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March 3, 2021

I Have a Love Hate Relationship With Gluten, Sugar and Dairy

I have a love-hate relationship with gluten, sugar and dairy. I love it, it hates me. It has taken me until this week to shake the cravings from all the holiday goodies. Most years, I don’t miss a beat during the holidays. I might have a treat or two but I’m right back on track. My general approach is that it’s just not worth how I’ll feel afterwards.This year felt like a huge milestone and I was feeling so grateful for a clean bill of health. So I gave myself permission to live out my fantasies. Sorry to bore you but most of them involved sprinkles and cream cheese. I indulged on every level but anything to excess. Yet the results were the same. I was like a drug addict in recovery. Cravings haunted me and leftovers taunted me.
so here it is, the middle of January and I’m just starting to feel like I have myself back in check.
I have reconciled my issue with gluten. I thought somehow I could outsmart my body, but not so much. I’m not sure when it happened, but my somewhere along the way my body has become gluten “reactive” which essentially means intolerant. I was strictly GF for almost 6 months about 2 years ago after blood work proved to be pointing in that direction. I felt great and it wasn’t all that much fun. But I’ve resigned myself to making it work now .
I have a genuine love affair with baking (v.) and baked goods. Its a hard wired “feel good” for me. My mom was an amazing baker. She baked birthday cupcakes, baked bread, we made salt water taffy, and caramels at the holidays. A large part of my warm and fuzzy childhood memories wrap around “goodies” and “feel good”. I am challenging myself to eat foods that don’t trigger a sweet tooth and that is my current situation. I had it on lock for years and years, until I didn’t.
Nobody NEEDS dairy and I just can’t live with how it comes to my cracker, or bread, or pizza crust. This is the area I am now navigating. For years, I was a vegetarian, but my body needs meat. I have decided to figure out a way to manage my love of pizza as it relates to toppings. I used to order a pie without cheese but that’s not always an option. I have grown to love a cheese board when entertaining and many desserts incorporate dairy.
My mind still tries to play tricks with me. I had talked myself into a chicken wrap tonight. Yes, you’re right, the wrap is gluten and FUN FACT, gluten stays in your body for up to 3 months. You’ll be happy to know I have a yellow fin tuna salad on its way from Delivery Dudes. My kitchen is on strike right now.
Having said that, I watched someone reel in a fish yesterday on the pier, and I was horrified. Alan said,” You love sushi, don’t you?” and I knew he was on the mark. I eat fish often and that is how it gets from the sea, to me.
I find myself examining my choices more than I have been in recent months; 2021? Is this the year I conquer this demon? I’m looking for greens, dark colors, and foods that sustain me. I can be extremely satisfied eating this way and I have, but I have to reacquire the taste. I hope you all are doing what your body needs and listening when it tells you something isn’t working. That could be fatigue, indigestion, or a variety of other symptoms.
I was a vegetarian for years and years, gave up most dairy years ago and now I’m wrestling with the principle of what tweaks I can make and which I can’t yet. Just a little food for thought as most of you sit down to your dinner table.
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Cathy Rosenberg  |  Contribution: 37,855