I might be allergic to wheat

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About 10 years ago, my mom was diagnosed with Celiac’s Disease. She encouraged all of us to get tested since it is genetic. One of my sisters had a positive test and I decided to avoid doctors because I hate them and went on an elimination diet instead.

I didn’t really notice a difference in how I felt, got a blood test and it was negative so I went on my merry way stuffing my face full of processed crap food full of (likely GMO) wheat gluten.

When Bean turned a year old, we found out she was allergic to wheat, eggs and dairy. My little world was rocked and I had a huge freak-out over what I would feed my picky eater that only really ate crackers and yogurt.

In many ways it was a good thing though because it got me back on track with paying attention to what was in our food and where it was coming from. We made it through that hurdle and last year we were done with food allergies for awhile. When I introduced eggs to Sparrow, he had a reaction and so we’ve been avoiding those for him. It’s not really that big of a deal though and now he’s at the point where he can tolerate baked goods with eggs in them so I think he’ll probably outgrow it like his sister did.

When I started looking into food allergies somewhat seriously after we found out about Bean and started reading a whole bunch of food allergy blogs, I found out that food allergy blood tests are not valid unless the item in question has been in your system recently. It was then that I realized that my blood test for wheat allergy was not valid since I’d been on an elimination diet.

I still didn’t think–or want to think–I had a problem with wheat though. Sometimes I would wonder when a symptom would pop up if maybe wheat was the culprit. When we were all almost constantly sick from shortly after Sprout was born until we moved back to Bakersfield, I really started wondering if maybe a wheat elimination diet would be a good thing since I’d heard and read so many things about wheat being implicated in immunity problems. I still wanted to believe that we were fine and there were no issues with wheat. Dealing with food allergies was HARD work and I didn’t want to do it again. Besides, I had blood tests on the kids to back me up.

A couple weeks ago we were at a friend’s house for dinner and I kind of binged on wheat. She made homemade bread, I made homemade chocolate chip cookies. A few of my friends had been blogging/posting pictures of baked goods all week so I was craving it bad. I had 2-3 slices of that bread and a few of my cookies.

That night when I got home I felt awful. Bloated. Nauseous. Really bad headache. I brushed my symptoms aside. I did not want to believe it was because of wheat.

The next morning I felt mostly fine. I made pancakes. My symptoms returned. While I wanted to believe it was a bug of some sort, I kind of started to realize it probably wasn’t. So I was contemplating another elimination diet. After only 24 hours of no-wheat, temptation, in the form of those leftover cookies, called to me from my kitchen counter. I popped just one in my mouth and a few minutes after consuming it, my tongue swelled slightly and felt like it was being pricked by needles (No, there were not any nuts in those cookies. To preemptively answer a question I’ve been asked several times since retelling this story. I guess other people also want to believe it isn’t wheat).

Time to take the elimination diet seriously.

I’m a little over a week in. My plan is 2 months and then try it again. I’ve been tempted by pizza, bread, crackers, cookies, scones, and every manner of chewy, wheat-filled goodness. But things really are much better in the wheat-free goods area since the last time I dealt with it. Some gluten-free bread actually tastes pretty much like bread now, especially if you toast it.

I made some muffins and pumpkin pancakes last week with Pamela’s mix and couldn’t really tell the difference.

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I really like these Pepperjack Nut & Rice crackers by Blue Diamond Almond company.

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We’re back to eating our Ancient Harvest Quinoa pasta.

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A lot of restaurants have options now too, not that we really eat out all that much. It isn’t so much that I miss wheat, it’s just finding myself in certain situations unprepared and needing something to eat. When everyone around you is eating pizza, a salad doesn’t necessarily compare to, or satisfy one’s craving for, that warm, melty, aromatic deliciousness. I don’t want to be the “problem diet” person though either. I want to go with the flow and be able to hang out with friends and family without making it an issue or talking about it constantly. Because that’s annoying and I don’t want to be annoying.

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2 Comments

Filed under Ramblings

2 responses to “I might be allergic to wheat

  1. i did three months of eliminating all gluten from my diet last year when we were heavy in fertility treatments. the first few weeks i thought i was going crazy and swear i was seeing things and hearing voices. after that my head really cleared and i lost like 15 pounds and had more energy than i had had in years. i also eliminated all caffeine and dairy at this time as well (although the only dairy i ever really have is greek yogurt, some milk in my coffee, and the occasional yogurtland indulgence). i learned to eat a lot of gluten-free alternatives (the bread is so much better toasted!) and even Popeye didn’t mind the Quinoa pasta. but after awhile I just MISSED food. i missed huge Brink’s Deli sandwiches and Cataldo’s buttery delicious pizza crust and all those other things that just weren’t the SAME in Gluten free. I keep saying I’ll go back on the diet… but then another delicious wheat-filled treat comes my way and i can’t say no. i just want to encourage you, and hopefully you’ll have stronger will-power than me, haha. and hopefully you’ll feel better and after a few months your gut will heal and you can slowly add things here and there back into your diet. Good luck!!

  2. Lisa Wuertz

    Thank you for the encouragement!

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