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LonelyWolf307

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About LonelyWolf307

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  1. As an update, I've been following the gluten-free diet pretty much since I made this post. I've felt infinitely better, my stomach isn't distended anymore. Honestly I'm about 99% sure this is what my issue is, it's been a problem pretty much since I last stopped going gluten-free after being told I didn't need to. I see the doctor next in late January - seeing if my ALT or AST levels have normalized will kinda confirm it in my mind. Either way it's most definitely worth it to stick to the diet if it's helping this much after like a week or two. An official diagnosis would be lovely so that doctors don't think I'm nuts but otherwise the only thing I need is "do this to feel better".
  2. All right, so long story time. I'm currently 20 and have had GI problems for years. When I was 15-16 or so is when it started, I had a lot of pain when I ate, a lot of bloating, nausea, sometimes vomiting, etc. It caused a lot of problems just with eating. I've been tried on reglan, zofran, most of the anti-nausea meds along with things like prilosec, etc for "acid reflux" which was their initial diagnosis (it never felt like acid reflux though, it was a bloating sort of pain not a burning one). It went on for almost a year before I finally saw a GI about it. Pretty much the first thing the nurse practitioner I saw thought I was a suspected case of Celiac, but they ruled it out with the blood test. The GI nurse practitioner suggested I try a gluten-free diet anyway, and scheduled me for an upper GI with biopsy just to be sure. So I was on a gluten-free diet for a good month or two before we got a chance to do the upper GI, but my symptoms were all but resolved at that point. The biopsy came back negative, though they said they found a lot of very small ulcers in the upper portion of the small intestine and re-prescribed the antacids. They also did a stomach emptying study which came back fine. They told me that I could go off the gluten-free diet, I stayed on it for about 6 months just because I felt better like that, and then I gradually re-introduced a few things like oats, and the rare piece of bread and other things that were previously off-limits. Now ever since re-introducing it I've had on-and-off problems with my GI tract. They've never been horrible, but I've also never been a big fan of most wheat products. I don't eat much for grains, and most of my gluten exposure is through things like soy sauce and things that have wheat as an additive but not a main ingredient. The symptoms are roughly the same, bloating, nausea, occasional vomiting (rare), that hungry-but-don't want to eat sort of feeling, you know? Recently it's gotten REALLY bad though, ever since my fiance moved in with me several months ago I've been eating a lot more wheat products because that's what he's used to eating and he makes french toast, etc a lot. It didn't really flare up or get bad until that point. It's pretty bad right now, I've gained around 10 lbs since he moved in in June (I'm only about 140 lbs, was 130, and 5'8", so 10 is a lot for me) and it's almost entirely abdomen as far as I can tell because my belly both looks and feels bloated 24/7, even if it's morning and I haven't eaten in 12+ hours. Eating is extremely uncomfortable and it's hard not to just avoid eating entirely at this point. Now I have been stressed out the last month or so, so I thought it might be that, but I hadn't realized that Celiac had some other symptoms as well... My liver enzymes have pretty much always been elevated. The last time I had them checked my ALT was around 80 and my AST was around 200. I was evaluated for those of course but everything came back just fine so they weren't sure why mine were so high; I never drink and I don't have hepatitis or any problems with the liver and I'm not on any drugs that would elevate those enzymes (can't take NSAIDs and don't take anything else but birth control). My hematocrit and hemoglobin are pretty much always a bit lower than they should be (hematocrit around 35% and Hb around 10-11 on average), and my other blood cell counts are on the low end of normal. I've been treated for iron deficiency anemia a few times and the iron pills have been sorta effective but only brought my Hb up to around 12.5ish (barely high enough to donate blood) even after being on them for a month, which is odd because I eat a lot of meat, spinach and greens, etc and my diet isn't deficient in iron at all (and even when I try to eat more of those things it's ineffective). I'm wondering how accurate the blood tests they use for Celiac are, and if it might be a good idea to re-try a gluten-free diet? I'm kind of at a loss for what else to do because this won't resolve. It started when I was about 15 and I'm now 20, and while it's waxed and waned I don't want to deal with it anymore. Should I bother to try to get re-tested even though they were negative last time, or should I attempt self-diagnosis if trying a gluten-free diet is effective in relieving symptoms? If it is am I stuck gluten-free for life?? Oh something else relevant - I have many bad allergies already so I wouldn't be entirely surprised at an autoimmune problem. My list of barely avoiding anaphylaxis-responses includes soaps, lotions, beestings, and MSG; I'm also extremely allergic to cats but I don't get the hives/throat swelling with them.
