Just like tracking the growth of a baby, I am now upping my tracking unit from days to weeks. I have learned a lot in this short time! The best thing we've done as a family is do gluten-free dinners. The cross-contamination in a family of five can drive me nutty, so it's best for me to stick to gluten-free family meals. For breakfast and lunch, on most days, everyone picks their own things and the gluten-free isn't as much of an issue. I have also decided to try to have a designated spot in the kitchen where I prepare my food, if we are all eating different things.
I have contemplated having the whole family go gluten-free, but am realizing that it may not be necessary (yet). In the meantime, more of our ingredients are gluten-free, many recipes have been altered to be gluten-free, and some family members are better about cleaning up their bread crumbs 😊.
I'm progressing nicely, but still hitting bumps along the way. Last night I went to a Japanese steakhouse and thought I made great choices until it dawned on me this morning that imitation crabmeat has wheat in it as a binder. I also tried a bite of seaweed salad and enjoyed every flavor until I realized it had soy sauce in the dressing. The rice paper was a nice alternative to a traditional wonton type wrapper. At the very least, a hard cider to drink was a safe move in the area of alcoholic beverages.
This morning I not only ate one small pancake while cooking them, as I usually limit myself to. Rather I cooked the full recipe and sat down with my kids to enjoy pancakes, bacon, and fruit all together. I used Bob's Red Mill Gluten-free Pancake Mix and the kids couldn't tell the difference. I was impressed with the fluffiness and moistness of the pancakes.
Feeling confident in my flour substitutions, I opted to make brownies after dinner using Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-free flour. The taste was there, but they were a little fragile. The brownies were still a bit warm, so I am curious as to how they will be once cooled.
Here I am a week into this lifestyle change and hoping I am on the right track. In general my digestive system feels better, but I seem to be constantly finding gluten hidden in things I wouldn't think of. Yesterday's discovery happened while reading the ingredients to an Italian dressing packet. I wouldn't have guessed that it would have wheat in it.
Other learning curves are happening as I study labels, noticing where they clearly state "gluten free" and where I am left questioning the food. Most packages have the "CONTAINS:" area in which I check for it to say wheat. However, I realize that wheat isn't the only thing that has gluten.
My appointment today with a nutritionist had to be rescheduled due to unforeseen circumstances. I have the appointment rescheduled for next week and am looking forward to getting more education on this topic.
A couple of weeks ago I received confirmation of what I had suspected for quite some time... I have celiac disease. Feeling that wheat doesn't digest well is different then knowing that it doesn't digest well. The formal confirmation is still sinking in...
At first I was resistant and continued to eat wheat on occasion. I then became determined to give the gluten-free way of life a try in hopes that I would feel better. I then spent several days limiting my gluten intake all day to only crave and "treat" myself to something with gluten by the evening. It wasn't working and was feeling like a roller coaster. I finally dug my heals into my own cravings and knee I had to draw the line. Here I am on day two of gluten-free nourishment!
I feel nourished and haven't had any stomach cramping and bloating. I am craving all the things I shouldn't have like pizza, bagels, a sub...as expected. However, I somehow managed to spend an entire dinner watching four children eat two of my favorite foods, fresh pizza and subs, while I enjoyed a chef salad (no croutons, of course).
I think there's hope for this lifestyle change, but will need to be patient with myself. I look forward to feeling better and learning how to best nourish my body. I also look forward to passing on the information and experience to anyone who it may benefit.