Cutting out gluten and dairy?? Here’s 5 things I wish someone had told me…
1. You need to buy more Tupperware.
(a) Batch Cooking: Eating out and picking up takeaways is now going to be a bit of a pain so batch cooking will be your new best friend. A freezer full of coeliac-safe homemade ready meals will come in handy when your family are picking up Chinese.
(b) Storing all the New Products: As soon as you’re diagnosed with coeliac disease or decide you’re cutting out gluten and dairy, you’re forced to reaaaally look at everything you’re eating… so naturally, you start experimenting more. Loads of extra containers will come in handy for storing the 295 different flours & dried fruits you’ve purchased and 5,732 different spice mixes you’ve concocted. Who knew!
2. You’re about to become a Boy/Girl Scout.
“Always be prepared”. Whether it’s spontaneous trips to Paris or just going to work, you’re going to need all the essential food items packed for the moment when the hunger pain strikes and there’s no GF DF goodies in the vicinity. Not got much room in your handbag? Sacrifice the lippy and the hairbrush for Nakd bar and an apple, trust me!
3. You don’t need to buy EVERYTHING you “can” eat.
I saw someone on Facebook group the other day saying they’d bought a gluten free chocolate cake… they didn’t like chocolate or cake but they “could have it” so had to try. The experimental phase of trying everything on offer straight after your diagnosis is all well and good, but after a few months, its time to return to normal food! Not just because of your wallet & waistline, but also because all of this extra food probably isn’t going to help your bloating.
(a) The riskiest place: the “free from” aisle – extortionately priced & full of processed food. BUT you feel like you have to buy one of everything because its “your section”. If you didn’t eat a loaf of bread a week before you diagnosis, you don’t need to be buying it now! Same goes for the weekly purchase of a chocolate gateau.
(b) The riskiest time: Snacking. I totally understand the impulsive need to eat when you can after you’ve first been diagnosed, because youre not sure if the restaurant you’re going to later will be safe. But for me that meant I was snacking 194,582 times a day, “just incase” and still eating 3 regular meals because, infact, most places I went to did cater for me after all. So do this…
Need some help tackling the supermarket – read this!
4. The most useful one. Call ahead.
Restaurants seem to be a lot more receptive if you give them notice. Warm gf bread will be waiting, the waitress will have found out what you can have (so you haven’t had to put her on the spot or got the “erm yeah I think so” in response to is it gluten free) and you’ll have more confidence that you’re not about to be poisoned! Winning all round.
5. The honest one. You won’t feel instantly better.
Going ‘gluten free’ doesn’t mean an instant cure. The bloating will still be there. You might still feel sick and tired every now and again. And you’re going to think … “I was better off when I was having gluten”.
I’m still in this phase with you, but I’ve sought the advice of my nutritionist, doctor and fellow instagrammers and it seems we’ll all get there, we just need to give ourselves time.