6 Months Gluten Free!

This marks my first six months on a gluten free diet (or within a couple of weeks of six months, anyway). Since I got the results of my blood tests today during my appointment with my gastroenterologist, it seemed like a good time to post a status update.

I had great results! One test (I’m not sure what it measures) went from >160 to <1:10, which the doctor tells me is a dramatic improvement. Of the two TTG auto-antibody tests, one went from almost 100 to 2.8. The other went from almost 40 to 10.3 and was the only test that was still a little out of the normal range.

My doctor told me that I’m obviously complying with the diet, that what we’re doing as a family is working, and to keep doing it. He’s going to have the tests reworked annually to monitor my progress. He was a bit impressed at the rate of improvement. He mentioned that everyone has ‘cheater’ days on a medical diet. I actually don’t. While it’s very hard to be certain you have completely avoided gluten in all situations, I have never yet consciously eaten anything I knew to contain gluten. Any gluten I’ve consumed has been accidental. However, my wife and I have worked hard to avoid such accidents. It’s nice to see those efforts pay off.

For whatever reason, I’m less prone than perhaps some people are to ‘cheat’ once I have actually decided to do something. A friend once told me that most people aren’t like me. They don’t decide something and then do it. Or something to that effect. I didn’t and don’t exactly understand his comment, but perhaps my lack of ‘cheating days’ fits in there somewhere.

I was worried that I was missing something somewhere and that my blood work would not show significant improvement. Changing to be gluten free has not been the easiest thing I’ve ever done. While it takes significantly less willpower than quitting smoking did, eating gluten free is much more complicated. There is so much to check and it’s so easy to make a mistake, misjudge a restaurant or product, or even end up with a contaminated product. I was extremely relieved at the results today.

And, a couple of weeks ago, my HDL (good cholesterol) tested high enough to be in the normal range for the first time since they started testing it some years ago. So I’ve really had two good blood tests in a row.

It seems I really am getting better. 😀

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5 Comments

  1. Posted September 29, 2009 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Awesome.

    Though — you quit smoking?!?!? Wow.

    If you & Stacy are ever in Houston, consider yourself invited to dinner (obviously of the gluten-free variety).

    Take care & God bless
    Anne / LF

  2. Posted September 29, 2009 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I quit smoking June 26, 1996. It’s been a while now. 😉

    Thanks for the invite! Don’t know that we have any plans to head Houston way, but will keep in mind.

  3. Posted October 14, 2009 at 11:37 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations on the 6 month mark!

    I once decided to “cheat” and eat pizza…and just spit it out…didn’t turn out well, and well I will never try that again…it wasn’t a good idea!

    – Jessika : Celiac Speaks – My Personal Notes

  4. Posted October 15, 2009 at 4:54 am | Permalink

    Thanks! I’ve not even felt particularly tempted to “cheat” at this point. I want to get well and stay well.

    (And that gives me another blog to add to the celiac section of my feedreader … 😉 )

  5. Posted October 15, 2009 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

    Of course, if I ever were going to “cheat” I wouldn’t waste it on something like pizza. I’m thinking maybe a reuben with that strong rye bread flavor I haven’t found anything similar to in the gluten free world. Or a hot loaf of perfect sourdough with butter. Or a big chicken-fried steak with cream gravy.

    You know… something that might vaguely be worth poisoning myself over. 😉

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