Jessica Duggins

Jessica Duggins Celiac Story

I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in June of 2023, so I’ve been living a gluten-free life for about seven months now.

My symptoms were quite atypical. Instead of the typical stomach issues, I experienced very low ferritin levels, resulting in hair loss, low appetite, weight loss, and feelings of faintness and weakness. Additionally, I struggled with high anxiety and depression, along with acid reflux.

Fortunately, my iron doctor suggested an endoscopy, which revealed signs of intestinal damage consistent with celiac disease. Subsequent biopsies and blood tests confirmed the diagnosis. Since going gluten-free, I’ve experienced a significant improvement in my symptoms, although it took about three months to see these changes.

One of my biggest challenges has been dining out safely, especially since I travel for work. I’m still learning to advocate for myself in restaurants and new environments. Recently, I successfully navigated a trip to Pune, India, with the help of resources like @glutenfreejio’s website, Instagram page, and other social channel pages.

While managing this disease can be challenging, I always remind myself that the alternative – living with untreated symptoms – would be even more difficult. I’m grateful to be feeling well and on the path to better health.