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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

Can't Stick To My gluten-free Diet
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I don't have celiac, but I'm gluten intolerant/gluten sensitive.

My reaction isn't severe. I won't be rushed to the ER if i accidentally consume gluten. If a crumb of gluten gets in my food, it won't affect me.

When I consume large amounts of it, I get "raccoon eyes," fatigue, stomach bloating, a rash, and abdominal cramps. So it's not that bad. My family doesn't eat gluten free so we have tons of crackers and cookies and all the good gluten-filled stuff at home. When I'm home alone, I eat them. Of course I'm sick for like 2-3 hours afterwards, sometimes it lasts until the next day. Waah but how can I stop eating gluten? My parents dont buy gluten-free stuff cause it's "too expensive."

Suggestions anyone??

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Have you been tested with ALL of the tests? I ask because from what I have read here, so many doctors either don't do all of the right tests, or don't perform them properly. And then half the time they don't know how to READ them properly either.

I am self-diagnosed so I have no idea if I am celiac or simply "gluten intolerant". But more and more, I'm starting to believe there IS no such thing as gluten intolerant. I treat gluten like poison because even though I don't get any digestive symptoms to speak of, I know I COULD be doing damage to my gut. And even if I'm not, I think it could turn into full blown celiac at any time.

There are all sorts of recipes on this forum for things made with ordinary ingredients that your folks probably keep on hand anyway. There was one the other day using a mashed banana, some peanut butter, and an egg. I think they were making both cookies and crackers with this. (I can't do peanuts so I don't remember exactly.)

But the point is, it isn't worth the RISK of doing damage, just to have that gluten-filled snack. Especially when there are INEXPENSIVE alternatives. Take some control. Learn to make foods you can enjoy that won't make you sick. You'll go through gluten withdrawal for a few weeks, but once you come out the other side I'd bet you find that you had OTHER symptoms, subtle ones, that you didn't even realize you had.

And you'll start feeling REALLY REALLY good.

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I haven't been tested for celiac. I was self diagnosed like you...I went gluten free and felt a whole lot better. My doctor said to go to an allergist. Since I had already gone gluten free, I couldn't get the celiac test. He said to just assume im gluten intolerant. So i guess Im in the same boat as you. Not sure if I have celiac or if I'm gluten sensitive/intolerant. And I guess I should be scared of damaging my system...

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"And I guess I should be scared of damaging my system..."

Yes, you should. Don't mess with it. My Mom was one of those whom it took YEARS to diagnose, and she ended up with permanent damage, had to have her parathyroid removed, needed injections of vitamins because her villi were so far gone that they never would heal. And then she died, either from leukemia which was brought on by the celiac, or as I suspect, it might have been from pernicious anemia brought on by celiac.

I think because the damage happens slowly, people don't take it as seriously as they should. Thydoid problems, permanent neurological damage, the list of truly horrible things that can happen are endless.

But I think the very best motivation for sticking to the diet is the difference in the way we feel. My digestive symptoms are pretty minor. When I eat gluten I get loose stools and have to go three times each morning. But I never got the "get out of my way" D that so many have.

But my psoriasis cleared up, my insomnia went away, my foggy brain cleared, and my energy level skyrocketed. And now my thin hair is starting to grow back. All of that is worth sticking to the diet, even if I weren't damaging my gut.

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Hmm, do your parents know your doctor said you might be gluten intolerant? That is important information for them to have. The medical knowledge about gluten intolerance or NCGI ( non-celiac gluten intolerance) is limited right now. There hasn't been much study of it so far. There was a study showing that it does exist, but not much of anything else has been learned yet. So you are in a gray zone, much more so than a person with celiac disease.

So there are a couple of approached you can take. You can follow a strict gluten free diet and avoid whatever affect the gluten intolerance would cause. You can ignore the gluten intolerance and hope there are no major health consequences from it. or you can follow a low gluten diet and hope that is not a problem.

one thing to think about is the symptoms you have. If there are symptoms that go away or get better when not eating gluten, that is important. That means something is happening in your body that is negative for your health. Symptoms don't happen for no reason.

Eating gluten-free is not as hard as some people think. You don't have to eat bread or pasta or cookies to be gluten-free. Just don't eat those things at all. Instead eat meats, vegetables, fruit and nuts. Mission corn tortillas are a good sub for bread. They can be used for wraps. Yo will see a lot of people talking about a "whole foods" diet. What they mean is avoiding processed foods like cereals and baked goo9ds and canned goods, pre-made meals etc.

It is easier to avoid gluten if you eat whole foods as the ingredient lists is very short. Oranges are oranges, and there is only one ingredient. Same with a bag of potatoes. When you get into processed foods the often have 10 or more ingredients many of which chemicals and not food. A good approach is to look for foods with 3 or fewer ingredients.

Some helpful threads:

FAQ Celiac com

http://www.celiac.com/gluten-free/forum-7/announcement-3-frequently-asked-questions-about-celiac-disease/

Newbie Info 101

What's For Breakfast Today?

What Did You Have For Lunch Today?

What Are You Cooking Tonight?

How bad is cheating?

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Thanks for the links. Yes ive decided to go completely gluten free. Never another cheat in my life. I'm even saving my own money to buy Gluten free stuff cause my parents think its too expensive...

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I think you need to find a doctor who will test you for celiac. You'll have to eat gluten leading up to the test. If you're not willing to re-introduce gluten, then I believe you should commit 100% to a gluten free diet... because if it is celiac, then you're hurting yourself by cheating.

As to your parents not wanting to buy gluten free snacks, then stick to whole foods... fruit, veggies, nuts, eggs, meat, etc. You can have snacks like rice cakes and peanut butter, tortilla chips and salsa...crunchy snacks help my cravings the most! I hope once they see how much better you're feeling eating gluten free they will become more supportive.

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Here is a search on snack ideas at celiac.com. There are a lot of threads about snack ideas.

Guacamole and sweet potato chips are a nice snack IMHO. Or peanuts.

It is very important to get enough protein when you are healing. Your body needs protein to re-build it's cells. Making the job of healing harder for your body isn't a great idea. If you do have celiac you need to be more active about getting the right nutrition for your body to heal. Celiac causes damage to the villi lining the small intestine and that impairs the bodies ability to absorb vitamins and minerals and food. So people with celiac are often low on some vitamins, and that can slow the healing process more.

Watch out for soy also, some of us have bad reactions to it.

Snack ideas

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