March 30, 2015

Elimination Diet Recap + 3 Tips for Trying Gluten Free


[A perfectly ripe avocado – my favorite gluten free snack!]


Two weeks ago, I mentioned I was about to finish an elimination diet. In case you’ve never tried it, an elimination diet is where you remove certain foods (usually gluten, soy and/or dairy) for a set amount of time (usually a few weeks) and then reintroduce them one at a time and record how they make you feel. This way you can easily detect your bodies’ reaction, and whether or not the food makes your body feel funky without or before heading to see a doctor.

For me, I noticed the difference WAYY before it was time to reintroduce gluten and dairy. In fact I haven’t really added them back into to my diet yet save for some butter in dishes, even though I finished detoxing well over a week ago. Why you ask? Because I feel GREAT! Since giving up gluten, a fog has lifted. I’ve been waking up with more energy, feeling more inspired and generally, more at home in my body.

But I won’t lie. It wasn’t, and may never be, easy. Sometimes I’m salivating over a piece of subpar cake and others (or sometimes my husband) is suggesting I try “just a little,” so I don’t miss out. Honestly though, I feel like I was missing out before! Even though I thought I barely ate gluten it was hiding in everything and making me feel really crappy, unclear and cluttered. I feel like I was going through parts of my life at a fraction of my full potential. And that’s way more painful than skipping that fresh french baguette.

So, how have I gotten by? Here are my top 3 tips for getting by in a gluten filled world:

  1. Always Ask – Gluten hides in way more places than you think, especially when you’re eating out. Before completely removing it from my diet, I considered myself as someone who rarely ate gluten. Boy was I wrong. In the past month I’ve discovered truly how prevalent it is, many restaurants even add gluten to foods that are naturally gluten free. So when it doubt, ask it out.
  2. Reimagine not Replace – When going gluten free, it’s a good idea to look for bread/pasta alternatives and not just replacements. Often times, the “gluten-free” versions are full of ingredients your body just wont understand, which could lead to even more discomfort. Instead opt for things like spaghetti squash, zucchini noodles and bean pastas. For those times when you’re really craving carbs, try this Chickpea Flatbread.
  3. Check in with Your Body – One of the most important skills I ever learned was how to listen to my body. After you eat take a second to put a hand on your belly and ask it how it’s feeling. Note how you’re feeling. Realizing how good I felt each time I ate a meal without gluten, helped reinforce my decision to quit it.

I’d love to hear how this resonates with you in the comments below and over on the Facebook page. If you’re interested in seeing how I stay gluten free be sure to follow me on Instagram @robynyoukilis.


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