"Life and beer are very similar. Chill for best results."
In this episode, we're talking beer. More specifically, the difference between gluten-free beer (good) and gluten-removed beer (bad.) Listen in as Gluten Dude talks a bit about his own beer journey, both before and after celiac disease, and explains the BS behind gluten-removed beer. So belly on up to the bar, grab a cold one and enjoy.
Good news: It's the holidays!
Bad news: You've got celiac disease.
Good news: You're invited to Aunt Enid's for dinner!
Bad news: Aunt Enid doesn't really get the whole celiac thing.
What's a celiac to do?
This is a tough one. A young woman writes to me, explaining that she is stuck at home for financial reasons, but her family doesn't take her celiac disease seriously and has pretty much written her out of the picture. There is a lot to unpack here. And as always, I do my best and explain what it is truly like to live with celiac disease (hint...it sux), hoping the family will "get it".
It's beyond frustrating when you're doing the right thing, eating the right gluten-free foods, and you still can't heal. This fellow celiac is two months in, is hating life and considering throwing it all away and eating gluten. She needs to heal physically and psychologically. Listen in as I throw in my two cents.
A little change-up here as I give thanks to the people in my life. Yeah...it's corny. But yeah...it's important. I also touch on my trip cross-country with my Dudette and my complete lack of preparation. Happy Thanksgiving folks!!
Boy did I eat like crap when I was young. My mom changed things up (to my horror) and I cleaned up my diet. Yet when I was diagnosed with celiac disease, for some reason I just had to have gluten-free cookies, cakes, brownies, pizza, etc. I paid the price. Now a mom with a 15 year old who is newly diagnosed with celiac disease is asking how to wean her off the junk food that she has been so used to. Here's her email:
"My 15 year old daughter was just diagnosed and is pissed as all hell and rightfully so. I read your book in two days and loved your voice...I am passing it on to her to read but may cut out the chapters on beer and semen lol. My question is I know you advise to steer clear of gluten free products and I agree but how can I help my pissed off teen who is not a lover of veggies and has allergies to most fruit? My one side of my pantry is currently a gluten free junk heaven!"
Beer and semen? Yikes. I address that, plus the mom's dilemma.
I was diagnosed with celiac disease after I already began working from myself and working from home. So those days where celiac just got the best of me, I was able to shut it down. But what about if you work at an office? How do you explain to them that there are going to be times where celiac just kicks your butt and you won't be at your full capacity? That's the dilemma in today's Dear Gluten Dude. Here's the email:
"Hi Gluten Dude. I've been gluten free for seven years now, ever since I got the call from the doc letting me know that I have celiac disease. Initially I did not handle the news well; in fact I ate a piece of Pizza Hut pizza about an hour after the phone call. Nowadays, I know the drill. I know that just a little bit of gluten can put me down for days. I also know that even though I've been gluten free for seven years, I still have a disease and it still impacts my body.
There are days when I just have no energy, there are days when I'm curled up on the couch, unable to move because I was the victim of accidental cross contamination somewhere. I'm vigilant, but as you know, there is only so much a person can do.
So, my question is this, how to you deal with an office/work environment? How do you explain that yes, following a GF diet pretty much keeps you healthy, but it isn't foolproof and sometimes you just need to take a break. How do you explain that you are perfectly capable of doing your job, but that you can't work 60+ hours a week. Thanks, Gluten Dude. Thank you for being an advocate for our community! "
My first thought? You better be getting paid for 60+ hours a week. My advice? Tune in.
The biggest lie in the world of celiac disease is that you'll feel better immediately once you begin your gluten-free diet. It sure as hell didn't happen to me and my guess is you also did not have those results. And it did not happen to this 19 year old woman, whose parents are frustrated. Here's the email:
"Hi Gluten Dude. My daughter is nineteen and was diagnosed with Celiac Disease five months ago. She was having severe stomach pain and after landing in the hospital, a biopsy came back as celiac. She has gone completely gluten free and the severe stomach pains are gone but she just feels crappy almost every time she eats. They told us it may take up to a year for her to feel completely better because her celiac was on the severe side. I am looking for confirmation this is normal and that there is still hope she will feel better. She is down right now with all the things she can’t eat. It is devastating to she your child feel so left out I just wish she would turn that corner. Any advice would be terrific! Thank you! "
My advice? Stop eating gluten-free food. Tune in and it'll make sense.
