Yesterday I had a doctor's appointment where I got my test results back from the celiac panel I took a few weeks ago. Unfortunately it came back positive so now I have to go on a gluten-free diet as I am allergic to glutens found in wheat, rye, oats, and barley.
Gluten is a protein found in all forms of wheat (including durum, semolina, and spelt), rye, oats, barley and related grain hybrids such as triticale and kamut.When people with celiac disease consume gluten, the absorptive villi in the small intestine are damaged, preventing the absorption of many important nutrients. The long-term effect of untreated celiac disease can be life threatening. However, with a completely gluten-free diet, the intestinal lining will heal completely allowing most patients to live a normal, healthy life as long as they remain free of gluten in their diet. Even a small amount of gluten can cause symptoms to reoccur.Although the gluten-free diet should be taken seriously, living and eating in the real world requires a sense of humor and a knowledge of both the diet and ingredients.
My doctor said that my results were very low and suggested that I would have no long term effects from eating gluten, but others say it doesn't matter if you have a mild case or not, so I'm not really sure on that one. I'm going to have to do more research on it.
We were invited to have dinner with the Weber State University DC alumni and the President of WSU last night. This worked out really well because a friend of ours from church just happens to be an alum and and a dietitian. I told her about my new diagnosis in hopes that she would have some insight on the matter. Come to find out she specializes in celiac and is going to a conference about it soon. Both she and another woman sitting by us have mothers with celiac.
I am somewhat familiar with celiac because my brother has it and I thought that I might so I've done a little research, but after really having to go on a gluten-free diet I feel a little overwhelmed with all the dietary changes I have to make. I'm going to have to be much more creative and careful in what I eat. I'm making lists of restaurants that have gluten-free menus or options and Whole Foods has a list of food you can get off their website that are gluten-free including waffles and pretzels. I'm excited to feel better and hoping that my eczema will go away. I figure I'll probably lose some weight as well since I won't have much to eat.
Last night I had a dream that I brought home a yellow cupcake with chocolate frosting only to remember that I couldn't eat it...dang! I did find out today that Cakelove, a bakery by my house, has gluten-free options which include yellow cupcakes with chocolate frosting, so maybe I can have it after all, although cakes made with rice flour run a little more than your average baked good.
This morning I was panicking a little as I discovered that my options for lunch were very few. I ended up making some rice and packing a potato. Luckily I can still eat my usual rice pudding and yogurt and my occasional chocolate and ice cream (ok maybe I won't lose any weight :D).
I figure if I get the word out people will let me know all the gluten-free stuff they come across and won't bring me cookies or something I can't eat...not that that usually happens anyway, but just in case...