New Year, New You: Resolutions and Cheating
This month’s article may be the most important yet! I was distressed to read Nancy Lapid’s article (http://celiacdisease.about.com/od/theglutenfreediet/a/Resolutions.htm) on cheating. In the six years and two months since I have been diagnosed with Celiac disease, I can honestly say that I have never consciously “cheated” on my gluten free diet. Not once. I become so violently ill when I haphazardly ingest gluten, it has never even occurred to me to “cheat”, so upon reading Ms. Lapid’s article, I was shocked to realize that this is not necessarily common practice and so, I must appeal to you and yours.
Being gluten free is never easy, but as each year passes, awareness increases and more and more options become available, from dining out to pasta and pastry alternatives, it does get easier. I’ll be the first to admit that there are certain foods I miss: I mourn the loss of butter croissants and the texture of WonderBread, but mostly, the ability to just go out with friends and not have to interrogate the waiter/chef/poor innocent soul trying to feed us. However, as much as I miss my former lifestyle, I have never “cheated”, never intentionally deviated from a gluten free diet. It is just never worth it. If you are gluten intolerant, being gluten free is a lifetime commitment: even if you don’t have an immediate reaction, you know that there is still significant damage being done to your body with long-term implications. As college students, our personal success is inextricably linked to our health and as students who are gluten intolerant, we must be proactive and vigilant. This means sticking to the diet, not being lazy about double-checking with restaurants and servers, and taking the necessary supplements. So this year, make your number one priority diet and lifestyle compliance.
If you have any questions, comments or ideas of your own - let me know! Feel free to contact me at this link.
- Kelsey Ganes, University of Washington student