28 December 2010

Goodbye Gluten!

A year ago I picked up this book, Living Gluten-Free for Dummies. I was told 
that I was sensitive to gluten, yet didn't test high enough to be confirmed "Celiac"

After I posted my blood test results here, I decided I needed another test 
to confirm this. My doctor recommended stool analysis to get a better reading 

I have heard stories over and over about those who tested negative 
continuously until one of the tests confirmed otherwise...

So why the further testing? Well recently a lot of my symptoms have come 
back. Symptoms such as the ones I posted way back in my Gluten Free Guide

Over the past week I have been getting the same rashes 
developing on my cheeks that you may remember from this post 

I definitely have to give credit to the many of you who 
warned me about the possible return of my symptoms!

Swollen fingers (typical of food allergies)

And given the worsening of my mood disorders, I can't help but 
wonder if there's a link between mood and gluten (denial much? lol) 

So here's the announcement. My OFFICIAL results 
are in (a.k.a poop analysis): It's confirmed that I have...

 "Sub-clinical Celiac Disease"

No i'm not pregnant! It's glutenous bloating my friends!

So what is "Sub-clinical Celiac Disease"? Well the way it was explained 
to me was that I am on the border between Celiac and Gluten Sensitivity... if I 
continue to eat gluten I will (99.9%) become Celiac. I guess you 
could say I am in the early stages of the disease.

Obviously I am going to listen to the test results and adhere to a gluten-free diet. 
Although it is a little sad that I can't eat wheat, it's exciting to know that I have a 
possible answer to my symptoms (mentally and physically). It's been an awakening 
for me as I connect the dots between all the unexplained symptoms I've had growing 
up. And to finally have an answer is all that matters!

Snacking Squirrel is officially becoming a 
Gluten-Free Blog! I hope you'll all join me in the 
New Year as I venture through my new, healthier life :)


Anonymous said... [reply]

Hooray? I'm not sure to be excited or not excited for you. I'm excited because all the symptoms you are experiencing, I was too.. and they majorly sucked. However, it's difficult to do the gluten free lifestyle, but you're already a pro at it! I'm glad you figure it out. Perhaps that's why the pants weren't fitting? :)

Susan said... [reply]

I hope this helps alleviate your symptoms Kelsey! Good for you for making the necessary changes to make yourself feel better.

alex said... [reply]

it's really nice to know youre not crazy...meaning...something hurts and you go to the doctor and he says nothing is wrong...but something is!!! So what....you live with this hurt....??!!

Glad you figured where your hurt was coming from!!! What a wonderful way to star the new year...feeling better!

i hope i made sense

Amy B @ Second City Randomness said... [reply]

I'm glad you've narrowed down the issues you've been having! I'm sorry you have to give up wheat completely (with no choice), but I'm sure you'll be feeling much better when you do!

Have a wonderful day, my dear!

Anonymous said... [reply]

i am fascinated by this kind of stuff. i was actually just doing a little reading last night about food allergies. i am breaking out something awful and was thinking about easing up on the dairy and gluten. i would definitely join in on your gluten free challenge!

Ilana said... [reply]

Wow, this post was illuminating to me. I have Hashimoto's Thyroiditis and have suffered from depression my whole life - never contributed it to gluten. I guess I have more digging into my health to do!

Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen said... [reply]

Oh sweetie, I am sorry to hear this. You know our household is with you here since my husband has celiac and I question my boys sensitivity to gluten. I know you will do well going gluten free though! I love all the amazing flavors of the different flours. Can't wait to see more of your amazing creations!

Anonymous said... [reply]

Wow, I'm glad you found this out when you did! I hope you start feeling better!
Best of luck!


Kath said... [reply]

I've had bloating, swollen face, and inflammations a lot when I ate wheat regularly. Dairy does the same things to me. I've been living gluten-free for several months now and feel so much better! And there are still many yummy things you can eat, like rice, oats, quinoa, amaranth, etc. I hope you'll feel better when you cut out wheat!

Unknown said... [reply]

oh i hope you take the best care of yourself dear!!! good luck :)

Meg said... [reply]

Ah gluten gluten gluten. I actually got the infamous rash on my knees...odd, but bothersome. Experimenting with gluten free recipes is fun, look on the bright side :) Which I'm sure you are! Best of luck, and here's to FEELING BETTER!

