05 June 2011

Going Gluten Free!

It all started about 4 months ago. I had an allergic reaction... a pretty bad one. It took about a month to recover and 4 different prescription medications.

I have no idea what I reacted to. Was it something I ate? Was it something environmental? Was it a combination of things? I really don't know.

It takes months to get in to see a specialist here. I have been on a waiting list since the beginning of March to see an allergist and have an appointment June 7. I tried to get the date moved up but apparently they only do that for cardiology patients.

In the mean time I have been trying to figure out what I am reacting to on my own. This has included things like going on a rice diet and introducing foods again one at a time.

One of the big things I found out? Gluten is so not my friend. Here's the thing, once you cut things out and try them again you really notice the reaction. What I found was if I eat breads I get bloated and feel like my head is in a cloud. I really find it impossible to focus on anything.

It got to a point I was afraid to eat. I have actually uttered the words, "I'm giving up food." Constantly feeling sick and dealing with my throat being itchy... it didn't feel worth it. Of course I can't really give up food, but I can pay attention to what is making me sick.

My mom has a lot of food allergies. So many that I think the list of food she can eat is shorter than what she can't. Close to 20 years ago she had really extensive allergy testing and it showed she can't have red meat, dairy, gluten, carrots, corn and the list goes on. I hate to say it but my body seems to be following suit. I already know I can't eat red meats, gluten or corn.

The thought of a drastic change in diet was really overwhelming to me. Aside from the cost, the thought of preparing two separate meals (one for me one for the kids) just seemed like too much! I remember trying my moms rice bread as a teenager and how dry it was, I didn't want to sacrifice the ease of toast or a sandwich. I can't possibly give up baking!

Then today I went to the grocery store. I found a rice bread mix, and thought the $12.00 price tag could be worth it and decided to give it a try. (It seems 1 loaf of rice bread is about $5.00 so if I could get 3 loaves out of it it would pay for itself) I was skeptical I won't lie. But much to my surprise it was both easy to make and tasted just fine! It wasn't dry at all, and it didn't crumble all to pieces on me either!

It gave me a sense that it is possible to go gluten free, and it's not going to be as hard as it was for my mother 19 years ago. Not only are there more products available now but there are even support groups like celiac.com

I can't actually give up all glutens just yet because it seems you need to be eating it in order to test for Celiac or Gluten Intolerance. At least I have hope now that it can be done

1 comment:

gluten said...

Can you really trust the 'gluten free' label on a product? From what I understand these things are not that heavily regulated, especially with foods produce outside of the country. I've picked up quite a few products only to later find traces of gluten.

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