Ive had type 1 for 13 years, and I have had Celiac disease for 3 years. Soo I'm still pretty new at the whole Gluten Free diet thing. Lately it seems like if I am having a perfect blood sugar day, then I get hit with an accidental cross contamination reaction. And if my stomach is fine for a day, then my blood sugars are completely out of whack. Anyone else have this problem? or any advice to give me on balancing both these diseases while being in college?
Hi Brianna H. I just saw your post on the group for multiple conditions; another place you might want to post is the group: http://www.tudiabetes.org/group/celiacanddiabetes
I've had Celiac Disease now for over 20 years and it remains a challenge (I've also had Type 1 for the same period of time). I read labels carefully, looking for hidden gluten, and we cook at home most of the time. The only thing I can think of is that maybe you have other allergies/sensitivities besides gluten. For instance, I can't eat soy or corn. Maybe an appointment with an allergist would give you more information. Good luck.
Well, you know that celiac disease takes precedence over diabetes. Every glutening triggers an autoimmune response that can last for weeks. Maybe nothing severe for you, in your case, but enough to keep you from your very best!
If you are in a dorm setting, be sure to talk to the head chef/manager. Really quiz them about cross contamination procedures. Do not trust that they know what they are doing. I belong to a senior group at our local university and am on campus every week for classes. Our cafeteria proudly showed me that they offer gluten free foods. They even have a student who is gluten free – except she did NOT have celiac disease and did not know about cross contamination. She was their advisor! Then the head chef showed me that instead of ordering in Gf desserts from a dedicated Gf facility and shipped, they were baking on-site using the same cupcake tins, brownie pans and mixers as the gluten-containing items. Ugh!
I complained via email, did not get a response and had to work my way up the chain. Why bother? ADA requires schools to provide safe meals especially when meal plans are required and not optional. Someone has to champion for kids.
If you are living off campus, you must train your roommates. Celiac is not just an intestinal problem, it affects your brain and nerves! Not good when you are a student. Want to improve your grades? Adhere to to the GF diet and keep your BG levels stable.
You could have intolerances due to intestinal damage (villi damage starts with losing enzymes that digest milk lactose, or absorb iron or calcium, etc.) That is something to think about.
I had to start avoiding wheat (and many other foods) two months ago due to a rare allergic/autoimmune condition called eosinophilic esophagitis. It's definitely very challenging! Made more so by the fact that I also have other "traditional" food allergies. Lately my diabetes has taken a back seat to my diet because I'm finding it very hard to avoid carbohydrates as much as I'd like. Obviously not a good solution in the long run ... I have noticed that my insulin requirements have dropped a LOT (almost halved) since starting this diet. Haven't noticed if cross-contamination affects my blood sugar as, so far, that's only happened twice because I'm being very careful and generally avoiding eating out. It definitely affects my EOE symptoms when it happens.
When I lived on campus and had both diabetes and food allergies, I luckily had access to a full kitchen, so I prepared all my own meals and did not purchase a food card. I think it's very hard to eat at any cafeteria once you get into multiple food restrictions.