Headache, thumping heart after eating BFree bread

Hi everyone, new to this community! :)

Was wondering if any of you have had any type of reaction to BFree bread? I am in the process of going gluten-free due to discovering I'm intolerant of it and I found BFree rolls to be a good replacement for wheat bread and helped keep me regular. However today I am certain I'm getting a reaction from eating them. I feel super tired immediately after eating a roll, and get a headache 'band' round my head, plus a thumping heart and a slight feeling of nausea. There's no gluten in them (nor oats which I also react to). I really need to know which ingredient(s) I'm reacting to so I can avoid it/them. The reaction wears off after a several hours.

At the moment it's like a minefield wondering which food might set me off next. I've joined Coeliac soc but clearly I'm reacting to more than simply gluten in wheat.

23 Replies

  • Ive tried this bread a couple of times and cant say i have experienced any reaction.

    It might pay you to ask your gp if they are willing to put you forward for an broad spectrum allergy/intolerance test. If not you can get them done privately.

  • Thanks Lisahelen :) I didn't get the reaction the first time, it appears to 'build up' in my system, each time I eat it I get a stronger reaction. So that's another thing off the menu. Probably my best bet is to make my own bread from a combo of flours I can tolerate.

    I'm a little leery of those food intolerance tests - it's an easy way for companies to make money out of people!

  • Hi Jadzhia

    I find that I react badly to xanthan gum (laxative) so have to avoid a lot of ready made gluten free foods. I make pancakes/wraps using either buckwheat or chickpea flour instead.

    Unfortunately any of the alternative 'grains' could be causing you problems. Corn is a fairly common one and so is buckwheat. Trying out all the individual ingredients could be difficult. If you can't get tested to identify the problem, you may have to increase your veg intake to keep you regular.

  • Yes it could be any of them. I do have a cupboard full of alternative flours! :D I've had chickpea flour in the past and that's been fine, as has tapioca. I'll have to experiment, and you're right, it might not be one of the flours at all, but an additive.

    I'd not bother with bread at all (in fact I gave it up for around 3 weeks) but had awful constipation, which wasn't resolved by eating lots of veg and yoghurt. In the end I realised I need more 'roughage' and so sought out the gluten-free bread, but will need to rethink.

  • One of our Guerillas has a blog of gluten free recipes, including several different breads. Might be useful. He recommends making small rolls to start with, to try out the recipe you are using. Good luck.


  • Oooh that looks wonderful, Penel, thank you so much Yes I will experiment with small quantities, going to be an interesting week! :D

  • All the gluten free products give me heartburn. I can't say I'm bothered what the specific ingredient is - they are basically junk! I hardly ever buy them, but its taken a few years to train my friends not to buy stuff specially for me which I really do not want!

    Try rice cakes - they have nothing but rice in and relatively few people react to that. The gluten free products are a stage we have to go through but now I just don't eat bread based stuff. For fibre I buy psyllium husks - which is the active ingredient in fybogel. I started off putting them in orange juice but now I just mix in water and drink down quickly.

    I have a packet of GF pasta in the cupboard that is over a year old and I will probably never eat it. You can nearly always substitute rice or potatoes in meals. And if you cook your own you will know exactly what goes in there.

  • Yes I'm good with rice (and rice flours) and quinoa (a new discovery and I love it). I haven't tried psyllium husks so will add that to the 'to try' list! (which is growing ever longer!) I did try some chickpea pasta which tasted surprisingly good. The downside was once the packet was opened it literally went mouldy in a few days, no long term storage possible.

  • You could always freeze the pasta once opened. Once you know the wrinkles.....

    Buckwheat pasta is nice too. And Amaranth makes an interesting sort of porridgey stuff, like the african stuff.

    Quinoa needs lots of added flavour(onion, stock, veg). It makes a lovely salad - fry it before cooking and the grains stay nicely separate and retains a bit of crunch.

    Psyllium husks are disgusting - but they do the job extremely well! You can buy the natural husk on ebay.

  • Never thought of freezing pasta! I suppose I could, would save wastage, for sure.

    Quinoa was a surprise 'like', I love it fried with veg, maybe add in some prawns or chicken. I was a bit nervous of stock cubes for awhile but discovered Knorr cubes are gluten free. It does have a nice nutty taste and crunchy texture. I far prefer it to the now can't-have cous cous.

    Haha well I will soon be finding out - ordered a small quantity. Apparently you can put it in yoghurt, too, so might try that out.

  • I had a distinct reaction - three days of fatigue, thirst and slightly off stomach - from the BFree pitta breads a couple of weeks ago, and seem to remember I didn't get on with the bread earlier. But I am quite sensitive and do tend to react to wheat deritvatives/barley malt syrup etc.

