Thursday, July 21, 2011

Balancing My Weight Gluten Free–Young Years

 

I have been wanting to write a post about my struggle with weight and living gluten free, for a long time! And when I finally sat down at the computer with the intention of knocking it out, I realized that this is so much more than one post!

So I’m going to write a series of posts – Balancing My Weight Gluten Free, where I’ll talk about my own personal thoughts, issues, tricks, etc. And hopefully we can create a dialogue through the comments section. What has your experience been?

What better place to start than the beginning?

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Well, maybe not that long ago. Let’s start with middle school, where my fashion sense really started to blossom:

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mmmm yeah. That ‘Thing 1. Thing 2.’ shirt is aging me isn’t it? Yep. It was 1995…and I promise it was in.

But as you can see from the pictures above, I pretty much grew up skinny. Not model thin, more like lanky – all legs – knees and elbows.

I grew up in a small town in South Carolina, without fast food…or restaurants actually. There was one diner, Pittman’s Country Kitchen, and it was your basic greasy spoon. My mom cooked all our meals, and while they were tasty, they were definitely FILLED with gluten. While I didn’t know it at the time, my thin figure, raging migraines, and constipation, could have all been symptoms of Celiac Disease.

But at the same time, we didn’t sit around on our butts either! We only had three TV channels (nope. no My So Called Life for me) so we played outside all day. We also didn’t have any soda unless it was a special occasion, so we were spared that sugar.

In 1996, we moved to North Carolina and to another small town. But this town had a few fast food joints – movin’ on up! But I still pretty much ate from home. I played tennis

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and danced

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and my lanky figure slowly developed muscles. Teeny tiny ones. I ate what I want and never thought about the fat, calories, or carbs. I was oblivious to anything regarding food, other than taste.

After high school it was off to college and a BIG city – to me. I know most folks would say Wilmington, NC is a pretty small town BUT it was HUUUUGE to me. And in regards to food, there were so much at my fingertips. I would say that I embraced fast food with my whole stomach!

My first year I was filling in a size 0-1 and by my fourth year, I was filling out a size 6-8 but at the same time, I was growing up. I was gaining some hips and a booty, but I was still completely in the dark about what I was eating. Healthy to me was a salad with ranch and a ton of cheddar cheese.

Reality Check needed.

Luckily I began working at a food co-op that focused on local, healthy, organic foods! There was a lot of information and I was a sponge! The more I learned about food, the more I paid attention to what I ate. I became more in touch with my body and I realized that sometimes after I ate I felt sick and bloated. I was convinced I was lactose intolerant but try as I might, I couldn’t stay away from cheese. My constipation took a 180 and I couldn’t stay out of the bathroom! I had to plan my day around diarrhea.

Fast Forward to a traumatic event and then a few months later, my Celiac diagnosis.

Six months after my diagnosis, I found myself with an EXTRA 30 pounds on my frame. And unfortunately, I had a realization that in my life I had never had to try to lose weight or even maintain.

I was clueless.

NEXT POST: The Gluten Free TRIFECTA that caused my weight gain!

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I created a new Gluten Hates Me header!!

AND

It’s coming….

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GHM is contributing and there are some other great gluten free items too!