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A friend at work brought in some articles which appeared in the newspaper and it was all about gluten intolerance and how in the majority of cases these people were also anemic or had very low iron stores as well as lethargy.

My doctor didn't automatically test me for gluten intolerance and it was much later down the track that this test was performed. It was so easy too. A simple blood test.

I always ate a very healthy diet and did wonder how i became so low in a variety of vitamins and minerals. It appears it is all linked to gluten intolerance. A number of people did mention this when i first came to this board, but i didn't know anything much about it and as i ate a good diet, never thought i'd be a candidate. The newspaper article goes on to say how there are so many people out there who have no idea that they are gluten intolerant. Extreme cases of inolerance end up as Coeliacs Disease, but others can suffer intolerance to gluten and not have the extreme side effects. I would simply get a bit of bloating and feeling a bit uncomfortable around my middle area, there were times i did have irritable bowel, but put that down to stress.

I am trying to exclude as many gluten products as possible, but it does get difficult. My supermarket has a healthfood section which does sell a lot of gluten free stuff. I do like eating bread toasted for breakfast or sandwiches for lunch at work, but the gluten free breads don't taste the best. So i'm slowly consuming the few things i still have in my pantry and each time i have to buy something new or replace something i've finished off i will make a better effort to make certain it's gluten free.

So for anybody out there having difficulties working out why they are anemic or why they can't get their iron stores to stop dropping or even why they can't raise their iron stores, i would seriously get a blood test to check for a gluten intolerance. That's not to say something entirely different isn't causing your particular situation, but at least a gluten test is easy to perform.

Gluten is found in grains such as wheat, rye, barley and even some people will suffer from oats also.
Audrey, it was my impression from the literature that I've read that you will only get vitamin/mineral deficiencies if you have full-on celiac. If you are *just* intolerant, you may have lots of side effects from gluten but you won't get the destruction of the villi in the small intestine and, therefore, no malabsorption.

If your celiac blood tests were positive (anything outside the normal range) then you probably need to have the small intestine biopsy to see if damage has occurred. If it has not, then you can't blame this for your failure to absorb.

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