Friday, April 16, 2010

How Long Does it Take to Heal After Removing Gluten?

A reader asks: “How long does it take for the small intestine to heal once gluten is out of the diet..for a person in their 50's?”

While we tend to think of the small intestine as a long smooth tube or pipe, I’d like to paint a more accurate picture for you. The small intestine is about 23 feet long but because it is folded into many finger-like projections it is anything but smooth (imagine shag carpeting), and its surface area is that of a tennis court. That’s a tremendously large area that is responsible for converting one’s food into available fuel that is then delivered to the trillion cells that you own.

In order the answer the above question completely accurately it would require knowing how much damage the small intestine had sustained. If this individual has celiac disease and was only just diagnosed in her 50s, the likelihood is that it could take several years to heal the intestine. If the individual is gluten sensitive then the healing time is less, maybe 1 ½ to 2 years, as less damage was sustained. While this may sound like a long time, do realize that most people start feeling better in a matter of weeks. And considering how many years the intestine was likely under attack from gluten, it’s only a fraction of that time that is needed to heal it. And when you recall that we’re talking about something the size of a “tennis court”, it makes sense that it takes some time.

What further plays into this equation, is what the person is doing to ensure that healing occurs. Obviously completely removing gluten is most important. But supplementing any nutritional deficiencies such as vitamin D, B12, iron, calcium, etc are also needed to give the body the raw materials it needs to heal itself. Further, identifying and removing any inhospitable organisms such as parasites, amoeba, bacteria or yeast is also necessary to regain health and proper healing of the small intestine. You can’t re-grow the grass on your lawn if every night an animal is digging it up!

In fact, the above paragraph addresses the largest hole we see in addressing gluten intolerance. The prescribed treatment is to remove gluten, but not much else. Neglecting to similarly remove any infectious organism can prevent regaining one’s health. Adding nutrients in which one has become deficient or those specifically designed to assist healing plus probiotics that help restore strength to the intestine’s immune system, are all factors that need to be employed for a truly successful program.

I hope you find this helpful and please let me know if I can be of further assistance.

Visit us at If you have questions or need any help, I’m here for you! Call 408-733-0400.

I look forward to hearing from you.

To your good health,
Dr Vikki Petersen, DC, CCN, CFMP

IFM Certified Practitioner

Founder of Root Cause Medical Clinic
Co-author of “The Gluten Effect”

Author of the eBook: “Gluten Intolerance – What You Don’t Know May Be Killing You!”


Anonymous said...

I have been gluten and dairy free a year. I had the celiac test and biopsy done about 6 months after I stopped eating these things. All was negative but I felt better over a couple months. Now I am told I can try eating these foods again but I get really tired and bloated when I do. Is it harming the body to avoid these foods even if your test came back negative?

cats said...

I have been gluten and dairy free for a year. 6 months after going on this diet I had the blood test and small intestine biopsy-both were negative for celiacs. I felt really well while on this diet. I am now trying to reintroduce these foods. I feel very bloated and tired after I try to eat these again. Is it harmful to eliminate these even if I was tested negative for celiacs?

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dear cats,
Once you have removed gluten from your diet for several weeks, let alone 6 months, testing is no longer accurate.

However, you have done the test that many consider to be the true gold standard and that is that you feel better when you're not eating it. Bloating is consistent with poor digestion and absorption. Fatigue is also often present with poor digestion.

So to answer your question it is definitely NOT harmful to eliminate gluten and dairy. Based on your symptoms when eating it, it makes sense to follow the diet that had you feeling healthier.

To your good health,
Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

In the above article, you state "Adding nutrients in which one has become deficient or those specifically designed to assist healing..." Please identify for me sources of "nutrients specifically designed to assist healing", as I am trying to maximize healing of my small intestine following a diagnosis of celiac disease, and elimination of gluten from my diet. I am taking a probiotic supplement in addition to my usual multi-vitamin, calcium and vitamin C supplements. I want to know what foods, specifically, contain "nutrients specifically designed to assist healing" of the small intestine, please. Thank you. Lisa

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

"Adding nutrients in which one has become deficient or those specifically designed to assist healing..." Please identify for me sources of "nutrients specifically designed to assist healing", as I am trying to maximize healing of my small intestine following a diagnosis of celiac disease, and elimination of gluten from my diet. I am taking a probiotic supplement in addition to my usual multi-vitamin, calcium and vitamin C supplements. I want to know what foods, specifically, contain "nutrients specifically designed to assist healing" of the small intestine, please. Thank you. Lisa

Hello LIsa,
While there are some general nutrients that are frequently found deficient in celiacs and can aid in healing, what we do for our patients is create tailor-made programs specifically designed for them based on lab testing.

