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to not understand the fuss about gluten?

146 replies

Bleakhouse1879 · 10/08/2015 13:08

This has probably been asked on here before, if so, shoot me down.

When I was a wee nipper I had never heard of gluten or its dangerous life changing properties. Now everyday I'm hearing about gluten-free this and gluten-free that, "I'm a celiac" or "my wife is intolerant to wheat and everything else in life"

Please could someone explain to this confused and rather befuddled gentleman of advancing years what all the fuss is about? Is it genuine or is it just another attention-seeking illness?

OP posts:
ApparentlyImDoingItAllWrong · 10/08/2015 18:48

Caprini Thanks, thats really interesting. With it leading to breathing difficulties are they sure its not an allergy to nuts? We have dust and grass allergies too, I share your misery!

Littleorangecat · 10/08/2015 18:50

For the person asking about crohns, look up FODMAP diet. I have had great success with it although I still take crohns meds. Part of it is cutting up wheat / gluten.

Littleorangecat · 10/08/2015 18:51

**cutting out - not up!

Caprinihahahaha · 10/08/2015 18:59

Yeah, it's certain. Full blood tests

She's generally weird Grin

Yes, sympathies to you too. It's full time isn't it.

cocobean2805 · 10/08/2015 19:10

My Dsis started being poorly 3/4 years ago, lots of viruses, rashes, bad tummy, pain, crippling toilet issues. She cut gluten and wheat out. She's a different person now. She is another who had some of the tests in the beginning but refuses to make herself ill to have the biopsy etc. I read the packaging of everything because wheat can be hidden in places you didn't expect. If i cook a meal and she's here, its a gluten-free meal, because once you get the hang of it, its not that tricky. I've lost weight and felt less stodgy, but I'll still eat garlic bread if its available. Cross contamination is a real issue, garlic bread goes in after the rest of the food comes out. She can't use the toaster or the butter if its been used for normal bread. She'd kill for a bag of Doritos and a twix and would wholeheartedly prefer not to be gluten intolerant.

Its probably best we only found out as adults though because I would have totally been chasing her round with a digestive threatening to rub it on her face if she annoyed me when we were children definitely didn't tell her I would drop a crisp in her gin and tonic the other day if she didn't stop whining

mistlethrush · 10/08/2015 19:11

I've recently had a confirmation of wheat intolerance - and this extends to Rye etc too. I don't know whether it's the gluten I am intolerant to, but I certainly can't tolerate it anymore. If I have some I can be too ill to go to work for at least 3 days, and almost unable to move due to pain.

Peshwari · 10/08/2015 19:19

I have coeliac disease but I don't get a noticeable reaction when eating gluten (the damage is being done internally), a friend who is merely intolerant gets a much more explosive obvious reaction. I have no problem with people giving it up without a diagnosis if it makes them feel better.

In fact, if someone told me eating something made them feel very ill but they kept eating it because they didn't have an official diagnosis I'd find that rather strange.

On the testing, those people who say they tested negative, is that only on the blood test? It has a high rate of false negatives, endoscopy is the only way to get a definitive answer.

PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 19:28

Try telling my 7-year-old, non-coeliac DD that gluten is fine. She'd love to be able to eat whatever shit she likes.

PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 19:30

They absolutely hate suffering from it and wish they didn't have it but say because of the number of people who are going gluten free as a lifestyle choice people think they are making their illness up.

Or because of it being more 'fashionable', the products out there are now 100% better than even 2 years ago.

cocobean2805 · 10/08/2015 19:33

Yes peshwari my sis got negative blood work back and the doctor told her the way to be certain was to overload on gluten and have I biopsy done (I think) She refused politely because even though we are sure she is probably coelliac, she didn't want to be ill again. She has to go back at some point for an endoscopy. It was on her insistence that they even reffered her for blood tests as the GP wasn't keen. She'd spent two years struggling with what the GP insisted were IBS, shingles, a funny skin disease that I can't remember the name of, allergies to hay, terrible mouth uncers, explosive arse/constipation, dandruff, pallid skin all sorts, until she cut gluten out and is happy and healthy again.

PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 19:35

no bleakhouse gluten only damages you if you have coeliac disease,

utter, utter bollocks.

Or thyroid disease
Or arthritis
Or gluten intolerance

PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 19:36

cocobean2805 - I was just discussing that today with DD. The blood test (negative) was pretty awful for her at 5, but she really doesn't want to have to stuff her face with gluten-containing foods for weeks just for a biopsy that will tell us she shouldn't eat gluten ...

ouryve · 10/08/2015 19:37

Yes, coeliac disease is genuine and makes people very ill. I first learnt about it in home economics lessons in 1983, so it's hardly something newfangled.

jellybeans · 10/08/2015 19:49

Oh dear

I and other family members are coeliac. It is a real illness that damages the villi and hence many non diagnosed coeliacs have malnutrition, anaemia etc. I have suffered other autoimmune problems and bone damage from it also. It isn't just the physical side either, it is a very socially isolating disease. That is the hardest part I think. Along with the extra expense and ignorance (as expressed in OP). Basically it is shit. I don't feel that much better even going g free either.