Ahhhh...celiac support groups. There are a lot of them out there but it can be a mine field of bad info. So how do you find the good ones? Here's the email I received asking this very question:
"Hey Dude - my 24-yo daughter was just diagnosed with celiac. I just discovered your website and app and it looks super helpful. Do you know of any support groups specifically for young adults? She is doing a ton of research, but also is grieving, angry, overwhelmed, exhausted, and feeling really lousy. Tonight she told me she also wants to try the low FODMAP diet, and I'm not sure if that will make things harder while she gets used to a GF diet, or if it makes sense to do it right away. I'm rambling, but just wanted to say thanks for all your resources and blunt truths. "
Listen in for the answer. Well...my answer anyway.
Dude note: I had some microphone issues today so the quality is not quite up to par. I'll be sure to fix that before the next episode.
Today we’re talking about the frustration of a new celiac diagnoses, well meaning friends who say the wrong things and a future spouse who feels inconvenienced by his wife-to-be’s new disease. Seriously. Here is the email I received:
Thank you so much for the candid website. I am partially diagnosed, meaning my numbers were high but I have to wait four to eight weeks for the biopsy to come back, but they were high enough that the doctor said it's most likely Celiac disease. I will only receive dietician support and resources once that comes back.
This journey has been so, so frustrating. Hearing well-meaning family members tell me "it's healthier." and "You'll get super fit." and "There's plenty of GF options out there!" just adds on to the frustration.
Having a fiancé who is supportive until he HAS to cook dinner on his cooking nights, otherwise I’d have nothing to eat that's safe the next day, is disheartening. While if he doesn't cook, he can pick something up at any restaurant and eat pasta that will reheat the next day. Basically he's supportive until it's an inconvenience. I have felt incredibly alone, bitter and downright angry over this diagnosis.
Thank you SO much for this website. It's refreshing to have someone finally state how I've been feeling. Yes, it's great to have a diagnosis, but it's overwhelming. Nobody in my life understands the frustration. I have ordered your book, and will continue to find support from this website.
Tune in for my response, including some tough love.
Today we are discussing gluten paranoia and how afraid of gluten do we really need to be when newly diagnosed. Here is the email I received:
Hey Gluten Dude. I'm so glad I found your site! I'm having a mental issue that I'm sure is not unique, so I hoped you could help. I feel like I'm slipping into "crazy" territory with the level of concern I have about gluten. I'm recently diagnosed and still getting the hang of it, but I find myself freaking out (on the inside) when my daughter puts her lunchbox on the kitchen counter...wasn't it also on the school lunch counter? And on the kitchen counter at her dad's (non GF) house?
But what about her blankie? It was at her dad's house! And her grandma's house! I cannot wash it every time she's at my house, but then it gets on the couch, and then I sit on the couch, and then I eat a snack OMG GLUTEN AHHHH! Or her clothes when I give her a hug. Or...or...or...
This is a constant brain cycle. Besides washing my hands before I eat, washing the counter before I prepare food, and keeping a GF kitchen/house (which I am), I'm doing what I can, right? Are there any good resources about chilling the fuck out for the anxious among us?
Tune in for the answer.
Today we’re talking about getting conflicting information from various doctors and who to trust and who to listen to when you are newly diagnosed with celiac disease. Here is the email I received:
"Hey Gluten Dude. I have just been diagnosed with Celiac disease at the Cleveland Clinic. They told me to have a local physician take care of the endoscopy and then gave me web sites and information; they were very thorough and very informative.
When I got back home, the local doctor told me this disease was not that bad and many overrated its effect on the body.
Cleveland clinic told me there was no cure, I just had to get checked and follow the diet. The new doctor told me Steroids would fix this just fine. I was warned by the clinic that steroids were only used if the villi was very inflamed and only for about a week and should be gluten free.
Clinic doctors told me that with my family history of cancer and heart disease I would need to be followed up on with a colonoscopy and endoscopy every one to two years. The new doctor says five to ten. Who is right here. Two conflicting things that are very different and no where to go. Thanks."
Today we're talking gluten-free pizza and whether wheat starch in items labeled gluten-free can really be trusted. Here is the email I received:
Dear Gluten Dude: My daughter is 18 and has celiac disease. She has had an accidental exposure recently to Digiorno Gluten Free pizza. She had such a violent reaction to it where she ruptured a vessel in her stomach and vomited blood. They are not certified gluten free and use the gluten removed wheat (wheat starch). How is this possible and how is it even legal???