Just started gluten and dairy free, how long untill noticeable results?

Hi there, I have been suffering with stomach , digestive problems , tiredness and headaches on a off for a couple years now. Doctors seem to be totally clueless, had a celiac test but came back negative, so they said just rest , have recently cut out all gluten foods from my diet and that has made a major difference although still feeling tired a lot , stomach aches daily and headaches most the time. Had some cheese yesterday and feel terrible today. Headaches, nausious and generally gurgly and ill, came on within 20 mins of eating it although it was lacto free. I have read also that the protein casein can cause digestive problems, so now going to completely cut out dairy from my diet starting today!.

Does any one relate to what I have wrote above and have any idea about how long from stopping eating all gluten and dairy based foods I will notice any difference?? I day, 2-3 days, 1 week etc?? Also how long does dairy proteins take to exit my body?

Thanks and hope this isn't to much drivel ! : )

35 Replies

  • Hi Thrashman,

    Welcome to the GFG's.

    I'm a dairy and soya intolerant Coeliac.

    I think hoping to notice a big difference in 2-3 days or a week after going gluten and dairy free, is unfortunately probably being a little bit over optimistic.

    Although as you've already noticed, things do start calming down and easing once gluten-free (and dairy free); however I would say it was many months before I really started noticing a significant difference in my overall health. The first improvement I noticed was not needing to go to the loo 6 times before I could leave for work! Within a couple of weeks I was also much less bloated.

    My suggestion would be to give it a month at first. If you are still struggling with tiredness and headaches after the month is up, then consider making a doctor's appointment and pushing for (more?) blood tests; because you may be anaemic or deficient in one or more of the other vitamins and minerals - especially if you've been having frequent bouts of diarrhoea recently.

    The first results I would be interested in knowing about (if it was me) are:




    Vitamin D

    In the short term you can help yourself by taking a good quality multivitamin and ensuring that you get enough calcium into your diet. Gluten-free foods aren't fortified in the same way that gluten containing foods are.

    Good luck!

  • Ok great, well that definatelly gives me a time line of progress to work with as had no clue in what to expect!! Had multiple blood tests over a year ago, but as I'm sure you may of found out, my doctors really didn't have a clue and really weren't very helpful , I will definatelly push if not feeling noticeable improvement by end of month : ) .

    Also I only know that I can't have dairy through how it affects me, never been tested if at all possible.

    Thanks for reply. : )

  • Ok great, well that definatelly gives me a time line of progress to work with as had no clue in what to expect!! Had multiple blood tests over a year ago, but as I'm sure you may of found out, my doctors really didn't have a clue and really weren't very helpful , I will definatelly push if not feeling noticeable improvement by end of month : ) .

    Also I only know that I can't have dairy through how it affects me, never been tested if at all possible.

    Thanks for reply. : )

  • What is a Coeliac ? And I wonder if Thrashman has had a biopsy done. I was told that the blood test often shows a false negative......not very reliable. Only true test is a biopsy.

  • Hi Jaydee53

    A Coeliac is someone who has an autoimmune response to eating gluten, resulting damage to the small intestines. In Canada and the USA it is spelt celiac, missing out the 'o.' It's the same thing however.

    As to blood tests showing false negatives, firstly it depends which blood test has been done. Here in the UK the test used most frequently is the IgA-TTg blood test. For someone like me who had full-blown coeliac disease on diagnosis, it is reported to be reliable around 95% of the time. I believe is somewhat less reliable if you're in the early stages of developing CD. This however is where a doctor can follow up by using other blood tests, such as IgA-EMA, IgA-IgG etc.

    Here in the UK a biopsy is only normally used to confirm a diagnosis. I suspect this could be because it is a very invasive procedure to put someone through and doctors are reluctant to do that unnecessarily.

    I believe you wrote in another post that you're from Canada; maybe it's different there?

  • Hi,

    My understanding is that for those living with Non-Coeliac Gluten Sensitivity (NCGS), understanding of the condition by doctors can be patchy at best.

    How long have you been gluten-free now? And are you based in the UK? I I ask because Medical support can vary significantly depending on what part of the world you live in.

  • Yeah that's definatelly seems to be the case, I have been gluten free now for 3 months, I only eat the super market free from foods as an alternative. I am based in the uk, live in Birmingham . : )

  • My part of the world - I'm a Midlander like you. It was the QE hospital that gave me my coeliac diagnosis.

    I hope you're aware of the need to replace your old toaster for one that has never seen a slice of gluten bread in its life. The dietician I saw, told me to change my wooden spoons, sieves, and colendar etc in addition to this. I would also recommend that you consider changing your breadmaker as well - if you have one. It's because of the risk of cross contamination from using these items.

