Still so misunderstood. Still actually referred to as “not a real medical condition”. When I hear, “oh, that gluten free fad” I literally cringe. This “gluten” thing changed my life. Imagine people saying, “oh you have a migraine again? Take an advil”. Picture this, “Oh you’re having an asthma attack, just try to breathe, you’ll be fine”. Yeah. Now, you can call Celiac by whatever name you want to, but this auto-immune disease, or that of any kind, is nothing to make light of. Ponder this. We live in a time where everyone is walking around with something chronic. Chronic headaches. Chronic allergies. Chronic pain. Chronic IBS. Chronic fatigue. Think of everyone you know. Almost all of them have a chronic ailment. Do you ever wonder why? I do. Every damn day.
I have spent lot of time in the past 8 years looking into why life threatening food allergies are on the rise. Asking many questions. Why are seasonal allergies are at an all time high? Whats with all the new food allergies? Where are all the new ailments coming from? Various forms of Lyme disease, Lupus, MS, Cancer, Arthritis, Seizures, Heart Disease, Diabetes and Asthma- all on the rise. And while I would love to write about everything I have found, my own personal opinions and scientific evidence, I am focused today on Celiac. Celiac, the autoimmune disease that when misdiagnosed and un-diagnosed cripples you. Celiac, the disease with over 300 symptoms that can mimic so many other disorders, diseases and ailments, getting a diagnosis can be nearly impossible. Celiac, the disease that can cause a variety of other diseases, (including cancer and organ failure) when not treated. Celiac, the great imitator. The misunderstood. The “fad diet”. The nuisance of restaurant employees everywhere.
When I was first diagnosed medically, I barely believed in this disease myself. I actually didn’t take the treatment (Gluten free diet) too seriously because I was convinced I had something else. I have since come across many people who have experienced that same feeling. Months later I was at another specialist, who ordered a slew of bloodwork, including a celiac panel, and once she received the results she had me come in immediately. This rheumotologist took into consideration my joint pain, along with my list of other complaints, as possibly having celiac. She was right. This was the second medical confirmation of a positive celiac. I began a gluten free diet immediately. The struggle is real folks. There is gluten hidden in the darnedest places! Spray oil. Ha! They put flour in spray oil. Caramel coloring, made with gluten. Those with celiac react to a number of other things as well. MSG, also known as Mono Sodium Glutamate, dairy, food coloring, toothpaste, corn, artificial sweeteners and a whole lot more.
Let’s talk cross contamination. Have you heard of it? When the same utensil that is used to mix a soup containing flour and then used to mix a gluten free soup, that is cross contamination. When you put a gluten free bagel in a toaster that has previously toasted a regular bagel- that is cross contamination. When you have white flour on your counter, attempt to clean it, yet a smidge remains, and that smidge gets into a celiacs mouth somehow that is cross contamination. What is the deal with this cross contamination? Same shit as if I were to eat a piece of bread. If I were to drink a beer. Have a slice of pizza. Eat a donut. Cross contamination will make a celiac sick. Period. Not just upset stomach sick. Over 300 symptoms sick. Headaches. Dizziness. Tingling. Joint pain. Stomach pain. Vomiting. Brain fog. Panic attacks. Fatigue. Dehydration. Inability to absorb nutrients. It goes on and on.
So the next time you or someone you know is talking about that “gluten free fad” or how annoying food allergies are, I hope you remember that someone you care about is suffering with some chronic ailment altering their quality of life. Chronic pain is not a passing trend. Migraines are no fun way to get out of work. Asthma is no laughing matter. May is Celiac awareness month. Share this blog to spread the word. The more we learn, the more we are educated, the more we open our minds, to all things, the better we become.