Gluten Meltdowns – Not a Myth

No One Wants to Have a Meltdown

I’m sure of this.  I never wanted to. Things were just so bad that I couldn’t help but be very upset.

Other people said:

“Aren’t you being a little dramatic?”

“Do you have to be so difficult?”

“You don’t have anything to be so upset about.”

“What’s your problem anyway?”

I’ve heard all those words and much more. I couldn’t explain how awful I felt.  I tried, but I guess I wasn’t convincing. Maybe other people were much tougher than I was and they could handle bad things better.

It was neither.  It was gluten.

Gluten Hurts!

Today, I think there are those that still don’t believe that gluten can be responsible for such drastic emotional dives. Trust me, it can.  Gluten causes me to feel bad in many ways. For instance it causes:

– Abdominal pain that is excruciating.

– Extreme bloating that can happen within just a minute after consuming food containing gluten.

– Skin rashes.

– Anxiety.

– Stress over how to handle all of this when in public.

These are just a few of the obvious problems that we deal with when we are not safely gluten free. There are so many more that can and do occur. I didn’t know that all the pain I went through when eating a meal was due to gluten. I never knew it could be different.  Sushi became my favorite food because it never caused me pain or bloating.

I’m going to take a moment and list my unique characteristics. They are:


– Learning Disabilities

– Dyslexia

– Gluten intolerant

– Too many digestive issues to mention

– 5 years ago I developed an autoimmune disease. I am prone to uveitis, rashes that look like I was burned with a blow torch, mouth sores and blisters, chronic fatigue and a bunch of random weird things that happen frequently.

It’s been interesting to say the least. I live my life in a constant battle against inflammation in all it’s forms.

One of the less obvious challenges are the gluten induced meltdowns.

Almost no one stops to consider that a meltdown occurred due to a gluten allergy or intolerance.  The common reaction is that the person experiencing the meltdown is acting out and needs to stop it. Now!

This attitude actually makes the meltdown worse. Before I was diagnosed and went gluten free, I felt like I must be the most criticized person on earth. I felt really bad about being me. I became a self proclaimed ‘Difficult Person.’  I warned people about me. I felt really  bad about doing that, but what was I to do? What if I had a meltdown? At least they were warned.

Honestly, living like that really sucked.  I may have gotten the habit of warning people from my mom.  She was forever letting other’s know that I could be a problem. That sucked too. There’s nothing like having your mom tell your soon-to-be husband that you need a lot of attention because you are so difficult. UGH!

The excerpt below is taken from an excellent article entitled ‘Why Gluten Is Bad: The Plain English Answer‘ by Helen Sanders

Gluten is Often Linked With Brain Function and Disorders
The inflammation that gluten causes can also have negative effects on your brain. Many neurological conditions have been traced back to gluten consumption. Scientists have studied the link between mental health and the consumption of wheat for over 50 years.

This is a short excerpt and I highly recommend that you read the entire article on

In a way it’s a relief to know that I’m wasn’t choosing to have meltdowns, contrary to popular opinion.  Life is hard and no one wants to be known as the problem person.

Identifying a Gluten Allergy or Intolerance

It is likely that having an undiagnosed gluten intolerance for so many years actually caused my autoimmune disease.  That is another story that I wish I didn’t know. If I could have known what was wrong early in my life, so many things would have been different…in a really good way.

There are a number of symptoms that can be used to identify a gluten issue.  The one I experience immediately is bloating and stomach pain.  I’m not talking about a little bloating and a slight stomach ache. These are extreme. Because I never knew anything different, I didn’t complain.  I endured.

If you have a child that seems to be out of control, undisciplined and a major drama queen/king, take a closer look.  Behavior may be a symptom of a gluten problem. It’s really worth the time and effort to investigate. Try a gluten free diet for 30 days. Heck that 30 day experiment could change your child’s entire life!