Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Rebecca's Last Balancing Act: Was It a Success or Failure?

November marks the end of the Gluten Free Health Challenge. Rebecca is sharing one final reflection post today, after being a part of the challenge for six months. Please stop and leave a comment for her, or join us in our Gluten-Free Facebook Group. - Iris-

Was it a success or failure? 

When I started this gluten-free journey, I had five goals:
  • Lose 10 pounds for my wedding.
  • Stop having yeast infections.
  • Stop having headaches.
  • Cook more. 
  • Take better general care of myself. 
Weight - Totally lost the 10 pounds. And then, after the wedding, totally found them again. So, gluten-free eating can be just as calorie-laden as gluten eating. No magical cure. But...

Infections - Totally working!!! Haven't had a single one since (mostly) removing gluten and dairy from my diet! Ironically, I did get a UTI, but, AND HERE IS THE AMAZING PART, thanks to my new diet and probiotics (which came along as part of the take-better-care-of-me portion), I didn't get a yeast infection after taking the antibiotics for the UTI. That is the FIRST time in my life I haven't dealt with a yeast infection after curing a UTI. Happy dance!

Headaches - MUCH reduced. And the ones I've gotten, well, they've been mostly after overindulgences. ;) 

Cook more - GIANT success! This week, I made the most delicious shrimp curry soup (yum!) and also delicious asparagus risotto. Who knew risotto could be made without dairy? (I didn't.) And it was so good that I plan to make it again in two nights. Last week, I made a butternut squash curry soup. OH SO GOOD! And I made a veggie and kale soup. SUPER TASTY! I wouldn't say I am at ease in the kitchen yet, but I've made serious progress. Not everything is amazing. The yam enchiladas in pomegranate sauce sounded so promising, but were not really worth the effort. But the main thing is that I am finding that gluten and dairy free cooking isn't so hard after a while, though the learning curve is hard at first. How do you make the same twelve ingredients take on different textures and flavors? 

Dairy-Free Asparagus Risotto

By the way, when I say I am not at ease in the kitchen yet, here is what I mean. Shrimp Curry Soup is REALLY EASY. That is IF you don't cook the prawns first and then peel and devein them. Duh. Live and learn. Actually, re-learn, because 15 years ago, I knew that. Oh well. I was kind of pissed at myself while it was happening, turning a 15 minute meal into a 45 minute meal, but luckily it tasted so good that it was worth the extra effort. 

General Care - Really good advances. I dabbled in acupuncture (amazing), chiropractic (effective but freaky), and of course, hypnotherapy with our amazing, Iris Higgins. I learned so much about myself through these adventures, and am learning to create time to be quiet and time to just be. A long way to go, but a good tool box is growing. Damian and I walk together, I occasionally get out to the parks and woods, we go dancing, and we're eating most of our dinners at the dinner table instead of in front of the TV. 

So while I didn't keep away those annoying ten pounds, I call this a successful journey. I've learned that gluten and dairy have a detrimental effect on my general health, I've grown more comfortable in the kitchen, I've started my new marriage with healthier habits, and I have a foundation for staying healthy long into the future. 

What a blessing this has been, and what a gift Iris gave to each of us. 



Delicious Alternatives said...

Way to go Rebecca!

Dorothy said...

Rebecca, it was so good to meet you during this challenge, and to get to know you better through your posts. So much happened in your life during these 6 months. I'm glad for all the good things you (we) learned along the way. I think you are an AWESOME person and hopefully we can keep in touch (another Flying Apron?). I hope you and Damian have a wonderful life together. Dorothy


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