Jump to content
  • Sign Up

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

I was diagnosed with celiac just over two weeks ago... I'm almost 26 and have been acutely sick since September 2010, although I've had serious intermitten abdominal problems since I was 14 (so bad that I was given exploratory abdominal surgery in 2006). Even after JUST the first week of gluten-free and large doses of supplements from my ARPN I felt some improvement. Finally!

But... I am a bread-and-pasta-loving-girl. It is killing me on this diet. Last week after an exhausting day I came home (currently staying with my parents since I've been horribly sick since last September) and there was a waffle sitting on the kitchen table (leftovers from their dinner). I was tired, emotional, and fed up... I ate it, and went to bed feeling redeemed. But boy did I pay for it the next 3 days!!!

I've learned my lesson, now that I see what even one tiny "cheat" can do to my body. But I'm looking for quick coping skills from anyone who has found them. I don't expect my family to eliminate gluten from their house for me, but when I'm hungry and the only thing gluten-free that I can eat is eggs or Chex (which get old... kind of fast) it's hard to look at the other stuff. It also hasn't helped at all that I've been so sick I lost my job, and gluten-free food "off the shelf" is a little too pricey for me at the moment. :( Also, I travel a lot and I'm always on the go (even though this disease has flattened me, ugh), doctor's appointments and job searching and whatnot, and I'm really bad at remembering to take fruit or something with me when I leave. Anyone find a good way to remind yourself?

I'd say leave some food in the car but summer is coming up and I can't imagine food staying good to eat in the hot interior of a car sitting out in the sun. :(

I have relatives and friends who were diagnosed with diabetes and I asked them how they dealt with the sudden diet change. They all said pretty much the same thing, that they can eat just about anything AS LONG as they are super careful about portions and whatnot. Then they said they didn't think it was as hard as giving up gluten cold turkey. Not exactly the pep talk I was looking for, haha. At least we don't have to stick ourselves every day to check our sugar levels! (if I had to do that I'd be a sunk ship)

Sorry if I seem like I'm whining or being difficult. I want to do well at this, but I feel like I don't have the personal tools yet. I was getting ready to move in with my boyfriend when I got sick, and now it is being put off until I am feeling much better (unfortunately it was going on for so long I have permanent damage, but my ARPN says I will still heal tremendously). He's wonderful about it, totally supportive and proactive about buying gluten-free foods he knows I like to have them on hand at his place, but he lives in NY (and I'm in NH) so we are only together on weekends! During the week it seems is where I am fighitng my battles with myself.

Kudos to everyone who is managing this already... 2 weeks feels like an eternity. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed when I think about the rest of my life looming in front of me without my favorite foods. I know it's for the best, and I know I will continue to feel so much better as long as I am good about it. My mom says I'm just mourning the loss of my favorite foods... at first I thought that was silly but the more I thought about it the more it made sense to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's no getting around it, it IS hard at first, You have to develop a whole new way of living and a whole new set of habits. Right now you are still living under your old habits and that's what is making your life hard. Once you ingrain the new habits it will get a lot easier.

The first rule is that you always have gluten free food/snacks in your car and in your purse, so that if you are ever caught in gluten land or no-man's land, you have something to eat.

Second rule is to avoid temptation. I know it looks enticing, but you just have to think of the days of suffering that that one moment of weakness will cause you. Is it really worth it? NO!!!

Living in a house with gluten eaters is tough, because the potential for cross-contamination is so high. You really need your own cooking utensils and toaster and colander.

You don't have to go out and buy expensive gluten free processed foods. In fact it's better if you don't at first, with a few possible exceptions so you don't feel totally deprived. All fresh meat, fruits, vegatables, rice, gluten free pasta, eggs are naturally gluten free. You may want to skip the dairy products that contain lactose at first (milk, cream and ice cream especially) because if your gut is damaged you will not be able to digest those. Use the family crock pot, if you have one, and make yourself up some stews and soups and freeze portions that you can just pop in the microwave and heat up when you come home tired and ravenous.

Another friend for you is a little portable cooler that you can stick an ice pad in, and take along with you cheese, gluten free cold cuts and crackers, whatever rings your chimes. Just don't leave home without it now that summer is coming on especially. Larabars, if you have not discovered them, are great snacks, Nuts, dried fruits are also good to have with you at all times. You do have to think ahead but it will become second nature to you after a while. I guess I am lucky because I go shopping once a week since it's 45 minutes away, and I always make a check list of what I am doing and the things I need to take with me. You will form new habits and these things will become easy and ingrained after a while.

I do think it is wise to not move in with your boyfriend until you have learned yourself how to live gluten free, and can train him :)

Do not despair. There are hundreds of thousands of us doing it every day, and it does become second nature after a while. Just hang in there. And we are here to support you. Feel free to ask any questions you have.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, girlfriend...I hear you. I've been gluten-free for a year and a half...it's easy for me. I've never cheated. BUT...I bought cupcakes for my retreat buddies this past weekend, and let me tell you: it killed me! These were fresh-made, gourmet cupcakes from a private bakery. And I'm not even into cake! But the smell and appearance were devastating.

So I had ice cream, instead. ;)

There are some great gluten-free alternatives out there. And think about what you really like about bread and pasta. For me, it was the filling and sauce. So I eat burgers and sandwich fillings without the bun. I eat spaghetti sauce on shirataki noodles, spaghetti squash and zucchini. You can also buy gluten-free pasta (schar is the best, IMO). If you really love bread for simply bread, then check out The Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef and the Gluten-Free Goddess for great recipes. I make my own waffles, pancakes, etc. with Pamela's mix or gluten-free Bisquick. Yummy.