While probiotics are excellent, which type and which specific organisms are better judged after a lab test. Additionally it is not uncommon to have infections in the intestine secondary to celiac disease and gluten sensitivity. These are a result of a compromised immune system. Knowing the specific parasite, bacteria or amoeba present, of course directs the treatment that is needed.

I find very few gluten intolerant patients who DON'T need help addressing the secondary effects of gluten. In addition to those items already mentioned you should have your vitamin D level checked as well as your magnesium and calcium levels. If your calcium is fine, it's unlikely you'll need to augment it greatly beyond a healthy diet of lots of dark green vegetables. The idea that bones need calcium (and calcium alone) is quite outdated. Bones need a healthy gut and a nice balance of minerals plus a strong vitamin D level.

I'm sure you've had your iron levels checked but if not that is an important one to monitor. Zinc levels are also important.

I'm not trying to overwhelm you but healing the gut, while not difficult, is best done by a program that address exactly what YOU need.

Feel free to contact me if you have more questions. I definitely want you to achieve the optimal health you deserve. We offer free consultations if that would be of interest.

To your good health,
Dr Vikki Petersen

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your reply. I go to a government subsidized clinic because of lack of money or insurance, and have nothing to pay for a doctor-supervised program, so mostly I'm just going by what my body is telling me, and what information I can glean without money. I drink plenty of Vitamin D milk, eat dark green leafys when I can get them, have been slowly cutting out what my system violently rejects, slowly sorting through what I eat to see what is actually causing negative responses. Its the best I can do, as the clinic won't authorize my doctor to run batteries of lab tests such as you suggest. There are plenty of us out here lately, people with low or no income struggling with a potentially expensive health problem. With some persistence, some educated guesswork and a lot of experimentation, I'll get better anyway. Thanks for what you were able to offer. Lisa

Anonymous said...

I have now been gluten and dairy free for 2.5 years, having discovered I was GI at 59 years of age. Although the chronic fatigue has gone, I have other conditions that were caused by a gluten damaged small intestine, which include: fructose malabsorption, salicylate sensitivity and histamine intolerance. My diet is incredibly limited to only meat, potatoes and yellow dwarf beans. I take a multivitamin and probiotics. I think when these other conditions are healed, I will know that my SI has finally healed, but so far no noticeable improvements. :(

Mtrivergal said...

Question for you. I started a 2 year long illness that made me lose weight, vomiting, diarrhea, and terrible heartburn. I kept tums everywhere. I finally realized that my muscles were wasting and I had no energy and being a nurse, sought GI input. I had the biopsy and was found to be celiac. Diagnosis at age 50 14 months ago. I started to put on weight, 40 pounds and no matter what I can't shake it. I am uncomfortable with this weight. I did immediately eliminate gluten after diagnosis. How long till my body levels out and I can shake some of this extra weight? I do realize that it is recovering from starvation mode. Thanks!

Unknown said...

My daughter who is 11years old is scheduled for an endoscopy next month. Her blood showed up negative for celiac. I was given some advice to consider gluten free diet before doing the endoscopy. I was told that can also come up negative as well in that correct? I'm worried that may not be enough time to draw my own conclusion and may affect the result of the procedure. Any advice?

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

If the celiac blood test was negative I'm not sure why a biopsy is being recommended. Typically, in conservative medical circles, a positive blood test is followed with a biopsy, not a negative one.

If gluten is removed from the diet it will negate the efficacy of the biopsy. In fact gluten removal will affect any test you do other than a genetic test. It doesn't matter for that one.

If you already have your daughter off gluten and are seeing any improvement in her symptoms I would highly caution you against reintroducing gluten for the sake of the biopsy.

It could be dangerous to reintroduce it if she is truly sensitive.

Gluten sensitivity is an accepted and significant condition that can affect most systems of the body. Celiac tests will be negative with gluten sensitivity but the patient will feel better on a gluten-free diet.

Feel free to contact me directly for more information or to receive a free health analysis for your daughter. Call 408-733-0400.

I'd like to help.

Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

I'm a celiac and have been gluten free for 7 months now and about three months ago i had a gastroscopy and they said that my small intestine/villi were already pretty much healed. My lactose and everything else were fine, but i'm still having trouble with symptoms that i had before going gluten free such as abdominal bloating, pains, urgency and waves of overwhelming nausea (IBS symptoms quite possibly brought on by eating gluten) After going GF they were all less severe but still are here none the less. I've been eating the right amount of fibre, drinking lots of water, probiotics (IBS support) and excercising but they won't let up. If this IBS is bought on by being a celiac and eating gluten, will it go away eventually being gluten free?

Anonymous said...

I'm a celiac and have been gluten free for 7 months now and about three months ago i had a gastroscopy and they said that my small intestine/villi were already pretty much healed. My lactose and everything else were fine, but i'm still having trouble with symptoms that i had before going gluten free such as abdominal bloating, pains, urgency and waves of overwhelming nausea (IBS symptoms quite possibly brought on by eating gluten) After going GF they were all less severe but still are here none the less. I've been eating the right amount of fibre, drinking lots of water, probiotics (IBS support) and excercising but they won't let up. If this IBS is bought on by being a celiac and eating gluten, will it go away eventually being gluten free?

Anonymous said...

You're test could have been a false negative. If you don't have gluten in your system, you won't have a reaction to gluten and that is what they're testing for. Hope thus helps!

Nadia Lakshmipathi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Hello Nadia,

It is not normal for your immune system to become hyperactive. It's not uncommon associated with a gluten intolerance but it's not normal.

Autoimmmune diseases are highly associated with gluten intolerance and you could be experiencing some tendency in that direction.

The secondary effects of being gluten intolerant are very important to be addressed. I speak of these in many blogs, but suffice to say that removing gluten is often not enough to completely remedy all symptoms.

The fact that you felt better is a good sign but there's more to do. It isn't difficult nor does it involve any drugs or surgery, but it is still necessary.

I you'd like to receive a free health analysis we can try to determine what's occurring. We are destination clinic and see patients from across the country and internationally so you do not have to live locally.

Feel free to call us at: 408-733-0400 - we'd be delighted to help.

Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

I've been having tummy troubles for a few months now. Doctors have suggested acid reflux, and a ultrasound came back negative. He's now saying its IBS. I chose to have an independent allergy test done which came back with an allergy to wheat, rye, barley and oats. I've excluded gluten for 3 weeks now. Is it too late for a coeliac blood test? I need some closure.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Hello Kalendria.

Are you feeling better now that you have eliminated gluten? If so I would not recommend reintroducing it and that is what you would need to do to get an accurate blood test.

However, there is a lab that performs stool testing and they don't require a reintroduction. I have used them for years and I find there technology accurate. They are called EnteroLab. Just go online to get the information. They deal directly with the patient, so you don't need a doctors' recommendation.

They can also perform a genetic test for you which is something that's always at your disposal to do regardless of how long you've been off gluten.

Please let me know if you have any further questions. I'd be happy to help.

Dr Vikki Petersen

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dear Anonymous who has been gluten free for 7 months:

There are other factors that I call the secondary effects of gluten that are likely causing your symptoms.

If you are precise in being gluten-free then you are most likely suffering from one or more of the following:
an infection in the gut
a cross-reactive food
a nutritional deficiency
an enzyme deficiency
an imbalance of the good bacteria -probiotics
a toxin

I know that sounds like a lot but it isn't difficult to find out which it is and the treatment isn't scary or difficult.

Feel free to contact me for help. That's why I'm here.

The number of people who improve somewhat on a gluten-free diet but not 'all the way' is a big one. What you are experiencing is not unusual.

We can offer you a free health analysis if you'd like. Call us at 408-733-0400.

All the best,
Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

I have been sick on & off for many years. I am 64yrs, and have recently become very shaky, dizzy, nervous, fatigued, and my diarrhea has become worse. I started the gluten-free diet after my blood test, and started feeling a bit better in a couple of days. Although I still have a long way to go. My blood test came back negative, but when I told the doctor I was improving, he decided to order a the camera into the intestines and bowel. I will stay on the diet, no matter what the outcome, hoping to improve even further

Anonymous said...

