Living With Extreme Gluten Intolerance

About 10 years ago I had a couple of incidents resulting a meeting with the "blue lights" brigade. One was so bad that it finished in the high dependency unit in the local hospital. In all cases, it was a very acute allergic reaction. The tests showed gluten intolerance as well as some level of residual intolerance to nearly everything - even chicken.

I initially laughed. I used to eat half a bread in one sitting and drink beer in quantities considered normal only in places like the Czech Republic or Belgium. The last thought to possibly cross my mind would be that I may be allergic to any of that. After a couple of more incidents, I grudgingly agreed - the tests were right. So I decided to make the best out of the bad hand dealt to me and learn to live with my condition.

While doing that I figured out by trial and error that:

  • I am allergic to proteins that are not specific to wheat gluten. I am allergic to most of the Monocot plants. Wheat, Barley, Rye, even Rice (so much for it being non-allergenic). I show some reaction even to bananas.
  • My allergy is at "peanut" intensity. It is literally off the scale. I can feel the difference when a chicken has been grown eating wheat (that makes me sick) or corn (I can actually eat that one). The residual proteins in the meat from the chicken being fed wheat are sufficient to trigger it.

The combination of these makes travel and eating quite "fun". I ended up learning about food and cosmetics more than I could have possibly imagined 10 years ago. Thankfully, I always liked to cook, so the new necessities combined quite nicely with an existing hobby.

In these pages, I have "brain-dumped" recipes, notes and other bits and bobs which may be of interest to someone with coeliac disease and/or other forms of gluten intolerance. I hope people find them useful.