7

votes

REALLY BAD gluten exposure reaction - Advice PLEASE!

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created October 13, 2011 at 8:55 AM

Hi

I have been very strict paleo for about 3 months now. Last night was my birthday so I thought I could loosen the reins for just one night. I had some soy sauce based Thai food, 2 slices of a very sugary/wheat/gluten-infested cake and red wine.

Well....I have been awake for the past 24 hours. My stomach is SO bloated I look about 9 months pregnant, I have severe tummy pains, wind, headache, chronic heartburn and just feel generally like hell. I never reacted like this pre-Paleo and am actually a little worried as to how sick I feel. Had to go home early from work and didn't sleep at all last night as I felt so ill. I also gained 4.5 pounds overnight!!

Can anybody please recommend anything or advise how long I am going to feel like this?

Does this even sound like a normal reaction or should I go to a doctor?

I have eaten a little bit throughout the day - some veggies in coconut oil and some ground turkey mince.

THANK YOU!

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on May 12, 2013
at 03:20 AM

nutella nutella

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on October 14, 2011
at 07:37 PM

I wonder if KeVita would work for this, too -- I don't drink kombucha much, but I did replace soda with KeVita (coconut fermented drink).

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on October 14, 2011
at 07:36 PM

+1 more on the "wheat flu" -- and on horrible headaches from refined sugar!

E3127c595ddd7b5badf7ea8e42f058d6

(205)

on October 13, 2011
at 10:21 PM

thank you for your comments! i dont know if i could go stricter than paleo though! imagine the reaction if i had a gluten exposure then..!

3eca93d2e56dfcd768197dc5a50944f2

(11697)

on October 13, 2011
at 07:05 PM

The SCD rules. I do a mix of SCD and Paleo diets, since I also must heal my gut (IBS here).

F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on October 13, 2011
at 04:35 PM

I have also read about that mucus thing! I was so pissed that I could eat toast daily for 20 years then suddenly after 3 months off wheat, suddenly I couldn't eat wheat at all.

8949bf87b0e0aefcad10f29975e4fa2b

(8989)

on October 13, 2011
at 03:51 PM

+1 wheat flu. I get it too, and it lasts for two days.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on October 13, 2011
at 02:08 PM

NOT celiac--normal gluten intolerance symptoms. Your body adapted and you didn't notice as much pre-Paleo is my guess.

E3127c595ddd7b5badf7ea8e42f058d6

(205)

on October 13, 2011
at 10:01 AM

yeh i think so too but its just so weird as pre-paleo i never had problems on this scale...a little bit of bloating here and there but nothing like how i feel now!

F52b51135f2c47eb46c986fdc9760b9b

(180)

on October 13, 2011
at 09:45 AM

sounds like you have celiac disease.

E3127c595ddd7b5badf7ea8e42f058d6

(205)

on October 13, 2011
at 09:18 AM

haha i am actually think i would rather eat mice than wheat every again i can tell you that much! im glad to hear my symptoms sound normal. i honestly feel like i am dying!! the bloating is just on another level.

E3127c595ddd7b5badf7ea8e42f058d6

(205)

on October 13, 2011
at 08:56 AM

i also gained 4.5 pounds overnight!

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11 Answers

8
Fb67dc30cead043d1d13ea503a3044dc

(3280)

on October 13, 2011
at 09:10 AM

Sounds normal. I didn't react like that to wheat before going Paleo, but I do now. The same kind of symptoms, including a ton of water weight overnight, feeling sick, and the painful bloating. It's miserable! But for me it passes (erm, so to speak...) in about 48 hours. Two days of misery, then on the third I wake up feeling normal again. I call it 'wheat flu.'

My mom gets the exact same reaction, and a friend who isn't blood related gets similar (not as bad, though). I read that once you're off wheat, your digestive tract loses the protective layer of mucus it had built up over the years to protect you from chronic gluten exposure. Once that's gone, a tiny bit will set you off if you're sensitive to it.

It completely freaked me out the first time it happened...and it's bad enough that I would now rather eat thumbtacks and sawdust than voluntarily eat wheat again!

(I thought you typed 'ground turkey mice' up there, and was actually intrigued..."Mice, you say? How do you best cook mice?" ;) I am waaay too into the non-conventional meat thing...)

E3127c595ddd7b5badf7ea8e42f058d6

(205)

on October 13, 2011
at 09:18 AM

haha i am actually think i would rather eat mice than wheat every again i can tell you that much! im glad to hear my symptoms sound normal. i honestly feel like i am dying!! the bloating is just on another level.

8949bf87b0e0aefcad10f29975e4fa2b

(8989)

on October 13, 2011
at 03:51 PM

+1 wheat flu. I get it too, and it lasts for two days.

F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on October 13, 2011
at 04:35 PM

I have also read about that mucus thing! I was so pissed that I could eat toast daily for 20 years then suddenly after 3 months off wheat, suddenly I couldn't eat wheat at all.

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on October 14, 2011
at 07:36 PM

+1 more on the "wheat flu" -- and on horrible headaches from refined sugar!

