Moving! And Imported Gluten-Free Deliciousness (6e)

I moved! I went from a small one-bedroom in a run-down building with bad management and tenants who really enjoyed their weed and cigarettes, to a large one-bedroom in a high rise building that makes me feel fancy. I even have underground parking. As far as I’m concerned, I’ve really moved up in the world.

Why Move?

Problems with my oven were part of the reason why I decided to move (read about that here). I cook most of my own food since I’m too cheap to pay money at restaurants for food (I think) I could make better. Because of this, a broken oven didn’t work for me. Management wouldn’t fix it. They tried twice and didn’t really help either time but insisted they did (it’s a long, angry story).

So I went out on a hunt for a new apartment. I saw some pretty grungy, nasty, dark, dingy, way too expensive for what you get places. It horrified me to the point of seriously considering staying in my apartment. But, after two weeks, I raised my budget and kept looking. After just looking at two other places, I found the apartment I’m in now.

My new kitchen!

The best part? A huge kitchen with plenty of counter space and even a dishwasher. Since I use about as many dishes as a four person family in one day, this has made my life much easier.

The other cool part? A solarium. Basically a room with big sliding glass doors and floor to ceiling windows. My cat loves it. She likes to sit on the window ledge even though it’s too narrow for her, so half her body hangs off. She also enjoys running headfirst into my  bedroom closet, since the sliding doors are mirrors. It became our morning tradition. I made coffee in the kitchen, heard her meow, then BANG! She crashed into the mirror. I’m guessing she thought she had to take down that weird cat staring back at her.

After I took a few minutes to introduce my cat to her mirror-self, she now only crashes into the mirror about once a week.

It Couldn’t Be Done Without My Parents

Since my parents are awesome, they came to help me move. And not only did they drive eighteen hours across the United States and cross the border into Canada, my mom brought me some gluten-free goodness:

  • Gluten-free crackers (Glutino)
  • Two types of gluten-free all-purpose flour (Bob’s Red Mill and Arrow Mills)
  • Xanthan gum (Bob’s Red Mill) Fun fact: xanthan gum works with certain types of gluten-free flours to help replace the missing gluten. It is not necessary for every type of gluten-free flour, so check your flour bag to find out if you need to add it!
  • Gluten-free pizza crust mix (Bob’s Red Mill)
  • Gluten-free lasagna noodles made from brown rice
  • Gluten-free curly noodles and linguini made from quinoa
  • Gluten-free seasoning mix for chicken/meat
  • Five bags of my favourite gluten-free, no preservatives popcorn (Indiana)

YES! Some of this stuff I thought I couldn’t find in Canada, but as soon as she brought all of it, I went to the grocery store and saw an entire display with Bob’s Red Mill products. Then I went in another aisle and there was my favourite Indiana popcorn. Neither of these things had been in the grocery store a week before.

Coincidence? I’m not sure yet.

Packing

In two and a half days, we packed up my whole apartment. My dad and I took frequent breaks to play on my iPad and watch TV, while my mom persevered in packing and cleaning. My dad and I also decided to put my giant poster of The Titanic (yep, I’m a nerd for that part of history) into a real live frame. My way of framing the poster had been using tye-dye coloured duct tape to attach string to the back. Then I hooked the string onto a nail….and it fell in the first week.

In the process of putting the poster in the frame, we managed to put the poster in the frame the wrong way so it would hang upside down. It just shows that our minds were far too busy contemplating intelligent things to deal with mundane things like putting a poster in a frame.

Or we just weren’t paying attention.

Moving: Super Awesome Fun Times

On the morning of the move, I packed up my cat, who had a really awful morning, from making mad escapes from her carrier to being locked in my car for a couple hours, to being locked in my new bedroom, to being locked in the big storage closet in my new apartment. Sorry, Lena!

Then I loaded my car with my other valuables: my tv, laptop, iPad and school books. I once read a book where this family moved and the moving truck never showed up at their house – all their stuff was stolen! It has forever left me with paranoia towards movers and moving trucks. So that’s why I put my most expensive possessions in my car.

Another couple days passed with scrambling to unpack all my stuff, hang pictures (with the right side up) and lights (thanks, Dad!) and set up my new apartment to my liking. I have a gluten-free section in my kitchen cupboards now! Which is already being depleted….

My parents took off for home, and I started using my new kitchen. The oven works! The dishwasher works! I made an entire gluten-free cake (recipe here) a week after moving in. Life really just got better. More gluten-free recipes and experiments, here I come.

