

Nita

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