Although I don’t have celiac disease, I’ve long thought that my body doesn’t respond all that well to gluten. I especially noticed feeling sluggish and bloated after eating foods like shredded wheat cereal. But the idea of going gluten-free was overwhelming – I love cookies, cake, bread and pasta, and I didn’t want to live without them.
But a little over a week ago, I decided to give it a try. I’ve been feeling more sluggish and bloated than usual, and am hoping that going gluten-free will help.
I haven’t missed wheat products as much as I thought I would – I don’t crave bread, I can live without cookies and cake, and I don’t feel deprived since I can still have gluten-free sweets and chips. It helps that I don’t have to be super diligent about it – it’s not a true allergy or intolerance, so I’m not religiously reading labels for gluten the way I do for peanuts and tree nuts, which we have to be very careful about. Sometimes I forget and eat gluten without thinking – like the vanilla wafer I popped into my mouth the other day when my son declined it.
A nice side effect is that I’m eating more produce since I can’t eat bread or crackers. Instead of cheese with pita chips, I have cheese with apple slices. Instead of bolognese with pasta, I had bolognese with sauteed eggplant and steamed broccoli. I did find a fabulous gluten-free, nut-free granola brand called Enjoy Life. But I haven’t really been trying to replace gluten so much as trying to eat other foods instead.
I feel a little bit better, although it’s hard to say whether it’s from avoiding gluten. But it’s only been a week. I’m planning to re-evaluate at the end of the month and if it seems like it is or might be making a difference, I’ll continue going gluten-free through October. In the meantime, if you have any great recipes or ideas to make this experience more fun, I’d love to hear them. Thanks!