Need any packing tips or have your own moving stories to share? Let me know!

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Pets Can Be Gluten Intolerant Too! (5d)

I first learned about animal allergies to gluten last spring. I went to a presentation day for graduating university students at a local university in Minnesota. My friend, a biology major, had her presentation that day and wanted moral support. I sat there, hair unwashed and tired at nine a.m., to support my friend on her presentation. But the presentation before hers caught my attention.

This student, whose name I can’t remember now, talked about her time interning at a vet’s office. She showed some pretty nasty pictures of animals getting neutered/spayed, and one looked exactly like my tabby/calico cat and that freaked me out. I like to pretend that never happened to her. Then, the student got into her topic: dogs and food allergies.

Reggie

Reggie

What?? I don’t usually consider myself an ignorant person, but this was a whole area of knowledge that I had no idea about! I figured since my dog Reggie, eats trash, cat litter, crumbs off the kitchen floor, and anything else that smells good to him, he couldn’t have any allergies.

Turns out, as the student showed on handy graphs on her PowerPoint presentation, dogs can be allergic to a lot of things, like corn, rice, and most importantly, wheat.

That’s right people, some dogs have to eat gluten-free too.

“The overload of grain in most modern commercial pet diets is thought to deplete the animal’s natural state of good health over time, leaving him more susceptible to many health problems.”  –Pet Wave

The student listed out symptoms of these food allergies, including rashes, throwing up, and strange behavior. In the vet’s office, they constantly diagnosed dogs as having allergies to their food to explain the dog’s sickness.

So that kind of stayed in the back of my mind for a long time. Later that summer I diagnosed myself as being allergic to gluten. Then, when I moved away from home and back to my own apartment for university, I started seeing commercials for gluten-free pet food.

 

This isn’t product placement for Iams Naturals. In fact, I almost got my cat this food. Then I read the huge list of ingredients on the side of the bag. It did not list wheat, but one of the ingredients is barley. If you haven’t read my What Is Gluten? page, then I’ll just tell you: barley contains gluten. So Iams Healthy Naturals is not 100% gluten-free.  

You lied to me???

Okay, since I’m not all about making crazy claims and starting a war (since clearly Iams is going to read this …), it’s very likely Iams is just using a marketing ploy. They don’t add gluten. But if gluten is already in the ingredients they use, they’re not really lying. They didn’t purposely add gluten as a separate ingredient. It’s like how some companies say their drink is made from 100% juice. But wait! What they’re really saying is that the percentage of fruit juice they add is 100% juice. But the rest of it has wonderful high fructose corn syrup and chemicals. See how that works? It’s like a little white lie.

Anyways, I posted the commercial because I think it has an important point: dogs and cats are carnivores. If they’re out in the wild searching for food, they’re not going to nibble in a wheat field or on some corn. They’re gonna go for the meat! Even though I don’t think my cat has any allergies to food, I’m considering putting her on some natural no preservatives, no grain, and no fillers food. Well, depending on how much it costs. (Sorry, Lena.)

So why am I talking about all this? Well, it’s because gluten intolerance isn’t just a problem for us humans. Dogs and cats can have it too. So do Fido and Mr. Purrs-A-Lot a favour if they’re sick and find out if they’re allergic to any food.

Need some names of healthy, all-natural pet food? Well, just for you, here are a few brands (click the name to go to their website):

Wellness: They make pet food from all natural ingredients, and have the motto “Every ingredient has a purpose.” They offer grain free (gluten-free) food in both wet and dry formulas, for dogs and cats. They have a variety of diet options (for indoor/outdoor animals, weight control, sensitive skin, etc.).

Blue Buffalo: In the company’s words: “NO corn, wheat, dairy, soy, or eggs, no chicken or poultry by-product meals and, of course, no artificial ingredients of any kind” in any of their products. They make food for cats and dogs, wet and dry recipes.

Canidae Pet Foods: (only available in the USA) This company makes Canidae for dogs, and Felidae for cats. They offer grain free options and promise all their products are made from holistic, all-natural ingredients.

Holistic Select: Pet food made all-natural for digestive health. Offers wet/dry food for cats and dogs and has grain free options. From their site: “[Digestive Health Formula has] pre & probiotics, natural fiber, digestive enzymes and digestive botanical, along with healthy, natural ingredients like fruits & veggies, healthy proteins, whole grains and omega fatty acids.”