Tine said... [reply]

Awh, sad the symptoms came back...
I get the same symptoms when I eat lactose. Have you ever been tested for lactose intolerance?

Good luck!

nourishedwellness said... [reply]

While you may find going Gluten free a struggle at first, it will get easier. So many people suffer from food sensitivies, allergies, intolerances, etc and don't even know it. It's important to acknowledge the connection between symptoms and what we eat. All of the detective work you've done will only result in a happier and healthier Kelsey! You've got my support girl!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I'm glad you can finally carve out a path for truly feeling better! I can't wait to watch the process!

Karen (Toronto Girl West) said... [reply]

While I know the results aren't ideal, I am glad that at least you have answers now. Besides, I have no doubt you will make this transition beautifully!!!!!

Jessica said... [reply]

It must be great to finally have a diagnosis for your problems: I have my first blood test for coeliac disease coming up so I hope it shows something one way or the other. Then again, it seems as though almost no results are conclusive! We seem to have very similar symptoms though...are oats okay for you or are you going to eliminate those too?

Really hope going gluten-free helps ease your symptoms!

Lucie - A Taste Of Vogue said... [reply]

I can totally relate to the finger bloating! I went "raw" a few months back, and its the best thing i ever did for myself! My face always used to get bloated too (along with my stomach!) I hope you start seeing results!


Anonymous said... [reply]

Wow :) I love this post because I get the SAME bloating as you... Omgsh, I always joke that I'm pregnant! I'm so glad to know that you found an answer, and I can't hide the fact that I'm looking forward to some gluten-free muffin recipes from you!! Anyway, I was also supposed to get tested but keep putting it off.. Hmm, I guess I should really get my but in the doctors office soon. Have a great week, and take care :)

Unknown said... [reply]

thats exactly what I have. And I did the fun stool samples too. I used to get rashed on my neck and chest. Oh so lovely. I am glad to able to share in this together.And yes, i do think there is a correlation between gluten and mood. No denial here!

Molly said... [reply]

My belly did that before and I was so scared I was like oh my gosh my stomach has expanded so much. I just took laxatives though thinking maybe I was just yanno (TMI). Probably not the real solution but it worked. Maybe it is gluten. Who knows.

Good luck on your gluten free lifestyle!

Carrie (Carrie on Vegan) said... [reply]

Good luck on your new journey Kelsey. It's nice to get confirmation of a health problem because they you know what you're dealing with. It's empowering. I have no doubt you are going to feel much healthier and balanced in 2011.

kell said... [reply]

dont want this to come out wrong because i know it sucks what you are going thru now, but selfishly (im gluten/soy/fructose sensitive)i am excited that your blog and recipes will be gluten free! so excited for you to feel better and to get new ideas from your creative self!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I'm so glad you have an answer. You have done it before so no worries right? You know I'll keep on reading!

Chelsea said... [reply]

That must be nice to have some definite answers now, even though it means adhering to a stricter diet. But if it means that you're going to feel better, it's worth it! Good luck with going totally gluten free! :)

Asha Raval said... [reply]

Thanks soooo much for sharing!!!!!! This is soo helpful Kelsey! And MERRY MERRY belated XMAS!!!

I was wondering...do you have family members who think your heathy diet is weird? Is there anyone in your family who still tried to feed you things with tons of gluten in it for instance? I just have a hard time coming home during the holidays because everyone is trying to feed me gluten-y sugary diary stuff. Like everyday. LOL. And they think I'm literally a health nut and we get into arguments at every dinner. Not very cheerful :)



Kristi said... [reply]

I can't wait to follow your gluten free blog!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I'm CELIAC too!!
My sypmtoms were pretty much NOn-stop stinkiest gas EVER for like two years. and anytime i accidentally eat it gas it is!
I actually have not been trested I self-diagnosed! My stupid doctors barely know what it is!
Crazy,huh? You would think they should know. gah.
I reccomend getting off of it asap! You'll feel so much better! The main key is my bakery down the street that gives me good ole' sandwich bread!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I'm sorry to hear that you need to avoid gluten, but it will improve your overall health (as you said).

I spent many, many years avoiding gluten and I just want to say that its hard at first, but then its a piece of cake.
Some of my favorite gluten free blogs



Biz said... [reply]

I am on the border too - sometimes it effects me a lot, sometimes a little - but Bob's Red Mill makes a great gluten free all-purpose flour - I've made pizza dough, muffins, etc. with it and I am hard pressed to tell the difference.

