Did you know that Cheerios are gluten-free? The day I found this out was a spectacular day in my world.
Have I always had issues with gluten intolerance? I honestly do not know. Here is what I DO know:
My entire life, I have had stomach issues. I have had pain in the abdominal area since I was a small child. (too small to be mentally manifesting an illness so that I could jump on a bandwagon and claim to have celiac)
The point is, my stomach hurt. A lot. It was debilitating. One time, I was convinced my appendix had ruptured. My mother picked me up from a friend’s house (where I was rolling on the floor in pain) and took me to see a doctor. Unfortunately, the doctor laughed off my pain and told me that I had gas. GAS. Well, that was great to know, but I was still in a lot of pain.
There wasn’t much to do, and this was 1989. No one was talking about probiotics, celiac, gluten, Evil Grains, etc. I remember wanting to cry at the first twinge of a gas pain. Once it started, my day was pretty much done. It would start somewhere in my gut, and slowly evolve into sharp, shooting pains that would force me to lay flat on my back. Walking around was not an option. Hanging out and being social was not an option. Living a normal life with sharp pains pulsating throughout my body was not an option.
I thought I was doomed to live a life with chronic pain in my guts. It wasn’t until my 30’s that I began to think that nutrition might be the issue. I started with probiotics- maybe there was bad stuff in my intestines. I switched to soy milk- maybe I was lactose intolerant. I became a vegetarian-maybe all the red meat was causing me to block up inside. Basically, I began eliminating all sorts of things from my diet to see what would happen.
Not much happened. I would have brief periods of relief and get my hopes up thinking I had found a solution.
About four years ago, I began to explore this whole GLUTEN FREE movement. I didn’t totally understand it, and I felt kind of silly jumping on another bandwagon. I am one of those people who gets highly annoyed when people bombard you with a cause. I didn’t want to bombard anyone with MY cause…I just wanted to feel some relief.
So I embraced the gluten-free diet. I accepted the eye rolls from friends and bread lovers. I asked for those embarrassing special menus at restaurants. I stopped drinking soy milk. The difference was quick and pretty amazing.
- I lost weight!
- I was no longer bloated
- I WAS NO LONGER IN PAIN!!!
- It’s fairly easy to do
- Gluten free doesn’t have to suck.
Here’s the deal: Gluten Free is not hard to do. The hardest part is giving up bread. Give it two weeks. If you are like me, and you have experienced pain your entire life,