Tuesday, October 27, 2009

It's Gluten Free for This Family

In August, I was commenting on Dino's learning issues and got an email from a friend who commented that his issues sounded like auto-immune issues, specifically gluten issues (aka Celiac).

I was curious and remembered reading how dyspraxia patients had amazing results cutting wheat out of their diets. So I decided to give it a try.

He started holding his pencil with the correct grip. He spoke more in class. He began conversations (that weren't about cars!).

I was impressed and thrilled. One day, he slipped and had some cake at a party. This followed severe stomach pains and Dino now refuses any sort of cake at a gathering. I am guessing it hurt pretty bad.

At the same time Dino went off gluten, Mike did too. Within one week, the arthritis in his hands were gone along with IBS issues he had dealt with for years. I began to suspect Celiac and did some research on it.

It amazingly quite common and if a parent has it, there is a 25% chance offspring will also have it. It made perfect sense for Dino to have it. It also appears to have a major effect on muscles--this would effect Dino's muscle tone for writing and speech.

But I still wasn't sure if it was what helped his learning. When I took Dino off gluten, I also started a more intense home school day routine, he began taking fish oil every morning and he was growing up. Maybe the gluten didn't matter on the learning end.

Well a few weeks ago, Mike took Dino to the neighborhood block party. In a momentary lapse of reason, both ate mac and cheese thinking about the cheese part of the dish not the gluten heavy pasta!

Within two hours, Mike was in pain and Dino literally spiked a fever and threw up. After that, Dino felt better (no fever, no vomit) but Mike was still in pain.

I sat down with Dino the next day to do a little work. The pencil grip he mastered so well was now a struggle. Simple letter writing led to tears and Dino spoke little the entire day.

I'm not a doctor but I know my son. He was not the same son the day before the block party. Dino struggled for almost a week with his speech and learning but slowly got better. The gluten did something to him. Something that hindered him, big time.

Gluten free is anything but easy but I am determined to make it work. I believe it is truly making a difference!

I am getting a lot of help from friends. I am finding more and more gluten free products including a special gluten free area at my grocery story. I just discovered a local pizza joint with very overpriced gluten free pizza. And ya know what, it is worth every penny :)


Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

YEA! Good for you, and good for Dino! And Mike too!

One of the bloggers i follow does gluten-free at her house too. She makes mac-n-cheese with gluten-free noodles but uses the regular Kraft cheese sauce. Just thought I'd throw that in!

KC said...

Glad it seems to be working well for you guys.

Tyne said...

Lisa, I read that post with tears of joy in my eyes! How very cool. I remember months and months ago all of the difficulties that you blogged about with Dino, and how very kind of the Lord to show you what was hindering him.

I will be praying for you as you minister to your family in this way. I know that it will be challenging to adjust your diets, but God's grace is sufficient (as are your cooking skills, I am certain!)

Susan said...

I am so glad that you discovered this!!

EatPlayLove said...

Have you considered doing testing to confirm it? I know it's hard to wonder and slip, see him not doing as well. I really do hand it to you, I was on an elimination diet when nursing my first born for a year, it was very hard. As an adult I could suck it up, but it must be hard for Dino.

mah-meeee said...

oh wow! thank heavens! i'm glad that you found out what might be causing dino's challenges.

please keep us updated. it'll be great to know how this is working out after a longer period.