Quick update: My IBS

white sourdough

More than one year has passed since my last post here. There are reasons, and very good news, but I will leave this to another post.

Here I wanted to leave a quick update on my “gluten” sensitivity odyssey, for those who have been following my gluten-articles series.

I did continue with the investigations, and so did my daughter, too, who has symptoms similar to mine.
We went so far as to very invasive tests for me (a gastroscopy, most hated procedure EVER) and genetic tests for both me and my daughter.

It comes out that neither me nor her have signs compatible with Celiac Disease. In particular, we don’t have the genetics for it (just like about 70% of the population).

Still, we do have similar symptoms. And these last few months have been particularly tough for both of us. Maybe because we were doing better and we relaxed in our eating habits, also supported by the seemingly good news we do not have even the risk for Celiac Disease.

That’s how we started to eat again whatever bread and baked goods we found during our busy days and weeks, rather than only my sourdough bread (made with organic and carefully sourced wheat) like we were doing before. This happened due to my busy schedule and my reduced time in the kitchen of these months in which I have set up my new business (more on it soon). The punishment came rather quickly and in the form of unbearable night cramps, and mornings and eves spent on the toilet, days missed of school and work, headaches, heartburn, constant tiredness, muscle aches and very grumpy moods for both of us.

To note, my daughter got much worse after a vaccination she took during this period. Not saying the vaccine was the cause, but it did make things worse for weeks after the injection. So this opens new avenues for me, in terms of possible co-factors.

And more doctor visits, and more tests, and more inconclusive results.


At the end, or at least at this moment, we have both received answers that classify us as having some form of IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) that builds up on a probable genetic predisposition, according to the last doctor we saw. What genes? None knows. But it is interesting to find out that those who are so “lucky” not to have a predisposition for Celiac Disease may equally be at risk of developing something similar but based on other genes, which we still don’t know of.

So we are back avoiding all that contains gluten except my sourdoughs. Which, for reasons I still have not clear, do improve our symptoms, especially mine. Soon I will dare with pasta and cookies/crackers from highly digestible grains, but I have learned my lesson now: no more “unknown origin” bread, pasta or cookies. And no more industrial gluten-free products. They are often just as bad in making our symptoms peak.

The gluten-odyssey continues, like that of many with our same condition. And I hope that soon I will be able to help others like me and my daughter concretely, giving them alternatives that make them feel better like they do with us.

Stay tuned and always keep on bread-ing!
sifted heritage sourdough

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Barbara Elisi

Hi there! I am the "soul" behind Bread & Companatico. My main interest is the preservation of bread tradition and craft, with an eye to health. I hope you are having a good time reading this blog, and please don't be shy to connect with me through comments or emails and do keep on bread-ing! 🙂

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8 replies
    • Barbara Elisi
      Barbara Elisi says:

      thank you Solange! we take one day at a time. today our symptoms are being nice to us, hope they will take a vacation 🙂

  1. Deanna
    Deanna says:

    Thanks for sharing this. I am going to share your blog posts with friends that are having similar issues and I am rereading the series. Thanks again.

    • Barbara Elisi
      Barbara Elisi says:

      thanks Deanna! so glad you liked the series and I hope it can help others like me and my daughter to better understand their symptoms. more coming!

  2. Cathleen
    Cathleen says:

    Thank you! My teen daughter has IBS, recently diagnosed after a lifetime of trouble. A low FODMAP diet works for her. We are still working to figure out her triggers.
    Welcome back! We look forward to more posts. All the best to you and your daughter.

    • Barbara Elisi
      Barbara Elisi says:

      awe… thanks Cathleen! it’s good to be back. I really missed the interaction with my readers, looking forward to more of it. glad to hear your daughter is doing better and that the diet works for her. we are still trying to figure out what to eat and what not to, only certainty for now is that my sourdough bread with properly sourced wheat does not make us sick, which is truly a great news for a bread lover 🙂


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