I come from a 'gastronomique' family and I am passionate about eating and creating quality food . When I first heard of the existance of celiac desease I remember thinking how awful it must be to have such a terrible affliction,then to my utter dismay, I later discovered I was myself one of 'those unfortunate people' and I had been unknowingly celiac for many many years! Initially, I was incredibly unhappy and struggled to deal with the disease's many implications, but I eventually came to grips with the condition and I am pleased to say that in retrospect, the diagnosis has actually changed my life in a very positive way. Not only do I now only eat healthy, nutritious and delicious gluten free food but I also no longer have any of the chronic health symptoms of a celiac who eats gluten either. I now enjoy optimum health, have a reduced risk of diabetes and have a full varied yet delicious diet without a trace of gluten in it. Yes, with a little effort, (and knowhow), it is possible to eat all your favourite foods again!
My multiple health ailments (which transpired to be because I was unknowingly celiac), eventually became chronic as medical practitioners’ over the years were unable to establish the cause. Like others, who feel ill but don't not know they have the condition, I conceded that my poor health was something I would just have to live with. Celiac disease symptoms are so diverse and affect different people in different ways, is it any wonder why misdiagnosis or no diagnosis at all is so common? More often than not it can be confused with IBS ( Irritable Bowel Syndrone) which main symptoms often mirror those of celiac disease. Twenty percent of us have IBS and out of this number, its believed that 10% are are undiagnosed celiacs. * It is estimated that for every celiac sufferer, there are a further four sufferers unaware that they have the condition and enduring ill health as a consequence.
It took a staggering 20 years of suffering before discovered I was in fact celiac. * According to Celiac UK, a celiac lives with the condition for an average of 13 years before correct diagnosis. Eliminating gluten completely from my diet has had a very positive result on my overall general health and I also have my energy levels back again.
At first, I found the elimination of food containing gluten from my diet to be incredbily difficult. I had to change my eating habits instantly and the copious amount of non obvious commercially produced food which I was finding gluten in was exasabating. Every food label has to be scrutinised for 'hidden gluten'; a time consuming and laborious process. New food labelling laws which came into force in January, 2012 have helped somewhat.
.My immune system is now over sensitised to any exposure to gluten whatsoever,(even a miniscule quantity). This is pefectly normal for celiacs once a gluten free diet is followed..Before diagnosis I could eat certain foods which contained small amounts of gluten without a radical adverse reaction. Now all gluten is eliminated from my diet, the reaction from cross contamination is somewhat extreme.