Gluten-Free Products: The Good, The Bad, The Meh (4d)

Let’s face it: great gluten-free food is rare. Since we all grew up eating wheat flour, anything made without it won’t be the same. But just for you, I’ve compiled this list of the best, worst and okay gluten-free products (in my very professional opinion).

I think if you take the approach of not comparing gluten-free products to their original counterparts, you might be pleasantly surprised.

The Good

  • All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour: So you can buy this in most grocery stores now. Lots of brands make it, but most should be good (I’ve tried a few different ones). Basically, it’s a combination of flours that aren’t made from wheat, like potato flour, rice flour, and cornstarch.

    Warning: This flour makes cookie dough taste like potatoes. But once cooked, it tastes normal!

The best part about this combination flour? It can be substituted in any recipe for wheat flour. Do you even realize the total awesomeness of this? I made brownies with this stuff and no one could tell the difference. I’ve also made gluten-free apple crumble with this flour, pizza crust, sugar cookies, and will soon try making a real, live cake with it. Best. Thing. Ever.

  • Gluten-Free Noodles: Most of these are actually made from rice, but check the label on the package to see what yours are made of. I’ve also tried noodles made from quinoa. They’re delicious and nutritious. If you don’t already know, quinoa is a sort-of grain. It has much higher protein and other healthy things than other grains, and is also naturally gluten-free.

    Gluten-free noodles are available in the gluten-free section in most grocery stores, and you can get spaghetti noodles, lasagna noodles, elbow noodles – almost anything. So guess what? You can still eat pasta. These noodles don’t really have as much taste as wheat noodles, but I think they’re perfectly good substitutes. Cover them in sauce and you won’t be able to tell the difference.

The Bad

  • Gluten-Free Granola Bars: Stay away from these! Have you heard about gluten-free food tasting like cardboard? Well here it is. It’s not even good cardboard. It’s like … cardboard that’s been sitting on the wet, dirty ground for weeks at the dump. Okay, maybe not that bad. But not worth eating.

I only tried one of these, made by Glutino*. But it was apple cinnamon flavoured – according to the package. The bar was dry, crumbly, and literally had no taste. Maybe a hint of cinnamon. I took one bite and threw it out. Maybe it was just the brand, but it totally turned me off from ever trying gluten-free bars again. If you’ve found a brand that’s actually delicious, let me know!

*Glutino actually makes other products that aren’t bad – try their crackers. Eat them with dip and they taste pretty normal!

  • Gluten-Free Hamburger Buns: All gluten-free bread might be bad, but I’ve only tried a hamburger bun when I was out at a restaurant. Bread is supposed to be fluffy and light, but this bun was dense and lacking flavour. It had texture like a pound cake, and overpowered the gluten-free veggie burger inside (which was actually quite tasty). Gluten-free bread and buns might be worth it for those of you who love bread and can’t live without it, but for me, I’m over it.Also with bread, Gluten-Free Croutons should be avoided, unless you really want some crunch in your salad. And I mean crunch. You could potentially break your teeth on these. They also lack flavour.
  • Gluten-Free Beer: Okay, so I really don’t drink beer. A sip here and there but really, I’m an amaretto sour kind of a girl. So here’s a review on gluten-free beer from my brother James, a beer specialist. He makes his own beer and has reviewed and rated 150 beers on Beer Advocate. Basically, he really knows what he’s talking about!

BEER: Nickel Brook Gluten Free (American Blonde Ale)

Aroma: Straight up aloe vera. A little off-putting.

Taste: The flavor follows closely with the smell; aloe vera. But, surprisingly, it’s not as bad as it sounds. I’ve never tasted sorghum before so I’m assuming that flavor is due to the use of this substitute malt. The palate is sweet overall with just a hint of bitterness (like maybe 10 IBUs which is nothing). It’s an interesting flavor for someone who’s used to that regular ‘beer’ taste. Soft finish and lingering sorghum flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and decent effervescence. Pretty easy to drink but the flavor is just strange enough to make it a little difficult.

Final Thoughts: It makes me slightly uneasy drinking something that tastes how aloe vera smells. I’m not sure whether to drink it or rub it on a sun burn. Either way it’s not terrible and I don’t have much to judge it against since it’s the first gluten free beer I’ve tried. Would I drink it again? Perhaps. I think it falls into the ‘meh’ category.