It took 6 months to a year. It will likely depend on how severe your condition. Hang in there and stick to natural whole foods free of gluten and even refined sugars. You should feel better soon.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dear Anonymous,
You were given poor advice when you were told to reintroduce the problematic foods into your diet. Having been off gluten for 6 month before testing made the possibility of an accurate lab test impossible. But you don't need it when your body has already told you how it feels about these foods.
The fatigue and bloating is really all you need to know.
Further, even if the test had been done while you were eating gluten, it was only a celiac test, perhaps you are gluten sensitive instead.
If you want some more information, safely, you can contact EnteroLab online and get a genetic test. That way you'll have some proof in case friends or family are wondering.

Let me know if that helps
Dr Vikki

Rod said...

hi Dr.Vicki. I have been GF for four months now. I was having severe pain in my body suddenly when I stopped the gluten within week it was gone. during my second week of being GF I developed a dairy allergy. I get severe pain in my sinuses within minutes of eating it. all of my life I have experienced strange and unexplainable symptoms in my body. I am almost free of them now. my question is when my gut heals do you think i will be able to tolerate dairy again. I am pregnant and struggle with goat cheese cravings of all things. and also how long will the healing take. thank you, Jennifer

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dear Rod,

I am so glad that you are noticing a positive improvement. I must say that I wouldn't have the 'goal' for you to reintroduce dairy back into your diet. It's not a healthy food and many humans are intolerant to it. Those with gluten intolerance are often especially sensitive.

I would like you to enjoy your feeling of well-being and look into dairy alternatives such as coconut milk, nut milks, rice milk, daiya cheese, etc.

I hope that helps.
Please let me know if you require any assistance. We are happy to offer you a free health analysis. You can call us at 408-733-0400.

Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...


I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease and immediately began the gluten free diet. After a few weeks, I would occasionally get similar symptoms after eating. I began a food diary and discovered that I had an allergy to soy, as well as to peanuts. Start a food diary and see if you don't find additional foods that could be causing the issue.

Anonymous said...

I heard during pregnancy that you shouldn't be gf because it could cause your child to be as well.??? Is that true??? Also I just started the gf about 3 months ago and really did it without cheating this last month and I introduced a yummy cookie( whole wheat with oats etc) and 2 hours later woke up and almost threw up... Since then I have woken up everyday with nausea and it lingers throughout the day. What is going on???? I know now I may be definitely g intolerant

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Hello Anonymous,
I'm not sure where you heard that information regarding pregnancy, but I believe it is quite flawed.

If a mother is gluten intolerant, the worst thing she could do for her health as well as that of her developing child's is to consume a toxin, gluten.

As far as your recent, dramatic reaction, I would say that you are likely gluten intolerant. You did an excellent challenge by staying away from it and upon reintroduction your body told you exactly what it thinks of gluten.

Such a reaction can take some time to get over, so it's not unusual for your nausea to persist.

If you need further help please consider contacting me for a free health analysis. You can call 408-733-0400.

Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

Hello Dr Vikki, I'm GI & have been GF,dairy-free & sugar-free for a month. I'm a 34 yr old woman. I'm trying to get rid of severe burning pain during urination. Nothing has changed so far.My body is v acidic. I also hv toxins, parasites, pathogens, fungus etc. Pl. help. I need to get rid of this pain & also lose 60 lbs..Thank you in advance.

Anonymous said...

Right after graduating high school, I finally discovered after countless doctor visits that I had gluten intolerance. All of my problems began to take hold when I was in 7th grade or so, and it got progressively worse from that point onward.So far I’ve been gluten free for about 3 months now, and I still can’t think clearly and I’ve still got stomach pains. I noticed that my stomach goes in cycles where at certain points in the week for about 3-4 days my stomach isn’t as bad, and then for 3-4 days my stomach will hurt a lot. There has been some improvements, but they were very minor, and my mind is getting worse. I thought of it this way: Think of a train that has built up a lot of momentum, it will therefore take a long time to slow to a stop. So, if the mind in particular was getting increasingly worse, it may take a while for the damage to slow down, and for the healing to begin (a long with the stomach). I may be wrong, but I would like to hear what you think of my theory. My primary question though, is how long do you think the healing process will take if all of this has been going on for 6-7 years or more?

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dear Anonymous (34 yr old)
I would be happy to try to assist you but I will need a lot more data.

