My daughters have Celiac but not the typical symptoms

by Donna
(Ontario Canada)

When my daughter was in kindergarten she always had tummy aches. I thought it was because she was a very shy child. She was always healthy looking and had a bloated tummy. My husband and I thought it was so cute because she had a tummy and it was similar to my pictures when I was young. The aches continued until she was in grade 5. In grade 2 after seeing a gastroenterologist we discovered that she had acid reflux and eliminated acidic food from her diet.

She was better but still continued to have mild stomach pain. We thought that because she didn't want to help out with chores she was showing signs of laziness and didn't want to pull her weight around the house.

In grade five my daughter had a male teacher and because of her extreme shyness had difficulty adjusting to the change, also some of her friends were picking on her. She started having more stomach pain to a point of intolerance.

Many visits to the hospital and specialist I was told that she was only constipated and the ultrasound showed many cysts in her stomach but they were harmless and possibly the cause of pain.

It was odd that she suffered from constipation when she had daily bowel movements. I did what the doctor ordered and gave her diuretics and tylenols for the pain.

After many hours of research and suggestions from my co-workers, I researched Celiac and the symptoms. My daughter did not have the classic symptoms. However, I decided to remove gluten from her diet completely because I had a gut feeling that was the problem.

She instantly felt good, she was happy, her marks went up, she was able to attend school 5 days a week instead of 1 or 2, she wasn't moody or grumpy anymore, her lips that were often irritated from the cold improved, her canker soars disappeared.

We saw an allergist about a month later. The fact that she was at a healthy weight and she tested negative for Celiac showed that it is impossible for her to have it according to the allergist. He said that she had a severe wheat intolerance and would outgrow it, but definitely not gluten intolerance.

I thought great, so I bought oatmeal and made barley soup and again a sick child. He wanted her to go back on a wheat diet. Within a couple of days she suffered from severe migraines, sharp stomach pain and would sleep a full 2 to 3 days. I removed the gluten from her diet because I wanted my healthy daughter again.

My youngest daughter does not physically appear to have Celiac. She is tall for her age and is a bit overweight. Her symptoms are quite different. Her stomach was always bloated and gassy she looked like she was seven months pregnant when she was only five.

Her legs ached every night and I thought she had arthritis, I would rub her legs to help with the pain only to find out that after I removed gluten from her diet, that the aching disappeared.

Her stomach looked normal and her constant hunger was no longer a concern. My daughters have never tested positive for Celiac disease but deep down in my heart I believe they have it because the change in their diet has improved their quality of life.

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Feb 10, 2016
at last i may have found my cure
by: Anonymous

This is exactly what my daughter has... bad legs bad headaches and extremely bloated stomach but she has had it ever since she was born she was a newborn baby with a massive stomach and also suffered with reflux and diarrhea bad gas. she is now 7 and is still the same she can be very lazy she is overweight and always hungry I'm really hoping this will work for her it will be lovely to see a change in my child as she is very shy at school and unhappy and moody most of the time I'm so glad to have found this post so thank you x

Nov 29, 2015
What about bowel movements
by: Anonymous

This sounds similar to my daughter. No leg pain, but she does get headaches. She also has really large bowel movements every couple of weeks that clog the toilet. Has anybody else seen that?

Feb 07, 2014
Sounds exactly like my daughter
by: Pauline

Wow this is my daughter I'm taking her to the doctor today but not sure what they can do.

She is very tall for 6 yrs old 132 cm but weighing 37 kg sticking out tummy

She complains daily of a sore tummy and sore legs. My husband rubs them and although active, is puffy.

I am immediately going to source the gluten free!


Apr 06, 2013
Same problem
by: Kerry

My son seems to have the exact same thing happening..

He is very tall and big for his age (wearing size 10-11 and he is 7). He is overweight and his stomach is very distended and hard.

He just went through about 4 months of constant puking, which had all sorts of professionals involved, but who decided its psychological.

His paediatrician did, however, suggest a wheat allergy but they haven't tested for it.

He eats so much, is always hungry and craving.. When I try limit how much he has, it doesn't seem to do any good. He has rough dry patches of skin all over his arms and back, and always feels sick and has terrible headaches.. He also suffers from bad leg cramps at night.

I am going to take him off all wheat for a couple weeks to see if things improve. Hoping I have found an answer as something is making him feel terrible yet there is apparently nothing physically wrong with him.

Dec 03, 2012
Thank you
by: Elise's Mom

Thank you for sharing your history.

I have suspected this in my daughter for years as well. She is very tall, overweight and her belly has always been distended (like your daughter's). She had severe stomach cramps when she ate and insatiable hunger, gas, cravings for sugar.

Now we're going to get serious about this and give the gluten-free lifestyle a try. I pray it helps.

So glad your children are healthy and happy now.

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