First Week of Gluten Free

“It will probably take at least a week or more — likely two — before you don’t feel like a big sack of asses.”

My friend Jen said that after one of my posts and it made me laugh.  Thanks, Jen.

I’m notoriously impatient and after all the reading I’ve done about gluten-free diets changing people’s lives, I’m just so desperate for it to work for me too.

Here are some observations from this past week.  I don’t know how much of this stuff is just normal ebb and flow, placebo effect, or completely imagined because I’m desperate to feel different.

  • Fatigue. I’ve been going up and down like a rollercoaster.  On Tuesday I felt amazing and energetic, on Wednesday I had a nap at 5pm.  No rhyme or reason especially considering I was eating a lot of the same foods (leftovers).  It’s getting better, though.  I haven’t needed a nap in 2 or 3 days.
  • Moodiness and headaches and temperature stuff.  I had a nagging headache all week and felt really irritated by everything.  For the first few days, my temperature was going up and down like I had a fever – one second I felt freezing and I needed a million blankets and the next second our apartment was so hot it made me feel nauseous.  I’m feeling better, on all 3 fronts.
  • Thyroid swelling.  I’ve been able to feel my thyroid since I started taking Synthroid in the fall of 2010.  Usually it feels swollen and tender like someone punched me in the throat; sometimes it feels like I swallowed a golf ball and it got stuck.  Over the last week, what changed is that it started to feel really tight.  I don’t know how else to describe it.  It felt like my thyroid shrunk, but it was stretched back out to its usual size.  Like you accidentally put your favourite sweater in the dryer, but managed to squeeze back into it even though it’s way too tight and totally uncomfortable.  However, it’s been getting better every day.  I’ve gone from being able to feel it 100% of the time to only noticing a few times a day.
  • Weight loss.  I lost 5lbs.  That’s pretty cool since I haven’t been able to lose weight in around 5+ years.  I’ve actually been eating more calories than usual, and I sure haven’t been ignoring bad food like leftover Easter chocolate.
  • Bladder.  This is way too much information, but also the most noticeable change, and one I hadn’t even considered.  I was diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis in 2007.   It’s something that I’ve just been living with, because I haven’t found a good doctor and the wait times for a specialist are insane.  I haven’t even done any research in a few years, but today I see that the Wikipedia page has been updated with two notable items – that autoimmune disorder is a possible cause of IC, and that anecdotal evidence has linked it to gluten intolerance, but not enough studies have been done.   Interesting.  This is huge for me.   My bladder felt so much better this week that I hadn’t even realized it felt so bad before.  (I got used to it, I guess.)  But this week I’ve been able to drink a pot of green tea a few hours before bed, and not had to get up 17 times a night to pee.  That’s a very big deal.

That’s it.  I’ve been a bit disappointed with discoveries about certain things I can’t eat (Yves products), but overall I’m feeling pretty positive about everything.


  1. says

    The first few weeks, I dropped pounds like mad. Now, it's WAY slower, but still a bit all the time.

    The mood thing… omg. I have never been a bigger psychopath in my life than the first couple weeks. Poor George, he's a saint for putting up with me. After that initial psychosis, I spent a couple months FEELING like I was a bitch, apologizing for it, and receiving laughs from him and my mom, saying I had never been MORE pleasant in my LIFE. Go fig. The fatigue thing comes and goes for me still, and I'm four months in… I would just say don't TOTALLY trust the websites because we still don't know how gluten affects each individual person with an allergy or sensitivity to it. I do think it's excellent to either keep a diary or post about it so you can SEE the progress for yourself as time goes by, because eventually you'll stop REALIZING it's continuous when it gets more subtle, but it's encouraging if you can go back and read your comments on it and see, "Oh, wow, yeah, that was BAD, this is much better." :) Anyway, I'm rootin' for ya!

    • says

      Yeah, I've felt really bitchy this last week, like I have the worst PMS in the world. It's pretty brutal. And the depression and random crying. OMG. I screwed up a recipe last week and basically just crawled into bed and cried because EVERYTHING IS THE WORST AND WHY DO I EVEN BOTHER.

      I hear what you're saying about not trusting websites. I just thought it was interesting, because the Wiki page on IC basically said nothing back when I was diagnosed. Everything was "nobody really knows much about it and not a lot of studies have been done and if you have this you're shit outta luck". I waited almost a year to see a specialist, and when I finally got to my appointment, she handed me some pamphlets and told me to google it. I then waited 13 months to see another specialist, and when I got to my appointment I found out his specialty had NOTHING to do with bladders. I've been asking my doctor for a referral for months and he keeps ignoring me/forgetting. I was just surprised that I even felt better at all in that regard, since it's just become a part of my life now to do things like get up 10 times a night to pee. It was about 4 days into no gluten when I woke up in the morning and said HOLD ON A SECOND, I just slept through an entire night!

      All of my thinking has been about my thyroid that I didn't even think about other stuff that could be connected. It's pretty cool if that's the case.


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