May is Celiac Awareness monthI couldn't be happier to tell you all about it.
I was diagnosed with Celiac's disease in March of 2010. It was shortly after my sister had been diagnosed which is what prompted me to get tested. We shared the same physical troubles, I figured it was likely we shared the same diagnoses.
I had been bothered by digestive issues most of my life. Add to that the skin rashes, headaches, joint aches, fatigue, depression, iron deficiency, and weight issues, I was looking for what I needed to change.
Imagine my relief when, instead of remaining diagnosed with numerous diseases or disorders, it was all connected to Celiac disease. My blood work came back off the charts. I went gluten free that moment.
I know that going "gluten free" has become the new fad, but part of the reason for that is finally people can be diagnosed easier. Prior to the blood test, a person had to go through a biopsy of the intestine. This was not a simple procedure and to be tested one usually had to have been hospitalized with no other explanation available.
To have a blood test to tell you there is something wrong and you aren't crazy, that is life changing.
Within 3 months, I had lost 25lbs. While some people cannot maintain their weight prior to diagnosis, my body saved the gluten it could not process as fat. Lucky me! (Although, it may have been that I couldn't eat any of my standby food - KD, burgers, etc.)
The first year of diagnosis, I ate healthier but had more difficulty eating out. Restaurants had nothing for me. I had more lettuce with "plain chicken breast" than I could count. It was good for me, but depressing.
The biggest problem was if I got someone who really didn't understand, I got really really sick.
Now that gluten free has become more well-known and a bit of a fad, it's easier to eat out. Most restaurants have an understanding and a protocol to handle things so I don't get sick.
Now I have myself on track. My stomach has never been happier. I don't have so many of the symptoms I had prior to going gluten free. My diagnosis changed my life and for the better. Now I want everyone to get tested just in case.
Seriously, I'm like a newly married person who feels the need to set up all my single friends. Except I'm trying to break up all my friends in relationships with gluten.
Okay, so it's nothing like that.
The point is: not even for all the bread in the world would I ever go back. I'm healthier and happier.
Even without donuts.
Want more information on Celiac Disease? Check out these sites!
Canadian Celiac Association http://www.celiac.ca
Celiac Central Organization - The Gluten Free diet
America Celiac Disease http://www.celiac.com
Gluten Free Living - A Basic Diet