So, I was having symptoms associated with my gluten allergies as early as fifteen years old.. however I just thought everyone felt sort of tired and shitty after they ate big meals, randomly sore, fatigued randomly throughout the day and so forth... When I was in my early twenties I noticed things getting really nasty with my physical health, but because not eating gluten was a fad and I am the anti-christ of all fads and trends (especially as a know-it-all 20 year old in college) I denied that it could be my reality and ate all the bread I could get my hands on as a big F you to everyone who asked for or advocated "gluten free" anything. Surprise, surprise, April was only screwing herself by acting this way (that's generally how it always ends) Anyway, I am really glad I am not so delusional and insensitive anymore.
Fast forward five or so years, I am getting more sick, more tired, more eczema outbreaks, more allergic reactions, more muscle fatigue, poor sleeping habits, worse eating habits and I haven't changed a thing... maybe I should.. seems like my life depends on it at this point.
Initially I had some friends turn me onto the Paleo diet, which boasts NO GLUTEN + NO PRESERVATIVES (among other things) I have never been one for diets, because I just like to eat a lot and often and was never told there was anything wrong with the way I eat or my nutrition. However, I was intrigued because of the promise of more energy and less fatigue when the diet was adopted properly. I wanted way more energy, better moods and less physical pain. Note: I also did not take part in any physical activity during this time other than bar hopping, flirting and cramming for accounting exams.
I tried the Paleo for a few months and it really worked for me. It became a bit unsustainable because (I decided) my financial and career situation didn't really allow any space for anything out of the ordinary in any realm of life... however when I reintroduced some of the non-paleo items back into my diet, I was able to better see how they affected me.
After not having a slice of pizza for about three months, I was so anxious and excited to get my face all up in a dollar slice from a two bros. in NYC, I got three slices (they're only a dollar a slice and three is still a minimal amount of pizza for me to ingest in one sitting) and I ate all of them pretty quickly, but shortly after I could not believe what I felt...
My body was all tingly, my head rushed with sensations I've never felt before, I almost felt high, or like I was at the dentist about to be knocked out, I felt my eyes go to half-mast and I felt like I was floating for the better part of the day after that. I couldn't believe it, I was almost entirely not functioning and seeing double because I ate... pizza. This SUCKS.
Anyway, my stubborn ass still took months to reckon with the fact that my allergy to this trendy thing was only getting worse, but (again I decided) my financial situation didn't allow me to have many gluten free options so I just skipped on the very obvious ones, the sides of bread, pasta and pizza... sometimes when I could take it, but it still wasn't enough, the difference was pretty stark the more I decided to be a bit more conscious and a bit less stubborn about how I was fueling my body.
From there I was able to gauge my body also does not do well with sugar, alcohol or grease of any kind and that I need to stick with a pretty strict diet and lots of exercise in order to feel "normal." For someone who has been in love with food and overall physical laziness since I left the womb, these have been difficult adjustments... but long overdue and absolutely worth every moment of anguish I've endured to finally feel better.
I always used to think, "I am lucky that I am the way I am, I don't need to change much, a little slip up here and there isn't so bad...I don't need to exercise, doctor says I don't need to..." and so on, however improvements to lead a better, healthier and more mindful life are available to all of us and when I do a little better by me, I am able to do a little better by you, too.
Just because you can manage doesn't mean you can't learn to manage a little bit better.
It's worth it.
MY FAV GLUTEN FREE PRODUCTS/SITES