Have you been doing a gluten free diet for a while, but your symptoms haven’t gone away? Or maybe they went away initially but then came back. Maybe you feel somewhat better but still have some nagging issues. There could be several reasons that may be causing this. So, before you ditch the diet and say it isn’t working, let’s go over some reasons why you are still experiencing symptoms.

1- You aren’t strict enough.

Many people don’t know how to do the gluten free diet successfully. They may not know how to read labels and are getting gluten that they are unaware of. There are many ingredients that gluten can be hidden in. Or they may think that a few bites of gluten here and there is just fine. This is not the case. To really heal your body and reap the benefits of a gluten free diet, all sources of gluten must be eliminated. Even a tiny amount of gluten can cause inflammation leading to uncomfortable and irritating symptoms. So, make sure to read all labels or make sure they say certified gluten free. When eating out make sure the staff know how to keep you safe.

2- You didn’t do it long enough.

Many feel that as soon as they go off gluten, they should feel better. This is not the case. Some feel better in a few days, but for some it can take up to 3-6 months for their gut to heal completely. So, stick with a strict gluten free diet and give your body the time it needs to heal.

3- It may be a gut microbiome issue.

There is a lot of new research talking about the importance of a healthy gut microbiome. The microbiome is made of trillions of bacteria that inhabit our gastrointestinal tract. Studies show that intestinal bacteria have an influence on how someone responds to food. When there is dysbiosis (imbalance of healthy bacteria to unhealthy bacteria) it affects digestion and the immune system and causes inflammation. This can lead to symptoms of celiac disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and food sensitivities. Though the studies are still ongoing, there is some strong evidence that taking a probiotic or eating probiotic-rich foods (kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha, plain yogurt) can have a positive effect on the gut microbiome. For additional reading reference these articles here:

4- There may be other intolerances or allergies.

Sometimes there are allergies that go along with celiac disease, autoimmune disease, or sensitivities. I would recommend getting a blood test to see if you have any food allergies. The blood test will show allergies but will not show sensitivities.

To identify food sensitivities, you can do an elimination diet where you eliminate the top 5 allergens: gluten, dairy, soy, corn, and eggs, for 3-4 weeks. Then reintroduce them one at a time every 4 days to see if there is a reaction. When you reintroduce, eat the food several times for 3-4 days and watch for symptoms. If you have symptoms, no need to keep eating it.

The gluten-free diet can be hard to master. It takes time, education, and a commitment to your health. While we all want to feel our best, sometimes there are roadblocks or areas you may need extra support with.

If you are tired of trying to figure out how to maintain a healthy gluten free diet, book a discovery call with me for a 15 minute free consultation.

I can help you get to a better spot with your health and nutrition. There’s no need to stay stuck and not feel your best.