I lived nineteen blissful years of my life before being told I shouldn’t eat gluten any more. I think it’s worse because I know what life with gluten tastes like. You don’t have to pre-think every meal or outing, you don’t have to ask every waiter or waitress for a gluten-free menu; in short, life in regards to food is simple.
Now, my doctor told me to stop eating gluten as a way to alleviate symptoms of my suspected endometriosis, and for that, I am thankful. I noticed a definite change in the way my body reacted to what I believed was a necessary amount of wheat – I’m sure my mother would contest me on this. I felt healthier and didn’t look four months pregnant every time I ate something wheat based. So there are definite plus sides to the whole gluten-free thing. But I must say, having been with and without gluten, there are definitely two sides to the flour covered coin.
For example, everything has a tendency to be a bit dry. Sure, everyone loves a crunch to their food, but let me tell you, life without gluten is more of a snap. Everything tends to fall to pieces because there isn’t any gluten to bind it all together – something I feel like I used to take for granted. All in all, it tastes like a bite of the Sahara – people may cringe at the word, but moist is something that gluten-free food is not. I learnt this the hard way on my 20th birthday when I experienced the delights of a gluten-free birthday cake for the first time. Let me tell you, it is not a party.
However, there are also benefits to living a flour-free lifestyle. Such as, on airplane flights they bring the gluten-free food out first; so you get to watch and enjoy your rice and sad vegetables as others wait longingly for their wheat-filled food. Many more places nowadays are becoming gluten-free and adding to their menu, so you get the benefit of trying out new places that you maybe wouldn’t have visited if you had still eaten gluten. Of course, there are times when I just crave a donut and there’s nothing I can do, or I see how quick it is to whip up a dinner that doesn’t need to be directed five different ways to avoid gluten, but why live life ordinarily when I can avoid the thing that makes my body hate itself and try some exciting new stuff on the way. Plus, have you tried gluten-free brownies? SO. GOOD.
To summarise this brief foray into the life of a gluten-free person, when it seems like life is handing you a dry, wheat-less lemon, explore and find out all the different ways your life could be just as tasty without it! There’s always a unique gluten-free alternative to take!