I recently asked members of a social media group for feedback about what they would like to read more about. One of the subjects that was mentioned was the positive side of coeliac disease.
To be honest, my first reaction to that would be ”what positive side?”. I hate having coeliac disease and if a cure was possible, I would choose to eat a normal diet again in a heartbeat- just for the convenience of it all if nothing else.
I was diagnosed with coeliac disease after 18 years of intermittent anaemia, fainting spells, constant diarrhoea and severe abdominal pains. My GP never conducted any particular tests except a regular complete blood count, and she found it fitting to send me for a psychiatric evaluation due to my frequent visits to her clinic with new symptoms every time. The psychiatric evaluation turned out perfect but my health was going downhill at a fast rate. Thanks to my late diagnosis by a different doctor, I was found to have osteopaenia at 28 years of age, and other health complications. I was also recently diagnosed with spinal facet joint arthritis, and since I am only 35 years old and have never had a back injury, I suspect it has something to do with my late diagnosis of coeliac disease.
So I have been thinking about positive things that came about with my diagnosis and the more I thought about it the longer the list became. This is my personal slant. I am sure you all have your own experiences and views on the matter.
Here is my list in no particular order of importance:
- I felt healthy for the first time in years. I had boundless energy and was pain free.
- My toilet breathed a sigh of relief.
- I no longer had brain fog (except for the return of the haze every time I was accidentally glutened). I really did not know what clarity of mind felt like until I was established on my gluten free diet.
- I actually learnt what gluten was- I thought it was ”just something in bread and pasta”.
- I have the opportunity of monitoring my daughter and the peace of mind of knowing that if she ever develops symptoms she will not go though hell to get diagnosed.
- Other family members got tested.
- I learnt about coeliac disease and other gluten related disorders and I am still learning something new every day.
- I got the opportunity to help raise awareness and advocate for others through my writing and my facebook page.
- I discovered that I like to write….who knew?
- I managed to build up my bone mass and reverse some of the damage I caused through years of eating poison.
- I discovered that I am a stronger person than I thought. I have never cheated on my diet and will never do so. There is too much at stake.
I know that for many the first thing on their list would be that a diagnosis helped them to eat a healthier or cleaner diet. I tend to disagree. A person can eat healthy food whether on a gluten free diet or not. As I always say, crap is crap, no matter if it is gluten free or not. So that was not included in my personal list of positives, although it might be a great thing for many others.
Do you share any of my views? What would be included in your positive list?
photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/melodycampbell/2656648042/”>Melody Campbell</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>
photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/jonmcgovern/3199154697/”>Jon McGovern</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/”>cc</a>