Rating: 2.88 out of 5. Below average. This beer has been rated 66/100 on Beer Advocate by 11 reviewers. Anything rating under 70 should be avoided.

The Meh

  • Gluten-Free Pizza Crust: You can buy this in grocery stores (or Bulk Barn) as a powder mixture that you add water, oil, and yeast to. These are decent, no major complaints or raves. They’re not like real pizza since they don’t really rise and have that soft texture. But I think it’s a good substitute for real pizza, especially if you put on loads of toppings and tomato sauce so the crust doesn’t matter. I’ve also added things like garlic powder, dried basil, dried oregano, and onion powder to give the crust more taste.
  • Gluten-Free Bakeries: Here’s my thing with these bakeries – I can make it myself! By using the gluten-free all-purpose flour, I’m fairly confident I can make most desserts. So I don’t really want to spend money on a couple of cookies or a fancy cake that I can do myself. But I have tried cookies from a gluten-free bakery, and they were pretty good. The texture was light and fluffy like a real cookie, but a little bit powdery. These bakeries are good if you’re desperate or can’t bake, but really, get yourself some gluten-free all-purpose flour and make it yourself!

So that’s all I’ve got for today. As I try more gluten-free products, I’ll either update this list or do another post. Check back if you’re searching for the best gluten-free food! If you disagree with me or have found a brand that’s actually good, let me know!

We can still eat all of this …. sort of.

If you live in the Toronto area, here’s a gluten-free company that makes tons of products: Goodbye Gluten. 

Why I’m Gluten-Free….and a Medical Disagreement (3e)

Why avoid gluten?

My mom first suggested I might be allergic to gluten a couple years ago. I scoffed at the thought of that nonsense. Puh-lease. Wheat is in everything. How can you be allergic to it? That would just suck.

Then she suggested it again a few months ago. This time, I listened. My stomach hurt every time I ate, instead of just a couple times a week. I spent most evenings feeling nauseated. Headaches were frequent. I took Pepcid every day to combat stomach aches, and Advil or Aleve to fight the headaches. But what they say is true: drugs are bad. (Okay, Pepcid and Advil aren’t bad for you. But like anything else, it’s best to keep things in moderation. So taking these medicines everyday, or twice a day, is too much.)

But sometimes when I ate, I didn’t get any symptoms. I decided to try out the whole gluten-free thing just to see what happened. I had been hearing about the gluten-free diet a lot, from other people and in the media. I had even seen gluten-free bakeries and food substitutes in the grocery store. As you already know (if you’re faithful reader), the stomach aches and headaches came to a halt.

My stomach aches, nausea and headaches had an explanation. Being an occasional hypochondriac, I was relieved my symptoms didn’t mean I was dying (thanks, WebMD).  I realized not eating gluten left me feeling more awake and energized. I can trace exhaustion, stomachaches and headaches right back to gluten now (it still sometimes sneaks into the food I eat accidentally. Do you know how much food has gluten? Writing a list of it would take an entire post! Let me just tell you one product though – SOY SAUCE. That leaves me out of eating pretty much half the world’s food!).

I spent some time researching gluten intolerance and Celiac disease, and it can actually start at any age. So maybe I wasn’t gluten intolerant my whole life, or the symptoms just started getting worse as I got older. At any rate, I now identify myself in the ever-growing circle of gluten-free eaters.

The Doctor’s Office

I know I’m not the only person who hates the smell of hospitals. They smell like sickness. And death. And needles.

Anyway, I went to the doctor (let’s just call her Dr. Wheat) for my annual physical. Near the end of the short appointment, I said that I had been trying out a gluten-free diet because I’d been getting a lot of stomach aches, and Dr. Wheat was all, “Eating gluten-free is not a diet fad. It’s meant to treat a serious disorder, Celiac disease, and if you had that, you’d be extremely sick and malnourished.”

“But it’s making me feel better…” I always get terrified in the face of authority disagreeing with me.

“You don’t need to eat gluten-free. Grains are very important for maintaining your health. Don’t stop eating them.”

I shut up about it, even though all I could think was I’ll show you! Although that was clearly impossible. I couldn’t perform a medical allergy test on myself. But if I could, I’d wave the lab results declaring me allergic to gluten in her face! Take that.