WeSailTonightForSingapore · 10/08/2015 19:51

Well, I don't have celiac disease but I don't eat gluten. I used to have the worst tummy upsets from my teenage years until I stopped eating gluten - on advice of my gp who suggested cutting out first dairy, then gluten to see. I've been gluten free for about four years now, and I finally have no problems digesting food. Not allergic or anything, just doesn't agree with me.

But it pisses me off that people think that the non-allergic do this as a fashion statement. Yes, as if I would willingly give up beer & pizza Hmm. Some people just don't get on with certain foods, and I don't understand why that's so hard to imagine.

rebbles · 10/08/2015 20:01

I'm a coeliac and only found out after 25 years of my life, mainly due to the increased publicity of it I thought it might be it. I have never felt better and conceived a month after changing my diet to a gluten free one. I am yet to find out the impact it has had on my bone density due to the fact that my small intestine has been completely damaged by my own immune system due to an auto immune response to gluten. It annoys me when people think not eating gluten is healthier when they are not intolerant or are coeliac as it makes it seem blazé. I have to eat a gluten free diet for the rest of my life even though there is nothing I want more than to eat a cake or some crusty bread. So yes, YABVVU.

HippyChickMama · 10/08/2015 20:02

cocobean dh was told he had scabies by one GP when he saw the rash on his legs!! For anyone that is gluten or dairy free that doesn't already know, there is a website/Facebook page called 'My Wholefood Life', it's amazing for gluten and dairy free recipes. I make an amazing flourless chocolate cake if anyone wants the recipe too, it's dh's favourite.

RattieofCatan · 10/08/2015 20:11

I'm one of those annoying "self-diagnosed" gluten or wheat-intolerant people. A few years ago I was in a state. I've had joint pain since I was a child, massive bladder urgency issues that steadily got worse through my late teens to early twenties and caused me to have panic attacks, brain fog, fatigue, some gut problems and other issues. It came to a head a few years ago and it was getting to the point where I was barely able to work the 24 hours a week that I was working and was doing nothing outside of work. Doctors weren't taking me seriously, never have done, I was under 25 with no children so I couldn't have joint pain or bladder problems and it had to be psychological.

A friend suggested I just cut gluten out from my diet for 6 weeks or so, two of her kids were intolerant to it and she knows a lot about special diets generally, so I eventually did it out of desperation, not expecting anything to change. Within weeks my bladder urgency issues became much more manageable and the fogginess was less extreme. Within months the fog was barely there if there at all, my guts calmed down and the fatigue became a lot more manageable. The joint pain got worse but I think a lot of that was because I could actually feel it rather than have the fog dim everything.

I'm now a few years down the line and can handle tiny amounts of gluten without symptoms reappearing. Hell, sometimes when out with friends I will have a bowl of pasta because it looks so good because I'm a twat and I suffer for it the next day and don't do it again for another 6 months or so.

I finally got a doctor who tested me for gluten last year but, as they said, there was no point because I'd been gluten free for two years by that point so I would have to eat it on a daily basis again to find out if I actually had an issue and that is not happening as I end up really ill and unable to work.

I get judged harshly for it by my family, they think I'm being an attention seeker and awkward (I'm already a vegetarian). But then they also thought that my health issues were all in my head as well and these are the people who heard me crying in the middle of the night in pain, so sod them.

primal What's the link with gluten and arthritis? Out of curiosity, I do still wonder what is wrong with me despite what most doctors have thought!

TheSecretCervix · 10/08/2015 20:11

I have slow motility in my stomach and was tested for celiacs. The test was negative however my gastroenterologist (who works at a top London GI hospital) told me to remove wheat and dairy from my diet. I think in the next ten years there will be much greater understanding of gluten intolerance and it's causes.

BarbarianMum · 10/08/2015 20:23

I was diagnosed with coeliac disease at 40.
My mum was diagnosed at 68.
My gran just suffered from terrible stomach problems all her life.

I'd never heard of autism, quarks or the Church of Scientology until I was in my 20s. Doesn't mean that the didn't exist, just that I was ignorant.

PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 20:29
PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 20:31

It's an anectodal connection, but one DP finds to be true for him (bad knees).

RattieofCatan · 10/08/2015 20:31

primal thank you :)

PrimalLass · 10/08/2015 20:32
cocobean2805 · 10/08/2015 20:35

primal its horrible isn't it, Dsis is tall, slim and willowy (I got the short, stout genes, bitter? Me?) She was losing weight she couldn't really afford to lose, bent over double groaning, lethargic constantly. I still can't believe the difference in her now.

hippy scabies was another one yes! We were all like "she's got the mogga!" The worst was just before Christmas, she came out in a rash all over that was like hundreds of little blisters, and then another rash that looked like ringworm (she was mortified!) And YES PLEASE to the flourless chocolate cake! I'm still getting to grips with gluten free cake/biscuits. I can manage a passable lemon drizzle. And I've found gluten free Welsh cakes are nice. My dad makes awesome potato pastry which I'm happy to swap!

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