For me (and you?): No wheat=no canker sores/mouth sores

I cannot stress enough that this has CHANGED my life.  It took many tries to get a balance but for me, when I eat wheat it makes my mouth and tongue swell almost imperceptibly and that makes me more prone to biting my tongue while chewing and jabbing my cheek and tongue with a sharp chip or piece of bread or pizza crust which then resulted in a canker/mouth sore.  The mouth sore then lasted about two miserable weeks during which I did not eat or talk because of the pain it caused, including flu-like symptoms, sore glands, etc.  Then when it healed, I would start eating again, delicious pasta, cereal, bread, pizza, cookies and immediately get another one.  And the entire miserable cycle began again.   One day, I was consciously eating bite-by-bite and I noticed that my bottom lip felt slightly heavy and swollen.  I looked in the mirror and it looked as if it was sticking out a little more than normal.  When I considered everything I was eating, there was wheat in most of it.  I took wheat out temporarily (just a couple of weeks) and then I reduced the amount I was eating.  I still eat wheat, but much less than I did previously and I am more aware of when the inside of my mouth starts to hurt a little and then I stop eating wheat, sugar, and dairy for a few days.  It has been about five years since I’ve done this and it has made a 100% difference in my health and happiness (and in those who had to deal with me while I was in pain!).  Although I am still working on a perfect scenario, my body is happiest and healthiest when eating mostly veggies, organic meats and soups, and green drinks.  Not very exciting I know, I am still a work in progress.  I am still dancing with finding recipes for health and for taste; one step forward, two steps back.  But the old sayings are true “You are what you eat” and “Food is medicine.”  Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go make my green lemonade!

*please see “Ode To An Aching Body” in my May 2010 archives which discusses what else I did to help my body get healthier and stronger and stop aching.  For me, I think too much wheat and canker sores/mouth sores leading to the flu-like achiness was a huge factor in the constant achiness in my body that sounds reminiscent of the beginning of symptoms of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Update: 06/11/2011

I am also wondering if systemic candida yeast in the body system gets fed by wheat, dairy, sugar, etc. and that is also another potential factor in having canker sores/mouth sores.  Pau d’arco tea can help and herbal capsules for candida yeast can help.  There are many brands to try–I kept trying herbal capsules until I found one that worked for me.  I honestly cannot tell you the last time I had a canker/mouth sore and I am someone who got them one after another.

Addendum:  02/18/2012

Yesterday my doctor told me in a surprised voice that a blood test showed that I had a slight allergy to wheat.  Hmmm…

***Addendum:  10/12/2012

I noticed yesterday (well I’ve noticed it over the past couple years but was in denial–with corn chips, corn tortillas, popcorn (sigh), corn on the cob, etc.) that popcorn makes my tongue swell a little bit too (like the wheat does) and of course I ended up chomping down on the side of my tongue and cutting it–ugh!  I know what that means 😦  and having all of that additional sugar with the candy and soda with the popcorn won’t do me any favors either.  I do take probiotic capsules and my husband told me a few months back that he’d heard L-lysine helps canker/mouth sores heal faster.  I’ve experimented on myself and I think it does make a slight difference in increasing the healing time.  Something you can research more if it interests you.  I do not know that much about L-lysine.

Update:  10/18/2012

I also immediately started taking a couple chewable probiotics, specifically one I found in the refrigerated section of the health food store called Udo’s Choice Super 5 Lozenge Probiotic.  I have been taking a couple of them at a time a few times a day when I think about it and I think it has helped a lot.  Yesterday I wanted to die I hurt so bad–the inside of my mouth and my body ached like the flu and I felt like I had a low grade fever, you know where you just want to huddle in fetal position in your bed.  I also took an Airborne tablet in water.  I feel amazingly better today.  I started taking the chewable probiotics last Sunday or Monday, so it’s been four or five days.  I have the cut on my tongue where I bit it and on each side of my cheeks where the popcorn and candy inflamed my cheeks and I bit and cut the insides of my cheeks way in the back.  So I will be taking out corn, sugar, dairy, wheat, soy, nuts/seeds, grains, etc. etc. and loading up my plates with organic vegetables and meats for a while until I figure out more.  (I think that grains is my next big step of things to take out because I’ve never been successful at it.)

Update:  03/07/2014

I found a link that discusses L-lysine and people writing about their experiences and how taking it helps heal canker sores and to take it to prevent them.  I prefer capsules (with the powder inside).  I think that capsules work better than tablets.  I haven’t looked too much into L-lysine and just usually took two capsules a day when I had a canker sore (usually spread out over a couple hours) and hadn’t noticed information before about taking L-lysine on an empty stomach.  Again, do your own research and talk to your own doctor.

******Update:  4/25/2018******

I found out in 7/2017 that I have one of the two celiac genes.  I was going through an integrative nutrition health coaching program to find out my last things I couldn’t figure out health-wise so that I could feel even better and to pass it on and help others and because of what I learned I asked my doctor to order the HLA DQ2 and HLA DQ8 blood gene test for celiac.  I had previously been told I didn’t have celiac from the antibody IgA test but I hadn’t been eating gluten and wasn’t going to start.  This could possibly change your life because it means you are not crazy.  Many people who have these genes don’t have an issue unless they are triggered by stress, a disease, etc.  I now know that I must stay away from gluten and really by doing that you and I will AVOID “aphthous ulcers”–yes! that means canker sores and we know that the best way to deal with them is to NEVER have them.  EVER.  EVER AGAIN. NEVER.

*Please note if you think you might have celiac talk to your doctor and go get tested before you take the wheat out!

Namaste and many blessings***

and may beautiful joyful health find you 🙂  I truly wish that for you!

❤ cory***  🙂



4 thoughts on “For me (and you?): No wheat=no canker sores/mouth sores

    • the lotus seed journals says:

      Hi Shakti,

      I would just try it–cutting down on wheat or substituting and replacing wheat products with rice, etc. for a couple days or a week or two if you’re feeling up to it. Maybe it won’t make much of a difference. My doctor just told me in a surprised voice yesterday that my blood test showed a slight allergy to wheat. So who knows. I just go by how I feel. Good luck to you and may you and your loved ones enjoy perfect health. Namaste and many blessings!***


  1. nedekcir says:

    I found your site while searching for mouth sore/canker sore. I can eat minimal amount of wheat a day (2 slices of bread). Anything more than that I get sore mouth. I guess L-Lysine is working for you because there is no more update after that. I will try it myself. I will try gluten free flour too and see if wheat was the problem.

    • the lotus seed journals says:

      I have realized for me not all wheat products are the same so I try to stay away from all of it. Maybe that will change in the future–I hope so! I noticed with pizza a few years ago, I could have one slice of one type and be okay, but immediately regret eating only a few bites of another type because it would cause my mouth to swell just subtly and I would end up biting my cheek or tongue or poking my mouth with the pizza crust and end up with a canker sore. I have also had this happen with gluten-free things so I’m thinking it’s also a preservative or additive that is affecting me. I’m trying to eat as fresh and clean as possible with whole meals so I know what ingredients are going into them and then I don’t want to snack which is where I run into problems because I would prefer the cookies sometimes. I also think that healing the gut is an important aspect for me at this time. And as much as I get tired of it, I think soup is brilliant. The L-lysine does help me. I am not a health practitioner so you would have to talk to you doctor or naturopath about your own needs but I take usually one 500mg capsule in the morning and one in the evening and sometimes one in the afternoon–usually I take the extra afternoon one when I’ve been under more stress (mentally, emotionally or physically).

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