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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
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henny

Early Menopause?

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I'm 38 and didn't go gluten free until about 2 years ago after having pretty bad symptoms for at least 12 years.

I have been having many menopause symptoms for the past year! I plan to go get myself evaluated and hormone levels measured very soon (had to save up the cash), but isn't this way too young?

Anyone know if untreated gluten intolerance can bring about early menopause? Could going gluten free and getting my energy back have brought this on?

(I am from a diagnosed celiac family but did not pursue diagnosis myself so I just refer to myself as gluten intolerant.)

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I'm 38 and didn't go gluten free until about 2 years ago after having pretty bad symptoms for at least 12 years.

I have been having many menopause symptoms for the past year! I plan to go get myself evaluated and hormone levels measured very soon (had to save up the cash), but isn't this way too young?

Anyone know if untreated gluten intolerance can bring about early menopause? Could going gluten free and getting my energy back have brought this on?

(I am from a diagnosed celiac family but did not pursue diagnosis myself so I just refer to myself as gluten intolerant.)

Celiac Disease and early menopause are strongly linked. It may be from a variety of reasons but I think one of the stronger ones is malnutrition...this can wreak havoc on your hormone levels. I am the only officially diagnosed Celiac in my family but there are many with strong symptoms but they all choose to live in denial.

I was 38 also when I started having severe menopausal symptoms but my cycle didn't stop until I was 45. That was 6 years ago. I will warn you that if you go to a doctor and tell them you are having menopausal symptoms, they may not take you seriously at such a young age. They truly do not get it. They out and out refused to do any hormonal testing on me and I left the office, never to return. Besides, you can start up with symptoms before your hormone levels have really dropped and this is why so many women, who complain about severe symptoms and go to their doctors for help, are told there's nothing wrong and it's all in your head! One piece of advice I can give you is your progesterone levels will drop first, before your estrogen levels do, when true menopause (that is detectable on blood work) starts. You may have severe symptoms and missed periods for awhile but no doctor considers you menopausal until you haven't had a cycle for 1 year. Honestly, trying to get anyone to take you seriously is akin to trying to be tested for celiac disease.

If you are having normal periods but are symptomatic for other things like hot flashes, changing sleep cycles or difficulty sleeping, it's most likely the start of peri-menopause and it could last up to 10 years before your cycles stop. I do use bio-identical hormones now and have for the past 3 years and it has made a huge difference in how I feel. BTW....my mother was 36 years old when her cycles stopped completely and she went into full blown menopause. I truly believe she is an undiagnosed Celiac as she has many of the symptoms I did. At 77 years old, she absolutely refuses to go gluten-free and her health is not good.

FYI, I went into full blown menopause at 45, one year before I was diagnosed with celiac disease. It was the worst year of my life, health-wise. If you are going into menopause or starting peri-menopause, don't sweat it too much....no pun intended! It's completely normal and and it's nice not having a monthly cycle anymore. Good luck with testing and I hope you can at least get someone to do that but don't be surprised if they tell you there is nothing there

on your blood work. That's more often the norm unless your cycles have stopped for good.

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Celiac can cause an early menopause and it can also cause issues with fertility. When I was diagnosed celiac I asked my OB/GYN if celiac had caused it and he said yes but they don't know why. I saw him about 3 months into the diet when I had some spotting and since I hadn't had a period in a couple years I figured I should check it out. He told me not to be surprised if my periods came back but it was too late for me. If you are still having your period hopefully the perimenopause symptoms will abate soon. Some OB/GYNs may be more open to testing your hormone levels if you are celiac as it is a know cause of 'female' issues.

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Thank you both for the information!

You are right - my regular doc, who thought my stomach pain was 'nerves' for 12 years, refused to consider perimenopause or do any tests.

I will be seeing an OB/GYN soon that I was referred to by my psychiatrist, who is concerned that my recent out-of-the-blue bipolar symptoms may be hormonally-triggered. My mother went from unipolar to bipolar at this age and had perimenopause also at the same time (she is diagnosed celiac)

I am having many symptoms but am still having a tiny bit of period most months. The trouble is that I am on birth control pills so I *should* be having normal periods just due to those. For about the past year I have had some strong periods but mostly just a hint of one, which is absolutely not normal for me.

Anyway, I'm gonna get it all checked out but was glad to hear your experiences. Advice from fellow travelers is immensely comforting, as always.

Thanks

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Celiac Disease and early menopause are strongly linked. It may be from a variety of reasons but I think one of the stronger ones is malnutrition...this can wreak havoc on your hormone levels. ...

snip...

FYI, I went into full blown menopause at 45, one year before I was diagnosed with celiac disease. It was the worst year of my life, health-wise. If you are going into menopause or starting peri-menopause, don't sweat it too much....no pun intended! It's completely normal and and it's nice not having a monthly cycle anymore. Good luck with testing and I hope you can at least get someone to do that but don't be surprised if they tell you there is nothing there on your blood work. That's more often the norm unless your cycles have stopped for good.

My experience is similar to Gemini's. I had no perimenopause symptoms at 47 but BAM I was fully past menopause in about 3 months. Very strange. I was so unhealthy and exactly a year later I was diagnosed with celiac. I think I had celiac since I was 18 but it got so much worse between 46 and 48.

I do agree with ravenwoodglass, though, that if you are not fully through menopause and are now gluten free, there is a chance your hormone levels could return to (near) normal. Just as some who are infertile can get regular ovulation after going gluten-free. And that might be better for you because some of the menopause side-effects are bothersome to me.

