Gluten Free Diet Benefits

Soooo . . . . I’ve been hiding a little secret from you guys.

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I’ve been Gluten Free for 23 days!

 

If you been reading some of my food lately, you probably knew that was coming.  Truth is, I really didn’t want to announce on the blog that I was doing a trial elimination.  For some reason posting about what I am GOING to do is like a kiss of death.  I needed to do it on my own time.

If you read my popular post introducing gluten, you would know that there are many benefits to eliminating the protein to see if you have any sensitivity to it.  I wanted to give it a shot because I was extremely curious and have become borderline passionate about it in such a short time. To break down my experience a bit, ill do another Q&A type post.

 

Was It Hard To Give Up?

Im a bread lover and I just don’t feel complete without a carb in my meal, so I was expecting it to be torture and to give up after the first day.  Which is why I found it strange that I didn’t crave wheat products much at all.  One reason I think I felt ok was that my body was actually absorbing nutrients properly without gluten to weigh it down.  When your body is nourished you don’t end up craving quick fixes.  I also feel like I had a little help from within on this one.  I think that its something I was meant to do therefore my essential self made it possible to keep going.  Sounds strange, but its how I feel.

One thing that was kind of hard is eating out at restaurants.  Sandwiches are out of the question as well as bread baskets and pizza.  I did ok, however I was itching to give up after being served a basket of buttery naan at the Indian restaurant. The good thing is that you can almost always have a salad which ends up being a good choice that you can feel good about!

 

What Differences Did You Notice?

Lots! 

My skin feels more clear and smooth. 

My digestion has improved tenfold.

My body is craving healthy foods more frequently. 

My energy has increased. 

I feel lighter & bloat less. 

I have an overall more clear & clean feeling. 

I didn’t get tired as easy.

I’m more in tune with how food affects me.

 

Did You Have To Buy Special Food Products?

Technically, I didn’t have to but buying certain things made this journey a bit easier.  I bought some cornbread mix, all purpose GF flour and brown rice bread to tide me over.  The GF breads and baked goods come out more dry and dense so it didn’t take long before I was satisfied with one serving. There are plenty of options out there. Even though more expensive it may be worth it to you if you find that your body runs better without gluten. Other than that, naturally GF foods are a plenty and luckily most of them are more health supportive already.

 

Did You Make Any Mistakes?

Yep.  But first let me stress that they were unintentional mistakes. There was no “eh, maybe ill just have a little bit today”.  I had half a beer, an accidental bite of crust in pastry class and had corn chips fried in oil that wheat products were fried in and also ate oats that weren’t specifically gluten free.  I will say that after the crust bite and one time after eating oats, my stomach was NOT happy and I was instantly put in a bad mood. The plan was to stay away from OBVIOUS gluten, not so much nitpick at the little things. Sometimes those little things bothered me and sometimes they didn’t.

 

Do You Plan To Stay Gluten Free?  Why?

Yeah!  I don’t see a reason NOT to after all of the positive changes that are going on.  There may be an occasion where I eat a meal with gluten but for the most part, the feeling of all the above is more addicting then having something with gluten.  I also really like the challenge.  I like the hunt of a GF meal at a restaurant or being able to experiment in the kitchen with new grains.  I kind of like having the label too and not in the obsessive way that it may have turned into once upon a time.  I think this change is helping me to become more in tune with health in general and it makes me a better candidate to help people with their issues. In fact I have my first health talk about gluten in the works!

 

So What Should I Do If I Want To Eliminate Gluten?

Again, I recommend doing as much research as you can before deciding to go for it.  It wont hurt you to cut out gluten but you should be in it for the right reasons (ie: not to lose weight).  I also just want to say that I learned that you cant expect to see how gluten affects your body if you don’t COMPLETELY eliminate it. You cant have it one day and not another, at least at first. Look at it this way, your body is sent to work digesting a big project (gluten) so all of the OTHER nutrients you ate with the meal are processed differently or at different times which doesn’t allow you to get the full effect of how your body works without it. Other than that, there are plenty of resources in books or online on the subject.  I also recommend reading this post by Christie.

 

I plan to do more posts on the subject including updates and great recipes. I also invite anyone to email me about any questions they have or about any help they might need val@balancingval.com .

 

Have you ever eliminated gluten before?  What changes did you notice?

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2 Responses to Gluten Free Diet Benefits

  • Maureen says:

    i can’t believe you have been holding out on me! Get your butt over here and do that demonstration and support me with going gluten free. I am ready! Let’s plan a food shopping trip together…Trader Joes or Whole Foods! My joints, my energy level, i’m blotted(sp?) LOL. Just a mess! Help! Hang with me! Be my buddy! School will finally be done tomorrow I can’t wait! Time to work on me!

  • McKella says:

    Congratulations on doing something that makes you feel so good! I have absolutely no problem with gluten (and I have the blood test results to prove it) I ate a piece of ‘zeke toast while I read this, but this is similar to my experience with dairy. I feel so much better without it, physically and emotionally, so even though I really miss pizza, Fage and cheesecake, I’ll stay dairy-free as long as my body needs to because I love the way I feel.