    Dairy caused me to go dizzy, as well as having gastric problems shortly after eating it. The penny didn't drop about dairy until I had been gluten-free for around six months.

    Like you have done, I tried the LactoFree products; and although for me the symptoms weren't so severe as yours, I found that I was still having fatigue issues from eating them. I also went to the GP twice about dizziness - which cleared up once dairy free.

    People who are gluten-free AND dairy-free have to be extra vigilant about their calcium intake, otherwise they put themselves at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis.

    Take care.

  • Hi, You sound just like me! Doctors gave me loads of tests, no idea what or why half the time. Eventually I gave up milk and anything dairy, I improved a fair bit, but still not 'right' any way 1 year ago I stopped all gluten (on Christmas day) and my health has improved as have my motions, and my constant tiredness. I soon gave up meat, last january, I still eat oily fish, most days, I use rapeseed oil, do not eat dark chocolate, though drink cocoa powder(100%), I have rice flour, SR gluten free flour, in small doses, I make popcorn but can't have maize? flour or buckwheat flour, I eat fruit but it can't be too ripe/sweet, No sweet-potatoes or aubergines I have pancakes each morning using soya milk (unsweetened)

    You should notice differences after a week, but they may not be what you expect! My colon is just getting right after a year, but if I make a mistake the symptoms take a week to recover from.

    Note:- much meat is washed in a casein derived anti septic or anti biotic to lengthen its shelf life

    If you are able and can read my other posts you may be get some more info on 'motions'

  • Hey, that's really awesome too hear you have improved after all the changes, gives me a large amount of hope on my diet changes. I am a big meat eater as well, so shocked to hear some meat washed in casein.

    At one point I got referred to a specialist and his first question was what do I do for a living.. ( I am a builder ), so after less than 5 mins with him and no tests he said I must of caught a pathegen from dust and just to see it out as I came back negative for celiac. Made me loose total confidence in the docs.

    Did u suffer from bad gas, nausier and being backed up?

    And motions ?

    Thanks : )

  • So maybe there is a pathogen in the dust! So what are you supposed to do about it? That's such a rubbish response. Fact is, a lot of us are wheat intolerant (personally I think most) and it's really not that difficult to give up once you start reading ingredients and eating fresh food, preferably home cooked. My mother was diagnosed coeliac late in life. My daughter was basically ill and not thriving EVER. Had gadzillions of tests (even coeliac with the family history). All negative. Eventually, when she was 14, I just took her off wheat. Ca ching! Within 2 weeks, she looked totally different! Same with me .... negative blood tests etc but I was getting symptoms. Ca ching! 2 weeks I was so much better. (Not just gut but also skin, arthritis pain, energy etc)

    Wheat intolerant people, sadly, do also seem prone to the dairy problem as apparently they have a similar molecule to something in gluten so once you're off gluten, the body starts rejecting the dairy too.

    I'm no medic, but I would say try one at a time. Give the gluten 2 weeks. Dairy .... well, I've only just started on that one so I'd go with other replies. My daughter says almond milk is very good .....

    Here's to a so much healthier, wheat free 2015 for you.

  • I'm guessing that it's only processed meat that's possibly washed in casein derived products. I buy my fresh meat from an old fashioned butcher, and have no problems with it.

  • I think you will find nearly all butchered meats sold in supermarkets will be affected. I agree with you that 'freshly' butchered meat from a butcher will probably be fine. I have not tested this yet. Did you have problems with supermarket cuts before you changed to old fashioned butchers? or have you always used them?

  • I stopped eating gluten and supermarket meat at about the same time, so don't know if supermarket meat may have been a problem. I wasn't aware of problems with dairy until a few months into being gluten free.

    The thought that supermarket meat could be treated with casein is worrying. Does this appear on labelling?

  • It does not appear on the labels, I came across it while surfing the web and even though I have searched a couple of times since cannot find the same site it was on, from memory it was a commercial site and not a hearsay type site.

  • Hey again jointpain,

    What did u mean by motions? : )

    Also does anyone find caffeine to be a problem?

  • Hi Thrashman, Yes the bloating was the worse , and I loved meat! Backed up, if I understand you correctly was much more common after eating meat, which is another reason I stopped. Now I am regular as clockwork, Once a day, every morning, My SIJ and knee joints still hurt most of the time, but the doc isn't interested in them, They really get worse if I have something 'dodgy' so I keep a food diary but only write down foods I have eaten which I don't normally eat, and I try to only have something different when I am on 'top' form, Like after Christmas I had Freefrom Chocolate coins which really caused a lot of pain in my SIJ and knees, so they are in the bin and it will take a good week to get better.

