Let me start with saying I love eating bread and pasta and everything alike. Also, this text contains a lot of the G word.
Spongy, glutenous dough, especially in combination with sugar and butter, used to be my ABSOLUTE COMFORT. I never thought I will want to get rid of it from my life. I mean, what is life worth without bread and butter? Actually every time someone asked me what's my favourite food (and that happened a lot once someone learns I am a chef) my reply was always the same - can you guess what it was?
Yes. Bread + Butter = My Big Eternal Love
The problem I had with gluten free (GF) products available commercially is that they almost always are packaged in plastic, have the addition of sugar and additives, or ingredients I could not even read easily. I really did not see a way here for me. I’d much rather eat a whole food, traditional sour bread, with gluten, then ultra processed meal, gluten free.
All has changed a few months ago, when I decided to eliminate it from my diet, along with refined sugar and dairy, just out of curiosity. I asked myself, what will it do for me? How will I feel afterwards? After all, making recommendations such as these to my patients, I wanted to step on a solid ground, knowing what I talk about.
This change correlated with gaining more and more information coming from various scientific sources, about what gluten actually does to my body, and especially to my precious guts. When I began viewing gluten as a sort of a weapon, just tearing down the intestines each time it is ingested, as well as sparking up inflammatory response in many places in the body, boy did my perspective start to shift.
Feeling increasingly better, lighter, less fatigued, while letting my creativity run free in the kitchen, playing with naturally gluten-free flours and natural sweeteners, and actually I developed a lot of great recipes in this time. I also found that the artisanal bakery in my city takes orders for sourdough GF bread made from buckwheat and corn flour, and found a recipe for Life Changing Bread with all nuts and seeds that is ultra delicious!
If I can eat pancakes, and bread, and cookies and cakes, while sticking to my whole-food, additive-free requirement, it can’t be that bad, can it?
So, this apprehension turned into… super power! I had a challenge, and I stood up to it. I managed to make the most out of it, all the time feeling better and better, definitely not feeling like I am depriving myself of something. Actually, I feel proud, saying ‘I don’t eat gluten’. It’s like I know something others don’t. I do it because I so deeply care about myself. It’s a self-love thing, really.
Less energy spent on digesting this hard protein = more energy to do what I am passionate about.
Less inflammatory response = less pain, less water retention (aka weight loss), and quicker reaction to potential pathogens.
Less intestinal damage = better life quality (it all starts with the gut!)
And yes, I have my moments. On a special occasion, I still sometimes do eat bread. I know it doesn’t serve me, but I see it as a process of letting go.
Change takes time! You are allowed to crave, doubt, give in sometimes.
And that’s all good.
Yet actually, after each time I eat it, it becomes more and more clear to me, that this is not the way. My tummy aches, I become irritable, and tired. And I know my response isn’t even that bad! Slowly but surely, the reward is greater than the risk.
And you? What are you willing to do for your wellbeing?