My Experience with Going Gluten-Free

My Experience with Going Gluten-Free
After years of abdominal pain with no clear-cut diagnosis, I decided it was time to find out if it could be caused by ingesting gluten. Going gluten-free has been very beneficial for me. Even though I continue to be surprised by the overwhelming abundance of gluten in our food, there are plenty of options out there for us gluten-free folks. It requires diligence and the willingness to read labels and ask questions. Just a partial list of symptoms for celiac disease, gluten allergy or intolerance include:
  • Stomach pain
  • Bloating
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Mouth sores
  • Tingling and/or numbness in hands and feet
  • Feeling foggy and memory issues
I was struggling with all of those symptoms, so I decided to cut out gluten for a few weeks to see if it would make a difference. I knew wheat was out, but barley and rye were off the menu as well. I also stayed clear of malt because it is made from barley, as well as vegetable protein because it may contain wheat. My saddest discovery was that beer contains wheat. There are a number of gluten-free brands, but you have to be careful. Some are “brewed to remove gluten." That could be serious for someone with celiac disease or a gluten allergy, because gluten might be left after the brewing process. As such, taste can be in an issue if you are a beer connoisseur. Thankfully, the list of beer options is growing. Wine, for the most part, is gluten-free, and so are some other types of alcohol. Many vodkas are made with wheat, but gluten-free options exist. Whiskey is another example of being “brewed to remove gluten." Rum is an option in most cases, however, the flavored rums can contain gluten. There
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7 comments

  1. Em says:

    Going gluten free is definitely a challenge as well as sugar free and ABSOLUTELY no artificial sweeteners. I find it amazing how they can manage to hide these things in some of the most unexpected places.

    Congrats on going gluten free!! Keep up the good work and try to take on the challenge w/ some sense of humor.

  2. Sandra says:

    Well, glad it worked for you, the writer. I did gluten free for a year. I noticed no difference whatsoever, and when I started eating like I always had, no difference there either. Nothing changed for me either way. And YES, I was diligent. Believe me, 15-20 years ago, it was not easy to find even health food stores that had much gluten free.

    • Carrie Anton says:

      Sandra, I’m sorry going gluten free didn’t help you. I’m sure it must have been a struggle to find gluten free foods 15 years ago. What works for one person might not work for the next. Fibro is a lot of trial and error to find out what works for you. Good luck!

  3. Kristy says:

    I have been gluten free for 9 months now, I agree it is difficult especially if you are also mainly vegetarian! I concentrate on whole foods lots of fresh fruit and veg, dairy and a little fish. Forget the processed stuff and all the additives. For me it has reduced my fibro pain a lot (close to 80% I would say) and no more numb and tingling hands in the night. I also started on kombucha and kefir which I make myself, I am focused on healing my gut with the hope one day I can eat gluten again.

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