My Journey

I was diagnosed Coeliac (Celiac) when I was 57.

I didn’t know what was happening to me at the time I was so sick I had lost 56 pounds in weight in the space of three months, Constant Vomiting and Diarrhoea had left me weak and exhausted, I thought I was going to die.

After many doctors visits, and a long stint on a waiting list to see a Specialist, I couldn’t wait any longer (scheduled appointment was 6 months away)

I was afraid that at the rate I was losing weight I’d be dead before I got to see the Specialist, so the family used every contact they had at their disposal, I spoke to all the local politicians’ lobbied doctors and councillors.

Eventually I got to see the specialist, had blood test and an Endoscophy. The results came back positive I had Coeliac/Celiac Disease.

I was later to discover that my cessation of smoking after about 40+ yrs  triggered the onset of Adult Coeliac Disease.

Link:Smoking Prevents the onset of Adult Coeliac Disease

I met a Dietician and they suggested a Gluten Free Diet for Life, no regular bread, pasta, cakes, biscuits (cookies).

No Fast Food ( Fish and chips, Curries, Pizza) also I had to be careful about ‘Gluten’in Products.

So I tried:

Gluten Free Bread (Tasted like Saw-Dust)

Gluten Free Cakes (loaded with sugar to disguise the gritty aftertaste)

Gluten Free pizza Bases (I’m sure cardboard boxes would taste better)

That did it,….I knew I couldn’t hack it! having to eat all that rubbish was a fate worse than death.

So I had to change the way I lived ORjust live on Veg, Meat, Fish and Nuts.

The thought of never having any sort of goodie again, drove me to do something about it.

I was at a loss, I could just barely cook, baking was way out of my league, I literally didn’t have a clue!

So I set about teaching myself, I read a lot of recipe books (regular and GF) and started to watch the food channels on TV

Most GF Recipe books used so many different types and mixes of flours that it was overwhelming.

I did try in the beginning to use their flour mixes, but found it way to costly and time consuming, at one stage I had four flour bins in my kitchen with different flour mixes.

Having tried all the usual flours available that were recommended by The Coeliac Society of Ireland and using the suggested recipes on the packets,

I found that when they were used alone they left a lot to be desired, there was something definitely lacking.

They were too dry, crumbly, gritty and were only edible if

toasted and disguised with butter and jam or something with a strong flavour.

So I set about creating my own recipes from scratch, using readily available vetted GF flours and ingredients.

I tried using the most popular gluten free flour for baking, but was not tolerant to the Codex Wheat Starch that was contained in it.

So now after a lot of trial, error and experimentation.

I can bake near normal bread that you can eat happily without anything spread on it …….Bet you can’t say that about regular GF bread!

Cakes are indistinguishable from the real thing so moist and tasty that Non-Coeliacs can’t tell the difference

Pizza bases that would pass for takeouts from any Pizzeria and biscuits (cookies) that taste real and crisp

My bread has lasted for about 4 – 5 days in an air-tight container at room temperature.

Some of my cakes (because of butter and alcohol) have lasted for more than 3 weeks also stored at room temperature.

Cookies retain their crispness and don’t go soggy once stored in a container.

Acting as Guinea Pig for my own creations means that I’ve put on weight, but who cares, the goodies taste great and I can bake !!

I feel so sorry for people who can’t or don’t want to bake and have to rely on commercially available Gluten Free Goodies,

Boy you’ll NEVER know what your missing.

_____________________________

Recently I was called back for a follow-up OGD + Colonoscopy as it was approaching 3 years since my diagnosis.

I went through the usual procedure of clearing out the system before the OGD + Colonoscopy,
I wasn’t too amused at the thoughts of drinking 3 Litres of ‘Kleen Prep’ mixture in the space of 2 hours
(I shudder just thinking about it)
it is reminiscent of drinking the water they wash the fish boxes out with at Billings Gate, YUK!
Having properly prep’d myself i set of for the hospital in the twilight (about 7am),
I was admitted into the day ward and got ready for the anesthetic etc.
Upon awakening i was offered the usual cup of tea (I had brought my own GF bread),
as I was relaxing the doctors came to visit and informed me that they had found a large ‘Polyp’
and were keeping me in until the results came back from the lab!
Next day the doctors said I could go home that the ‘Polyp’ was Benign,
an appointment was made to see the Consultant in 3 weeks.
Finally the appointment came around and I attended, the Consultant told me that the ‘Polyp’ was benign
and is called a ‘Adenoma’
these are nearly always benign but can become cancerous if not removed.
(it just goes to prove the importance of follow-up investigations)
Anyway to keep monitoring the situation, it was suggested that I have further Colonoscopies at 3 month intervals.
I’m not exactly ‘over the moon’ at that thought!, but it’s good to know I’m getting screened.
Coeliacs over 50 are more prone to Polyps (adenoma’s) than any other age group. Reference
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5 Responses to My Journey

  1. Teresa says:

    Davey, Sorry to hear about all the gastro exams. My daughter (34) was seen about 4yrs ago and seemed ok for a while but she will soon be going back for more tests her meds are not working as well as they did. I have been trying to find your recepies they used to be on the Coeliac site but I can’t find them have they been removed?
    Thanks T

    • David_H says:

      Yes, Theresa, I asked that they were deleted, long story.
      Everything was all over the place.
      I’ve restricted access to my recipe blogs as I’m combining them and condensing then into one managable blog,
      Internet Recipes adapted for a GF Diet
      Everything will be tagged so sayif you want a main course, you’ll just have to click the main course tag and all the recipes will be listed.

      This is a work in progress, as I don’t get much free time now to update, it will be some time before it’s available.
      Apologies on that score, if there’s anything in particular that you are looking for I could maybe give you a link.

      Best Regards,
      David

    • David_H says:

      Unfortunately yes, it’s a long story and I intent to let sleeping dogs lie.

      Unfortunately my previous computer crashed with all the recipes on it.
      I still have some in hard copy form what were you interested in and I’ll see if I have it.

  2. nINA says:

    Hope you are doing well today. I just discovered your site! I am very interested in baking my own GF foods. It looks as though your information will prove helpful. I look forward to going through the links on the sidebar.

    I had to chuckle at your comment that some of your cakes lasted up to 3 weeks at room temperature. How on earth could that be?!! Baked goods of any sort, in any location, would not make it a week in our house, hahaha! 🙂

    Cheers,
    ~Nina

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