So here’s why I’m telling you all of this: Not all doctors will react like mine did, since gluten intolerance is becoming more widespread. I heard on The View that something like 10 percent of the population is gluten intolerant. That’s a ton of people! But also a word of warning – I’ve read about other people with gluten intolerance who gave up on a doctor’s diagnosis because they got the same reaction as I got.

Go to your doctor if you think you have an allergy, or anything else, and make them test you for it. Don’t be a coward like me (she was just so insistent I got scared). Maybe someday I’ll get a real, legitimate gluten allergy test, but for now, I’m just avoiding gluten. And that works.

Most of the time….

Pshh. I don’t need no doctor.

Life Without an Oven…and with one that didn’t work (2e)

I’ve lived without an oven before. And it sucked.

I’ve had lots of experience with ovens before. As a kid, I once decided to press my whole hand on a hot oven rack. Maybe I didn’t believe the heat coming from the oven was real? As you can tell, I was clearly a philosophical child. I must have had a feeling reality and appearance weren’t lining up. Really, it was a brilliant mistake.

My current oven situation is not philosophical. It’s illogical. The thing doesn’t work! But I’ll go more into that later. For now, let’s talk about the eight months of my life I spent without access to an oven.

THE DORM

In first year of university, I lived on residence in a dorm. The dorm hall allowed everyone their own room, so I only shared a bathroom with my roommate. But living in a dorm meant no kitchen – unless you count the disgusting, always dirt encrusted, sometimes fire-causing microwave in the common room (and the fire culprit? Microwavable popcorn. It got students every time).

Some people got creative in desperate times with that microwave, making macaroni and cheese and even chocolate cake (a rumour I only heard about, and I still wonder if it’s true).

Just saying

THE CAFETERIA

I ate wraps or Tim Horton’s sandwiches for most meals in my time on rez. On the first floor of my dorm hall sat a large cafeteria, which I was led to believe offered delicious cuisine from around the world.

 Fresh, wholesome, homemade food!

A full salad bar!

Burgers, chicken nuggets, grilled cheese sandwiches, and fries from the grill!

Something for everyone!

Nope.

Surf ‘n’ turf. Imagine this, but not fancy and on a paper plate, consisting of fake lobster and dry steak.

You had to be adventurous to eat in the cafeteria most nights. They had a surf ‘n’ turf night that had the whole place smelling like rotten fish. I didn’t even dare try that. Steak night presented an adventure in breaking plastic knives on cheap cuts of beef. For me, it was either burgers (which got gross after the first few times) or hitting the wrap bar and eating chili (occasionally made with random vegetables like broccoli and celery, maybe from the days they cleaned out the salad bar).

I was sick most of the time first year, with stomachaches and headaches. This was before I knew about being gluten intolerant (read about that here), but I really didn’t eat much bread or pasta. But I’m sure flour touched most things. The other problem was MSG.

THE HORRORS OF MSG

What is MSG? It’s a flavour enhancer under a long chemical name that I can’t spell. It’s supposed to make things taste better, kind of like salt. Little known fact: you can be allergic to MSG (it’s true! Read about it here). Know what being allergic meant? Feeling flushed, nauseated, and getting migraines from food with MSG. The cafeteria used plenty of MSG to make their lackluster food taste remotely normal.

Of course, I only realized this later, months after moving out of the dorm hall. But even if I had known, I couldn’t waste my $4,000 food plan by buying other food.

“Four-thousand dollars! For shitty food?!”

I know. I still feel extremely ripped off.

MY OWN APARTMENT

So let’s fast-forward to second-year, when I got my own one-bedroom apartment. I could cook my own food! Except for one thing.

My oven.

It’s so awful I can’t even get a good picture of it!

At first, it was fine. I was still figuring out how to cook, going off a carefully detailed list from my mom of how to cook different types of chicken and meat. Then, I started trying to bake things. I couldn’t figure out why things either burned immediately or went flat when I took them out.

Well, it wasn’t my lack of baking skills (like everyone thought). The oven in my apartment was 50 degrees off from the temperature dial, and also didn’t hold a steady temperature. Eight months after I put in the first request to get it fixed, a repairman came and reported it fixed. After that, it only got mildly better than before. My gluten-free creations didn’t always turn out, unless I planned on longer cooking times at lower temperatures.

So I had to figure out more and more ways to cook only on the stovetop. Chicken can be pan-seared. Steamed vegetables. My own spaghetti creation – tons of chopped up vegetables in tomato sauce with ground turkey. But still, my cooking was very limited.

