Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Foot Loose & Wheat Free

Anyone who reads my blog, checks my twitter timeline, or just generally KNOWS me is aware that I like to indulge in a fun little eating cycle that, although enjoyable at the time, leaves me in pain, bloated and moaning about how evil the demon grain wheat actually is.

Basically every time I eat anything like bread or pasta I end up in a lot of pain. My tummy swells like I have swallowed a beach ball, I get intense and sore stomach spasms and occassionally some even more disgusing symptoms like trapped wine and diarhoea.

I haven't always been like this. When I was a skinny size 8 in my late teens I pretty much ate all the carbs without consequence. That meant toast for brekkie, sandwiches for lunch (the Boots meal deal with the 3 in it naturally) and then a pizza for dinner. Maybe even a chippy on my way home from the pub. I'm not kidding. I actually ate like that and I didn't put on a pound.

Which leads me to the question I have been asking myself for ages. Did I do this to myself? I'm thinking quite possibly so. I've never been particularly fat but my early twenties saw the start of a fixation with my weight and my descent into dieting began. During this time I was so insistant on maintaining my size 10 figure that I pretty much cut out carbs all of the time. At one point I went 6 months without eating bread. And the result? Now that I eat a lot more normally wheat seems to give me nothing but bellyache.

If I go gluten free I feel great. After a few days I lose a couple of pounds. I feel lighter and better and healthier. I have no stomach pains and I'm in a great mood as a result. But then the lure of the garlic bread or the chocolate cake ALWAYS gets me in the end. So much so that I don't think I have ever lasted any longer than 10 days gluten free. So why do I do it to myself? I don't know. Anyone who knows how much I like food knows what a greedy little glutton I am and I severely lack willpower. I tell myself that I will just have this one slice (or 3) or focaccia and that I will just take the pain (along with a couple of buscopan). But that come tomorrow morning I will start a new extra healthy gluten free lifestyle to rival Gwynnies.

Obviously I don't. I last another few days then I do it all over again. But the real reason for this post is more curiosity. I'm desperate to know if anyone else deals with symptoms similar. Trips to the doctors, blood tests, etc have proved inconclusive. The only suggestion the doctor can come up with is mild IBS. Which is mainly triggered when I eat wheat. But it doesn't even make sense. Because I tend to be fine after a bowl of noodles or a bottle of beer. But a bit of french baguette kills me. However, I have discovered the grain spelt seems to have none of these horrible effects on me. Spelt spagetti not only tastes delicious but I can eat a whole bowl without spending the rest of the evening clutching a hot water bottle. Same with spelt bread.

It's things like this that have led me to question whether this is all in my head. When I could eat whatever I liked only a few years ago. And when I was pregnant with Ava (which was only 20 months ago) I ate a ton of breakfast cereal, biscuits, pasta and flour without any real problems. But the hardness of my swollen abdomen and the disgusting toilet habits I incur after a big Italian leave me in no doubt that this affliction is very real. I think my boyfriend has hit the nail on the head. That if I start introducing wheat into my diet steadily for a while and just take the pain - that it will eventually go away and I will be able to eat it again. And he's probably right. The problem I have with that is that I hate the horrible bloated feeling that wheat gives me. And I like my skinny jeans too god damn much.

Has anyone else had symptoms similar to this? If so please feel free to comment or email me as I would love to hear from others who suffer from a similar condition.......x


P said...

Did you do this to yourself? Possibly but not in the way you think. If anything you were probably always suffering from an intolerance of some sort which meant you ate a lot of it - and when you cut it out for long periods of time and then tried to reintroduce it, you then realised there was a problem. I can't really explain the science behind it, but I'm pretty sure that's it in layman's terms.

Although it sounds like IBS too and a bit like how I get it after I've had too much alcohol for a few two many days. I felt like this at the start of this week after stopping drinking.

Dawn Young said...

I had to read that a couple of times till I got it but I think you are TOTALLY right x

Katyclysm said...

I couldn't help but comment...I live with a girl who had has had similar problems, she used to be able to eat bread and everything you mentioned until her first year of uni when she started getting similar symptoms!
After loads of tests and trips to the dr's they've diagnosed her with Coeliac disease. Maybe it's worth looking in to! :) xx

Dawn Young said...

I suspected that too but I had tests which proved it's not that! Thanks so much for commenting though xx