This is not my usual style when it comes to writing but it’s an important story that I feel I must share with you!
Because you too, most likely have a love affair going on with wheat and the saddest part is, you probably don’t even know it.
What am I talking about?
Well it started with an elimination diet I initiated. I decided that for 21 days, I’d go completely sugar, grain, dairy and processed food free.
Crazy right? Yes, and HARD. It was actually way harder than what I expected it to be. I always saw myself as a pretty healthy, overall clean, not a lot or processed foods (close to none) type of eater. Still…quitting the above, particularly the first few days, was tough; super tough. Right up there with drug detoxing.
The most difficult one to cut out? Wheat.
During my coaching certification training I was immersed in information related to the consequences of wheat over consumption and negative effects of gluten. But like many, I was in denial. I felt like the information didn’t apply to me. I went to great extremes to source high quality organic wheat, sprouted organic wheat, took the time to soak wheat in acid mediums, and tried different types of wheat grains. As a result, I believed that I was exempt from gluten’s consequences and kept enjoying my wheat based foods and even priding myself in how healthy they were.
I was wrong, big time! I was just as much a prisoner of wheat as the next guy. Amazingly I didn’t even know it until I decided to take it out!
Sure, I knew I loved my sprouted grain quesadillas with spinach and yoghurt, along with my sprouted grain chips with grass fed melted cheese on top, but because they were masked in what I thought to be the utmost amount of “healthiness,” what I didn’t realize was that I had grown dependent on them just like everyone else.
Yes, dependent. The same way someone gets dependent on alcohol. Or cigarettes. Or crack cocaine.
How did I discover this dependence?
It went something like this:
Day 1 of no wheat: I felt fidgety, kept thinking about chips and dip, really wanted some bread with my food.
Day 2: The craving were even stronger! I felt lost. I ate, but wasn’t satisfied, kept thinking about toast and muffins and pancakes. Foods that I didn’t even really eat to begin with!
Day 3: Had a cloud over my thoughts, couldn’t focus, all I wanted was wheat! I was moody, crabby, fatigued, tired. I displayed every single symptom of wheat dependence and I hated that I was going through it. Especially after all the work I put into trying to make sure I didn’t fall victim to the wheat! The cravings were insane (I’m not exaggerating) and the thoughts compulsive in nature.
At this point, some of you may be thinking, why in the world would I put myself through that and more specifically why would you ever put yourselves through it?!
There’s a few reasons, but I’ll focus on 3.
When you force yourself to no longer make it about the food and instead make it about feeding your sense of self, the food loses its power and the awareness and personal growth that goes along with this shift is both exhilarating and freeing!
Huge revelation for me and for others on the same path. Once you become aware of this, you can more readily fulfill your needs with other, non-food items that don’t have any negative physiological effects associated with them.
Will I ever not eat wheat again? No, that’s not my plan. I am on day 16 though, and planning on going to day 21. But who knows? I’ve actually been having thoughts of continuing to day 30 because of how good I’ve been feeling being wheat free. I’ve lost a few pounds, my thoughts seem crisper, and I feel more organized in my life (best way to describe it).
Even though the struggle is still very real, and I’m on a path of progress not perfection, the benefits continue to regularly shine through; pulling and motivating me to continue in the same direction and remain on the same path.
Do I blame wheat for not experiencing the above benefits before? Not 100%. What I do blame though, is my dependence on the wheat, and by initiating this elimination diet I not only discovered and became aware of it, but am now in the process of breaking free from it.
Image Credit: Google Images
Interested in initiating your own elimination diet? I can help. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org