But your best bet is to make yourself a deal: no gluten-free pastas and bread for one month. Eat everything else. Try something new on a regular basis. Check out new recipes. It will help your taste buds to get acclimated. Now I don't know what gluten items taste like, because I haven't had them in so long. And try, when possible, to embrace this healthier eating. You know that diet everyone says they should be on? That desire to eat healthier because they know they should? Guess what? You are going to be doing it. You'll be able to give advice on how to do it, because you will be living it. And you WILL feel better. People are amazed by how I eat -- and I like eating this way! I love vegetables and fruits, meats and tofu. Because I'm off a lot of sugars and stay away from most carbs like gluten-free breads and pasta, the real, whole foods taste 100% better.

Hang in there. It does get easier. And you are entitled to whine and mourn the loss of one lifestyle. It takes time to adjust.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am terrible at planning ahead so at the beginning of the week I make little bags of snacks (ziploc sandwich sized bags) and keep them ready to grab as I walk out the door. I use the snack size bags to keep things separate.

So far, the best combination (keeps me full) is:

pretzels (Snyders makes gluten-free ones that are good and not expensive)

nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews, I buy them at Trader Joe's)

Laughing Cow light cheese (those round ones with the wax coating . . do not need to be kept cold)

dried friut (apricots, cranberries, plums . . . again, from Trader Joes)

If I get stuck somewhere at lunch time, this is enough to take care of it.

It really does get easier.

Cara

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with what mushroom said, and would add that when the time comes that you want gluten-free breads, making your own is far less costly than buying it ready-made. Plus it can be much healthier. If time is a limiting factor, you may want to consider a bread machine - one with a good reputation for making gluten-free breads. I cannot recommend one however, as I bake from scratch, but there are plenty of members here who use such devices. But as was already stated, it is best to stick with unprocessed foods as much as possible right now. Your body needs time to heal.

It does get easier over time. You'll get there!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are totally mourning the loss of those foods, which makes complete sense. I have been doing that the past couple weeks getting myself ready for a diagnosis. I was just telling my husband that the thought of never eating a food again is a hard thing to process, even if I don't eat it a lot now. For me even if I don't get a diagnosis next week I plan on trying gluten free to see if it will help me not feel so sick. To get myself prepared I have been researching and finding things I can still eat. I am a healthy eater already, but I do LOVE pasta and bread. Cake I can do without but I like cookies too. But the things that made me happy that I will still be able to have include:

fritos (original)

cheetos

tostitos (maybe with some salsa and cheese shredded cheddar)...or homemade quacamole and salsa

lays potato chips with homemade dips

reeses peanut butter cups

dove chocolate

icecream

cornbread (and chili)

ore ida tater tots

I am not a huge eater of all these things now...but I like them and excited about the chips for snacking if I start to starve. Good luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are totally mourning the loss of those foods, which makes complete sense. I have been doing that the past couple weeks getting myself ready for a diagnosis. I was just telling my husband that the thought of never eating a food again is a hard thing to process, even if I don't eat it a lot now. For me even if I don't get a diagnosis next week I plan on trying gluten free to see if it will help me not feel so sick. To get myself prepared I have been researching and finding things I can still eat. I am a healthy eater already, but I do LOVE pasta and bread. Cake I can do without but I like cookies too. But the things that made me happy that I will still be able to have include:

fritos (original)

cheetos

tostitos (maybe with some salsa and cheese shredded cheddar)...or homemade quacamole and salsa

lays potato chips with homemade dips

reeses peanut butter cups

dove chocolate

icecream

cornbread (and chili)

ore ida tater tots

I am not a huge eater of all these things now...but I like them and excited about the chips for snacking if I start to starve. Good luck!

Thank you so much for sharing this lists of snacks. I was starting to panic a little because I'm also new and I had no idea that I could eat these things! Now I'll know where to turn in a pinch when I'm starving at work :) Thanks!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

what worked best to remind me to take food with me when I'm out is forgetting to do so a few times and feeling like crap. works pretty well.

when you have an hour or two on a day, make something naturally gluten free that you can have leftovers from - lentil soup, stir fry, etc. then you just have to pull something out of the fridge.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just gone gluten free, and as I live alone and have always been a big cook (i was already on an unprocessed, whole-grain diet before the gluten-free one) it hasn't been a rough adjustment... I didn't eat junk food already. But here's some advice that my best friend (who is celiac) gave me (she's a doctor)

Because my friend is a hospitalist pediatrician she is always running around and on long shifts. So she keeps a box of Larabars in her locker and makes sure she has a couple in her labcoat pockets at all times. She cooks her meals for the whole week on her day off and freezes them, so that she never has to cook during the week. (Also she has retired parents who are big foodies and sometimes they do this for her to help her out.) She also buys her snacks in bulk over the internet (amazon is often cheaper than the store when you buy in bulk) and packages them up so that she can grab and go. And her partner has adjusted to the gluten-free lifestyle-- eating gluten-free at home, and only have gluten products when they go out to eat. She manages fine, and trust me, as a doctor who works insane shifts she knows about having no time.

See if there is a gluten-free bakery near you. Ask around- I found one in my city (San Antonio) and went in today-- They had amazing bread (not like the gluten-free bricks at the store), pie and cupcakes. Cupcakes!! I bought one. It is just good to know where you can get the gluten-free comfort food if you have a craving. I feel better already having found the bakery.

Also find people who are just generally supportive. I got lucky in that my best friend is and that my parents have been super supportive. My dad surfs the internet (he's retired) and sends me gluten-free recipes. Also I told a few select colleagues and they have been helpful too (they were the ones that gave me the info on the bakery and they aren't even gluten-free.)

best of luck- I have just gone gluten-free too, and am trying hard to just stay positive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
0

×