Perhaps you would like to receive a free health analysis? If you're interested you can call us at 408-761-3900. That way I can better understand your symptoms and what is needed to improve your condition.
Dr Vikki

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dear Anonymous who was diagnosed after high school -
The fact that it's been 3 to 4 months and you are not feeling better likely means that the secondary effects related to gluten are affecting you. The roller coaster of your symptoms also points to that fact.
If you'd like specific help, please consider contacting us for a free health analysis - call 408-761-3900.
It's not fair to your health that you're trying so hard to be gluten-free yet not feeling the benefits. The good news is that there is a reason.
I'm happy to help you improve your health. That's why I'm here.

Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

Dr Doctor, I was told to go gluten-free & dairy-free for 3 months. Do u think it is safe for me to go dairy-free as I had ostoporosis 10 yrs ago when i was a 20 y old? I live in a very cold country. Should I take vit. D supplements or calcium tablets?/ PLEASE HELP..
Thank you ever so much..
These days its sooooooo rare to find someone who helps for free..Way 2 go..!! Love ur site, totally..!!

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Yes it is safe. Dairy products are no protection against osteoporosis. In fact the countries with the highest dairy intake have the highest rates of osteoporosis.

Do make sure you are getting good absorbable calcium from dark green leafy vegetables and exercising about 45 minutes a day.

And yes again, you should definitely get your Vitamin D levels checked. I like the levels about 50 to 60.

Let me know if you have any further questions.

Dane347 said...

May daughter is 14yrs old and for about a year now she has been having the waves of nausea and phantom pains in her gut. None of her doctors could tell her what it was. Then the anxiety arrived followed by depression. Everybody thought it was all in her head until I had a food allergy test done. It seems that she is allergic to gluten. It seems there is a great deal of research on how gluten affects people neurologically out there. She has just started her gluten free diet about a week ago. She is always sick and still has anxiety. It has stopped her from doing anything. I am trying to be patient but I have heard that it takes weeks, months and sometimes years to feel the effects of a gluten free diet. How long can I expect her to feel sick and anxious, if gluten is really causing this?

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Dane347 - If your daughter is being perfect on her gluten-free diet and gluten is the cause (or at least one of them) of her symptoms, then you should expect to see some changes in 4 to 6 weeks.
If you see absolutely no change, there is likely another cause that must be addressed. She may want to try a dairy-free diet at the same time considering the known neurological effects associated with it.

Please feel free to stay in touch and let me know how she's doing.

Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

Hi i have a question , my 8 year old has all the symptom of celiac, bloated, stomach pains, hard stomach, lots og gas , irritability, i finally took her to a gi pediatric doctor we did the celiac blood test which came positie, she was off gluten for 3 weeks only now she is back on gluten for 10 days to to the endoscopy, so my question is do you think 3 weeks off gluten will affect the biopsy results? Like i said she is on again and will be on luten for 10 days she is already got all pf her symptoms back specially the stomachache ... Please i would like some advice i don't want to put her through thay for nothing. Thank you!!!

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Well you're question touches a raw nerve for me. If her blood test was positive and all her symptoms went away during the 3 weeks, I think it's cruel and unusual punishment to then put her back on it, only to have her suffer again. How much longer does the GI want her to wait before doing the endoscopy?
Please note that the endoscopy is no longer the 'gold standard' once thought. Research supports that positive blood tests along with improvement of symptoms and positive genetic markers are more than enough to make the diagnosis.
I know this is 'late' advice since she's already back on gluten, but the genetic test is not invasive and requires no gluten consumption.
Even if the endoscopy is negative, it doesn't negate the celiac diagnosis.
I would think doing the endoscopy right away would be fine considering only 3 weeks off gluten likely didn't create complete healing of her villi, if they are affected.
Once again, there are many celiacs with a negative biopsy that still have the disease.
The next step is to handle the secondary effects of gluten that I speak of often.
If you need more data consider contacting us for a free health analysis - 408-733-0400.
Reintroducing gluten runs the risk of developing an autoimmune disease, which is why I am so opposed to the practice.
Good luck and please let me know how it all goes.
Dr Vikki

gfstillconfused said...

I had a lot of the symptoms for gluten intolerance and went on a gf free diet 3 months ago. During this time I accidentally ate something containing wheat once and had a reaction much stronger than the symptoms I used to have. I also ate regular bread two days in a row recently to check whether I really have a problem with gluten. Again the reaction was a lot worse than the symptoms I used to have.

I'm confused about this. While I used to have a lot of symptoms before going gluten free, why ddi I have a lot more severe symptoms during these two brief gluten challenges?

