Monday, July 25, 2011

Balancing My Weight Gluten Free–Trifecta of Trouble

 

Miss the first post in this series? Recap here!

A year after going gluten free, I became really uncomfortable with the weight I had gained. I knew I ate mostly healthy, but something must have changed. I was carrying an additional 30 pounds on my 5 foot 4 frame.

It was tough because health wise, I was feeling the best I had ever felt. My migraines were gone, and so was my diarrhea! But at the same time, I didn’t feel like myself. I had gone up two pants sizes over the course of a winter, and I began to feel depressed. I just wasn’t comfortable in my own skin.

Thankfully, writing this blog and reading others, gave me the inspiration and the focus I needed to take control. I sat down and made a plan. First I was going to keep a food journal for a month. It was tough, but worth it! I wrote down everything. Even handfuls here and there.

And I noticed a pattern. There were three MAJOR issues that I found, each sabotaging my health separately and together. I call them: The Gluten Free Trifecta of Trouble.

The troublemakers: Gluten Free Substitute Nutritional Landmines, Food Insecurity, Deprivation = Treats

Let’s start with the most obvious saboteur:

Trifecta

It’s pretty simple. I felt like I was already losing so much, by giving up gluten, that I felt like I deserved treats. And while everyone does deserve a treat once in a while, I began OVER-TREATING myself with empty carb gluten free foods.

Gluten Free cookies, brownies, and cakes. I would justify a bigger portion than I needed. Gluten Free pasta was easy enough to cook, so I would make indulgent bowls with rich cheese and smoky bacon.

My treats fed in to the next saboteur:

Trifecta

SO many of the gluten free substitutes I was eating (and overeating) were made with white rice and assorted starches. Refined to the max and processed – losing out on much of the fiber found in brown rice. And everything was high on the glycemic index – not good for blood sugar.

And let’s not forget the CARBS! Carbs, Carbs, Carbs.

While your body needs carbs for energy, not all carbs are created equally. Complex carbs coming from whole grains and fruits and vegetables are WAY better than their refined counterparts. You could see the simple carbs my body was storing all over my mid-section!

The last saboteur ties right in with the previous two:

Trifecta

In the first few months of going gluten free, I found myself in situations where I was hungry but there was nothing I could eat. I remember being at a wedding where there was literally NOT ONE thing I could eat. But I thought I handled that well. I had OVEREATEN at lunch, just in case there was nothing at the reception for me.

It didn’t help that in my first few months I was constantly starving. ALL. THE. TIME. hungry. So I started overeating. I lost sight of portion sizes. If I found something I could eat, that’s what I would do: EAT. It’s hard to understand the logic, but I literally felt like I needed to eat whenever I could because I didn’t want to get stranded without any GF foods.

I was overeating, over treating, processed gluten free substitutes.

Next post: I’ve identified the issues…and now the solutions!

Do any of these saboteurs sounds familiar?

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