After two weeks on a gluten-free diet, symptoms improve and can subside completely in approximately three months. It takes around six months for the villi to return to normal levels for the small intestine to recover completely. However, if you continue to eat gluten, the villi will continue to decline.
There are several ways that you can test whether you have eliminated all traces of gluten from your body. The most reliable method is still with a blood test. Your doctor can order this for you or you can buy it yourself at any pharmacy that carries the immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody test. This costs about $20 for each sample taken.
You should be able to detect gluten in your serum within minutes of eating it. If you do find some remaining particles, then read up on our serum therapy article. This might help clear up any lingering effects immediately.
Another way to check whether you have eliminated all traces of gluten from your body is by taking a look inside your gut. You can do this by taking a biopsy of the lining of your bowel.
Your symptoms should improve after a few weeks of starting a gluten-free diet. Many individuals begin to feel better within a few days. Your intestines will most likely not return to normal for several months. It might take years for them to fully recover.
The length of time it takes for your symptoms to resolve depends on many factors, such as the amount of damage done to your intestinal lining from consuming gluten for so long, any other medical conditions you may have, etc. Some people start to see improvements after just a few days while others may need a month or more before they see significant changes in their symptoms. No one can say how long it will take for you because each person's body is different. However, if you're able to stick with the gluten-free lifestyle for only a few weeks and your symptoms still haven't gone away, then you should consider discussing this with your doctor so he/she can determine what's causing them.
Your symptoms should improve significantly after a few weeks of beginning a gluten-free diet. However, it might take up to two years for your digestive system to fully recover. Your doctor will schedule an annual check-up during which your height and weight will be assessed and your symptoms will be evaluated. These visits are also good opportunities to discuss any changes in your behavior or lifestyle with your doctor. For example, if you begin to experience headaches or mood swings, these could be signs of a more serious medical condition that needs attention.
It is not recommended to go back to eating wheat products once you have started the gluten-free diet. However, if you must eat some gluten-containing foods, such as pasta, bread, and cookies, then try to limit yourself to only 10 grams of gluten per day. This amount will not affect your health.
People who start the gluten-free diet later in life may need to give their bodies time to heal before adding other allergens like dairy and soy. The average age of people diagnosed with celiac disease is 36 years old. However, about 15% of cases occur in people younger than 18 and 95% occur after age 65.
Many people claim that removing gluten from their diets improves their digestive issues within a few days. Fatigue and any brain fog you've been experiencing appear to improve in the first week or two as well, but change may be sluggish. Some people say they need up to a month without gluten before they feel fully recovered.
When you reintroduce gluten into your diet, you should start with small amounts of bread, pasta, and other wheat products and wait at least three months after stopping exposure before consuming more of it. In some cases, people who have been diagnosed with celiac disease cannot avoid gluten forever because it's part of what is known as their "environment." For example, they might eat sandwiches made with wheat bread if they live alone and there is no one around to cook for them. In this case, they would need to continue to exclude gluten because even though it isn't listed on the label, it is actually present in most brands of bread.
People who have been diagnosed with non-CD gluten sensitivity should still follow the same rule: Reintroduce gluten only after a period of time has passed. This is necessary because the reaction it causes in someone with GS is just as harmful as having CD. However, since there is no way to know how you will react to certain foods again, it's recommended that you extend your recovery period over several weeks or months instead of trying it all at once.
Most people experience symptoms for two to three days before they go away. That's a high price to pay for swallowing a trace amount of gluten. But for some people, the effects of eating gluten may last longer.
In studies conducted among people with celiac disease and those who have tested positive for antibodies against gluten, its toxic effects have been seen for up to six months after stopping exposure to it. However, this length of time has not been confirmed in clinical trials that use only healthy subjects without evidence of gluten sensitivity. People who have not been diagnosed with celiac disease but who still show signs of sensitivity to gluten should not eat it for more than six months at a time.
Once you have removed gluten from your diet, continue to monitor your body for any further reactions. If you experience any lingering effects (achy muscles, headaches), then you had a gluten attack.
The duration of these attacks depends on how much gluten you ate. The more you eat, the longer the effects will last. But even small amounts of gluten can cause problems for people who are sensitive to it. It's best to avoid food products that contain wheat flour, barley, or rye unless you know for sure that they are free of any traces of these foods' components.