I would be very grateful for an explanation.

Further info: I still have occasionally mild pain even on the gluten free diet. I know (test negative) that I am not allergic to wheat.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Your reaction is common and it means that you truly are sensitive to gluten, despite not having a wheat allergy. The reason the reaction is more intense is that your immune system has gotten a chance to 'relax' while you removed gluten and then when you reintroduced it, the immune system was able to let you know how it really feels about it.
That is simplifying the mechanism, but the concept is true.
I often hear this same question from patients. Now if you didn't have a sensitivity, the reintroduction would cause no reaction, let alone an amplified one.
I hope that makes sense.
Dr Vikki

Anonymous said...

I've been suffering from chronic severe constipation ever since I was an infant, and the problem got worse and worse. About 7 years ago I started feeling nauseous and ever since I'm nauseous 24/7. Food (doesn't matter what type) makes me feel like vomiting. Even water has started to bother me when I ingest it. I'm 25 lbs underweight and I never gain any weight. The problem is, I keep losing. I'm down to 90 lbs as of now and i'm just so tired, nauseous, sick and weak. All doctors tell me it's just GERD, prescribe me antacids and send me home. I've tried everything for constipation, but nothing works. I drink water, exercise, no caffein, no dairy, mostly fruits and veggies. I take probiotics too. Sometimes I get so plugged up to the point where even laxatives won't work anymore. All the doctors I've been to didn't bother to do anything about this. I went gluten free about 4 months ago and the first 2 weeks I felt amazing. I've never felt better in my life, but then I ate gluten twice by mistake and went back to feeling nauseous, really plugged up etc. The thing is, I no longer respond to the gluten free diet. I mean I eat gf, yet I don't feel the same as in those first 2 weeks of gluten free. Should I reintroduce gluten in my diet and call it a day? My doctor has told me celiac is not an option because I don't have diarrhea, so what do you I should do? I can't get him to test me for celiac anyways.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

I would urge you to consider calling us for a free health analysis - 408-733-0400.
You need to get assistance right away and it's not something I can do over the internet.
Please consider it as we would be delighted to assist you!

Ted said...

Wow, what a great blog!

I am gluten sensitive. I found out when I started to get all sorts of autoimmune problems; nail infections, sudden loss of 10% body weight, blurred thinking, etc. etc.

In my country you can't get tested and even the best hospitals have trouble with understanding gluten sensitivity.

Vitimin B shots alleviated virtually all my problems.

I can recommend a powder called Triphala, which is a mix of three dried fruits. I had a problem with skin on my fingers never healing for 2 years. 2 weeks of drinking this disgusting stuff solved that problem. Look it up, it contains substances used in medicine for healing skin. I imagine it is also doing my intestine good.

Jason Opland said...

What tests are performed to check for specific parasite, bacteria or amoeba present? Endoscopy with a biopsy? Please advise.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

The test we use for infections is a stool analysis Jason. There are many different versions of such tests. The lab we use is the most comprehensive of its kind and they use DNA probes to identify the organisms present.

We have found the test to be quite good in identifying infectious organisms.

Let me know if you have any further questions.

Anonymous said...

I have been diagnosed with gluten intolerance, the blood test for celiac was negative and I have an endoscope scheduled in the near future. My question is, Will the fact that I have been gluten free for 6 weeks change the outcome of my test? Are there any other tests for Celiac because I am concerned that if I have Celiac and don't know it my health will be further compromised.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

If you've been diagnosed with gluten intolerance (sensitivity) and your celiac test was negative, I'm not sure why you're scheduled for an endoscopy. Perhaps you can let me know what your doctor is looking for.

If the endoscopy is to rule out celiac disease, then your 6 weeks of gluten-free is going to make the test useless. Now, I DO NOT think you should reintroduce gluten in order to do the test - Please DO NOT do that. But there is also no reason to put yourself through the test if ruling out celiac disease is the intention.

You can run a genetic test through EnteroLab if you want to know if you carry the genes for celiac vs gluten sensitivity. That test requires no reintroduction - something I consider to be quite dangerous.

I hope this helps. Please consider calling us for a free health analysis (408-733-0400) if you want further assistance.

Anonymous said...

