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"I was told that Sjogren's will make my eyes dry, and my mouth dry. If that's all it is, why do I feel so tired? And achey and sore? Why can't I think straight on some days, and why does sunshine make me feel so awful? Why can't I eat some of the foods that I used to, and why do I get so much heartburn these days? What's happening to my body?"
When people with celiac disease eat foods or use products containing gluten, their immune system responds by damaging or destroying villi—the tiny, fingerlike protrusions lining the small intestine. Villi normally allow nutrients from food to be absorbed through the walls of the small intestine into the bloodstream. Without healthy villi, a person becomes malnourished, no matter how much food one eats.
The question seemed to remain unanswered - so why can't I eat bread and cereal and pasta anymore without some really embarrassing results? I was perfectly capable of ingesting pastries and breads before Sjogren's. It seemed suspicious to me that the irritable bowel syndrome made it's appearance at about the same time that Sjogren's showed up.
Last week, I came across an interesting source of useful information regarding the link between the digestive tract and Sjogren's Syndrome. Written by Dr. Joop D van de Merwe, this online book titled Sjogren's Syndrome: Information for Patients and Professionals, is a very thorough discussion of all things Sjogren's. The book is twenty one lengthy chapters and is a very large file if downloaded. The terminology and explanations are geared toward health care providers, but for those with a reasonable understanding of the immune system and anatomy, it is a very informative read.
IBS means your bowel doesn’t work the right way. IBS can cause cramping, bloating, gas, diarrhea, and constipation. IBS doesn’t damage the bowel or lead to other health problems. The doctor will diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. You may need to have medical tests to rule out other health problems. Stress doesn’t cause IBS, but it can make your symptoms worse. Fatty foods, milk products, chocolate, alcohol, and caffeinated and carbonated drinks can trigger symptoms. Eating foods with fiber and eating small meals throughout the day may reduce symptoms. Treatment for IBS may include medicine, stress relief, and changes in eating habits.