Monday, August 27, 2012

Things I Never Knew...

Those of you who know my story, know that last October it was discovered that I had cancer (Lymphoma)
in my spleen, which I had removed in December.
Miraculously, God has brought me through all of that-without me even having to have treatments thus far!
I am indeed blessed!

However, over the course of the last few weeks, I have found out a lot of information that I never knew!
After the lymphoma was diagnosed, they eventually diagnosed me with colitis, gastritis, and celiac disease.
NOW, they have found that everything I had has been caused by the Celiac Disease!
(Celiac Disease is an intolerance to anything with gluten. Including breads, pasta etc...)

I personally never knew that Celiac was anything to really be concerned about.
I thought that once you stopped consuming the gluten--that it would resolve.
I am finding it that isn't the case at all.

Here are some things I have learned:

  • Celiac disease is an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food.
  • Untreated celiac disease can be life threatening. Celiacs are more likely to be afflicted with problems relating to malabsorption, including osteoporosis, tooth enamel defects, central and peripheral nervous system disease, pancreatic disease, internal hemorrhaging, organ disorders (gall bladder, liver, and spleen), and gynecological disorders. Untreated celiac disease has also been linked an increased risk of certain types of cancer, especially intestinal lymphoma.
  • One in 133 Americans have celiac disease.
  • It is estimated that 95% of celiacs are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with other conditions
  • 6-10 years is the average time a person waits to be correctly diagnosed
  • Celiac disease can lead to a number of other disorders including infertility, reduced bone density, neurological disorders, some cancers, and other autoimmune diseases.
  • There are NO pharmaceutical cures for celiac disease.
  • A 100% gluten-free diet is the only existing treatment for celiac today
  • Other Celiac related problems include: migraine, anxiety, depression, Dermatitis, Down's Syndrome, Liver Disease, Irritability, Lupus, Thyroid, Infertility, Autoimmune diseases (the list is too long to include here)
  •  a nearly 4-fold increased risk of death
(Please note, I am not afraid to die. Want to know why? Click Here)

Accurately diagnosing celiac disease can be quite difficult largely because the symptoms often mimic those of other diseases, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn's disease, intestinal infections, lactose intolerance and depression.
Blood tests are the first step in a diagnosis of celiac disease. A doctor will order one or more of a series of blood tests to measure your body's response to gluten.
In my case the biopsy was the key to finding it.
I am urging you if you feel that you may have Celiac to follow up and get it checked out!
The symptoms I had that sent me looking into the fact that I had a problem were
Anemia, hair loss, and mucous in my stools.

Here is a link to a symptom check list

These days I have more good days than bad-for which I am thankful.
Most days I feel "normal" to some extent. I am sad to
say though though that I have battled with some depression.
I also am having trouble with pains in my hands--don't know why yet.

I am on a strict diet that excludes gluten, as well as most dairy, sugar, & starches.
Because of my intestinal damage, I am following the Gaps diet to heal my gut.
What DO I eat?
I eat soup made from bone broth, that is organic.
I also eat lots of vegetables, nuts, seeds, and some fruit.
I try to eat about 50% raw.

This is a journey that will continue for as long as I live.
I do not know what God has for me yet in this, but I am clinging to Him as we journey this path.


gypsygirl said...

Thanks for posting! I've learned a bit about Celiac Disease from my herb class too, but I didn't know it could cause so many problems! Isn't is awesome though, that God designed our bodies so that when we locate the problem, so many things can be affected, and solved by fixing it? We serve an awesome Creator!!! And I am so glad that you are feeling better!!!!

~The Neighbor Girl ;)

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