If you’ve got a supportive family, count your blessings. I’ve received so many emails over the years from others who are not quite as fortunate. This one came in a couple of days ago and it has her doubting whether she should even mention gluten to her doctor.
I have a doctor’s appointment on Thursday morning and I don’t know whether to bring up a gluten sensitivity or not. It’s just a regular appointment; nothing special because I’ve been feeling a million different kinds of ill for well over eight months now.
I don’t say celiac for two reasons: 1) I have yet to meet another person in the UK to have heard of it and 2) because my grandma is the only person in my family so be sensitive towards gluten. I brought the subject up with her and the things I’ve been feeling are very similar to hers but she just told me to get a grip and deal with it – despite that she bought me Jennifer (my complete idol for what she does for her cause) Esposito’s book, telling me that it could give me some answers.
Everyone in my family has some form of food allergy or sensitivity – except from me so far. I told my dad (who I live with) and he just gave me the response I get from everyone – “you’re a 16 year old girl – it’s just hormones”.
I’m sorry to just ramble here but Im really unsure of how to go about this appointment and any feedback would be great.
I am so happy you reached out to me. Not only do I want you to mention gluten sensitivity, I want you to mention celiac. Celiac disease is as prevalent in the UK as it is here in the United States. Please don’t let the fact that it may be somewhat rare deter you from finding out the truth.
You say you have been ill for 8 months. That is your body talking to you and you need to listen to it. What I do need you to do is stop listening to your grandma and dad. Not about everything of course, but about this. A parent’s or grandparent’s job is to look out for your best interest. They are not doing this so you need to take it upon yourself.
I know at 16 this can be kinda scary but you’ve got a long life ahead of you and you deserve to live it as healthy as possible.
So yes, mention that your family has a history of food allergies.
Yes, mention that your grandma has gluten issues (and possibly undiagnosed celiac disease).
Yes, ask that they do a blood test and specifically check for celiac.
And yes, be your own best advocate.
Sorry you don’t have a better support system, but you’ve got one right here.
Keep me posted.