This forum is for questions and support regarding What Causes Lyme Disease, Diagnosing Lyme Disease, Joint Pain issues, Living with Lyme Disease, Nervous System issues, Prevention, Risk Factors, Skin Disorders, Symptoms and Treatments.
A few comments have been posted recently referring to diet sensitivities in those with Lyme, and going gluten-free was mentioned recently as well.
I got a bad systemic yeast infection a year or so ago, and part of treating it was to clean up my diet, very strict at first, but now I eat vegetables, fruits, some grains, and protein, but no dairy and no wheat. I may have a genetic issue with wheat and the gluten it contains (not uncommon in those with Irish genes, which I have), just as dairy intolerance is not uncommon in those with Am. Indian genes (which I also have). [[Fortunately I can still eat chocolate, so all is not lost. Ha.]]
It sounds like a very strict and boring diet, but really it's not, and I have lost all the extra weight that had crept on over time.
I wanted to recommend to those of you who are having dietary issues a website specifically for those trying to avoid gluten, which is in more food products than I ever imagined.
The University of Chicago has a celiac disease center, which is about people like me who have dietary sensitivities in the small intestine (I just found out that the word 'celiac' comes from the Greek word 'koilia', meaning belly. Always wondered about that).
If you are interested in a very detailed list of foods to avoid and foods that are safe, as well as an explanation of how this works day-to-day so you can avoid possible problem foods, go to: www [dot] celiacdisease [dot] net / gluten-free-diet (but first put the dots in and take out the e x t r a s p a c e s in that URL).
The site has positive and encouraging advice. "Step one in managing the gluten-free diet is to understand which foods contains wheat, rye, and barley so they can be eliminated from the diet, and intestinal healing can begin. It may seem overwhelming at first as wheat, rye and barley are common food ingredients, however there is a variety of foods that are naturally gluten-free. Fresh foods, without any processing or additives, from the fruit, vegetables, dairy products, and meat/meat alternatives food groups are all NATURALLY GLUTEN FREE. That is five out of the six food groups [grains are the sixth, but there are some grains that are okay too]."
There is a list of 4 dozen grains that are okay to eat, so trust me, I'm not starving. Those include various kinds of rice, buckwheat, chickpeas, corn, millet, potato flour, quinoa [my personal favorite], sesame, soy, and others. Oats are possible, but they have to be specially processed oats to avoid cross-contamination with gluten grains. The article explains this.
Whether there is a specific tie between gluten sensitivity and Lyme disease, I don't know, but if your gut is not a happy camper, you might try modifying your diet for a while to see if you feel better. I sure do!
thanks for sharing your experience relating to gluten and other dietary issues. as you know, i'm am not diagnosed, but last may, i decided to undergo a major detox diet and eat very much like you describe. at the time, i gave up extra sugars, all grains and dairy and did notice an improvement in my energy level and some of my symptoms. (and isn't losing 20lbs a lovely side benefit??) i have since re-introduced brown rice and quinoa which do not seem to have a negative impact. my sugar intake is still much reduced, but i do have a little coconut milk ice cream a couple of nights a week and more than the one piece of fruit i limited myself to for about 6 months.
my rheumatologist ran a celiac blood test and i screened negative, but i found out that i carry a copy of the HLA-DQ2 gene which, although not diagnostic, is associated with celiac disease. as a result, i figure it can't hurt to continue with this diet. my only concern has been with respect to my calcium intake. i am taking a supplement, and, now, a magnesium citrate supplement thanks to your advice.
Thanks, binx -- you jogged my memory to get my calcium levels tested ... I don't take calcium supplements bec. I have a damaged kidney that is prone to calcium build up (aka kidney stones) but that's no reason to ignore my bones entirely!
What kind of calcium (citrate?) do you take? I am always suspicious of the panicky medical headlines demanding that we each take huge amounts of supplements ... but bones are worth keeping healthy, eh.
I too am gluten free. I began my new diet almost exactly one year ago when all my symptoms started because I thought maybe that was the problem. I've been tested by several different methods and although I don't have celiac disease, I do have a gluten/wheat sensitivity.
It was very hard at first, but now, it's pretty easy. I buy Udi's whole grain bread either fro whole foods or my local health food store. It is the best gluten free bread.
I also try to stay dairy free too although, I'm not as strict on that.
As far a calcium, I have a good product that my nutritionist recommended and it's in a bottle and comes in liquid form. It's by Lifetime and it's "Calcium Magnesium Citrate 750 mg. It comes in different flavors. I buy the blueberry flavor. I really like it and could probably drink the whole bottle at once! ha ha Also, my nutritionist said to break my dosage up and take 1 Tbspn in morning and 1 at night because your body can only absorb so much at one time.
i am sending you a link to the calcium supplement i'm currently taking via PM so you can see if it's of interest. it's 500mg/day of food-based calcium and includes magnesium and vitamin D.
i don't have bone density issues at present, but i do notice that taking the calcium supplement at night helps me with my insomnia a little bit. maybe it has to do with something along the lines of warm milk before bedtime...
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