3
Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on October 13, 2011
at 02:05 PM

Drink some kombucha, kefir or eat some sauerkraut!

Repopulating the good gut bacteria can make a big difference for me if I eat some gluten (rarely!)

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on October 14, 2011
at 07:37 PM

I wonder if KeVita would work for this, too -- I don't drink kombucha much, but I did replace soda with KeVita (coconut fermented drink).

1
8eef0e1edc664c72c451c73e3331d519

(100)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

Yep, I helped celebrate my husband's birthday by partaking in the cake and I also felt horrible for three days. Definitely not worth it. I also did not experience any adverse reactions to wheat prior to giving up grains. It's a good reminder on just how bad that crap is for you! Hang in there!

1
219f558c6fb724423033d983cca96d1a

(258)

on October 13, 2011
at 01:45 PM

I have celiac and it sounds to me like a normal celiac reaction to gluten. Even if you don't show up with celiac gluten intolerance is a recognized condition. It takes 6 months for gluten to leave your system. Nothing gets rid of it except for time. There is a diet like paleo called the scd (specific carbohydrate diet) diet. It is a little stricter than paleo. The best book to check out is "Breaking the vicious cycle." The SCD diet is all about healing the gut.

3eca93d2e56dfcd768197dc5a50944f2

(11697)

on October 13, 2011
at 07:05 PM

The SCD rules. I do a mix of SCD and Paleo diets, since I also must heal my gut (IBS here).

E3127c595ddd7b5badf7ea8e42f058d6

(205)

on October 13, 2011
at 10:21 PM

thank you for your comments! i dont know if i could go stricter than paleo though! imagine the reaction if i had a gluten exposure then..!

1
Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on October 13, 2011
at 01:41 PM

I have celiac disease, and this sounds pretty typical for a celiac. You may want to get tested to see if you've developed a sensitivity. The pain and bloating should decrease as the gluten leaves your system. Still, drink coconut water to keep your electrolytes up. It will also help with the headache. In tablet form or with greek yogurt, get some probiotics. They'll help with the bloating. Keep taking probiotics for a couple of weeks to repair some of the intestinal damage.

If you can get your hands on some, also take some ecchinacea. It's an herb that helps immune function and a few other things. It will help your body heal itself. Also, with a reaction like this, you may now be susceptible to getting sick in the next week.

Also try another herb, quercetin , which helps for some people to diminish celiac reactions, because of how it inhibits histamine release which causes inflammation. While your reaction is already well underway, it may still help.

Feel better!

1
9bca3c7a5a8a78433ce4a398b668aa4b

(287)

on October 13, 2011
at 01:40 PM

i have a gluten intolerance and that is exactly how I react when i eat something that contains gluten. (i dont do it on purpose, usually happens when i eat out or at someones house) and it can stem from the littlest bit of onion or garlic powder sprinkled on veggies (some spice companies add flour to them the "thicken them up" and bc they are cheap) Anyway, I usually drink a lot of water and like it was said above it "passes through me." There is nothing that I can take that will make it go away, it just does on its own. Usually within 24 hours mine is gone, but i have never eaten THAT much gluten in one shot. I would also check into being tested for the allergy, thats a pretty bad reaction only be you havent had it in 3 months... good luck and feel better!!! :)

1
24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on October 13, 2011
at 01:27 PM

I would get really bloated before I cut gluten and eventually went paleo- it was like that on almost a daily basis, so I feel your pain! I thought I had celiac, but blood work and endoscopy showed otherwise, so I guess I have non-celiac gluten intolerance. If you suspect you have celiac, I'd see a doctor because if it turns out you do have it, you'll have to be 100% gluten free (I seem to be able to tolerate small amounts); to me, it's worth knowing for sure!

When I get glutenized like that, nothing seems to really work other than the passage of time (sometimes a couple days) :( I also find that doing some forward bends or lying on my back with my knees up to my chest seems to help get the bloat out :/ I hope you feel better soon!

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on May 12, 2013
at 03:20 AM

nutella nutella

0
E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

on October 14, 2011
at 09:52 PM

I'm extremely sensitive to gluten, and that reaction sounds about right. Any time I accidentally ingest the stuff it takes about 3-5 days for me to feel better. (I hope you feel better sooner than that!)

0
Cd62a9f3bdc3710d3edd0ef2c34aaa45

on October 14, 2011
at 07:15 PM

I had my first cookie in ages yesterday- spelt and oats and I had a horrible reaction including bloating, diarrhea and a 5lb weight gain. I really had thought 'grain flu' was exaggerated before I felt it for myself.

0
2c4b2d9c824982cf26bddb4cc1d65069

on October 14, 2011
at 11:53 AM

Read up on a salt water cleanse. I did this by accident a couple of weeks ago (I was adding a little salt water to my diet)... And MAN, did it flush things out!! Ma,e sure you have about 2 hours of privacy though. It is fast and furious.

0
13c5a9f1678d75b93f269cdcf69f14d5

(2339)

on October 13, 2011
at 06:58 PM

You should post over at celiac.com

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