Good luck to you!

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Hello,

I'm new to this forum but I was hoping that this would help me with my questions. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and now an autoimmune disorder which may be systemic lupus but docs say they don't have enough evidence of it. Anyways I knew something was wrong with my body when I got continuous aches and pains throughout the 3 or 4 years til now. I have an awful intolerance to gluten which makes my pain 100 times worse. I find that if I eat cookies, cupcakes, anything with wheat or gluten my body just can't handle it and I can hardly move at all. So I have cut gluten and wheat out of my diet but something weird has been happening even though I don't eat it anymore. Yesterday when I woke up in the morning I felt fine, then I went back to bed, and got up, but when I got up the second time I was extremely dizzy, so dizzy I had to make my way back to the bed really fast because I felt so faint, and my body was getting so hot it was so hot that I felt as if I had to open a window, it was cold in my house and cold where I live, and I felt it was so hot that I had to change my pants into shorts and my stomach felt really uneasy. Later on in the day after coming home from a walk I was experiencing this pounding migraine and my muscles and joints where aching so badly. My stomach was feeling queasy again along with the migraine making me feel like I had to vomit, which I indeed did have to vomit quite a bit even though I didn't eat very much at all yesterday. Even before yesterday about a month or two ago I've experienced night sweats, and when I was at a restaurant, I felt like my body was completely overheating and dizzy, and the person I was with wasn't hot at all, and apparently it was just me. I'm only 25, and I'm kind of getting scared. I'm going to go see a doc probably tomorrow but can you get early menopause at the age of 25. I haven't even had any kids yet so I'm freaking out because I don't want to be infertile, I'm not sure if this may be symptoms of fibro and I've talked to some fibro sufferers but I feel like my symptoms are getting kind of scary.

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Alli the symptoms you are describing happen to me when I get CC'd. You may have had a small amount of gluten slip in somewhere. Eating in restaurants is risky for us sometimes even if they have a gluten-free menu. Processed food is also risky at times. What is your diet typically like? Have you eliminated gluten from your personal care products like shampoos, makeup, lotion etc? If you have a significant other make sure they brush their teeth well before you have a deep kiss as a bit of gluten reside can get us. You may also find a sublingual B12 tablet helpful with stuff like fatigue, just make sure it is gluten free.

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Hello,

I'm new to this forum but I was hoping that this would help me with my questions. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and now an autoimmune disorder which may be systemic lupus but docs say they don't have enough evidence of it. Anyways I knew something was wrong with my body when I got continuous aches and pains throughout the 3 or 4 years til now. I have an awful intolerance to gluten which makes my pain 100 times worse. I find that if I eat cookies, cupcakes, anything with wheat or gluten my body just can't handle it and I can hardly move at all. So I have cut gluten and wheat out of my diet but something weird has been happening even though I don't eat it anymore. Yesterday when I woke up in the morning I felt fine, then I went back to bed, and got up, but when I got up the second time I was extremely dizzy, so dizzy I had to make my way back to the bed really fast because I felt so faint, and my body was getting so hot it was so hot that I felt as if I had to open a window, it was cold in my house and cold where I live, and I felt it was so hot that I had to change my pants into shorts and my stomach felt really uneasy. Later on in the day after coming home from a walk I was experiencing this pounding migraine and my muscles and joints where aching so badly. My stomach was feeling queasy again along with the migraine making me feel like I had to vomit, which I indeed did have to vomit quite a bit even though I didn't eat very much at all yesterday. Even before yesterday about a month or two ago I've experienced night sweats, and when I was at a restaurant, I felt like my body was completely overheating and dizzy, and the person I was with wasn't hot at all, and apparently it was just me. I'm only 25, and I'm kind of getting scared. I'm going to go see a doc probably tomorrow but can you get early menopause at the age of 25. I haven't even had any kids yet so I'm freaking out because I don't want to be infertile, I'm not sure if this may be symptoms of fibro and I've talked to some fibro sufferers but I feel like my symptoms are getting kind of scary.

I've had nausea, vomiting, sweats, chill, and dizziness as migraine aura before. I usually have no warning at all. It's only happened a couple of times, but it was so intense, I called into work and presumed it was stomach flu until the headache started.

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My experience is similar to Gemini's. I had no perimenopause symptoms at 47 but BAM I was fully past menopause in about 3 months. Very strange. I was so unhealthy and exactly a year later I was diagnosed with celiac. I think I had celiac since I was 18 but it got so much worse between 46 and 48.

I do agree with ravenwoodglass, though, that if you are not fully through menopause and are now gluten free, there is a chance your hormone levels could return to (near) normal. Just as some who are infertile can get regular ovulation after going gluten-free. And that might be better for you because some of the menopause side-effects are bothersome to me.

Good luck to you!

I think going gluten-free may be (unfortunately) reversing my menopause just as I thought I was finishing that little project. Where do I get more medical information on this??

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I'm one of those whose symptoms were so mild I never knew I had it. It was the psoriasis that tipped me off. It too was mild at first although it started twelve years ago. But my early meonopause symptoms started 20 years ago. Makes me wonder if I had celiac for a lot longer than I had thought. Makes me wonder what kind of damage I really had/have. I sure wish I could have been tested, and that I could afford to get vitamin levels and thyroid tests.

I feel a lot better than I did, now that I have been gluten-free for a year and a half. But I wonder sometimes if I'll ever feel REALLY good again. :(

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