Looking forward to what you come up with in 2011!

Jenn @ Peas and Crayons said... [reply]

My brother has full blown Celiac, along with some uber lactose intolerance. I've been having some of these symptoms a lot lately too... Maybe I should get some testing done.

Thank goodness your're already so well prepared and eating so healthy as it is! You def. have an edge over most people that wind up finding out the news from a doc and having to change everything about the way they eat. You should only have a few small changes to make, right?

Best of luck, doll! I'll try to keep posting gluten free recipes on my site! <3

Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

Meagan said... [reply]

I'm glad to hear it :)

Anonymous said... [reply]

so glad you have found the root of them problem! i hope you'll be able to focus on the things you can enjoy, rather than the things you'll be missing out on! so happy for you, its like finally starting a new journey towards health and happiness :)

Anonymous said... [reply]

Good you figured it out so you can avoid it! Hopefully your symptons clear up :) There are so many gluten free products out there now!

Jess@atasteofconfidence said... [reply]

I'm glad you found an answer- I know how that is, it's so frustrating. Good luck!

Tatianna said... [reply]

Oh my goodness Kelsey! I'm sorry about the new information, but as you said, it's good that you actually know what's causing the symptoms now. Plus, if anyone knows how to eat gluten free with ridiculously delicious recipes, it's you!
I can't wait to see the awesome things that you come up with :)

Alex @ I Eat Asphalt said... [reply]

Since I've gone almost completely gluten free I feel so much better. I definitely fell off the horse over the holidays and paid for it. Plus, I really cant tell the difference between most gluten free foods. They are still delicious!

zoe (and the beatles) said... [reply]

yay! i'm so glad you figured everything out :) that's so awesome, kelsey! you're totally on your way to feeling better. i think i might attempt to do the same. i always have a a swollen tummy :( can't wait to see the recipes you concoct :)!

Samantha said... [reply]

Well I am excited to follow your gluten-free blog. I know some people that have gone gluten-free simpy because they say it makes them feel bad, but havent had anything diagnosed--they say they feel like a million bucks now! Can't wait to see your gluten-free muffins :)!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I look forward to reading more about you're going to proceed-sorry you had to go through all of this! Also is it wrong for me to say, I wish I could find a pink like the one on your cheeks from the rash? I think it's a cute pink :)

PS-Love the holiday squirrel in your banner!

Cindy said... [reply]

Hi Kelsey.

I am sorry you have a gluten sensitivity and borderline Celiac disease!
I am also very happy for you that you have answers...I know many people struggle with answers to their symptoms for a long time.

I am (by choice) cutting out a LOT of grains and sugars this new year (had already started before the Holiday cookie fest started, so I follow you!

and you don't look a smidgen pregnant! Your teeny!!!


Marianne (frenchfriestoflaxseeds) said... [reply]

As much as I think it would suck to be told you could no longer eat a certain food, I think it's great when someone can find real medical answers to what's ailing them. If gluten is causing problems, then giving it up is the way to go. Good thing those sweet potatoes are gluten free, eh? :D

Sara @ Nourish and Flourish said... [reply]

Kelsey, I'm so glad to hear you finally have an answer for the icky feelings! Cheers for getting creative in the kitchen! I'm beginning to think that I need to get re-tested for Celiac. My tummy troubles refuse to go away...I stay away from wheat for the most part, but am definitely not vigilant. I find that when I eat foods that contain gluten, my stomach is "off" for about a week afterward. I'm really glad you're talking about this, especially because I hadn't heard of sub-clinical Celiac until I read this post. Thanks for the inspiration to keep investigating! I'm looking forward to re-creating some of your GF creations! :-)

Anonymous said... [reply]

That was the announcement? Well I was expecting something like I met the love of my life....but gluten intolerance is good as well I guess...

Just kidding girl :)

I m really happy for you. You found what your body needs and I m sure you ll feel great from now on!

Joanne said... [reply]

I'm glad you finally got a real answer after all this time! Here's to a symptom and bloat-free life from now on!

Michelle said... [reply]

Kelsey! I've missed your blog.
I hope you had a Merry Christmas and I'm glad you've gotten an answer, good luck on the gluten-free diet!

Candice @ ChiaSeedMe said... [reply]

I'm so happy for you to finally have some answers! I would imagine it's no fun to have to eliminate gluten from your diet, but I'd say you're probably going to be so much happier and feel so much more in control!

