Living and Thriving Gluten Free

Healthy & Whole Food Eating

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This is part of a beginner series. To see the others, click here.

You've just been told you need to go 100% gluten free. You likely have been told you have Celiac Disease, Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity, or Gluten Intolerance. That sucks. You've just been sent for a loop. This just isn't fair. "Why me?"

Gluten free beginner mindset banner over peppers on a table
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What now? What does gluten free even mean?

Stop... take a big deep breath... exhale slowly... relax. Though this might not be easy, you can do this.

But don't go rushing off to the store quite yet looking for all the latest gluten free products. Before you do that, you first have to come to grips with the fact that you can never eat gluten again. Let me repeat that... you can never eat gluten again. Never.

Ouch! This sucks, doesn't it?

It's okay to be mad. It's okay to feel like your old life is gone. It's okay to wish you could just go back to the old days when you could eat whatever you wanted and think nothing of it. Those days are gone. Get mad. Scream. Shout. Cry.

It would be great if everyone had the willpower to just power on through, and cut out gluten right this minute. Not everyone can do that. Give yourself some time. Though not too much. There's a real, critical reason to get gluten gone.

So, get mad, get angry... and move on.

Your focus needs to be on the future, and not the past. If you stay in the past it will only make you miserable, depressed and bitter. Not to mention terribly sick.

So, you can't have gluten. And? The reality is... it could be much worse. Gluten free is a doable thing. There are a lot of worse diseases where nothing can be done... You can do this.

You need to take on this challenge mentally. It's vital to succeed at going gluten free. When you get it into your head that you CAN do this, it gives you an immediate boost to your self confidence. And that confidence can be used in all areas of your life.

For the coming weeks and months, focus on training your head. Focus on getting the attitude that you will succeed. You're thinking WILL eventually shift from "I can't eat that" to "I don't want to eat that."

When you get there, you're well on the way to succeeding at this gluten free life.

Here's some things to try to help get your head wrapped around this new lifestyle from a "mind" perspective.

Don't beat yourself up. You will make mistakes going forward, and you need to be kind to yourself. There's a lot of info to learn, and sometimes if just takes time to put all the pieces together, and make all the connections. Remind yourself that today you know more than you did yesterday, and tomorrow you'll know more than you do today.

Keep your meals simple at the start. Rather than loading up on all the packaged food that's gluten free, stick with simple foods. Meat, fruit, vegetables. This will speed up your healing, and reduce the stress in hunting for exact alternatives to gluten. Most packaged gluten free food is very unhealthy, and loaded with fake ingredients. When you eat that kind of junk, it prevents you from healing, makes you continue to feel bad, and feeling bad will simply stress you out.

Have some fun. Make time every day to enjoy yourself, and laugh. It can be as simple as meeting with a friend over a cup of coffee. Or playing with your kids. Or having "game night." Or watching a movie with your spouse and kids. Or going for a manicure. Whatever it is, make time for it, no matter what.

Find a local in person support group. If you don't know where to look, find a city directory, and see what you can find. Or you can even ask as some health food stores. When you find some local people it can REALLY help in being able to truly vent and know that they'll know EXACTLY how you feel. It can also allow you to have the opportunity to socialize and maybe even be able to eat outside of your home for the first while, since you won't know which restaurants you can safely eat at.

Have some regular chit chats with your family. Keep them informed on what you're doing, and they can become your advocates. Even small children can be a help and a positive influence when they're included. Even if you don't necessarily share all the medical details, you can share the lifestyle adjustments, such as special food for you, or the need for them to wash their hands after eating cookies, etc. When you start finding good recipes, include them in the process, and you may find it easier to reduce the need for quite as much gluten in the house.

This is part of a beginner series. To see the others, click here.

Here's some resources to help with some head learning and stress reduction:

Gluten Dude - Do Not Live in Fear

Mayo Clinic - Change your mind to grow

The Center for Mind-Body Medicine - 5 Ways to Relieve Stress

Thora Toft

FREE Guide
10 Steps to Healthy Gluten Free Eating
GF 10 Steps Guide
The 10 Step Guide is packed full of tips, tricks, recipes and regular Member only tips to get you started on the road to living healthy without gluten.
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Thank you for sharing, well presented and helpful

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I'm glad to hear it was helpful!

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