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Hmmm. Anyone know anyhing about wheat intolerance?

(72 Posts)
ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 13:45:09

I fear I may have some sort of wheat intolerance, I've always been bloaty and burpy, swinging between unexplained diarrhea and inexplicable constipation. Just always ignored it TBH, more of an annoyance than a problem. But, over the last 6 months or the bloating has become increasingly more pronounced and uncomfortable and I look pregnant half the time hmm.

Anyway, yesterday I noticed that my belly started to blow up like a balloon reasonably quickly after I'd had a sandwich. I'd been chatting to one of DDs friends mums about her DDs wheat intolerance earlier in the day, so I began to wonder if there may be a connection between my simptoms and wheat too. I usually bloat more and more as the day goes on.

So, today I've not had any wheat and lo and behold my belly is actually getting less swollen as the day goes on. But, yeah, I have other unexplained symptoms too: random extreme itching, dry eyes, coughing, spontaneous hives, endless depression, tiredness, migraine. Um, loads of stuff actually, seems I'm a bit of a mess now I start to think of it. Can any of these be related?

Anyway, does it sound like it'd be worth eliminating wheat for a while to see what happens? It's not something I fancy doing at all, most of my favourite foods are wheat based and having suffered from eating disorders in the past I'm not too keen on doing anything radical to my diet for fear of setting myself off again...

Any advice or wise words (like, 'don't be so damn stupid woman') would be greatly appreciated.

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 13:51:23

Sorry, I should have previewed that and cut it down a bit!

Didn't posted in allergies 'cause, well, allergies are serious, potentially life threatening stuff and this clearly isn't. Would it still be better to post there there though? confused

Carnabystreet Thu 07-Jun-12 15:52:31

It sounds absolutely like a wheat intolerance.

Give it up for 2 weeks- you can stilleat oats, rice and lots of gluten free breads available.

tribpot Thu 07-Jun-12 16:00:54

I would agree, give it up for a fortnight and see what happens. I would post in allergies, making clear you know this is an intolerance rather than something life-threatening, as there will be plenty of advice there from parents of coeliac sufferers.

Personally I would give up oats too for the two-week period; my DH can tolerate oats but not wheat, my ds used to be the other way around and now is fine with both.

Cheapest way to do it is just not to eat wheaty stuff, so rice and potatoes with a main meal, cornflakes (being careful of brand if you're going to be very strict) for breakfast. It's a bit of a pain in the arse getting started, so why not meal plan to take the pressure off a bit? That way we can advise you all in one go instead of as you wonder once again WTF to eat for lunch.

VivaLeBeaver Thu 07-Jun-12 16:04:40

If you're going to do it then do it properly, its not just weetabix, pasta and bread but you need to check the ingredients. A friend of mine has celiac (sp?) disease and has to check the packets of everything - sauces, sausages, etc.

Maybe wheat intolerance isn't as strict as been totally gluten free.....not sure.

Maybe ask your GP, though I think some think that food intolerances are bollocks.

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 16:41:03

Thanks for the replies!


I was hoping you'd all say I was being daft and neurotic TBH - like Viva I tend pretty skeptical about a lot of alleged intolerances (I know someone who claims to be intolerant of refined sugar, for example) but AFAIK there's a lot of evidence for significant sub-allergic reactions to some foods.

Have stayed off wheat products so far today and the old belly is feeling a lot more comfortable I'm way less bloated. Am burping more then ever though hmm.

What's the two week thing about? I think I've seen it mentioned on BF threads where the BF DC has a suspected dairy intolerance but I've no idea what it's about.

So, should I cut out for two weeks and then see the GP or t'other way around? Can they test for this sort of thing or only for proper allergies? As I said I'm terrified wary of making drastic changes to my diet (especially when I do actually have some excess weight, as I do now) because of my previous problems with food.

Is an ignored intolerance something that just carries on as it is or would it get worse over time / cause some sort of damage?

I menu plan already so I'll just adapt for myself for the coming week and then plan properly before the next shop.

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 16:43:42

I must say, I'm absolutely sick to death of the random itchiness and sudden hives. Have needed anti-histamines most days for the last few weeks and was pondering seeing the GP anyway. Hate going to the GP...

TMilligan Thu 07-Jun-12 16:50:22

Go to the gp and ask to be tested for coeliac disease (blood test first off) to rule it out. I went gluten free - that's completely off all wheat, rye, oats and barley (except for special gluten free oats) and found it totally changed things for me - previously diagnosed as severe IBS - this was 13 years ago.

Then my mum got diagnosed coeliac, so I went to the gp and he explained that I will have to go back onto gluten containing foods for minimum of 2 weeks before I can be tested for coeliac disease - no way am I doing that. So, my mum gets her gluten free bread and pasta for free and I don't.

If you aren't diagnosed as a coeliac, then yes, it might be worth giving coming off wheat a go - there's loads of books about wheat / gluten free eating in libraries for some help.

Good luck

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 16:51:41

But, but, but coeliac disease is damn serious left untreated, isn't it? Surely I'd know if I had that???

