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About Amica

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    Connecticut, USA
  1. Annacsmom- I have two new perspectives for you... I was in college when I went through inital testing for celiac. I was ready to call the school and ask to change my housing to a dorm with a kitchen because I didn't see anyway to eat gluten-free in a cafeteria that cooked mass quantities of food for so many people. I was devastated at the thought of having to stay behind when all my friends went to eat their meals. (It may sound silly, but the cafeteria is one of the hubs of a college campus!) However, when I contacted dining services they were much more helpful than I anticipated... because there were other students on campus with celiac disease!!! They did ask that I call an hour or so before going to the dining hall to let them know I was coming, but that is a fairly small inconvenience compared to having to abandon the ability to eat with peers (and not have to prepare every meal!) A link from this site reports that 1 in 133 people in the U.S. have celiac disease http://www.celiac.com/st_prod.html?p_prodi...-14107565240.0f and I have heard many similar statistics. Maybe it would be worthwhile to bring this to the schools attention? Even if your daughter attends a small school, I bet she is not the only one dealing with this on campus! Cafeterias are used to being careful about cross contamination of nuts and other foods with high allergy rates, so pointing out the rising rate of celiac disease may help get things going for those on gluten-free diets! Also, I currently work in childcare and order food from a food service company. Although I can't speak for all food service distrubutors, I know that ours (and probably many others) have entire sections of their catologue dedicated to food allergies and intolerances. The cook for our preschool makes lunch for 60 little ones everyday. She deals with a variety of allergies and intolernces, including celiac disease. She is able to order food for all of the children from our company, and keeps the gluten-free food in a designated spot in the kitchen. It's likely that the college's food service company (if not another they could order from) could offer them a list of gluten-free products they could buy. Good luck!
  2. If anyone is looking to eat ethnic food at a restaurant (or even travel) The Gluten Free Bible has a "Celiac Card" printed in many different languages in the back of the book. You could easily copy them for the chef to get the process started!
  3. Thanks for the help everyone! I am going to call to make an appointment with my Doctor tomorrow. I'm glad to go in knowing what tests to ask for!
  4. I was diagnosed with a gluten sennsitivity in 2004. My Doc said I did not have celiac disease because my endoscopy results were negative (after a few weeks eating gluten-free). Since then I have been comfortably eating a "low gluten" diet. After hearing more and more about the health problems associated with untreated celiac disease, I have been doing some research online. Since my diet is not entirely gluten free, I want to make sure I don't have celiac. I am considering going back to my doctor soon, and asking for a full celiac panel. I had my first (and only) blood screening for celiac in 2003. My Doctor ordered tests for anti-gliadin (AGA) antibodies. My results were as follows: Anti-gliadin (IgG): 50 (with greater than 30 indicating a moderate to strong positive) Anti-gliadin (IgA): 10 (with less than 20 indicating a negative) However, today I was reading about the meaning of each test on labtestsonline.org and found that "AGA IgG and IgA are often ordered together so that their results can be compared. If one is positive, both should be - unless the patient has an IgA deficiency." I started looking into IgA deficiency, and it is a pretty serious auto-immune disease that I don't really show any symptoms of. (I work with kids and do get occasional colds, but have never considered myself to have a weak immune system.) Is there anyone out there with IgA deficiency? Also, is any antibody test-- AGA, EMA, ARA, or tTg-- anymore reliable than the other? Should I ask my doctor for all of these tests? If I do have the tests, should I "gluten-up" for them? I haven't been completely gluten free in over a year, but do limit it in my diet. Please share advice!
  5. Lynda- I just came to this messsage boardto this site hoping for an answer to the same question!! I started having problems about 7 years ago. At first, I had occasional discomfort and diarrhea. They gradually worsened, and I began to tie them to specific foods, particularly acidic and greasy foods. I switched to low orange acid juice, then stopped drinking it at all, and cut tomato sauces from my diet. If I ate these foods, I would have severe stomach pains that would send me to the couch, followed by diarrhea. I also had less predictable periods of constipation and diarrhea. When things continued to worsen, I finally saw my physician. He immediately considered celiac disease as a possibility, and ordered bloodtests. The tests showed that my gluten antibodies were at a high level, but nothing else was wrong (no anemia, etc.) He referred me to a GI doctor. But since the whole thing was happening during the holidays (Christmas and New Years) it was a few weeks until I met with the GI doc and had a biopsy. In the meantime, I started myself on a gluten-free diet. I hit up all the health food stores in my area, began searching for recipes, trying to explain the disease to my family and friends. But then... My biopsy results came back negative. The doctor told me that I had a "sensitivity" and not an "intolerance," so consuming gluten wouldn't be detrimental to my health. He said I was free to eat whatever I wanted to. I was simply shocked because my symptoms had disappeared on the diet... I even found that I could breathe easier when exercising. This diagnosis was all about 3 years ago. Now, I have a "low gluten" diet (I don't eat pastas or breads, but share normal condiments with my family and snag the occasional cookie). I don't have the same GI symptoms I had before. However, I have always had a constant doubt about the diagnosis in the back of my mind. I have since read many articles that stress the importance of being on a normal diet containing gluten when having a biopsy. I have also become aware of the diverse symptoms and stories of celiac disease... some people have almost no symptoms while some are extremely ill at the slightest contamination. While I generally feel OK now, my concern is that I could have a case of celiac with less dramatic symptoms, and it could go undiscovered for a long time since I have a "low gluten" diet. I have struggled to find any information about "gluten sensitivity"... except that there is no research on whether a sensitivity can develop into celiac disease. And, as many have posted, there is conflicting information on how long it takes for intestines to heal on a gluten-free diet, or become damaged while consuming gluten. When I expressed some doubts to my GI doctor, he said that he could do more blood tests while I was on the two diets, but since I already had a positive test, I'm not sure how that would make the situation any more clear. If anyone has any information on "gluten sensitivity" or advice on testing/diagnosis, please share!! -Amy -
  6. Hi everyone! I am brand new to the board and looking for a doctor in the area who may be able to help me. I have a "gluten sensitivity" diagnosis, but am looking for someone else to hear my story and give me a second opinion/more testing. I am on a "low gluten" diet now, and I want to be sure that it is a healthy thing for me to do! If anyone can recommend a specialist in CT area, please do! Thanks! Amy
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