It’s been just over a year since I stopped eating gluten. The original reason I made the switch from wheat based flour to rice based flour was an article about the ways in which gluten can negatively impact someone with a thyroid disorder – which is something I have. I’ll leave the details of my personal health issues aside, except to mention briefly that going gluten free also cleared up a rash I had on my arms. That’s a little irrelevant to most people, so I’ll focus more on the overall benefits that I have discovered instead. There are two big reasons why I’ve stuck with it for so long and why I won’t be switching back.
The first reason is that I feel healthier. I don’t feel as sluggish and I’ve lost weight. My metabolism has sped up and it feels great. I can eat all day and never feel bloated. Wheat is a filler food, in large quantities it can be really bad for you. Brooke is a great example too because while she still eats gluten, she eats a lot less of it than she used to. We buy gluten free pastas, breads, and flours. She still eats gluten when she brings something home from the restaurant, buys something like granola bars with wheat in them, or of course, when she drinks a beer. She’s living the happy-medium lifestyle and has also lost a lot of weight. It may be lacking specificity, but all I can say is that I really and truly do feel healthier. There’s a lot of science behind it, and you can read books like Wheat Belly to find out more. Really though, I encourage you to give it a try. Don’t eat gluten for just two weeks and you’ll start to feel better, I promise.
The second thing that I really love about being gluten free is something that I thought I would hate. I finally conceded to my parents’ urging me to try giving up gluten in February of 2013. I had just received a whole slew of baking supplies for Christmas including the America’s Test Kitchen Family Baking Cookbook and a brand new Fiestaware pie pan. I was so terrified that being gluten free would mean giving up baking. Or baking gross cardboard-ish deserts. Instead, I learned a lot. I started making my own flour blend and baking right from that book with it. Pie crusts turned out to be just as good gluten-free. Instead of baking less I started baking more because old favorites were new experiments. Almost everything turned out just as good and some things were even better. So if the fear of losing cookies, brownies, and pies is holding you back – you’ve lost your excuse. Remember how I said I lost a lot of weight? Well it certainly isn’t because I cut these things out, I eat them all the time. It’s the gluten guys.
Are you gluten free? I’d love to hear why! Leave a comment, share your story or fears or tell me why you’d never do it! I want to know!