By the way, you are so pretty!

Anonymous said... [reply]

my blood test didn't come back in the range for celiac either but i was told by my doc not to eat gluten if i don't want bloating/hives etc. i had to take prednisone to get rid of the hives i had from bread several months ago. i have eaten small portions of candy that have trace amounts and my mouth gets itchy and feels waxy with tiny bumps. i guess i could do the stool test but i just decided to live gluten free! it's freeing for me and i feel so much better!

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said... [reply]

Thanks for the information as I don``t know a lot about this.

Sarah said... [reply]

Aw girl, I can imagine you have mixed feelings about this, but I know you will take great care of yourself, come up with amazing recipes, and kick some butt ;) We'll always follow your blog! Always here for support!
<3 S

B said... [reply]

Oh my goodness Kelsey...it's scary how many of those symptoms I have. I've had horrible swelling lately. My belly looks EXACTLY like yours - no joke. But more bloated :(. It's awful...I was told I was negative before though? A long time ago. And I also seem to get bloated no matter WHAT I eat anyways. I also was told you'd be going to the bathroom alot and having bowel movements, etc. with it. I'm quite the opposite if you catch my drift...

Lauren said... [reply]

Hey Kelsey -- I'm sorry to hear about your diagnosis. I know it'll be a tough change. BUT I'm very happy that you've at least gotten some answers to all the health issues you've been having. I hope that cutting out gluten completely will help you feel so much better and bring a happier, healthier you in 2011 :)

Krista said... [reply]

Having an official answer must be a relief for you. Although the diagnosis sucks, now you know what to work with, right?

Kelsey said... [reply]

hopefully this will make you feel better.

Anonymous said... [reply]

I used to get bloated like that alllll the time. It still happens, but not quite so often. Although the only changes I have made are eating a more balanced diet (which in my case actually includes eating more grains, and fat). I hope that you are able to decrease the bloating frequency - I KNOW how much it BLOAS. (ha)

Anonymous said... [reply]

Aw, thank you so much for posting these photos. I get the same symptoms, and its hard not to feel self-concious (especially about the pregnant gluten belly!!) Anyway, sorry you have to give up gluten for good, but its soo worth it! I feel 1000X better now (I've officially been gluten-free for 1 year!) not just physically, but mentally too.


Carly. Rushton said... [reply]

Finally I find someone online who has the same symptoms as I have! In a way it's nice to see that what is going on for me (my symptoms) are similar to someone else's. I guess the disease or intolerance manifests itself in different ways. I get mild swelling of the face depending on how much I eat...and redness! Plus uncomfortable bloating. Glad you found some answers! I have yet to get tested (blood/stool)..best of luck to you!

Kelsey Ann said... [reply]

Hey Carly! Yes getting tested is essential if you are noticing such synptoms. If it is an allergy, it will likely get worse. No fun! So checking to rule gluten out is a good idea. Worst case scenario- you have to live without wheat and/or gluten...but the perk? Amazing health, energy, and happiness :)@Carly. Rushton

Anonymous said... [reply]

What lab did you use? I have been wondering which to go with.

vasilml26 said... [reply]

Hello. I've been reading your blog because I may have the same problem as you do. After years of suffering I've found that I am gluten intolerant and now I am waiting for test for celiac disease. I have the same red cheeks and ears that you have on the pictures before going gluten free. I've had them for years along with the bloated belly and etc. I want to ask you - how much time passed away before those red cheeks and ears disappear after you went gluten free ? . And also I want to ask if sometimes your cheeks and ears felt like they are burning and get really red ? I hope to hear from you soon.
Thank you.
email vasilml@yahoo.com

vasilml26 said... [reply]

Hello. I've been reading your blog because I may have the same problem as you do. After years of suffering I've found that I am gluten intolerant and now I am waiting for test for celiac disease. I have the same red cheeks and ears that you have on the pictures before going gluten free. I've had them for years along with the bloated belly and etc. I want to ask you - how much time passed away before those red cheeks and ears disappear after you went gluten free ? . And also I want to ask if sometimes your cheeks and ears felt like they are burning and get really red ? I hope to hear from you soon.
Thank you.

Kelsey Ann said... [reply]


It took about 2-3 weeks of eating gluten free to notice a real difference and not have the issues with redness. I definitely recall my ears feeling like they were on fire and burning! Hugs.

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