In the past year or so people have been finding out more and more about gluten intolerance and Celiac Disease. For some, it may be a healthy fade and for others it’s more of a serious life changing diet. Just my luck, I’m one of those life changing diets.
I got diagnosed with Celiac in my senior year of high school. I was in and out of doctor appointments, hospitals, specialist and dietitians. I remember vividly going into all these appointments knowing exactly what to do, since it felt like I have been doing it forever. I’d go straight to the chair where they draw blood, rolled up my sleeve and waited for the doctor to do his thing!
After a couple of months of being in and out of appointments my doctor finally had the results and I had (drum roll please…..) Celiac Disease! I remember my dad being in the doctor’s office with me, he fell forward while the chair in front caught his balance. I watched him while my mouth dropped opened and wondered what the fook was Celiac Disease!?
My doctor thought it would be a good idea to get my digestive track checked in case there was damage from all the years I ate gluten. It’s called endoscopy, for all of you who don’t know, it’s a non-surgical procedure to examine my digestive tract using an endoscope that has a light and camera attached to it. Boy, that was real fun. I won’t go into too much detail since some of you may be reading this and have to do the procedure but in the end, I was glad I did it and knowing my digestive track is OK. I believe this was the point where doctors where understanding more and more about Celiac and what it meant to have this disease. Now, 6 years later finding out about Celiac is a lot easier than what I had to go through.
So, what is Celiac Disease? A lot of people think you can’t have gluten/wheat and if you do you get a really bad stomach ache, although that’s right there is so much more to that than you think. Everyone’s symptoms are different yet they affect you the same. For instants, if I somehow eat gluten I’ll either feel nothing and go on with my day or I’ll feel like I want to throw up (sometimes I do) and sleep for 12 hours. My upper abdominal swells out to the point I’m not able to wear anything tight and I’ll lose all my colour and turn very pale. Basically when that happens my life is me laying in bed with a heating pad and watching Friends until It passes through my system.
Celiac Disease attacks the villi that looks like little hairs in your small intestines. The villi’s are the ones that absorb nutrients. So, the more damage we have the more villi’s aren’t there and fewer nutrients can be absorbed causing a lot of complication down the road. Staying on a gluten-free diet let’s you and your little villi’s free from pain and damage.
However, I have noticed people who have been diagnosed will still continue to eat regular breads/pastas. I feel like it’s our own responsibility to take action and get yourself back to health.
RESEARCH, RESEARCH, RESEARCH! Always do your homework, as they find new things about Celiac every day!
I haved heared people say “I have Celiac but I still eat what I want.” Those words make me cringe and want to throw up for them. It can still do damage to your intestines, whether you feel the pain or not. Sadly if you ignore the fact you have this disease you get more than a damaged intestine.
Throughout my blog I will be going on more about life as a Celiac and I’ll be posting lots (well basically all) gluten-free recipes, the struggles and the positives of being gluten-free.