60-Day Gluten-Free Challenge Results + 7 Tips On How To Re-introduce Gluten

We have a huge problem. Our electricity supply got cut off yesterday for the whole building, which means that we are living with battery-operated Chinese LED lamps, cold food, and freezing showers. It’s not exactly what I call fun, but there isn’t much we can do. It’s a long story, and I’m sure I’ll be able to share it all with you later, but for now I’ll try to do my best and come to the Internet cafe as much as I can, so I can at least reply to your comments and emails.

I’ve got two new videos for you (luckily, I filmed and edited them just before the power was cut off), and they kind of go together, so it would be best to watch them one after another. I’ve recently completed my 60-day gluten-free challenge, and I really wanted to give you an update.

The first video with my challenge results and some more insights into the whole gluten-free hype is here:

The second video with my 7 tips on how you can make friends with gluten-containing foods is here:

I hope you’ll find these videos helpful, and if you are yourself on the gluten-free diet or think you could be sensitive to wheat or gluten, let me know in the comments! What kinds of symptoms are you experiencing?

Lots of love,
Vita xx

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Comments

  1. Hi Vita,

    I have a love/hate relationship with the whole GF phenomena. I was GF and dairy free for 4 months and lost 11 pounds. Not a drop of milk or speck of gluten hit my mouth. This, along with books like WheatBelly and The Primal Diet, made me feel like gluten and dairy were the reasons for my excess weight…
    I was even allergy tested (negative for wheat and gluten, but moderate reactivity for cottage cheese, cheddar cheeses, and cow’s milk). It wasn’t sustainable. I felt like it was a prison sentence. I mean, I don’t even have celiac disease. I decided to reintroduce some diary- cheese and the occasional half and half to my tea and I’m fine. I eat gluten on occasion and I’m fine.
    What I have learned is that I lost 11 pounds because I was eating less CRAP! Sorry for this rant, but the whole GF/DF for trendy reasons- even a coworker’s baby is “GF”- give me a break!- is out of control. If someone has a medical illness or condition, that is one thing, but I am no longer a slave to the whole GF nightmare.

    Thank you for sharing your 60 day experience:) Rant over 😉

    Anna from California

    • Hi Anna, thanks so much for sharing your story. I think you hit the nail on the head there. I also often think that perhaps all the amazing health benefits that people see when they go on the Paleo diet, vegan diet, etc. is more because of giving up processed junk and becoming more aware of what they eat. It makes total sense. It’s so interesting that you’re sensitive to certain dairy products and not the others. What was the method of testing? So happy you’re out of the gluten-free nightmare. It really can feel like a prison sometimes. Loved your rant! xx

      • I did a finger-prick and mailed my results to a lab in Massachusetts that is known for allergy testing. This was back in March of 2014. I don’t feel like I have “issues” with cheese, and I haven’t wanted cottage cheese since, but maybe it was more of a gut-inflammation than full blown reaction, you know what I mean? And yeah, totally agree that once people truly evaluate what they are eating, they start to see results- whatever they may be 🙂

        Happy Wednesday!

    • Hi Anna,
      I agree with you for adults, but wanted to comment on the GF baby comment. It is a widely held Winston A. Price nutrition suggestion for feeding your children to hold off grains for the first year (or even two if they have a reaction when introduced). Their bodies aren’t equipped to digest them (leaky gut or something similar if I remember correctly).
      That said, to say ‘GF for life’ at infancy is out of control!

      • Hi Tina! I agree with what you wrote. It makes sense to hold off the grains for the first year or two if the baby is sensitive. However, so many parents keep their kids away from grains completely now, which makes me wonder how sensitive they’re going to be to them when they grow up and try to reintroduce them or indulge occasionally. It might set them up for a digestive nightmares and restrictive dieting for the rest of their lives. xx

  2. Hi, Vita. I hear you, and I also believe the whole gluten-free ‘movement’ is out of control. Surely if you have celiac disease or a true allergy, yes, by all means avoid it. But I think a lot of companies are jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon as a way to make money. Back in autumn of 2010 I read The Primal Blueprint, gave it a good, honest go, and even lost weight (though I wasn’t trying to, nor did I need to.) Over the past four years I’ve struggled with cravings for foods I used to love, but now had a stigma attached to them based on what I learned through various books, websites, blog posts, etc. Thanks in part to your recent October favorites video, I read Diet Recovery (original and 2), along with another Matt Stone book, Eat for Heat, and Joey Lott’s book, Just Eat It. Much of what is mentioned in these books resonated with me and shined a light on a new fixation I’ve developed since discovering Primal/Paleo: eating ‘perfectly.’
    Suffice it to say, over the past couple of weeks I’ve loosened up and, while I’m not indulging indiscriminately in ‘junk food,’ I honor my body’s signals and cravings for certain foods (particularly helpful since we just celebrated Thanksgiving here in the States.) To my surprise and delight, I’m able to enjoy in ALL foods – even had waffles a few mornings for breakfast – what?! It’s been great, and I owe you a big ‘thank you’ for sharing not only your experiences with various diets but with books you’ve read and found helpful. We can all learn so much from one another ~ it’s such an amazing world we live in, connecting with others who are halfway across the globe.
    Cheers!