  3. Just one specification; I've heard it's only maltodextrin in foods that is regulated, and is always from corn unless otherwise specified. Meaning things like medications with maltodextrin as fillers aren't necessarily gluten-free, to my knowledge. Might want to look out for things like that. Personally I try to avoid any processed foods at all, save things like rice flours, and do all my own cooking just to avoid cross-contamination issues. Plus it's a whole lot healthier that way.
  4. Wow, solid poop would make me want to cry... I had chronic constpiation with diarrhea, so I consider myself lucky when my colon's not impacted... That's great that you're having regular stools though!
  5. I'm relatively newly self-diagnosed and I have problems digesting anything but fresh fruit and veggies, and limited amounts of soy. Just give it a little time, a few months at least, and if it doesn't start to clear up you might have a problem with beef.
  6. ...your family thinks you're crazy for not tasting their new chocolate chocolate chip cookie recipe, because surely a little nibble couldn't hurt right?
  7. Yeah, it could very easily have been the flour dust, if nothing else getting on my food and contaminating it. I eat little other than fresh fruits, soy by-products and beans, fresh veggies, and small amounts of brown rice, grits, and mashed potato flakes. On rare occasion I'll have some gluten-free bread that is oil-free save some flax seed I use as oil replacement, but I don't like to do that because it has egg whites in it as egg replacer doesn't work well for me in bread recipes. Perhaps I should wear a surgical mask while making anything with flour in it? Or just stop making anything with flour in it and see if that clears things up after a month or two.
  8. That's probably a good idea - but I can't afford to make cookies out of rice flours, so my dad and everyone else will just have to go without. I only bake breads for myself because that's what's most economical, being a college student who has more than enough on her plate without making the part-time job a full-time by doing night shifts at the nursing home as well. I'm always good about washing my hands VERY thoroughly (damn medical training taught me to wash my hands relatively obsessively), but I use the same pans and dishes as my dad does, who still eats gluten and won't go gluten-free. Am I damned to keep getting glutened because of possibly contaminated dishes until I move out or if I wash them thoroughly enough can I avoid it? I really can't afford to keep getting glutened - I ride my bike to and from work and school, half an hour ride up and down hills each way, and am on my feet lifting and rolling old people all day, and because I tend to cause problems and on rare occasion accidents when I'm this sluggish I really can't afford get this tired.
  9. I had a jar of the Slim-Fast that you mix with water to make your own smoothies not long ago, the label says that it may contain traces of wheat. I wouldn't risk it.
  10. Does anyone else get sluggish after an accidental glutening? I had something yesterday that must have gotten some of the wheat flour dust that I have for baking stuff for everyone else in the family/when I feel like making cookies to bring to the nursing home residents I work with on it. I feel like a slug today, and while I know I'm not physically tired, and I'm not hungry or anything, I just can't get moving at all. Does anyone else get like this, and how long will it take until it's worn off and I have the energy to go for a run or something again?
  11. I've actually had very good luck with a model made by Sunbeam, it's sold at Wal-mart stores for about $40, and you can buy it through their online store if you want. I haven't tried any of the settings other than white bread(it has 12, 3 crust settings, and the option of making a 1 1/2 pound loaf or a 2 pound loaf), but it's always managed to turn out good gluten-free and regular loaves for me. And the price is right too. It never seems to get breads over or underdone for me, and I experiment with recipes and everything so that's always a plus. I've never tried the Zoji so I wouldn't know, but I don't plan on buying one because they're out of my price range.
  12. If you can find any dairy-free chocolate chips, semisweet maybe, it seems like pretty much everyone except me likes this recipe (I don't like chocolate unless it's in its bitter, unsweetened form). It's from Bette Hagman's vast collection. 3 cups marshmallows 1 cup chunky peanut butter, or creamy, but add peanuts to taste 2 cups chocolate chips 1 stick butter Melt in a microwave, put in a container and let set for a while in the refridgerator, and enjoy. On top of it all, it's next to impossible to mess this one up too
  13. I just made cornbread today actually, and I think it turned out pretty tasty. I just followed the recipe on the corn meal box with the following modifications: -double the amount of egg whites called for -replace the wheat flour called for with either white rice flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour -replace the oils called for with double the amount of flax seed meal, and add as much water as needed to make it the right consistancy -add one and a half times as much baking powder as called for That's all I did and I think it turned out pretty tasty.
  14. I sometimes make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with corn tortillas instead of bread, since I think that gluten-free bread doesn't taste quite as good in sandwiches as it does by itself (the kind you buy is too dense, the kind I make by hand is tastier without any other flavors added on top).
  15. YES! I've been looking for something to use some ginger root I have sitting around the house right now. This sounds absolutely delicious, gotta try it when I get home Thank you!
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