One Month Gluten-Free

Originally, I was to try this gluten-free thing for 21 days and see how I felt. 

I was very open-minded to the idea of trying it, but was somewhat doubtful it would actually make a difference.


I mean, my love for bagels is really well-documented on this blog. 

When Tina was making a bunch of blog t-shirts, I even asked her to make a Will Run for Bagels shirt. Which I will still proudly rock, because I still believe in that. Even if I maybe won’t always be having them now…

As I write this, I just got home from being out in NJ for Mother’s Day.

So many holidays past, the trip home was marked by needing to stop to use the bathroom (or feeling like I needed to the whole ride) en route. After I lost weight, I thought perhaps it was due to my old propensity to eat way too much. Or that it was normal to feel sick after eating more than usual. 

I went back to the nutritionist for a second visit last week to discuss how the first three weeks had gone, and I was really happy to report that it had gone incredibly well. In the three weeks prior, I’d say my stomach had bothered me more days than not.

In those three weeks, my stomach bothered me…twice?! And I lost 4 pounds, which was nice, but even more importantly, I felt so much less bloated. I’d forgotten what it felt like to not feel bloated all. the. time.

There were several things I knew would test me in these three weeks: Easter, Kentucky Derby Day and my NYJL volunteer day, where they provide breakfast of sweet, beautiful bagels.

Easter ended up being relatively easy; I asked my mom to get gluten-free pasta, and I just didn’t touch the bread, and didn’t touch breaded things (which I don’t usually anyway.) Derby Day: after several glasses of wine, I could not resist the mac and cheese…so I didn’t. I thought it’d be a good test to see how I felt, too. And my stomach felt just fine. That next day, I brought my own GF bagel to volunteering so I wouldn’t be at all tempted. 

I’ve had bites or small servings here and there of gluten, and I find them okay if they’re isolated, but if I go several meals or days in a row having more gluten, I start feeling crappy again.

One commenter on my original post talked about her going gluten-free last year and then not staying 100% gluten-free “because I don’t want to become so intolerant to it that the tiniest little bit will make me violently sick, I enjoy gluten too much to make that total lifestyle change.” I don’t tolerate dairy super-well either, but I long ago decided a life without cheese is not a life worth living, so I do have cheese sometimes for that same reason.

The RD and I talked about this and agreed that it probably made the most sense for me to just keep up a mostly gluten-free diet if it made me feel better, but since I don’t have celiac, that it wouldn’t harm my body to have some gluten, I just should know I might not feel as great, and decide what it’s worth it for.

Having gone through several holidays in the past month, I’m really surprised how easy it’s been. I’ve tried to abstain from most of the GF substitutes because I’m also trying to cut more processed food out of my diet,. BUT when I’ve tried GF pasta, I’ve realized how it’s not really the pasta I was ever craving, but the comfort of the carbs. Because I don’t notice much of the taste of the pasta at all. I notice feeling happy having carbs and the sauce/meat/vegetables with the pasta.

Another interesting thing I noticed was the decrease in sugar cravings, particularly in the afternoon. I’d been on a serious sugar kick in the weeks and months prior to this that I found myself banishing without even really noticing.

I DO NOT INTEND FOR THIS TO BE A GLUTEN FREE BLOG. At all. But I wanted to record my thoughts on this for myself, and for any one else who is curious about this type of experiment. 

While I’m going to try to stay away from most of the processed stuff, obviously I’ll never do that 100%. So – what are your fave GF products/brands? NYC people – any great restaurants with GF-friendly menus?

17 comments on “One Month Gluten-Free

  1. Joy

    So I am not a carb lover so most of what I like isn’t gluten… But that said my friends know I hate bread (hate is a strong word I just really would rather anything else) one made me pizza on potato skin it was good! And the ONLY pasta I’ll eat is trader joes brown rice pasta which I JUST learned is gluten free (it’s also amazing)

    1. Vitoria

      @Joy: Not a carb lover?!?!?! What?!?! Dude tell me your secret. I love carbs like a fat kid….cuz I am a fat kid.

