Gluten Free Cheerios Saga – Part Two

I have been writing this post in my head for the last week.  In fact, I wanted to write this post last week after about a week of Cheerios eating.  Unfortunately for me, some gluten slipped into the house and into my system and I’ve been struggling to repair.  Having gotten a little lax with my diet since being pregnant, I think I’ve also been sneaking in some of my other food allergies… only compounding the inflammation.

Needless to say, I’m afraid of the Cheerios in light of the stomach issues.  I managed two days of Cheerios pre-exposure and by day two, I had what my husband and I call bubble guts.  Hyperactive bowel sounds and bubbles all over.  Gas.  It was tolerable though mildly uncomfortable.  This could be from two things: mild response to the low ppm of gluten still in the Cheerios or from my guts simply not being sure what to do with all that fiber running through my system.  I would really have to try them for longer to have a clearer picture for myself of what is going on.  Unfortunately, I worry that it’s part of what made my gluten reaction so severe.  At some point, I may balls up again… but fortunately, there were two of us in this experiment.

My husband, on the other hand, has eaten Cheerios – nearly two whole boxes of Honey Nut and most of a box of Frosted – for nearly two weeks now and loves them.  The only thing he would love more from General Mills right now is if the Lucky Charms cereals were out.  (General Mills does say his Lucky Charms dream will come true…)

He denies any bubble guts, diarrhea, any symptoms.

It’s the next best thing for him to sliced gluten free bread.

We’ve had some theory discussion on this.  My theory is, for someone like me, prolonged use of Cheerios may make me sick.  The exposure, if done regularly, will build up some inflammation and sensitivity.  My gluten exposure last week was so small compared to my husband’s and I’ve literally spent the last week 1/2 trying to get my stomach back into function.  I’m very sensitive, know right away, and do not get exposed very often.

My husband, on the other hand, gets exposed more regularly.  His symptoms are milder — mostly diarrhea and cramping depending on the extent of exposure.  Mine leave me barely functional.  His lining says, “I can handle 7ppm per serving.” Is this due to his more daring behavior?  Hard to say.  May just be his version of celiac.

He’ll keep eating them.  They’ve been on sale at Fred Meyer for 1.99.  If he can tolerate it, that’s the cheapest gluten free cereal I’ve ever bought.

I’m not sure I will keep eating them.  I’ve been struggling with some of my other food allergies and it’s going to be safer to eat cleaner for awhile.  Better for the baby, anyway, they say.  All those nutrients.

If you do try them, please keep following Gluten Free Watchdog.  They are currently compiling a list of reactions to the Cheerios and submitting it to the FDA for follow up.  We’ll see what comes out of that.   Gluten Free Watch Dog: Sick after Eating Cheerios? 

Celiac disease.  When our idea of living on the edge includes trying gluten free Cheerios…


Read more:

Gluten Free Cheerios Saga – Part One

General Mills on Gluten Free

Gluten Free Watchdog’s Position Statement on GF Cheerios

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