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Wheat Intolerance and Your Family

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Wheat Intolerance and Your Family – How do you know if you, or someone in your family, are intolerant to wheat? Symptoms can include regular headaches; wind/gas (that smells); stomach cramps and pain; skin irritation (like an itchy scalp), a bloated stomach; unpredictable bowel movements (diarrhea or constipation); tiredness; and low mood. Other symptoms, especially in children, can include bleeding noses and low energy.

Many of these symptoms are common in other conditions. However, if these symptoms occur regularly, what you’re eating may be affecting your health.

Keep a Record and Seek Help

You can often see a pattern. Start by making notes of the foods eaten and key symptoms, then ask your doctor for advice. They may do some blood tests for coeliac/celiac disease. If you’re not a coeliac, you may still be intolerant to wheat, but this may not show up in blood tests.

Your doctor may recommend that, as a start, you make some short-term changes to your diet. This could include cutting back on wheat – including cereal, bread, pasta, pies, crumbed food, pastries, crackers, and biscuits.

Write down how you feel. If there’s an improvement in your symptoms and you want to continue with a wheat-free diet, it’s worth seeing a registered dietician.

Eating wheat-free is a major change to your diet. A certified nutritionist consultant or dietician trained in the low-FODMAP diet approach can provide you with a healthy eating plan to help you safely eliminate wheat from your diet.

Read Labels

Removing wheat from your diet is a challenge, but there are many products available to replace wheat-based food, including gluten-free products.

Make sure you read the label on every food that you eat or buy. Watch for small things in your diet that can contain wheat and may cause symptoms, like chippies, liquorice, and lollies made with wheat glucose syrup.

Check sauces, marinades, dressings, soups, stuffing, and gravy for any wheat and remember if you are following the low-FODMAP diet, not all gluten-free foods are free of FODMAPs.  Again, read labels carefully!

Try low-FODMAP

If your symptoms continue, have a look at the low-FODMAP diet, which can help to relieve symptoms of digestive problems and IBS. The low-FODMAP diet avoids wheat; barley; rye; garlic and onions; honey; lactose; sugar alcohols; and certain veggies, fruits, and legumes.

The acronym FODMAP stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides And Polyols.  They include fructans, galacto-oligosaccharides, lactose, excess fructose, and polyols.

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