Friday, February 6, 2015

For The Sake Of My Health: Going Gluten Free

Prior to September 17th, I guzzled, on average, one bottle of pepto each week. I had a stomach ache three or four days of every week. And, every month or so, I would have a "flare up" deeming me essentially useless and confined to my bed. This coming from someone who is accustomed to being so healthy, I don't even have a General Practitioner.  WTH?  (My sentiments exactly, although I might have used the letter 'F' more than once or twice).

Since February, I have seen three doctors and had full panels of blood drawn. All to be told there is nothing wrong with me. But, there was! I knew it. Until I found out what it was, I wasn't willing to give up. Thankfully, I did not have to search past a fourth (naturalistic doctor). Someone who finally listened to me and took a different approach to discover the culprit: gluten.

Normally, we write about parenting here, and I get it, this is not nearly as exciting as say, potty training stories. But, this is important stuff. Feeling like I felt, there was no way I was being the best Momma I could be to Baba. I just felt so dreadful. All the time. And, I can safely, gratefully and confidently say that I have not felt better in almost three years.

Backing up: what is gluten? Gluten is a protein composite found in several types of grain; mainly wheat, rye, barley and spelt. (Yeah, not sure I even know what spelt is...)

What's the thing about gluten? The thing is this, and it's simple: It's the only nature-based substance we put into our bodies that we cannot fully digest. Did you catch that? We can't actually digest gluten all the way and so it sits in our guts. And, often times it leaks out - into our blood stream. OK, enough about that.

Going without gluten does no harm whatsoever. There is no benefit to gluten that cannot be found elsewhere in our diet. So eliminating it made perfect sense. But, full confession here: I was super skeptical. I didn't want to hop on another fad bandwagon.

I'm not skeptical anymore. Coincidentally (or not), my last stomach ache was exactly 144 days ago.  (Yes, I am counting.  It's that big of a deal.)  In those 144 days, I have more energy than before I got pregnant. I sleep better than I have in at least three years. My hair is looking shinier than I can recall it ever looking. And, my skin has cleared considerably - with my crow's feet looking shallower than that time when I was 20.

Some people have no issue with gluten. It does not negatively impact them at all. And, if that's you, good on ya. If you're anything like me, and wonder why you're constantly feeling like you ate a balloon, you're not alone. Take 30 days and eliminate gluten. When you add it back in (if you even want to, you might be feeling so good!), watch for your body's reaction.

I couldn't be happier in my decision and rest easy in the fact that I listened to my body and made clear changes that have positively impacted not only my physical state, but also my emotional and mental well-being. Add my ability to parent Baba like she deserves and it's a home-run to me!

Please and Thank You.

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