It’s been more than a month since I adopted a GF lifestyle. Although it can take many months and even years for the body to adjust to such a change, I thought I’d post an update on my progress so far.
There have been some agonizing moments. I miss Chinese food and fried chicken and hearty sandwiches and crusty sourdough bread. Sometimes I sit around hungry because I can’t have the only thing that I’m hungry for. There was a family gathering a few weeks ago where I had nothing to eat but coleslaw (which I don’t even like) because everyone who was in charge of the food either didn’t know or forgot that I was GF now, so I went home crabby and famished. I’m tired of trying to figure out the best way to eat a bunless Five Guys burger, and bitter that I have to pay the same amount for it.
There have been some victories. The other day I made not only the best GF pizza crust I’ve ever had, but possibly the best pizza, full stop, that I’ve ever made. I successfully replicated my mom’s chocolate-cake recipe with a GF all-purpose flour mix that I put together based on Gluten-Free Girl’s mix. The GF pretzels at the nearest grocery store cost twice as much as regular store brand, but they taste better. I made Yorkshire puddings that tasted just like my old gluten recipe.
I’ve had to make unexpected adjustments. I’ve realized I’d been in the habit of feeling crappy because of gluten. I tried a GF naan recipe that was okay but, after eating it, I got inexplicably anxious. I was waiting for the stomachache, for the heartburn, for any other symptoms that would send me in a mad dash to the bathroom–a waiting that had become second nature. When the symptoms didn’t come, my brain didn’t know what to do; I almost psyched myself into a stomachache. I made dragon noodles with brown-rice pasta, expecting to feel discomfort from the spicy, buttery sauce, but all I felt was a burning tongue and a full belly. But that’s another weird thing: I don’t always feel as full anymore after a meal now–and I’m wondering if I have gotten so used to nausea and bloating after a meal that I mistook the feelings for satiety.
And physically? I feel better. I can’t say that I’ve felt less depressed, or more energetic, or that I’ve lost weight. My depression has been less severe, but that could be the change of seasons. I haven’t been sleeping well, but part of that has been daylight savings time. But digestion-wise, yes, there is a noticeable difference. It’s at the point where the prospect of eating a regular sandwich fills me with dread, however sorely I am tempted.
So there’s my update. The short version is that there have been a lot of difficult moments, but I am exploring and sometimes having fun, and it is worth the effort.