VivaLeBeaver Thu 07-Jun-12 16:55:02

My friend who is cealiac had loads of digestive problems and went to the Dr and was diagnosed. It started off fairly minor symptoms but afaik the symptoms get progressively worse. If he was now to eat a slice of non gluten free cake by accident he'd have terrible stomach cramps and possibly vomiting. But he wasn't that bad to start off with.

Chestnutx3 Thu 07-Jun-12 17:00:40

I was tested for coeliac and came out negative. I went wheat free for a month two years ago, all my symptons disappeared and after that I did eat wheat but to a lesser extent and I've been fine since. Its not necessarily a life sentence!

MoreBeta Thu 07-Jun-12 17:10:25

Procrastination - I have suffered a range of complex digestive and other intolerance/allergy type symptoms for 20 years.

In the end, I excluded all wheat, barley and other gluten conatining foods as well as lactose (milk sugar) from my diet and my symptoms dramatically improved. I am currently seeing a coelliac consultant who is doing research on complex unexplained gluten intolerances that do not show up as classic coeliac.

He has told me that a new body of research is showing a huge number of people with complex gluten intolerances that show up only later in life.

I am convinced that the rise of IBS, coeliac and wheat intolerances in the last 25 years are linked to the Western wheat based diet we have and modern manufactured bread/pastry making methods.

My consultant has advised me to be tested for wheat intolerance, as an exclusion test but in reality the true cause of many of the sort of symptoms you describe is not cut and dried but is increasingly common in the population.

I suggest you try to get a coeliac and a wheat allergy test but if you get no proper diagnosis or you do not show up as coeliac or wheat allergic after tests then I suggest a strict exclusion diet that I did and see if it makes a difference.

NB. Only do this after your coelaic tests have been done as these have to be done while you are still eating gluten .

Badvoc Thu 07-Jun-12 17:20:27 interesting!

My mum has Coeliac (only dx 2 years ago when she was 64) and I have had complex digestive issues for about 10 years now...awful constipation, cramps, bloating, nausea, gerd. I have also been dx with gallstones.

I had another blood test 2 weeks ago (was anaemic) and came up neg for coeliac. it worth going wheat free and is that not the same as gluten free?? <dense>

What do I need to do to be wheatfree? bread, cakes, etc?

Badvoc Thu 07-Jun-12 17:20:44

(already have GF pasta btw)

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 17:25:46

Thank you all so much for all the information. I suppose I'm going to have to take this seriously then. Haven't had wheat (but have had oats and rice) for 24 hours - my normally comfortable skirt is now falling down and I'm farting like a farm hand, there is clearly something going on. Oh well.

I shall have pizza, salad & garlic bread for dinner as per menu plan and make an appointment to see the GP in the morning.

Badvoc Thu 07-Jun-12 17:26:48

OP: could you have candida?

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 17:29:08

Not vaginally ATM, but I do get it. Never had it orally or in my breasts when BF. Why?

Badvoc Thu 07-Jun-12 17:35:52

One theory is that candida causes a lot of the issues you describe...the cure is going wheat free (or rather foods that contain yeast)

I did the Harcombe diet a couple of years ago (lost all my weight too!) and there is a whole chapter on candida...the 1st 5 days of the diet are "detox" and you dont get to eat any wheat, milk etc.

Its tough and tbh it did make me feel quite "odd"...light headed, headachy...

Worth a try?.......

Badvoc Thu 07-Jun-12 17:36:33

<not assuming you are overweight btw! Just happens to be a weight loss plan>

wonderingwendy Thu 07-Jun-12 18:14:17

i also have this intolerance to wheat and have swapped to the gluten free bread rolls - so dry but its the only thing that keeps my ibs away
i can have a normal sandwich once a week but if i have more im in trouble

HandMadeTail Thu 07-Jun-12 18:21:01

DH and all my DCs have been tested with York test .

They have various intollerances which have made shopping and cooking a bit of a PITA, but they spend less time on the loo. wink

ProcrastinationAteMyMorning Thu 07-Jun-12 19:16:35

<bloats massively>

Will update when I've seen the GP.
Interesting about the candida, I'd not heard of that.

nutmegthespringerspaniel Thu 07-Jun-12 20:51:47

Good luck with GP

( Is any use ? )

Carnabystreet Thu 07-Jun-12 20:52:17

Your Gp will do a blood test to rule out ( or in!) coeliac.

After that though be prepared for GP not to know much.Many don't, on intolerances.

If you want help with intolerance then a dietitian can help and you might find this site helpful

LentillyFart Thu 07-Jun-12 23:28:52

OP my SIL is wheat/gluten intolerant but she can cope if the things she has to avoid are made with white spelt flour. It's made by Dove's Farm and available at Sainsburys. I now use it in many things too and there is no discernible difference to ordinary flour. As for the refined sugar intolerance thing - well once I'd have poo-poo'd that too until I found out by way of having to give it up for other reasons that I am highly likely to be very intolerant of it! Good luck sorting your diet out

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