    They tasted good and there was nothing in the ingredients that seemed problematic, though I suspected I might be reacting to quinoa flour as I can't eat normal quinoa these days without feeling tired - but if you're OK with it, it's probably not that.

    I hardly ever eat bread any more as I don't seem to get on with most of them now - though it's sometimes a low-level thing: the M&S bread weirdly makes me feel flat and low in mood. The only one I've found that is totally unproblematic is the bread from the Artisan Gluten Free Bakery in Islington and that’s a bit expensive for everyday use.

    I recommend the Dove’s Farm brown rice pasta!

  • I second your suggestion of Dove's Farm pasta, it's a success in my household for even the non-GF eaters.

    I rarely eat bread now but regarding the M&S bread, last week I picked up some of their white bread & I *think* they've changed the recipe since the last time I ate it; it no longer contains the hydroxypropyl methylcellulose which many GF people react badly to. I loved it, it's the most "bread-like" bread I've had since going gluten free!

  • My white bread days ended around 40 yrs ago and I really can't go back to it again. :D I'll certainly investigate Dove Farm's pasta though. :)

  • I tried the M&S brown bloomer slices this week and they were fine - it was the brown seeded loaf I didn't get on with so well. I'm beginning to think I should keep a list cross-referencing the ingredients of all the different types...

  • Welcome to my world! :D It doesn't hurt to keep a list, helps you to rule out ingredients you're OK with, then you're left with the suspects! I keep wrappers or the ingredients parts of them at any rate, if I'm suspicious about a food!

  • Yes I doubt it's quinoa (had some about 3 hrs ago and feel fine). I do think eventually I'll figure out my own 'bread' recipe but I can see that taking quite some time.

  • I've discovered that I can eat wheat in other countries or is organic that leads me to believe it's chemicals in our wheat supply in the States.

  • I'm very late in spotting your post but do try googling 'gluten cross-reactivity' as there are other substances which can give you a similar reaction to gluten and I definitely suffered from this on giving up gluten when I was diagnosed as coeliac. Millet affects me quite badly and is in a lot of breads. It also took me a while to work out that eggs made me ill since I'd been able to eat them previously.

    Good luck, hope you find some bread that doesn't upset you. I find Schafer brown ciabatta rolls best for me, and Helen's bread mixes.

  • Thanks for responding Hil101 - yes indeed, I have now found I react strongly to the avenin in oats, so those are now 'out'! (Sadly). I think I will be going down the route of making my own bread. Apparently sourdough is a better way to go, but of course takes some time to 'grow' a starter which you then must feed and so on. The taste and texture is supposed to be an improvement on other types of 'gluten free' you can buy/make. :)

  • That sounds interesting. Bread makers have a gf setting these days as well as a recipe book, so that's worth looking into.

  • I've just been reading round on the 'gluten cross-reactivity' search and it appears that one piece of research has been quoted by multiple 'net sources, giving '19 gluten cross-reactive foods'. There appears to be more myth than fact relating to this claim. Take a read of this article:


    Skimming through this, the main source of other foods causing reactions is still contamination with gluten, even if the product is claimed as 'gluten free'. It's well worth reading through this article as it shows how some of the statistical analysis of the original paper making the claim was poorly done.

    Also, there appear to be no confirming studies/papers published that back up/confirm the claims in the original paper, as is the usual method for confirming any results like this. Independent confirmation is very much needed as part of the scientific process.

    Having said that, I'm not saying we can't react to oats/millet/barley etc, however the reason we do may simply be because they are contaminated, not because they contain a gluten-resembling molecule. Thus I am very leery of accepting that there are so many potential 'reactive' foods out there. Of course you must go with what your own body tells you, but do be wary of these types of claims that don't have solid reproducible evidence behind them. :)

  • Thanks, Jadzhia, I had read the original Paleo Mum stuff and didn't check it out in as much detail as you have. I just noted that it fitted my own reaction to millet, oats and instant coffee which I'd been unable to explain. However, I was overly sensitive to gluten for some years (I have both gut and skin CD) and it's hard to totally rule out straightforward contamination even when products are marketed as gluten free. Anyway, it's a good lesson in not taking things at face value, even if written by a 'doctor' from some kind of a research background!

  • Blame it on my science degree! :D It might have been gained ages ago but the training remains, and there is much on the Internet that is accepted as fact when a more rigorous approach is needed.

    I've just been reading about clearing out one's kitchen to get rid of all gluten contamination. Oh boy. Got my work cut out! :D

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