Going Gluten-Free: A Patient Story (part 2)

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In celebration of Celiac Awareness Day on September 13th, this week we are featuring posts on the celiac and gluten-free lifestyle. Today we’d like to share an inspiring story from one of our founders, Sandi Kaplan. This was originally posted in 2010, but the message is an important one and worth revisiting. Hopefully it will inspire you to share your story with us. I am not one of those people who had any digestive symptoms with celiac disease. I would eat bread, cookies, cake, pizza without a hint of digestive upset. However, I have been anemic for as long as I can remember. I have taken a multitude of types of iron supplements – with food, on an empty stomach, in divided doses, all at once. To absolutely no avail. I have eaten meat, not eaten meat, eaten vitamin C sources with the meat. I have tried iron boosting teas, tinctures and botanicals. I tried every remedy that typically will work for people with iron deficiency anemia. During my first pregnancy, my iron was very low and I just could not get it into the normal range. As any pregnant women knows, severe anemia coupled with typical pregnancy tiredness makes for an “I can’t get off the couch” kind of issue. With my second pregnancy, I wanted to birth the baby at home but that plan was in jeopardy because of my significant anemia. Our amazing midwife could not understand why a young, otherwise healthy woman was so anemic. At my husband’s suggestion, and with my midwife’s encouragement, I finally got tested for celiac disease. Bingo! With the gluten out of my diet, my iron levels started to improve right away. I was able to birth our second child at home and my iron levels recovered well even after a significant amount of blood loss. It has taken longer for my iron reserves (as measured by my ferritin level) to get into the normal range but three and a half years later, my ferritin looks great! I have always been a person with some energy but the normalizing of my iron levels means that my energy levels are even better. I am so grateful that my anemia mystery was solved in a way that does not even require me to take drugs. I just have to read labels, enjoy the multitude of delicious gluten free food options and gaze happily at my excellent lab results! Tell us your Go Gluten-Free story in the comments below for a chance to win. Also, be sure to use this special Zing Coupon Code GFday913 for $5 off each box of 12 bars (no limit) with free shipping on 3 boxes or more in our online store. Code is good until September 24th, 2012.