My father is 76 and recently diagnosed with celiac. He has lost 40 lbs. and continues with diarrhea about 7-10 times a day. Before he was diagnosed with celiac and started GF, he was going to the bathroom 10-15 times a day with completely watery diarrhea. He has been GF for about one and 1/2 months now and is still having bowel issues. Docs told us that his villi is severely damaged from the disease. He continues to dehydrate every few days and has been admitted to the hospitals about 11 times in the past two months. Now that we are sure of his diagnosis and keeping him hydrated the best we can, do you have any other recommendations for me?

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Hello Anonymous,
I cannot make medical recommendations for your 76 year old father over the internet. That is illegal.
I can offer a free health analysis however. Just call 408-733-0400. That way we can get some more information and decide on the best course of action.
You CAN definitely do more for him than keep him hydrated, however.

Amanda said...


I have had symptoms of Celiac disease for about a year and a half (possibly some milder symptoms longer). About 1 and 1/2 years ago I started having bowel issues and I lost 20 lbs. without really trying (I was happy to lose the weight). I attributed the weight loss to me stopping drinking soda. I recently went to the doctor and brought up my bowel problems and he ran some blood test and I came back highly positive for IgA (tTG). I was told to stop eating gluten to see how I feel. Until yesterday I had been gluten free for 3 weeks (I am sure I had some slips, as I still don't know everything that has gluten in it). I researched Celiac disease and called my doctor and asked if I needed a biopsy. He told me that yes, I did and that he wanted me to start eating gluten again for 3 weeks and then have the biopsy. I am worried that the results will be negative now that I stopped eating gluten for 3 weeks. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I do not like how I feel eating gluten, now that I have stopped and really don't want to have to keep eating it for longer than 3 weeks. How long does it take for the intestines to heal (please tell me that healing would not have occurred in my 3 weeks of gluten free)? I would appreciate any advice....

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

Hello Amanda,

Your doctor is a little behind the times. A biopsy is no longer required in order to make a celiac diagnosis. Additionally, it could be very dangerous to reintroduce gluten when your tTG IgA is very high. You could initiate an autoimmune disease, beyond the one you already have which is celiac disease.

Please consider finding a doctor that will give you more current advice or consider contacting us for a free health analysis - 408-733-0400. We are here to help!

All the best to you,
Dr Vikki Petersen

Mike said...

Here is some background on my condition. I'm 34 years old and I've known something has been wrong for 15 years. From two things. One being my stool has really not been solid that whole time and I have gotten chronic sinus infections especially when drinking heavy doses of beer, mainly Budweiser. So with these sinus infections I've taken antibiotics and had three sinus surgeries. About 2.5 years ago I was on antibiotics for most of 4-5 months continuously. My health started deteriorating very slowly about this time and I had some swelling in my right sinus. Worse and worse over the 2.5 years and long nights of drinking really strained me. My ENT doc struggled to figure out what the swelling is in just my right sinus and finally turned me over to the folks below.

I've been gluten, dairy and fish free for 7 months now. These were my highest sensitivity. I am going to a place that is a combination of nutritionists and medical doctors working in tandem. I've had the blood test for food allergies, stool samples for parasites and thyroid function tests. I've eliminated the food allergies which consist of basil, egg, chicken, turkey and the others listed above. We've eliminated the yeast out of my gut and replenishing it with strong probiotics, glutamine and other supplements. We've regulated my thyroid with Nature-Throid. I really feel these folks have there stuff together and I'm on the right track.

So with all this background, 15 years knowing something was not right and 2.5 years of gradually feeling worse I have a question about the healing process. I've read it can take up to 1 to 2 years to heal my gut all the way. Am I in this category with the length of time I've had the problems? So obviously I'm not healed yet. Another question has to do with how it heals. It's been a roller coaster of feeling better for a week or so followed by feeling like garbage for a couple of weeks. Is this roller coaster ride common(I'm in a serious downturn at the moment)? I know inflammation is common with leaky gut and that the digestive tissue below is interconnected with your nose and mouth, so is inflammation in the sinus common?

Thanks for your help,

Anonymous said...

224I have had a high ESR rate for 2 years (80 or above). I have been GF for a month and just had blood drawn with no change is the ESR rate. how long will it take to see that drop? I feel much better but would like to see that number come down.

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

@ Anonymous w/ high ESR rate:
The reason your ESR rate is high could be due to more than just gluten. Additionally, it takes about 3 months of being gluten-free to see a change in such lab tests.

