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Thyroid UK
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Have I been glutened?

I've been gluten free for a year now and last night had a Chinese takeaway that the restaurant assured me was gluten free. I had Singapore rice noodles, chicken in black bean sauce and prawn crackers. I felt fine last night but felt quite achey this morning and then about 4pm this afternoon started having really bad stomach cramps. My question is as the stomach pains started about 20 hours after eating the take away is this too big of a gap to think there could have been gluten containing ingredients?

13 Replies

Also meant to say that I don't think it's a bug as I'm constantly burping and very gassy :(


I would say the chances are really high that you have been glutenated! Either from an ingredient (soya sauce, stock...) that they didn't realise contained gluten, or from cross contamination. They could have flour flying around all over their kitchen. Hope you feel better soon.


Thanks - I think I'm really surprised that it's taken so long for me to feel a reaction as I guess I thought something would have happened last night but perhaps not?


MidnightBlue is right: I just looked at the jar of blackbean sauce in my fridge (Lee Kum Kee brand). It contains wheat.


Quite common for there to be quite a long gap, so yep, think it's likely.


In my opinion, it was probably MSG, having had all those symptoms from MSG on a few occasions.. terrible stuff.. causes headaches and all sorts of pain.


i agree, I have friends who react to badly MSG with bloating, gas, diarrhoea, swollen fingers etc

Gluten has me on toilet within few hours but alto I'm ok with MSG I avoid it for other reasons xx hope you feel better.


One day after eating MSG, I lose a portion of my vision, in both eyes, for 20 minutes. I avoid MSG as much as poss. but sometimes it occurs after eating out.


Could be the soy sauce if you had any.

Got this site when I googled for 'soy sauce ingredients'


This is the relevant extract

The Role of Wheat and the Fermentation Process

Carbohydrates contained in wheat are the component that gives soy sauce its fine aroma; the wheat also adds sweetness to the soy sauce. Wheat is roasted at high temperatures, then crushed by rollers to facilitate fermentation.

Or this site bbc.co.uk/food/soy_sauce

Made from fermented soya beans, salt, water and barley or wheat flour, soy sauce (or soya sauce) forms a basic ingredient in Japanese, Chinese and other Asian cooking.

I remember my daughter saying she had to be really careful with Chinese restaurants as she had only found one soy sauce she could tolerate.

Try asking if their ingredients are wheat free.


Or it could be MSG's as Chinese food usually contains very large amounts of these. Our local Chinese takeaway doesn't use soy sauce at all because of the wheat. Clemmie

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We have an excellent chinese near us that pride themselves on listing all their ingredients and are coeliac society approved. I have been told in other restaurants that the food is GF when it certainly isn't. I think the moral of the tale is stick with places where they very overtly state that dishes are GF and go to great lengths to reassure the customer.


The time gap is normal in my opinion, for me the gap is anywhere from 24 - 36 hours and it makes it difficult to diagnose the cause. I get a 3 day headache from being glutened along with feeling a bit fluey. I agree it is most likely to be the black bean sauce. I have found taking some gluten specific digestive enzymes when I eat out really helps to prevent this type of thing, obviously you can't eat a bread roll or have gravy, but for small hidden gluten it does the job for me. I take two enzymes with dinner, then two again when I get home if I remember, if not then two with breakfast for good luck. I hope this helps you.


Thanks all - it's weird as I've been gluten free for a year and didn't think it was helping so was planning to eat some bread this weekend just to see what happens

...think I still might do that as then at least I'll know if I do have a reaction one way or another


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