Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Before & After Gluten-Free

How's that for a before & after? ;) 

The photo on the left was me at 19 years old - six years before I went gluten-free. My heart was constantly racing, I would wake up with a swollen face, nose, and eyes every day, and I was constantly moody, depressed, and exhausted. Doctors wanted to treat me with anti-depressants, corticosteriods for swelling, numerous antibiotics, diuretics, and sleeping pills. After two sinus surgeries which did nothing to help my symptoms, I began to take matters into my own hands. I started to see a connection with what I was eating and how I was feeling. To make a VERY long story short (a six year long story to be exact), by age 25 it hit me.... "I can't eat bread..." and within a few months I was finally diagnosed with gluten-intolerance / Celiac.

The photo on the right is me now at age 32. I've never felt better! The past seven years have been a long process of learning how to do gluten-free the RIGHT way - living mostly on veggies, fruit, and grass-fed meats. (Paleo works best for me!) I've been in the process of healing my gut with Glutamine, digestive enzymes, probiotics, and the right vitamins and minerals. I had testing done for additional food allergies from ALCAT and have cut out tree nuts and tuna now, too. I've learned to love and appreciate nutrition more than ever before. It's been an uphill battle, and I'm still not 100% there yet......but as I look at myself 13 years ago - I can see how far I've come, and know I'm not ever going back!

If you just don't feel right - give Gluten-Free a try! If your doctors are not giving you clear-cut answers as to the causes of your issues - start looking at how you are eating. I truly believe food has everything to do with our health. 
 Gluten-Free WORKS! It really does ;) You can take my word for it!

Have a fabulous Gluten-Free LIFE! I know I will! And LIKE my Facebook page to get the "scoop" on a happy & healthy Gluten-Free Lifestyle. 

♥ Christie


Anonymous said...

Wow! Congratulations, you look fabulous and so healthy, and as young as you did at 19. Just started on GF, so glad I finally know what's been causing my bloated face and eyes. Will post again in a few weeks.

Christie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hello - thanks for sharing your before and after, it was an interesting read.

Even in my 20's I had no apparent health problems from gluten - I would occasionally get a bit puffy eyes if I ate a lot of pizza or drank beer, and the skin on my fingers sometimes was a bit flaky in spots but nothing major.

However when I entered my late 30's I developed:
- burning indigestion (that could only be controlled with Nexium)
- aching feet when I got up in the morning
- fuzzy vision
- noticeably pale complexion
- puffy face
- pot belly

My indigestions was kept under control with Nexium which cost $60/month.

When I hit 40, I started to experience occasional aching around the heart, which was a bit scary.

Anyway, I tried all sorts of dietary changes, but still had the same reoccurring problems.

One day, I came across an article on gluten intolerance, and noticed I had many of the "Celiac symptoms" listed. Yet I felt resistance towards the idea of cutting out gluten, as I had been indoctrinated with the idea that grains such as wheat were highly beneficial, even necessary!

Finally I decided to try going 100% gluten-free. So, I made sure that every single piece of food that went into my mouth had NO gluten. For example, If I went out for sushi, I would ask if there was wheat in the soy or miso soup and so on. If went out for dinner I explained very carefully to the waiter that I could only eat food on the menu that had no gluten. At home I replaced bread with rice.

In two weeks of following a gluten-free diet, all of the symptoms, yes ALL of the above 6 problems completely disappeared.

The big thing I noticed within a few days was an increase in energy. Curiously, I also stopped having cravings for late night snacks.

In eight weeks my pot belly halved in size,

Today I have no pot belly and my energy levels and ability to focus are outstanding!

Going gluten-free has been the best decision I have made in the last two years.

All I can say is, if you suffer from indigestion (GERD), give a gluten-free diet a go and see if that fixes the problem - it certainly worked for me.

I hope this kind of online sharing will be of help to others.