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About paulstefano

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  1. If you are just gluten intorlerant and not Celiac, it could take quite a while for the diet to work. I've found in my case, the diet helps a lot right away, but it takes some time for symptoms to completely go away (or so the theory goes). I actually have never gotten completely better, but have never been Gluten Free for more than a month. I'm hoping that after 6 months or more of being Gluten Free, that I will have no symptoms anymore.
  2. paulstefano


    There are lots of mail order services available that will send you gluten free foods.
  3. I just had this happen last week. It's got to be a weird coincidence, though. I was carrying a heavy object over my head at the time. All of a sudden, I had a stabbing pain in my back, right between the shoulder blades. It never went away though. I've had back pain ever since, for about a week. I have to think it's a muscle pull, not related to celiac, but you never know.
  4. The Gluten free diet is not lacking in nutrients. In fact, the western diet, so dependent on wheat flour, is what is mal-nutritious. I think you'll find that by following a gluten free diet you'll actually get more nutrients and thus gain weight. Case in point. I used to love to eat pastries for dessert. Pie, cakes, cookies. Love them. In a gluten free diet, while it's not impossible to eat those things, if made with the right ingredients, it is much harder. Now, I'll typically eat some grapes, or canteloupe fo dessert instead. Much healthier and more nutritious.
  5. Don't sweat the diagnosis. Any Gastroenterologist worth his/her salt will tell you Crohn's and Colitis diagnosis are very difficult. Even when a diagnosis is positive, it's not always concrete. My situation went that way. From a Crohns diagnosis, (maybe) to Colitis, to complete limbo. The only thing that has seemed to help is a gluten free diet. Bottom line is, there is a way to deal with just about anything. Reading medical journals on the effect of Crohn's will scare the bejesus out of you, but it's not always so bad.
  6. paulstefano


    YES, YES, YES symptoms can come and go. Read my recent post entitled Ulcerative Colitis vs. Gluten Sensitivity in this section. Try the Gluten free diet, even for a few weeks. It's easier than you think. Places like Whole Foods carry everything you could imagine made from Gluten Free ingredients. If you feel better, than you know you can help yourself with a gluten-free diet. If not, no harm done, you've just joined the millions of Americans who have tried to diet.
  7. Hello, I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis 4 years ago. Well, I say 4 years ago, but it's not that cut and dry. I was first told I had Crohn's disease by a Gastroenenterologist in 2000. Based on a convenience, I started seeing another doctor. He also told me I had Crohn's disease. After moving, again, I sought out another doctor. He did 2 colonoscopys over 2 years and decided I actually have Colitis, located in the extreme distill colon. Now, after over a year of trial and error therapy with steroids and mesalamine, I was still having problems. My doctor was about to suggest using immune suppressant therapy with a drug called imuran. This scared the heck out of me. These drugs suppress the immune system to stop it from causing symptoms. The side effect is the body is exposed to all other germs, with a weakened defense system. After discussing, my Doctor suggested seeing a pharmacist friend of his who runs a natural medicine shop. He finally suggested the link between Celiac and colitis. He suggested going on a gluten free diet, while using some natural supplements. Immediately, I noticed a difference. Although I only stayed on the diet a month, I noticed I felt signifcantly better. Nearly all of my colitis symptoms went away. I recently started eating gluten again. I started off, for instance by eating a whole pizza. It took 3 days, but after that time, I felt terrible again. It's my opinion, that I have at least a gluten sensitivity, if not full blown Celiac disease. I am now back on a gluten free diet, and will remain on it for the foreseeable future. So what's the moral of the story? Ask questions. Do research on your own. I live in Baltimore, home of the Johns Hopkins University Hospital, perhaps the finest medical institution in the world. All 3 of the gastroenterologists I visited were graduates of Hopkins, yet it took visiting a pharmacist (who graduated from University of Maryland, not exactly a correspondence school) to suggest the gluten connection. Luckily, my current Hopkins disciple, is very open minded. It was he who referred me to the natural medicine center. He suggested seeing an acupuncturist, and is very interested in what I have discovered about my own situation, so that he may share it with other patients. Now there is significant research to suggest that a build up of gluten in the system can cause a celiac like response. There is an article on this web site that makes that argument. The problem is, there is a build up. Unlike classic Celiac disease, I don't have immediate reactions. I can eat an entire loaf of bread and feel fine that night. If I do that for several days in a row, though, the symptoms flare up. The same is true in reverse. If I start a gluten free diet, it is not an immediate cure. It took a few weeks for me to notice a difference, and even then I had symptoms. I'm hoping that in a few months I will be symptom free. We'll see. The bottom line is there is no clear cut answer to the Ulcerative Colitis vs. Gluten Sensitivity question. Maybe some day.