  2. Katie

    I think gnocchi would be considered “gluten free” as long as you’re having a traditional potato gnocchi. (and I only think, so make sure you double check) Also, Iowa Girl Eats has gone Gluten Free, but her recipes still sound delicious as usual! Also, thanks so much for the twitter recommendations, The Smith was awesome!

  3. Mandi | No Apathy Allowed

    Although I haven’t ever been tested or done any systematic form of trial and error, I sometimes wonder if I also have some sort of gluten sensitivity. I’ve become much more aware recently of how certain foods affect my body and I’m trying to keep that in mind when I make food choices. So I would definitely be interested in hearing more about what you discover in your (nearly) gluten-free journey!

  4. Shawna Hussey

    Nizza in Hell’s Kitchen has a whole gluten free menu, which is awesome for an Italian place, and makes their pizza crust from a chickpea blend. so good. i try to eat mostly GF as well but am not 100% (i’d say maybe 80%). def share more restaurants if you come across them!

  5. Jacquelyn @justjacq

    I don’t have celiacs disease but gluten definitely does the same thing to me that it does to you. I didn’t want to live completely gf because I still wanted to be able to enjoy eating and not feel restricted when I go out to eat or at a party. So I do the 90% gf thing too. I avoid it most days or have higher quality items that have gluten in it. I also found eating gf versions of food just doesn’t do it for me and is usually packed with other not so savory items to make it more tasty. It is crazy how sluggish and bloated I feel if I have too much gluten over a short period of time!

  6. Liza

    Rissoteria in Greenwich Village, Keste in Greenwich Village, Wild in the West Village, Tompkins Square Bagels has gluten-free bagels, TuLu’s Bakery has gluten free stuff. I’ve been gluten-free for four years and a vegetarian for 26 years. It’s manageable, especially in NYC. Good luck!

  7. Cheri @ Overactive Blogger

    I was test back in November because I was experiencing a ton of stomach discomfort. I was so surprised to find out that I did NOT have Celiac’s Disease, so instead of a GF diet, I am trying to eat really really clean. Nothing prepackaged, and a lot of prep to see if some foods I’ve been eating have been the culprit.

  8. Stephanie

    My stomach issues sound similar to yours. I don’t have celiacs, I just feel much better when I avoid gluten. That being said, I do still eat it occasionally – I just try to make sure whatever I’m eating is REALLY good so it’s worth the stomach discomfort later.

  9. Ash Bear

    Huge thumbs up for cutting back on the processed foods! I find that I am far less bloated when I stick to my Swiss “diet” versus when I’m back in the states for this exact reason! On the GF front, check out Iowa Girl Eats and Deliciously Ella (UK).

  10. elizabeth e

    I did a 10-day cleanse earlier this year – no gluten, no dairy, no caffeine, no alcohol, nothing processed – and it was amazing how good I felt! Too bad that isn’t at all sustainable. I’ve fallen off the wagon (wedding season), but I’m working on doing the no gluten/no alcohol/limited dairy during the work week. I really do feel much better, so I can’t wait to hear about your new 80% lifestyle.

  11. Kelly@BroccoliandBoxjumps

    Kudos for trying Gluten Free. I am working my way through a Whole30 to see what sensitives I have to Dairy, Grains, Alcohol and Sugar. It’s amazing how good you feel without eating these things but as with cheese it’s no life with too much restriction.

  12. Amanda

    I’ve been gluten free for 3 years now and also try to stay away from the processed, engineered GF products. But certain things are necessities. I love Mary’s Brand Crackers. All Udi’s products are my favorite. I also just discovered a new bread at Costco called Essential Baking. You can order online. Their seeded bread is awesome. Also, corn tortillas are my best friend. KIND bars are awesome when you need something quick or while traveling. Those are my must-haves/can’t live withouts.


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