  • Look for a Kosher butcher if you are worried about milk/meat contamination. Red meat is such a good source of iron and B12 that giving it up can create problems and you would have to be careful to get them from other sources.

    Constipation can be a real problem. Have a google of soluble and insoluble fibre, they have different effects on the body and you need to get the balance right.

  • Wow, listening to everyone has really opened up my eyes and gave me a super insight on how to proceed forward. Going to start only buying what meat I do eat from butchers only ( kosher of possible ).

    Thanks everyone for your help, : )

  • Just came across this

    Typical immediate symptoms of an allergy to casein include swelling of the face, mouth, tongue or throat, nasal congestion leading to a runny nose, sneezing, coughing and wheezing, itchy eyes, as well as red, itchy skin, rashes or hives. Other symptoms may take weeks to develop and include a general increase in mucous production, abdominal cramps, loose or bloody stools, and diarrhoea. The allergy can be severe enough to trigger anaphylaxis and so the best treatment is complete avoidance.

    Now if I have casein my mouth and tongue swell enough for me to easily bite the inside of my mouth and then have ulcers I also have the increase of mucous, and bloody stools/diarrhoea, but not the rest of the symptoms.

  • Wow, can you send me a link for where you read this . Have exactly the same as you, biting the sides of my mouth quite bad after I had dairy the other day ( now gone dairy free as said in original post ) got alsers , and got itchy eyes and swollen throat, ( going down now ) To co-insadental for me, was very baffled why this happens, makes sense now.

    Thanks : )

  • I found it on a search here is the link weighttraining.com/faq/what...

    I don't weight train!

  • I've just read your posts and want to urge you to get tested for other things bowel related (I'm speaking from experience).

  • Hi jack, thanks, what sort of things can you suggest?


  • Get camera tests done, (both ends) get blood tests done - it isn't just gluten that causes these symptoms. Ask for a referral to see a gastroenterologist - only they can exclude everything. In the end it could be IBS but you'd rather an expert gave the diagnosis.

  • When u say test, was that a small bowel biopsy,or just the blood,test ?

  • Hi jaydeee53,

    It was a blood test only at my gp's : )

  • My specialist told me, they show a false negative....why do they bother with it. A true test is a biopsy.

  • I have heard that quite a bit now but unfortunately my gp won't send me for a biopsy unless I got a a 6 week gluten diet, which to me is totally Insain. They want me to consume the poison that is harming me for 6 weeks to take a test to say that's what's harming me.. The mind baffles. Totally agree with you : )

  • They want you to eat gluten so everything is inflamed, otherwise they could do the biopsy and it would come back negative. About one slice of bread a day is all you need to eat. I just finished the six week and got my biopsy back -- Marsh 3b.

  • To rid of all gluten in your body it takes 3 months! No cheating at all or you start all over again! Not easy at is in Everthing!! quinoa replaces proteins nicely!

  • Hi. I have been being tested for months now. Blood work, Urine Samples, Stool samples, Breath tests, Upper GI, Colonoscopy, Endoscopy, 4 hour x rays session (forgot what its called), all these tests given by my Gastroenterologist. You know what they have found and/or diagnosed...NOTHING. I have been put on different antibiotics...to no avail. No faith in these doctors nowadays AT ALL. I am 5 days into a lactose free diet, with no changes to this point. Anybody have any ideas...I am willing to hear voices of experience over doctors at this point !! Symptoms: Bloating (serious-right after eating), URGENT and frequent loose bowel movements (again, shortly after eating). belching, gurgling stomach, discomfort/pain in stomach.

  • For me, I started feeling better within a week, but I have since found other foods which I can't tolerate (corn being one, so gf foods and flour are no-go for me), but there is a lot of healing your body needs to do, so it isn't a quick fix, just the beginning of a new more healthful journey.  I use the paleo diet to exclude a bunch of additional problematic foods which has worked well for me.  Also, have you had your B12 tested?  People with food allergies and intolerances have compromised guts so we can't absorb as much B12 as we need and blood serum testing has flaws which mean you can have low B12 and your doctor will think your level is fine.  Here are a list of other B12 deficiency symptoms difficulty-swallowing.com/s... in case its helpful?  All the best.

  • Hey haithi, thanks for reply . It's been over a year since I posted this string and since have been totally gf , dairy and permanentelly follow a low fodmap diet, my body has healed incredibly and have dropped 25 lbs! Never had my b12 tested, but gave up on my docs , they really were very un helpful ! I have also cut out all corn and so called free from products since this post which made a major difference. Still suffer with stomach ( gut issues ) and headaches but just have to keep trying! Have been recently looking at something called diatomaceous earth.. Have heard amazing things for digestive healing! Tganks for your reply, hope your well : )

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