Anyone who reads, ‘The Stranger In My Head,’ will discover that I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism this past April. After nearly three months on a low dose of Synthroid, with little to no improvement in my symptoms, the doctor doubled it last week.
She also thought that my going on a gluten-free diet would be a good idea. I had done some research and found that gluten sensitivity, or Celiac’s Disease, is often a problem for those with hypothyroidism. I’m fairly sure that mine is just a sensitivity issue. And I know if I don’t limit starchy foods, I tend to get a carb crash within a short time of eating. So yeah, I figured a gluten-free diet couldn’t hurt. And could help. A lot.
Except I didn’t want to do it.
I mean who really wants to change their whole diet? No more breads? No more pastas? Who cares that I don’t eat much of either one of those things? Tell me I can’t have them and I start feeling deprived immediately. Even though I hadn’t even stopped eating them yet, I imagined years and years of insatiable cravings for the foods I could no longer enjoy.
Now usually when I’m about to embark on a lifestyle change, I will start Googling everything there is to be Googled on the subject. But not the whole gluten-free thing. It took me about three days to dig deep within myself to find the maturity I needed to start acting like a responsible adult. Until I finally sat down and spent some quality time with Google.
And then I went to a garden market and bought a truckload of fruits and vegetables, along with some gluten-free flours they carry in their specialty department.
Fruits and vegetables…
Now it’s not that I don’t like good for you foods. It’s more that the things that are good for you aren’t the things that taste the best. Things such as macaroni and cheese, chocolate chip cookies, or brownies. I don’t even eat those foods on a regular basis. But when I want them, I really want them! And you know what? An apple is not a satisfying substitute for a walnut filled brownie. Or a gooey bowl of pasta shells and cheese.
So I returned home with my huge bag of greens, oranges and yellows, figuring that my life was about to get very depressing. Meat and produce… Oh goodie.
Gluten-free was such a boring thought that I didn’t even want to eat today (maturity went back into hiding, I’m afraid). If I couldn’t eat…something with gluten, then I didn’t want to eat anything at all. Yeah, I know, that wouldn’t work very long term. And it didn’t. So I finally sucked it up and had a banana.
And it wasn’t too bad. Of course that could have been because I’d put off eating so long that the sole of a shoe might have tasted pretty good by that point. But supper was really good, too. Baked potatoes are gluten free…Yay! I’d rather have a baked potato than pasta any day.
So back to Google I went. Maybe it was time to put in some honest, open-minded research. Get a little beyond the basic food lists and see what else was available out there.
Apparently, as long as I don’t mind baking (and I don’t), there are some fairly good substitutes for many of the foods I enjoy. Not everything, of course. I’m going to really miss my homemade yeast breads and pizza dough (unless I fall off the gluten-free wagon sometimes, and I probably will). I’ll also be really bummed if I can’t find a decent dumpling recipe to have with my stew.
But I will get over it. Because you know what? Having good health is important to me. Once I get past the, “I can’t have this anymore?” stage, and I’m working on getting past it in a hurry, I’ll be fine. I didn’t think there was ever a chance I’d get to that place, but now I am 100% confident that I will. I am important.
It doesn’t hurt to have discovered that Dairy Queen soft serve is also gluten free…