Coeliac (Read 1536 times)

    I've just been diagnosed as coeliac- I had to pull out of the London Marathon 3 days before, as I was severely anaemic. Hence the investigation/diagnosis.

    After a 3 month hiatus, I'm ready to get back to some fitness. I wondered if anyone else here is running on a wheat-free diet, & how it affects their carbo loading with gluten free pasta/bread before big runs.

    Cannot believe how good a 2.5 mile run feels after all this time doing nothing but eat (doctor's advice!)

    2012 Goals- London & San Francisco Marathons.

    I'm on Twitter as @gram63


      is that the same as celiac? i was diagnosd with that 3/17/09 and went gf for about 3 months and abandoned the diet.  the cost benefit was too high.  im basically asymptomatic and given the regimen to be truly GF, its extraordinarily expenive, and a huge PITA.


      additional opinions:

      - theres loads of resources out there, so living a GF life is as easy as it has ever been (dont mistake that for its easy)

      - nobody has yet solved the problem of what makes bread good is gluten.  there is no such thing as a good GF bread.  the absolute best case description of a GF bread is 'not bad' (which is not even close to 'good')

      - Redbridge - a GF beer by Anhesuer Busch (or whatever their name is now) isn't bad (seeing a theme here?) - especially if you dont mind spending $30/case

      - I never heard of anybody succumbing to celiac disease, but I dont get out much.


      Hope things go well for you

        Cheers, I checked & celiac is the same thing.

        It's expensive here in the UK, too, but at present I'm trying to eat other things,rather than the expensive replacements. It has meant preparing every meal from scratch, which oddly has resulted in a more varied menu, since I used to stick to the same few things. Also, it has been the PITA you describe. Having to plan well in advance, try to shop around & see who's got gf products on offer, etc.


        I guess my biggest unknown is what happens at peak marathon training, when I have resorted to huge quantities of pasta/bread to bulk up my carbs. I saw a dietician, who said although everyone goes for pasta in this regard, potatoes are underrated as a carbo loading device.


        We'll see, I'm just running again, & have 10 miles in mind for Septemeber.

        Thanks for the reply..

        2012 Goals- London & San Francisco Marathons.

        I'm on Twitter as @gram63

          I was mis-diagnosed as coeliac and spent 7 years on a totally gluten-free diet. I reacted really badly to barley, wheat, rye and oats (which some coeliacs don't react to) so the coeliac diagnosis from the GP did make sense especially when combined with the blood tests he did (I never had the endoscopy), and whatever was going on, the gf diet seemed to calm it down.  I found the hardest bit of the diet to begin with was avoiding the hidden gluten...malt extract in rice and corn-based cereals or in chocolate for example, or potatoes that were coated in flour, stock cubes containing malt or wheat, soy sauce (although some tamaris are fine)...all were a killer at times and had me not very well in quite awkward situations. 


          In terms of carbs (rather than carb-loading specficially), although I wasn't running as much when I was following a gf diet, there are still lots of options for ensuring calories from carbs.  You obviously have gf pasta, but it is expensive, or certainly to get the decent tasting stuff.  I actually got on really well with using thick rice noodles instead of using gluten free pasta.  It doesn't taste quite the same, but the texture is much nicer than a lot of the gluten free stuff.  Just soak them in water for a short time though, no long cooking like with pasta.  If you go the gf pasta route, keep the cooking so the pasta is al dente...it really falls apart otherwise.


          Other carbs can obviously come from rice...I really, really rate rice pudding as a pre-run and pre-race breakfast...as long as you can tolerate the dairy side of it (I know some coeliacs have lactose issues)...it's easy on the tummy and has a good mix of protein and carbohydrates.  Jacket potatoes are great, mashed potato, any potato and also carrying cold potato wedges (and more rice pudding) if you're out for a long day on the hills.  Rice cakes etc if you like them, but some people hate the,, and watch for the ones that have malt or other gluten-containing ingredients.  Corn crisp slices are quite nice as snacks too.   Another cheap gf thing is polenta...you can do loads with it, even make cakes.  Oriental supermarkets can also be really helpful for rice paper to make spring rolls and stuff yourself (and also for the noodles), and stockist of Indian food that sell gram flour so you can make bhajis the real way and stuff like that.


          Gluten-free bread was something I always struggled with unless it was toasted or very fresh.  You can come up with your own recipes, and adding xanthum gum helps to bind it together, but I still found it cakey or hard to take unless it was warm.  It just tends to make you cough and choke if you try and eat it the rest of the time.  Although a good breadmaker, like the panasonic sd255/256 with the gluten-free program can make reasonable bread to use. 


          Gluten-free cakes and cookies can be much more successful, especially homemade ones.  You have to play around with the recipes.  Making granola/flapjack style bars using millet flakes, nuts and seeds and fruit can be great as little snacks too. 


          I really didn't have any issues in terms of energy when following a gluten-free diet, you just have to plan a bit and think a bit more.  I know I wasn't running marathons, but, in the days prior to a marathon or long run, as long as you're eating well, there isn't a massive need for huge carb loading anyway.  It can be expensive if you follow it using the special diet section of the supermarket, but there is loads of stuff that is gluten-free naturally and doesn't cost the earth.  Make use of the prescription stuff too...the bread mixes aren't bad, and the pasta is some of the nicer stuff you can get.  If you are buying bread, the Genius stuff isn't bad.  I also found that making drop-scone style bread worked quite well, and you can make reasonable homemade gf flatbreads too.


          Hope some of that is helpful, I'm sure others have more advice and experience.  If I think of anything else I'll post again, or feel free to PM me.

