I’m Lauren-Lucille Vasser (yes, Lauren-Lucille is a long first name, but I dig it!), your Celiac Diva hostess, living in Colorado Springs, CO. I’m a Christian, a wife, a professional singer and actress (AEA), hostess, and & chick who loves my family bunches. I found out I had Celiac Disease on March 18th, 2010, my healing birthday…
My story: Four and a half years ago, my life changed in an instant when we thought I was having a heart attack, chest pain beyond my comprehension. It took me 3 years to get a chest pain diagnoses of Costochondritis. However, little did we know, it was not costochondritis at all, but a result of Celiac Disease. After 3 years of struggling with chest pain, my health began to deteriorate further: numb hands, an oddly broken foot, diarrhea -gross!, headaches, ear aches, back pain, numbness, tingling, severe mood swings, muscle twitching, not able to get enough sleep, psoriasis, and the list goes on…
Seventy five doctors later from TX, TN, CA, and NYC, I called into Dr. Wallachs Youngevity radio show about my symptoms. That’s correct, I said a radio show!! lol. Within minutes, he nailed me with, “you have Celiac Disease” …..Cricket….. ”I have what? ” After that, I went gluten free immediately, not knowing at the time I should have done the blood test/endoscopy asap. I got into an appt with my GI 8 weeks later to talk about what Dr. Wallach had shared with me. She immediately wanted me to do the gluten challenge and the biopsy, but there was no way I would go back to gluten for anything. And I knew in my heart that God sent Dr. Wallach to show me how to heal. How cool that after years of suffering, my answer was free…it was a miracle. A free miracle, lol, and evidence of God’s unique love.
So at that point we chose to do the genetic testing as well as stool testing. FUN! lol. I tested positive for the Celiac Disease genes with the highest combination of genes for contracting the disease and negative for gluten allergies. My stool testing showed that the amount of malabsorption of fat I was experiencing was 6 times the normal range. It shocked me. Also, my iron, Vit D, B6, mineral absorption, calcium, and magnesium was were all incredibly low. And a year later…I still have low bone density (osteopenia, another huge marker for Celiac).
All of that combined with the fact that I was improving on a gluten free diet was all the proof I needed. So my GI at the time, uncomfortably declared me an “unofficial Celiac.” If I knew now what I knew then, I would have gone to her immediately for the blood work and endoscopy. However, my journey didn’t take me there, it took me here, and now I’m under the care of Dr. Lebowohl at the Columbia University Medical Center in NYC . So for me, I’m relieved with all my heart to finally know what was wrong with my body. And then….. The Celiac Diva was born! Cause if you have Celiac…you gotta be your own advocate and from time to time, bring out the diva in you!…humbly of course. =)
AKA- The Celiac Diva