    • Hi Rosie, glad you also think it’s out of control! I can relate so much to what you wrote. Eating perfectly healthy things, such as properly prepared lentils or sourdough and feeling guilty because of Paleo brainwashing is insane. But it’s so challenging to get out of this mindframe. All that information seems to just sit in our heads and that little voice keeps nagging. It’s annoying, isn’t it?

      I’m so glad that Matt Stone’s books helped you! I read Diet Recover I and II, but I didn’t read Eat For Heat because I read that it’s just repeating the same information over and over. Is it true? Or is it worth reading? I loved a lot of ideas in the books, but I prefer the first version. Diet Recovery II has gone too much towards junk food in my opinion. I believe it’s possible to get over dieting and to rebuild the metabolism without resorting to ice-cream and sugar all the time. Don’t you think?

      So glad you’ve been enjoying your food, including waffles! I also make sourdough pancakes once a week or so, and they keep me very happy. Good to know they’re healthy, too. 🙂 So good to know I’ve been able to help! xx

  3. Vita,
    Eat for Heat is pretty much the same information that’s provided in Diet Recovery I and II, so you’re not missing out on any information there. He talks a bit more about over-hydration, but again, it’s not new information and I think he drove that message home in the other two books: drink when you’re thirsty, not just because you’re ‘supposed’ to drink a certain amount of water every day.

    I agree that the junk food emphasis is a bit much in the second version of the book. The way he explains how it may be helpful to those with severely wrecked metabolisms makes sense (again, not sure if I fully believe his reasoning), yet I don’t think my own system is in that horrible a state. I’m not overweight nor am I always cold (probably due in part to where I live). I think there’s a sane, middle ground between being overly restrictive and munching away on doughnuts and Doritos, and I certainly can’t bring myself to eat McDonald’s, that’s for sure!

    Yes, it’s hard to let go of that little Paleo voice in my head! I try to remind myself, though, that back in the 90’s fat was the enemy, and now that mentality has been turned on its head (thankfully!)

    Speaking of sourdough, I began a starter yesterday evening when I got home from work. I’ll feed it throughout the week and plan to bake a loaf on the weekend. I’m so excited to see how it turns out, and I’ve got lots of beautifuly, Kerrygold butter left over from Thanksgiving that will go nicely with it. 🙂

  4. Five years ago I was experiencing some severe symptoms, to name a few I had numbness on my entire left side of my body (docs tested me for a stroke 3 times), fatigue and I would pass out 2 hours after eating, patches of hair would fall out, muscle aches, would feel like I had a cold basically for other symptoms.

    Then a family member said it sounds like celiac disease or at least gluten allergy, so I simply cut it out the next day and ALL symptoms went away. Within 1 year my hair was thicker then it had been in 5 years ( I have pics to prove it).

    Long story short all people should consider ditching gluten. My wife did as well and she has minimal to no digestive issues any more and prior had stomach pains etc.

    A side tip to avoiding gluten- I found that orbit gum had wheat starch and things that have grain alcohol like tinctures etc have gluten in them as well. To go 100 percent gluten free you must be willing to ask and verify as its in way more things then you would think!

    Oh and Vita rocks!!!

    • Wow, that’s amazing! I often wonder if gluten is causing my tooth decay, but I tried to go off it for 60 days and didn’t feel any different. I really don’t know. I try to stick to low gluten grains, such as rye or barley. But I really don’t like wheat, it makes me feel funny. You’re so right about gluten hiding in everything. And also sugar hiding in everything! The other day I got seriously furious. My husband and I have been living without electricity for 2 months now (long story) and we can’t make homemade bread (no electricity=no oven), so we’ve been buying rye bread from a store. A few days ago I managed to get hold of the ingredients, and guess what? It contains inverted glucose syrup and caramel syrup. What the hell? I’d rather live without bread. That’s crazy! xx

      • I agree, I went off sugar a year ago and the funny thing is the food companies code it so you don’t realize, like glucose, sucrose etc etc. Its all sugar or brown rice syrup, cane juice etc. Best thing is xylitol or stevia if you need a sweetener.

        When I was in Germany a European woman said American bread with gluten wheat makes her very sick but in France and italy she has no problems. She said over there they use no preservatives and the wheat gluten is not sprayed heavily with pesticides and toxins.

        That being said personally I have celiac disease it’s a genetic thing other family members have as well where we absolutely can not process gluten and it actually ruins our intestines… some people can tolerate it but I think deep down its not good for anyone. I have heard from Doctors that gluten is like bubble gum in our intestines, it sticks to the intestinal walls, traps bacteria and candida flourishes and creates leaky gut syndrome… then the fun begins with food allergies and gastro issues.

        In the world we live in now I think the only way to go is only eat organic foods, stay away from breads, pastas etc and substitute with gluten free alternatives like rice pasta, gluten free bread etc.

        • Yes, I’ve heard that about European wheat as well. However, I’ve also heard that it’s sprayed with pesticides just before harvesting in Europe as well. In France and Italy, a lot of the bread is proper whole grain and often sourdough. While here in Spain it’s mostly white flour and yeast, or whole grain flours mixed with white flour to make it softer. It saddens me because if I can’t make it at home, I pretty much can’t get hold of proper authentic bread. Well, I’d rather live without bread at all in that case. xx

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