Grieving the Loss
Twenty years ago, when I found out I was gluten intolerant, I went through a few weeks of real grief.
I was depressed and upset at this change in my life which affected so many things. I had to throw out much of the food in my pantry, and learn new cooking techniques. Tricky social situations kept coming up. My family and friends didn’t know what to serve at gatherings. It was by turns upsetting, irritating, embarrassing, and sad.
I am now convinced that my reaction was both healthy and helpful. In time, I was able to move through these feelings to a gluten-free life without feelings of deprivation. When I realized that high-carb foods also had to go, I went through a similar phase, but because a lot of carby foods have gluten, it was shorter and less intense.
If you are feeling some of these feelings, they are normal. If you find yourself hopping on and off the low-carb bandwagon, maybe you never really faced the loss. Here are some steps to help you move through this process.
These days, people go on and off so many diets that they often don’t think about what it would really mean to adopt a new way of eating permanently.
However, the truth is that if your body does not process carbohydrate well, this is exactly what you must do. If you are sensitive to carbohydrates (sugars and starches), are insulin resistant, have metabolic syndrome, are pre-diabetic or diabetic, you have a greater risk of living a shortened and less happy life if you do not do something about it, period.
If take measures early in the progression, you can avoid a lot of damage to your body. By the time diabetes is diagnosed, the pancreas is really failing, and the risk of damage throughout the body rises dramatically. However, the damage begins long before reaching that point. So don’t wait.
Need more of a wake-up call? Here are some studies that author Jenny Rhul has compiled about damage caused by pre-diabetic levels of blood sugar.
The Loss is Real
Changing the way we eat involves real loss. We are probably losing some of our favorite foods - comfort foods, celebration foods, and just plain tasty foods. There are also social adjustments, as many social situations revolve around food. Some people can even become a little hostile. Who wouldn’t be bummed out about this? It’s perfectly normal. In fact, I believe that if you allow yourself these feelings, you’ll get through them faster, and they will be less likely to sabotage your new healthy way of eating.