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My Gluten Epiphany

July 20, 2010

I promise, there will be a day when I stop talking about gluten.

(This is more of a sidenote: I need to include that I had a milkshake fail this weekend. Long story short, I had a milkshake with gluten in it. All day, I had felt great- no stomach issues at all. After I drank the milkshake, about an hour later, I was curled up in a ball on the couch from stomach pain. This hit me pretty hard because it made me think that it’s a very high possibility I might have some type of gluten allergy.)

I’ve been researching like crazy; I haven’t done this much reading on one subject since my college days. I feel as if I could write a paper on this!

I’ve moved on from the stomach issues, focusing on psoriasis.

Psoriasis and Gluten.

Some doctors have actually stated that gluten causes psoriasis.

Not all doctors agree, but the fact that even some are suggesting this is enough for me to put down the fork and listen.

I’ve been reading researchers and studies, doctor’s opinionsblogs and forums (to gain personal experiences), , etc.

The tricky thing about psoriasis that causes some doctors to stumble is it’s not a one size fits all disease. What may work wonders for one patient, may cause another patient to get worse.

Same as the gluten-free diet- I’ve read of some people seeing immense improvement just in days of going GF, but also read of others who claim to have developed psoriasis because they went gluten free.

However, I’m started to draw my own conclusions about my own situation.

Here’s what I’m thinking.

Nine years ago my body developed psoriasis out of no where telling me I was allergic to gluten, but i didn’t know it.

Not all people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity show any symptoms. Maybe the psoriasis was my symptom.

And now, my stomach hurts. My body’s reacting. All these years, being sensitive to gluten, maybe the lining of my stomach has worn down because I kept eating gluten, not knowing. And now, it’s gone too far, and that’s why I’m noticing it.

I know I sound like I’ve gone a little crazy in the head, but I truly believe I’m onto something.

After three weeks of stomach pains, I’ve cut out gluten for five days and have no more pain. The arthritis in my hand, caused by the psoriasis, is feeling a little better every day. My psoriasis spots that were once red and inflamed are calming down. I have more energy; I don’t feel as if I need ten more hours of sleep a day.

Could this have been my problem all along?

I’m going to keep going with my experiment, but I’m also going to a gastroenterologist in a couple weeks.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. Courtney Marshall permalink
    July 20, 2010 9:12 pm

    Hey Ashley I was just looking at your blog and noticed all of your gluten talk. I’ve actually been doing some research on this myself and it sounds like you may have found your problem. If you haven’t already you should check out Gluten Free Girl and the Chef – it’s a great blog with wonderful recipes even if you are not doing GF. Also just as and aside and as encouragement be ready to accept that a doctor may not really believe in GF issues for you or he may even be resistant to testing for it. I’ve had some problems like this myself and everyone I know that is GF seems to share the same story. Anyways, good luck with your GF experiment

  2. Courtney Marshall permalink
    July 20, 2010 9:19 pm

    One other thing you might want to check into is the alkaline / acid thing. Basically we need our diets to be 80% alkaline and 20% acid and unfortunately most of our diets are a little heavier into the acid range – I know someone who swears by cutting GF and working to be more alkaline she has eliminated almost all of her arthritis and stomach problems.

  3. July 20, 2010 10:33 pm

    Hello Ashley – your blog showed up on my Google Reader today so I popped by to see what was going on with you and gluten. It sounds like you’ve channeled House M.D. and have been able to symptomatically diagnose yourself. It will be interesting to see how your GI appointment goes. To make sure that you get your money’s worth from the first visit, try to remain on a gluten diet so that any lab work they do will not be skewed. Otherwise, they may ask you to get back on gluten for a while and then have you come back in for the lab work.

    And for what it’s worth, the psoriasis that you mention is how gluten intolerance presented itself with my son. However, both my daughter and I (both diagnosed with Celiac) did not suffer from any skin issues. But of course, we are each unique creations.

    Regardless, I hope that you are able to get the answers you are looking for and ultimately pursue a path that leads to good health and feeling well.

  4. Kara H permalink
    July 21, 2010 1:05 am

    Ashley, Gluten Free diets are definitely extremely difficult. everything you eat requires ALOT of thought and it’s frustrating and EXPENSIVE. I know that it is especially hard in Birmingham. In Orlando there were alot more food options available in stores, so just one more challenge to that diet. Something I found quick and easy is rice noodles. They have them at Whole Foods and aren’t COMPLETELY ridiculously priced. I ate brown rice and black beans with spices often. Also oatmeal and millet breads. Anything rice or millet based tasted really good. I did it for 6 months. It takes alot of practice to make and combine foods you can eat and have some variety. (Of course I was also dairy, sugar, wheat, and yeast free, so it may not be as hard of a transition to just gluten free).

  5. hollydoodle00 permalink
    July 21, 2010 6:35 am

    Hey Ursh…let me know how it goes with the psoriosis. The hormones from the pregnancy have made mine better up until recently when the stress of life came on full force (and we psoriosis folks know what that means).

    I’m interested in seeing if the GF really does help with your flare ups.

    Love ya and look forward to seeing you again one day 🙂

  6. Katy H. permalink
    July 21, 2010 3:46 pm

    Hey Ashley…just wanted to stop by to say hello, hope you guys are doing well…
    I read in one your earlier posts some of the things you have found that are GF…well today as I was eating a handful of dried cranberries, I decided to read the package and it says they are GF ~ I thought of you and since you are probably still looking for a couple things that you can snack on that are GF I figured I would help in your quest 🙂
    I hope this new eating “change” helps you out health-wise!

  7. July 22, 2010 8:34 am

    Really hope the Gluten free diet helps you out! When do you see your GI Doctor? I’m curious to see what they say! Mine was an ongoing thing of about 5 years before they did surgery! I’m glad to see you think you might have figured something out!

  8. MARY OTERO permalink
    October 21, 2010 11:50 am

    THE psoriasis THAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT IS PROBABLY dermatitis herpetiformis…. CHECK OUT THIS LINK..

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