After the second failed oven repair, I immediately complained to my mom. She told me to try to get it fixed again. My superintendent insisted the oven was fixed and refused to call someone in to work on the oven again, unless I would pay for it. This, along with other problems, led me to looking for a new apartment.

I just want to bake again! And cook things in the oven! So now I’m on a quest to find a new apartment with a bigger kitchen and working oven (and maybe a newer building that isn’t home to mice in the walls and bugs crawling out of the vents and into my apartment). Keep checking back for a new post on my experiences with moving when I finally find a place!

UPDATE: I found a new apartment! Read about it here.

Also, If you’ve had similar experiences to mine, let me know! I need more ideas for stove top cooking!

Goodbye Gluten (1e)

No cake? No pasta? NOOOO!

Me: “I eat gluten-free. I’m allergic to gluten.”

Person: “Oh my god, I’m so sorry! That must be terrible. I couldn’t give up gluten.”

Me: “I’m not really giving it up … it makes me sick so I don’t eat it.”

Person shakes head. “That must be so hard.”

That’s the true story of almost every conversation I’ve had when the truth comes out about me being gluten intolerant. But hey, at least this means I’m just like Miley Cyrus, who admitted to being gluten and lactose intolerant on Twitter. (Okay, not a good thing. Have you seen her hair lately? Yikes. And yes, I follow Miley Cyrus on Twitter. Go ahead and judge.)

It’s either that “how awful for you” reaction or no reaction … because that means the person doesn’t understand what gluten is. But with references to gluten-free food being mentioned on TV shows like “90210,” “Ben and Kate,” and a variety of morning talk shows (including “The View”), the gluten-free lifestyle has become a popular fad. If you don’t know what gluten is, read about it here.

I’ve had many reactions from friends and family to my own gluten-free diet. I’ve also had many of my own battles staring at the bread, pastries and desserts people around me eat and contemplating if the awful stomach pain I’ll get later is worth it.

It usually isn’t. Unless we’re talking cake.

Lovely gluten filled food I miss:

-Cake, cookies, brownies, quesadillas, hamburgers, boneless wings, croutons, and garlic bread

The gluten food I do not miss:

-Bread, pasta, chips, ice cream, pastries, doughnuts, and pumpkin pie

So no, Ms. Your Life Must Be Awful Now Without Gluten, I’m not that upset about it. Fact is, I never really liked bread or pasta and just ate it when that was all there was. And now, as my body further forces me to be healthy, it also rejects fried food, too much dairy, and chocolate.

Yes, there is something worse than being gluten intolerant. Getting hives in my mouth from chocolate.

The good news is I can still eat rice! Except eating it way too much as a child ruined if for me, since it served as my dad’s go-to dinner side dish whenever he cooked.

I can eat potatoes! But really, in my opinion, the only way potatoes are good is when they’re mashed up with garlic or cut up and fried. But guess what? French-fries apparently have gluten.

So what does this leave me with? Chicken. Vegetables. Fruit. Meat. Fish. Carefully reading every label to see if there is any mention of wheat, barley or rye. And gluten-free food substitutes. Read my thoughts on some of them here.

But really, I’m not complaining. I did the free at-home test to see if I was gluten tolerant by avoiding gluten for a few days. And guess what?

I FELT SO MUCH BETTER! (That deserves all caps because really, it’s made a huge difference in how much Advil and Pepcid I choke down on a daily basis.) I’ve had migraines since I was 10 years old. For a week, I couldn’t go to school due to debilitating pain in my head. Lights felt like red hot pokers sticking ripping into my brain. I had no idea what was going on. My parents gave me Advil and Tylenol but nothing worked. I ended up going to the children’s hospital for heavy duty pain relievers and even got a CAT scan to check for a brain tumour. Turns out, I just had plain old migraines, just like my dad and older brother.

But now, since I’ve been eating gluten-free, I haven’t had a single migraine. It’s a migraine MIRACLE.

The craziest part? Now that I (almost always) eat gluten-free, when I do have gluten, the reaction is much worse than it’s ever been before. Immediate stomach ache. The next morning, it’s a flour hangover. Exhaustion, headaches and nausea. It’s like I’ve trained my body to reject any gluten I dare swallow.

Bye, birthday cake. It was nice knowing you. Your gluten-free substitute just isn’t the same.

Got the same problems as me? Leave a comment here, so we can cry together about eating gluten-free.