After years of fertility struggles, a Hashimoto's diagnosis, MTHFR Homozygous C677T (aka the mother fucker gene) diagnosis, and constantly feeling like the human embodiment of trash I figured the least I could do is cut out gluten.
Gluten causes inflammation and reducing or cutting it out completely can increase energy levels, enhance athletic performance, lessen depression, improve fertility, and clear your skin. So why not cut it out? Honestly, I have a love for baked goods and did not realize how many products contain small traces of gluten. It took my forever to finally pull the trigger and give up all the foods I crave, but interestingly enough I crave them so much less now!
Added sugars are so addictive! I still find myself craving sugar, but that craving is not sufficed by yogurt or fruit instead of chocolate and pastries. Honestly, the cupcakes in my fridge have been there for almost a week now, which might be a record for me.
My diet consists of a lot of rice, organic meats, local produce, and an occasional processed item like a granola bar if I am working back to back shifts and need a snack for the road.
The only sugar in my diet is the small amount we add to our gluten free pancakes. Or the sugary Jeni's splendid ice cream I am eating a scoop of every day... It really is helping me cope with all of this. Occasional comfort foods are still okay, right??
Overall, cutting out gluten has led me to eating a much more balanced diet.
I credit the balanced diet and lessened inflammation from going gluten-free for my improved energy levels.
Honestly, it feels too early to tell if my depression has improved, but I can say that the first two weeks coming off of sugar made me extremely irritable and mean.
My skin seems to be going through the intense breakout and clearing period. I am finally starting to see things clear up and I am hoping that it lasts and I can credit the gluten-free diet.
I feel slightly less fatigue, but is that going gluten-free or my new Tega Cay Coffee Co addiction? We may never know...
And for fertility, I can't say either. I am not trying to conceive, but after years of fertility issues I think some of the credit to a healthy pregnancy can go to this diet if I do have luck when I begin trying.
Overall, I am feeling pretty happy with my decision to cut out gluten. I think it has encouraged me to just eat better overall, and it allows me to practice a bit of self discipline.
Processed foods that do not have gluten tend to have other nasty additives which has led me to have to cook from scratch often. I am thankful for the push because I honestly do love to cook! This also means more meals together. Instead of eating a quick ready to go thingy, instead I cook a meal and eat with my partner when he gets home. Or I eat and leave him leftovers if I have a night shift. I feel slightly more like a team when we are sharing food and having dinners together.
And I think maybe it makes up for the fact that I acted like the Hulk around him during the first bit of this gluten detox...?
Jess is a full spectrum birth and postpartum doula and a newborn care specialist. She has been working with newborns for nearly 9 years.