           "Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow.  Don't walk behind me; I may not lead.  Just walk beside me and be my friend."

          A Saucy Wench

            my experience with going GF is it is MUCH easier if you DONT try to find GF substitutes for bread and pasta.  For the most part they suck and they just make you want the real thing more.  Carb load with rice, sweet potatoes, potatoes, beets and fruit. 


            Just try out the potatoes ahead of time some people constipate badly, others do not.  But sweet potatoes dont seem to have that problem.  Roast some beets with your white potatoes and they will cancel eachother out. 


            As it stands, white potatoes have ALWAYS been my carb load of choice.

            I have become Death, the destroyer of electronic gadgets


            "When I got too tired to run anymore I just pretended I wasnt tired and kept running anyway" - dd, age 7

              Definitely agree with Ennay that most of the substitutes, especially the gf bread, just makes you miss the real thing.  I mainly ate potatoes and rice as a result, however did play with substitutes, and when it came to homemade cakes and cookies I really could make stuff (and my Mum also made) stuff that tasted like normal food.  I really like rice noodles as they're not a substitute they're lovely in their own right...hence all the uses in thai cooking etc, but it also means they're fine with pasta-style sauces too and so much cheaper than the gf marketed stuff.  Luckily for me I love risotto and rice anyway, so it just meant eating more of that too. 


              I was lucky and got on fine with normal potatoes...but a definite yes to sweet potatoes etc too.

               "Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow.  Don't walk behind me; I may not lead.  Just walk beside me and be my friend."


                Carb load with rice, sweet potatoes, potatoes, beets and fruit. 


                +1 on all those. My DW is Gluten free (and dairy too) and trains very successfully without it.


                Rice flour and rice cakes are good. Don't forget corn as a source of carbs, with tacos, tortillas etc.

                The process is the goal.

                Men heap together the mistakes of their lives, and create a monster they call Destiny.

                Ostrich runner

                  Amy Yoder-Begley is a pretty famous runner with celiac--IIRC, she has blogged about dietary issues and running with it.


                    Thanks for all the excellent advice.

                    Hoppity: I really appreciate the details here- my Coeliac disease has been confirmed via biopsy.

                    I've never used rice pudding as pre-race loading, haven't eaten it for years in fact, I shall be giving it a go. Also appreciate the rice noodles tip.

                    As a veggie of 20+ years, I'm used to restricting my supermarket choices, so I've managed to keep an eye on those hidden glutens you mention. Indredibly, I have just bought the newer model of the Panasonic bread maker you mention.

                    I have been using the mixes rather than a scratch recipe, though my GP tells me my PCT will shortly no longer prescribe the mixes (nor anything but 1 bag of pasta & 1 bag of flour per month) I must investigate a foolproof scratch gf bread recipe.

                    Genius is an excellent loaf, though again expensive. I, too, have had some success with flatbreads- the thing I cannot source is masa harina to make corn tortillas, as store bought ones are mixed with wheat flour.

                    I am cooking fresh meals every day, & have lost the habit of buying pre-prepared curries, etc, which is good, but exhausting on top of a full time job.

                    Ennay I am also a huge fan of potatoes, though I had always felt them to be 'inferior' to pasta, since that's the accepted carbo loading item.

                    Sweet potatoes have been on the menu of late, & the experimentation is ongoing!


                    This is great info & pleased to know long distance running is not lost to me!


                    *shopping list: rice noodles, rice pudding, *

                    2012 Goals- London & San Francisco Marathons.

                    I'm on Twitter as @gram63

                      Gram63, glad the burble was some help...I was lucky with the masa harina because I live in a pretty mixed area with loads of international  grocers selling this kind of stuff at really great prices (plus huge quantities of gram flour, potato flour, rice, noodles, spices, cool veggies and fruits etc).  You can order masa harina online though and I know people that used to do that, and they also sell corn tortillas (rather than corn tortillas containing mainly wheat) online too.  Tacos were more often all corn, even supermarket ones, so they can be an alternative.  I can try and remember places, but otherwise I'm sure a google might help you.  It's also worth checking out the international section of the dreaded Tesco (not the aisle with Old El Paso etc in, but the one with the more random bits and pieces) because they quite often have a good selection of flours and even tortillas, plus cheaper rice in bulk quantities too (if you're not getting this elsewhere).  


                      I used the doves farm bread mix and that was okay (and easily available) but not quite as good as the prescription loaves, and I also started to make up my own flour mix using the ratios on the various bread mix packets.   The supermarket bread mixes were okay too.  In the end though I stuck more with flatbreads made with GF flour and ate non-bready things for lunches and most of the time...with occasional treats.  If you want ready made stuff I found the supermarket naan breads pretty good and the same with the pittas...much better than the loaves and mixes, I guess because they aren't as reliant on the rise and the gluten, therefore don't suffer so much with its absence.


                      Like you I found it was all about cooking from scratch and watching labels.  I started bulk cooking curries, chilli etc and then froze in portions and that removed a lot of the time issues on busy days (and have kept doing this for convenience since).


                      I hope the rice noodles work well for you and the rice pudding too.  As I said, get in touch if I can help at all. 

                       "Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow.  Don't walk behind me; I may not lead.  Just walk beside me and be my friend."

                        This thread is making me hungry. Damn you Hoppity - I want rice noodles, and I want them now!

                          Pad Thai?

                           "Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow.  Don't walk behind me; I may not lead.  Just walk beside me and be my friend."

                            That's it. I'm off to find some food.