It would be great to get you to see a clinician who could evaluate the true root causes of why your ESR is high.

I'm happy to help. Consider contacting us for a free health analysis - call 408-733-0400.

Here at HealthNOW we are a destination clinic and we treat patients from across the country and internationally. We are here to help!

I look forward to hearing from you.
Dr Petersen

jaclyn said...

I have a question.I had a 14 hour surgery 8/14.I was on multiple drugs including blood thinners,anti inflammatories and a five week course of doxycycline(prophylactic)About the time I went off the antibiotic,I started experiencing symptoms of gastritis,nothing helped.I had an endoscopy in October which showed mild falettening of the intestinal villi.A biopsy was negative for celiac.I was unable to eat due to severe nausea,lost over fifteen pounds.I went to a dietician who said I was protein deficient plus most vitamins and minerals.She encouraged me to use dairy to up my protein.I started feeling better,but still had on and off stomach pain and nausea.I have since learned that not eating can blunt the villi.I just removed gluten and dairy from my diet and in less than 24 hours feel a slight difference.Is there any hope that my villi will recover and if so,how long will it take?

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

@jaclyn- I'm so glad that you wrote. I don't know where you live but I want to ensure that you get the help you need from a clinician who knows what to do for you. Please write to me via my email: That way we can ensure you get the assistance you need.

A 14 hour surgery plus all the medications that you received put your digestive tract into a state of shock. The good news is that yes, you can have your villi recover with the correct program. And no, that program involves no scary drugs! So it's all good news, I just need to "talk" to you to get you going in the right direction.

We are a destination clinic and treat patients from across the country and internationally. We are here to help!

I look forward to meeting you!

Nury said...

Probiotics work in a very simple, yet highly beneficial way. They keep the populations of harmful microorganisms from growing. Some probiotics are also capable of killing pathogens, thus improving digestion and preventing conditions like candida or urinary tract infections.

Haroon Shahid said...

Hi there! Ive got a question that no one has been able to answer, and would like your help on this. Basically, ever since I was 3 or 4 , Ive had eczema and have been severely allergic to egg. It started off with eczema on one finger and one toe, and over the years, allergy tests have brought dairy, nut and shrimps in and out and eventually all left except the egg. But my eczema has gotten worse over the years and now at 22, It's all over my face, hands, elbows, legs and feet. I've tried everything to fix it, and avoid egg at all costs, even though the allergy isn't so bad now, used to have to go to the hospital when I was a kid, now I just get rashes and get itchy for the next couple of days when I accidentally consume some of it.

My main question is, recently, I got a IgG food intolerance test done, and it said I had 49 incompatible foods, the major ones being egg, gluten and all dairy products. So I mistook food intolerance for food allergy and got super upset that I will not be able to have most of my diet for the rest of my life. But it says at the bottom of the report that avoid gluten, dairy and yeast for a year. Does that mean that if I do end up getting this stuff out of my diet (which I have for 2 weeks now), that it is actually possible to lose these intolerances and be able to eat what I normally do after a year? I feel like the reason for my eczema not healing is that I've been having gluten my entire life, and that's probably why its gotten worse over the years. But my main question is, do you think it's possible for my skin to heal completely in this one year, and my intestine to heal too, and possibly losing the intolerance to be able to have these things again? Because the test was very expensive and I don't know when I know I can have these things, if it is possible at all..

and one more last question (sorry for taking up so much of your time reading all this!) , when they say avoid gluten and dairy for a year, does that mean I cannot have it for one meal even once in a couple of months? And do I have to be extra careful to see if even stuff like potato chips which have small amounts of gluten in them harmful? Or can I have those time to time?

Thank you so much for reading this!

Anonymous said...

Hello and thank you for your blog.may I please ask a question.
I had a test recently for leaky came back with a very high iag result and I was advised to give up gluten and has been 2 months and I have had no response at all.
Is it too early to get any result?
I have had 2 blood test for coeliac disease and both were negative.thank you

The HealthNOW Doctors said...

@Anonymous who has high IgA. Thank you for writing in.
The best way I can help you is to know more about your health and symptoms. It's very difficult to give advice with no data about what exactly is bothering you. An elevated IgA can mean many different things.

Consider contacting us for a free phone consultation. That way we can speak, I can get an idea of what symptoms are bothering you and how best to assist you. Call 408-733-0400.

I look forward to speaking with you.