Gluten Free Guerrillas

Shock symptoms when badly glutened - do you have them?

I've always been a bit freaked out by shock symptoms when I get badly glutened; vomiting, diarrhea, sudden cold clammy sweat, very cold extremities, light headedness, confused state. A couple of times I've fainted through a bad glutening. I'm having investigations for some other endocrine issues and wondered if the 'shock' symptoms relate to that or a severe glutening. Does anyone else get this?

11 Replies

Yes sassyl. I also get like this, its very frightening I find, the last time I was glutened, I had vomiting, diarrhoea, I didn't know which way to go first, I started shaking, really really cold, I had to get into bed fully clothed, my husband wanted to call the paramedics, but, I wouldn't let him, I think it must be similar to antifelactic shock,, this weekend we have a food fare in Peterborough, hopefully a dietician will be there so I am going to have a talk with her, I do try very hard not to get glutened, it''s not what I do to myself, but, when I go to places and they are supposed to be GF, on the last occasion I was told that the chips were GF and they were cooked and the oil filtered in a different pan, but, they didn't say the chip were coated. hope your soon better


Hi sassyl, my gut specialist asked me what my symptoms were when I was glutened and I said as well as sickness and the runs I would get a fever and my lymph glands swell up, he nodded sympathetically and said this shows that I avoid gluten so when I do get glutened it has a more dramatic effect on me. And it makes me feel the cold and cold like I'm cold to the core which spooks me out.

I hope that you feel better soon and at least you've been referred for tests on your endocrine system so good luck with that and let us know how you get on. And try not to worry.



Hi Sassyl.

Last time I got glutened I also had the cold 'thing' - I was really frozen! It was partly due to the frequent trips to the bathroom in the early hours, but mostly due to being glutened. I was shivering away under a 13.5 tog duvet wearing two T-shirts and a dressing gown. Fortunately I had vomit free symptoms, but instead ached all over like I had the flu; and for good measure it normally feels like someone is using my guts as their punch bag for about 48 hours afterwards.

Last time around the brain fog lasted at least five days and I had absolutely no energy for over a week. I was mildly depressed - literally! and that took around 10 days to wear off.

I've never fainted; however no two people react exactly the same to being glutened.

Good luck with your endocrinology issues, I hope you can get sorted out soon.


I'd just like to curl up and die when I get glutened. I end up in agony with neuropathic pain, nausea, numbness, weakness, severe fatigue, jumbled speech, cog fog and vertigo like you wouldn't believe. It now takes about seven weeks to start feeling like a human being again.

There's a huge range of symptoms people can have from being glutened so the odds are that it's gluten causing all your symptoms but you can never be too careful getting things checked out properly.


takes me a couple of months to recover too, with the joint pain lasting longest. Even tiny cross-contamination levels bring on the 'shock' symptoms you describe- I wear a furry hat and three duvets and a hot water bottle while my husband lounges around in shorts and a t shirt. A gut chap at a conference I went to once said that you have this entire army that used to deal with normal levels of gluten and now they hang around with nothing to do al the time….so when a bit turns up they all react at once (I find thinking of vast numbers of bored teen agers easy to imagine)


The quickest and easiest way I describe it when I have to call in work is it's like having food poisoning - well it is in a way! The aching bones I have to work with.

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Yes Sassyl, I get the same except without vomiting, plus my hands and forehead develop a swollen red rash. I climb into bed fully dressed and freezing cold, am out for the count for 45 minutes, then wake up with what feels like a bad hangover. The other gluten effects kick in on the usual timescale (e.g. ulcers next day). It's frightening how quickly it kicks in.


Last time I was badly glutened, I was on the verge of calling to be admitted to hospital I felt so bad. Just like you describe. I think it was to do with dehydration. As soon as I could keep fluids down I started to feel better.

The other symptom I had, which carried on for a few months was pain across my liver...

Yes its very scary..


Yes Sassy, my symptoms are exactly the same, my whole body shivers and yet I am sweating as if I am really hot. Hope you feel better soon.


Yes sassy, I am the very much the same. I never used to be physically sick but I am now. I accidently ate normal spaghetti and I was bad both ends. I was panicking because I couldn't breath and did ring the nhs no who wanted me to get an ambulance but to be honest I cldnt move I was that ill. It will be interesting to see if the doctors come up with anything else on your endocrine issues. Doctors where I am are not really bothered and never get any support of any kind. I hope you get some sort of answer.


Ah, a year later got to the bottom of some of this. I am B12 deficient too, and lots of the long-term symptoms from a glutening have actually been because of the B12d. PLEASE get your B12 checked out if you are having long-term symptoms from a glutening too. Have a read of the b12 deficiency org website too. You don't have to be below our UK reference range to be suffering.

My doc finally noticed it after 4 years of falling serum taken in yearly coeliac screens. I'm on injections every other day and after starting doses in October, I'm just starting to feel ok.

PARTICULARLY IF YOU HAVE BRAIN FOG SYMPTOMS get it checked out, it can lead to permanent neuro damage.


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