Pic of the day - What Being Gluten-free Means to Me
After being ill, seriously or less so, but all the time since shortly
after 9/11 (yes, 01, *that* 9/11), I started trying to go gluten-free
last summer. I haven't gotten it quite right yet. Having quite a few
problems with contamination, and occasional flareups, but overall,
it's been an incredible experience. I regularly tell people, "Going
gluten-free has to be the best thing I've ever done for myself!" Here
are some of the reasons why.
I'm not accidentally biting my tongue and cheek all the time. Ow.
I'm not thirsty all the time.
I can walk up and down stairs without hurting. I can even carry my
computer bag while doing it!
My knees and hips don't hurt as much. No swelling. None. I even made
it down to the floor, scrubbing, and back up again, by myself last
weekend. It wasn't easy, but hey, I did it!
I'm no longer taking 3 or 4 naps each weekend. This means I'm getting
a LOT more accomplished!
I'm not struggling to stay awake on the bus coming home from work.
That means I don't miss my stop. ;) And have to walk back.
I sleep better. All through the night most of the time. I sleep less,
and am better rested.
I come home from a day at work and cook dinner. Smiling!
I hardly ever get hives. No more crazy mad itching! No more scabs!
(Well, I wish, but I get enough contamination, that this still happens
more than I'd like. It is much better, though!)
I've hardly been sick, for months! All kinds of things going around at
the office, everyone else seems to be sick. I keep expecting to get
sick, but so far, knock on wood, I'm doing pretty good. When I have
gotten sick, it's short. A weekend. That's it. (Now just watch me come
down with some dread illness in the next week or two!)
When I walk places, I'm not being passed by EVERYONE! Sometimes I even
pass someone else.
I don't feel older than Moses watching my 85-year-old friend prance
around the choir loft at church.
I'm not dizzy. And I've stopped taking my dizziness meds. I haven't
had a chance yet, but I think I could probably dance again!
I'm much happier. Not just feeling better, but actually less sad, less
depressed, more cheerful. Ridiculously cheerful.
I'm less anxious, also, and don't feel as stressed. Basically, I feel
more positive and hopeful.
Food is tastier. Yummmmm. :)
I'm more satisfied by the food I eat, so I'm not as hungry. That means
I eat less. That means I'm losing weight. Oh! Wow!
Because I'm not as badly vitamin deficient as I was, I'm not
constantly craving foods, especially not craving liver.
Because I'm moving more and faster, I'm getting more done. Being more
productive means I'm not as far behind and I'm not playing catch-up as
much. I have more time to do the things I love.
Because I'm healthier and happier I'm more fun to be around. That
means my social life is better.
I heal faster. If I bruised myself before it usually took months to
heal. Six months was not at all unusual. Longer, even.
I come home from a day at work and may actually clean house for a
while before I make dinner. Both cooking and cleaning! In one day!
After working!!! Whooh-hoooh!!!
The house gleams. In multiple rooms. That hasn't happened in over a decade!
My stomach doesn't seem to make as much acid, so burping, belching,
GERD are relatively rare events. I cut my GERD meds back from twice a
day to twice a week. Maybe in another year none?
There are more health problems I had that are getting better, but you
get the idea. The gluten-free idea all started trying to find a
solution for my skin problems of about a decade. I wasn't expecting
most of these benefits. They are a surprise, a gift.
Most important of all, though, is that my mind is sharp and clear.
Before, I'd been forgetting things. I was struggling to get by at
work. It was scaring me so much I brought it up with my doctor. But
the memory problems didn't match anything obviously diagnosable. So we
were watching it, establishing a baseline. All those things you do
when you are trying to figure out what's wrong. And it turned out to
be the gluten. I can think again. I remember so much more. I can make
a plan, keep it in mind, and follow it through. My mind is clear. What
Oh, the other thing going gluten-free means to me? Quinoa. Lots and
lots of quinoa. :) Mmmm, love it!