The Next Thing That Can Go Wrong

Looks like I am gluten intolerant.

Just as I’ve been working to eliminate foods that are difficult to digest or cause bloating in an effort to reduce my fistula leaking, I ate a big bowl of pasta.

Eating a big bowl of anything is unusual for me these days. My portions are teeny tiny and I can’t eat and drink too much at the same time. I’m passed 3/4oz now, so I have the appearance of eating more normally, just very little at one time.

The fistula is yet another thing I have to live with and eventually share with a partner should that ever come. The goal is to control the bloating as much as possible to reduce or eliminate any leakage and I’ve gotten pretty good at immediately determining foods that irritate. The nutritionist told me 2 weeks ago to begin reducing gluten and that has helped, so I think when I ate this bigger portion of pasta my body wanted to revolt.

I woke up at 4am doubled over in pain and my stomach sounded like The Predator – literally. My son heard it and said “Mom! That’s the predator noise!” And found a clip. It’s exactly right.

I’m not sure how to add an audio link but that’s the noise.

So it looks like I have to go commando and pretty much eliminate gluten. Like I don’t have enough shit to deal with (meant in every literal sense of the word!).

I can’t eat rice which stinks, and it seems I can manage one piece of Dave’s Killer Bread once in a while as long as it’s not every day, but what else do I need to eliminate?

Other than the one bread, I don’t eat bread.

I know I can not tolerate pasta now.

I have been eating these BelVita biscuits because they are easy way to get my carbs and fiber in but they have to go to, just in case.

I don’t eat cereals and snack foods.

I honestly think I probably have most of the worst gluten offenders out of my diet already so it looks like biscuits and pasta now come off the menu too!

Guess I’ve got a lot of research ahead of me – any experts out there?

Author: Madeline Harper

My journey through divorce and an emotional and sexual reawakening. Love, laughter, friendships, family and heartbreak included. And there is sex, lots of it, so close your eyes and turn the page if that's not for you! While I started this blog as an endeavor to journal my thoughts and feelings in an attempt to better understand myself, it has become an amazing platform from which I have met some of the most interesting and wonderful people in my life. My path is often crooked, but I hope you will share in the journey with me.

10 thoughts on “The Next Thing That Can Go Wrong”

    1. Rice is gluten free. It’s easy to conflate “glutinous” under which a class of rice falls with “gluten”. But, rice is totally gluten-free. It is high in carbs, and white rice has a high glycemic index if you are diabetic or pre-diabetic. White rice also totally gums me up (can’t poop) because it is “refined” (i.e. the fiber has been removed). I try to eat low-carb (in part because I am pre-diabetic) and high-fiber (since I gum up) and have come to enjoy grains like millet and quinoa. You can also try gluten-free pastas; I find that the quinoa-brown-rice blends have the most integrity. Another pasta alternative, one that works really well with the season? Get yourself a spiralizer and you can make “spaghetti” out of zucchini. For me, pasta is a vehicle for butter and sauce, so it almost doesn’t matter what the “pasta” is, and I happen to love zucchini. In the fall/winter, you can achieve the same with spaghetti squash, which self-spaghettis. One thing I have gotten into are meat salads: mmm mmm mmm! Combining nice pieces of chicken or steak with delicious greens, some herbs, maybe some toasted nuts for crunch. Steak and arugula is a great combo, and if the steak is still hot and wilts the arugula, well, how-dee-licious! I’d avoid as much as possible going for gluten-free processed facsimiles of your favorite baked goods, because those are often loaded with unhealthy high-glycemic index wheat-flour alternatives. Although, things have come a long way in the whole department of gluten-free baking.

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      1. I think that the biggest challenge when your diet gets restrictive is eating out. It’s getting easier to make delicious and satisfying food at home, but restaurants, especially convenience restaurants or high-end dining, don’t make these concessions. That can make dating challenging! It’s too expensive, too time-consuming, and too unorthodox. But, there are more establishments out there that cater to people with these kinds of dietary needs. As you work in a major metropolitan area, there will likely be lunch-joints, especially the kind that make “bowls” that will work for you. You just have to find them. As for high-end dining, again, you just have to do the research! Maybe try to find places that cater to millennial clientele, as this market seems more sensitive (both physically and philosophically) to there needing to be GF food options. look for places that are paleo- or keto-friendly. Steer yourself towards Asian and Latin American food, away from European, cuisines that are fundamentally gluten free. Stuff like that.

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      2. That’s funny – I’m usually good about eating out now because I can’t eat very much. So I always go for the protein with meat, fish or chicken. I can avoid the bread and sides because I can’t eat that much. I’m the reverse if eating worse at home (but that’s really a side effect of the surgery and my tummy not holding much food). I try not to get lunch at work. I bring cottage cheese or chicken from home. My Starbucks habit (already almond milk) is too expensive as it is – I can’t afford a $13 lunch on top of it! Found a Greek tapas place for dinner the other day that had amazing fresh food!

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      3. If you don’t want to labor more in the kitchen, you can find the pre-cut zucchini or veggie noodles in the store. Same goes with finding “riced” cauliflower, which is a great alternative to white rice. Cauliflower is a brassica and can give some people gas, so it isn’t necessarily a solution if gas is what you are trying to avoid. Zucchini, however, is much gentler on the system.

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      4. Actually since I changed my eating habits I tried all of those. The funny thing is I hated them but now my kids LOVE mashed cauliflower! I will eat zucchini and squash baked but not boiled like a doodle go figure!! I even bought a spiralizer. I’m awful about veggies. I will admit I find it the hardest thing to eat because I just don’t like them.

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      5. You might also experiment with pasta made in Italy from Italian flour. I have had many gluten-intolerant friends say that they are much more sensitive to American wheat than European wheats. I know it sounds crazy, but numerous people I know swear by this. Look carefully on the package. For example, Barilla is an Italian brand, but most of its products on the American market are made in America. Look for the “Made in Italy” insignia on the package.

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  1. I have been gluten free for ages. I eat a lot of corn based carbs if I need carbs. corn cakes which are like rice cakes but thinner, I use them as my bread, eat them with jam or peanut butter or avocado tomato etc. They are puffed so not full of fat. I also make some flatbread with gluten free flour – my favourite blends are prebuilt to mix lots of flours and provide good flour like responses- chickpea is generally the main ingredient, with some tapioca starch and xantham gum. Add some baking soda and salt and water and make in a non stick skillet to create a warm bread. But there’s lots of fiber so I find it way less bloat causing

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