Gluten free diets - how do you do it, and does it really help?
I've just recently been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and it still hasn't quite sunk in yet. I've been having symptoms for a while, and have always thought it was down to fibro, but was still shocked when my rheumatologist actually diagnosed me with that! I don't know what I was expecting..Although he did some tests to rule out other autoimmune conditions (tests for ANA, ENA, anti-CCP, etc), especially since I have a lot of joint pain. He also did tests for vitamin D deficiency and gluten intolerance/Cealiac.
I get a lot of joint pain, muscle pain and weakness, fatigue, chest pain and general dizziness and aches and pains...oh and sleep disturbances! I'm quite interested to know more about eliminating gluten products (and perhaps dairy as well?) from the diet and whether this has helped other fibro sufferers. I'm seeing the rheumatologist again in 2 weeks, so will see what he says about everything and whether the other tests show anything. In the meantime, I just want to know more about what alternative therapies people have tried. There's one person at work who has gluten intolerance, and it seems as though he can't eat anything?!?!
Re: Gluten free diets - how do you do it, and does it really help?
I've been GF for 3 yrs. Didn't help my muscle pain per se, but it did eliminate a lifetime of severe IBS, which sometimes goes along with fibro. I don't have any celiac antibodies, but one of my kids is celiac, the other kid has wheat allergy. So our family is GF.
Many people find they do eat more nutritiously on GF diet than on conventional diet, in part because, yes, most boxed/canned/convenience/fast food, etc. is off limits. The GF diet has a steep learning curve, much steeper than any other I've encountered. The diet is also somewhat time-intensive, esp. grocery shopping, at first. And of course there is more scratch-cooking.
Two resources I'd rec. to learn more about it: 1) Local support groups -- Gluten Intolerance Group or Celiac Sprue Association 2) Most any book by Danna Korn. Her most recent in 'Gluten-Free Living for Dummies.' Danna gives expert advice in most readable fashion.
I've known a number of people who, UNlike me, DID get resolution of their fibro symptoms with GF diet. One was celiac, the other had 'nonceliac gluten sensitivity' -- which not all docs believe in.