My Story of Discovering Celiac Disease

Many people my age don't understand that eating on a gluten free diet isn't a choice. Many people my age especially don't understand what gluten actually is. Being on a gluten free diet as a teenager is defiantly one of the hardest things to do as some of you may know. The last thing you want to worry about is what you can and can't eat and you probably just want to live life normally no matter where you go. It can be frustrating not having food when going to a friends house, not having anything to eat at a party,  or having to find different food for sports. As a teenager I've had to find alternatives for all of these and have had to explain to people countless times why I have to do so. This is my story on how I discovered I have Celiac Disease and how I deal with it as a teenager through out my daily life.

I was in 7th grade when I started to notice something was wrong with how I felt each day. I was constantly tired/fatigued, had many stomach problems, headaches nearly every day, and constant pain in my stomach and all throughout my body too. This started to become an every day thing for me, after a while I started to think this was normal and forgot what normal was. For months I just brushed it off until until 8th grade came along. That's when things got considerably worse and that's when I knew I had to figure out what was wrong or I felt like I wouldn't be alive long enough to even figure what was wrong in the first place.

8th grade was one of the years where I felt like the most was going on in my life. I played football and lacrosse, had great friends, a girlfriend, and was busy with school too. I felt like everything was perfect in my life, except for my health. It became everyday where it would be almost impossible for me to wake up in the morning. I would be fatigued during school, after school, and all throughout the day. In 1 month I lost 10 pounds, and in 6 months I lost 21 pounds all for no apparent reason. I knew something was very wrong and started to think it could have to do with how much I was eating or when I was eating. I later learned this wasn't the answer and it had to of been what I'm eating. I did tons of research for months on the internet and through books just trying to find out what it could possibly be. Celiac Disease was my answer.

What led me on to actually discovering I could possibly have Celiac Disease was my mom. She was also diagnosed with Celiac a year before I was and had nearly all the same symptoms I did. I began a gluten free and lactose free diet in April of 2011 and immediately noticed a difference in how I felt. All of my stomach pains and problems were completely gone and I knew this was a main part of the problem that had to be changed forever. If you are interested, Here is the other half of my story about how I got diagnosed with a rare type of Adrenal Disorder just last October and how it changed my life forever.
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  1. It is good to see you doing this blog. I have a 17 year old daughter who has Celiac's as well. She was diagnosed at 1 though. It is hard to do the things "normal" teenagers do. She is on the track & cross country team at her school, and they do pasta parties before their big meets. So basically everyone is noshing on all of these great looking gluten containing foods in front of her once a week. Anyway she handles it pretty well. I shared your blog with her. It's good to see someone using their experiences to raise awareness of the disease, and it's refreshing to see it from a teenagers point of view.

  2. Thank you very much! I can relate to your daughter about dealing with Celiac in social environments, and it's defiantly hardest at my age which I'm sure she understands. I'm planning on making a Gluten free section for teens later on, so I hope this will help you and her. It's great to hear positive feedback, Thanks!

  3. Hi Taylor,
    Thanks for being proactive and getting your site up to help others. I will put my grandkids on to you and try some recipes…when I find the time..

    Please check out my site, My book, Toxic Staple: How gluten may be wrecking your health - and what you can do about it! I was just recognized by Dr. Ford, a pediatric gastroenterologist and forward thinking expert (from NZ- on the Gluten Syndrome) as one of the three books in the states addressing the hazards of gluten beyond celiac disease.

    Wouldn't it be nice to catch this life/body destroying monster before so, so much damage is done? I spell out testing that may detect intolerance before your villi are shot to pieces. This could be valuable and preventative info for any siblings or other family members you have…especially if they are having ANY chronic symptoms of most any sort.

    You can look up Toxic Staple or Anne Sarkisian, author on FB for Dr. Ford's youtube. I need to get more savvy with FB and Twit. Also have a blog @ Toxic where I will be posting more research, a few recipes, and stories for folks to relate to so they can get a handle on their health before it is totally destroyed.

    Nice job, young man!