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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

Celiac Vs Wheat Allergy

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I have lots of gas and multiple bowl movements/day. I also have low iron, low zinc, and poor night vision. I don't have stomach pains though.

I talked to my doctor about it and he told me just to try the diet and I do feel better on it and have a lot more gas and brain fog when I do eat wheat although I'm not super sensitve to it. I'm really just wondering if I have celiac or a wheat allergy. I can't really find a clear distinction when I search for it.

Mostly I'm wondering this because I'm having a horrible time with the diet mostly because I probably have some form of a syndrome (polycystic cystic ovarian syndrome) that prevents me from eating high glycemic foods like potatoes, rice and corn and I don't know what to eat anymore! Oh, and I'm allergic to soy. I can eat lots of veggies, fruit, meat and dairy, but that doesn't do it for me. I also have a history of eating disorders so I'm having a hard time eating the higher calorie substitutes because I don't want to gain weight. It is kind of a triple whammy for me to since 1. they are higher in calories, 2. I'm more sensitive to the high glycemic index foods they are made from, and 3. now if my villi are all happy they can absorb more.

I think I'm going to try the York lab panal in December when I have some money but right now I'm very poor, in vet school, and have no insurance so I'm just wondering if I really have it. I have something, but how do I know if it is celiac or a wheat allergy?

Thank you and sorry for being so negative. You guys are always so supportive and I'm just a little frustrated with it right now.

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The difference between a wheat allergy and a gluten intolerance is the portion of the immune system reacting to the wheat protein. In the case of a wheat allergy, it's IgE molecules that bind with wheat protein and wreck havoc. In the case of a gluten intolerance, it's the IgG (and IgA) molecultes that do it. Additionally, with a wheat allergy, you can eat oats, and (depending on the severity), barley and rye.

It's tricky to tell the difference without doing any medical tests, given that the symptoms of gluten intolerance overlap with the symptoms of a wheat allergy in some people. You could always give oats or rye a try and see if you react to that the way you react to wheat. The fact that you have nutrient deficientcies, however, points towards poor absorbtion, which is a feature of gluten-intolerance, and not a wheat allergy. If you are gluten intolerant, you must avoid ALL gluten, whether you are super sensitive or not.

I understand that difficulty of dealing with high-glycemic index foods - I'm hypoglycemic myself. The key here is that the sum of your meal needs to have a low glycemic load. That does allow some portion of the meal to include higher glycemic foods, as long as it is balanced with foods that slow the release of sugars into the bloodstream so you don't require a level of insulin output you can't support. Of course, it doesn't make it realistic to eat a lot of high carb meals, but there are a lot of other options out there.

You may find it easier to focus on whole foods, and not substitutes for gluten-filled foods. For instance, you could make a stir fry with vegetables and chicken breast, cooked with some canola oil, and served over brown rice. With plenty of vegetables, and a cup of rice, you're looking at a very filling lunch or dinner for 400-500 calories that is full of nutrition and enough protein and fat to keep you from needing a quick burst of insulin to deal with the blood sugar increase. Or you can make a meaty chili that goes relatively light on the beans (replaced by lower-glycemic vegetables) that has enough protein, fat, and fiber. Of course, you may be more or less sensitive to carbohydrates, but most everyone with issues surrounding their blood sugar and/or insulin merely need to find the proper ratio that their body can handle.

As long as you keep your total calories down, you won't gain weight, but as you noted, you will start absorbing nutrients better and you may find your weight unstable for a few months. Realize that your body is adjusting to being healthy, and a weight gain you see now need in no way be a permanent gain. Keep doing the research you're doing, and you'll find, in a few months, you've gotten a lot of inormation that makes these decisions much easier.

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Thanks for the response, Tiffany!

I really appreciate it. I'm kind of lost right now. I think I will get tested during Christmas when brain fog is ok because I'm really wondering if there is something else going on. I think I need tests in order to make me commit because it is really hard! It is ok most of the time but I have crazy cravings or I want to eat for convenence. I am trying to come up with new and easy meal ideas too. Thanks.

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Have you been tested for hypothyroidism? Brain fog and polycystis are both symptoms of Hypothyroidism also. You might get checkout for it also.

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Yes, I've been tested for hypothyroidism many many times. Thank you for mentioning because it is a real common problem and I think a lot more people need to be tested for it. My TSH is always between 1 and 1.5 which is really good.

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    • Teresa,  You posted this same question yesterday.  You did get a response, but you did not answer the questions asked which might help you.  We can not diagnose you over the internet.  We are not doctors, but just people who can not consume gluten.  We share tips, our personal experiences, and ask questions about the gluten free diet.   If you have or suspect DH, read through the DH section for coping strategies.  Keep to the gluten free diet.  Talk to your doctor!  It might NOT even be related to celiac disease!  
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