I Adore What I Love Blog // MY GLUTEN FREE STORY + 3 GF FOODS I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT // www.iadorewhatilove.com #iadorewhatilove

Happy Wednesday, blog friends! So I know that I always talk about how I have a gluten allergy but I thought I would take some time today to discuss my GF story! Don’t worry, I won’t share allllll the gory details but I’ll start by saying I was having crazy symptoms for months and TOTALLY ignored them! Ooops. My doctor thinks that it’s probably something that developed during pregnancy and although it took me forever to figure it out {11 months after giving birth to be exact} she’s probably right.

What started to happen was that I began feeling sick a lot. I was exhausted and weak and after I ate anything, even something as small as one tiny cracker, I felt super full and bloated for hours. HOURS. To the point where I sometimes skipped lunch and still, never wanted to eat dinner. You’d think it would be awesome but it really wasn’t in the least. I was miserable in my own body! I also was having terrible bouts of acid reflux again out of nowhere {something that I suffered with while pregnant) and always felt nauseous. To make a long story short, I just felt BLAHHHH. After a few months of ignoring these symptoms and going about my daily life, I just couldn’t anymore. I started to throw up after I ate anything and finally came to the conclusion that what I was feeling was most likely the result of a digestive problem. You guys, IT WAS NOT FUN.

One night, I couldn’t sleep, felt like I was 5,000 pounds {not kidding} and super weak, so I put all my symptoms into this app that I have and ONE possible illness came up that I might have… celiac disease. I had heard about it before but I really wasn’t educated in what it meant to have celiac. I knew you couldn’t eat gluten but to be honest, I didn’t really even know what the real definition of gluten was, besides knowing that it was in bread. Well, shoot.

My friend has a gluten allergy so I texted her that night at like 1 in the morning freaking out!! Ha I didn’t think she was going to respond since it was so late but sure enough, she’s a night owl like me so she did… assuring me that I was going to be fine! Honestly though, the thought of no longer eating bread was not okay with me!! After letting this revelation sink in for a bit, I realized that if all that was wrong with me was a gluten allergy, i’ll take it… because it could have been MUCH worse! This was an illness that I had the power to break just by changing my eating habits! Then I thought about it more and if I might be able to relieve myself of these horrific symptoms by eliminating something – no matter how big or how small – from my diet, I was all for it! Shortly, I turned my frown upside down and did some google research. Sure enough, literally every symptom that’s named for celiac WAS ME. Never in my life was a gluten allergy on my radar and all of the sudden my world changed upside down! 

I made a vow to myself that starting the next day, I was cutting gluten out of my life. It just so happened that on that day I was going to NYC with my husband and some friends for a little trip but that was besides the point. I was going to do it! If I felt better, amazing, and if not, well, I would deal with it after the trip. YOU GUYS!!!! I felt like a different person immediately!!!!!! {insert alllll the hands in the air / hands praying / happiest of emoji faces here}

Every morning for breakfast I typically ate 2 pieces of rye bread toast… never again! {just an fyi, i eventually did learn the real definition of gluten, and that anything that’s wheat, barley, and rye is considered to be a gluten-filled food} This is crazy but it was honestly EASY for me to change my lifestyle and go gluten free. You know why? Because I never wanted to feel so sick as I had been feeling prior to making this dietary change again. That’s enough momentum for a lifetime! 

After NYC, I went to the doc who confirmed that I do have celiac. My acid reflux was gone, I was no longer feeling bloated, no longer nauseous, no longer weak, etc. etc. I felt like ME again! Which I’ve come to realize is the best feeling in the world!

What I’ve discovered is that leading a gluten-free lifestyle is really no healthier to the average person than not leading one, especially if you fill your diet with foods that are replacements of gluten, like gluten-free bread. BUT it limits your food intake at many restaurants and house parties. I used to eat Brody’s left over food and now I can’t. If the resto that I go to doesn’t have a gluten-free menu, I’ll order the chicken sandwich without the bun. So in turn, personally, I am eating much healthier and lost a few pounds as a result. That was a welcome plus! 

The day I got home from NYC I cleaned out my whole pantry, freezer, and refrigerator and gave all my gluten-filled foods to my mom! Except for a few of Brody’s favorites, my household is completely GF, which thankfully, my husband is totally on board with too. Since adopting this allergy, I’ve come across some GF foods that are GROSS and others that are AMAZING! Without further ado, here are my 3 favorite gluten-free food substitutes that I can’t live without at home! 

I Adore What I Love Blog // MY GLUTEN FREE STORY + 3 GF FOODS I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT // www.iadorewhatilove.com #iadorewhatilovePurchase Udi’s products here, the pretzels here, and the baking flour here.

Just a few other Gfree staples that I LOVE:
Wellaby’s Parmesan Cheese-Ups {which I spoke about in this post}, Chocolate Peppermint Stick Luna Bars {which I mentioned my obsession with here}, Gluten-Free Pasta from Trader Joes, Edy’s Slow Churned Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream {thank goodness this is gfree because I eat it a few times a week after dinner… and always have!}, Garden Veggie Straws {my son and I share a love for these}Purdue Simply Smart Gluten Free Frozen Breaded Chicken Breast Tenders {i eat these for dinner often}, and Honey-Nut Cherrios

You guys, you will never hear me complain about this allergy. It’s my new normal and what’s to complain about when I’m feeling pretty great everyday?! Also, living in Chicago is probably the best place to have this kind of allergy because almost every restaurant I go to has their own gluten free menu! I will never take that for granted… it’s amazing! 

[bctt tweet=”If you have a #glutenallergy, this is a #mustread! 3 #GF foods you shouldn’t live without!” username=”iadorewhatilove”]

In addition, I’m ALWAYS pinning gluten-free recipes so if you’re interested, you should probably start following my Pinterest profile! {my boards are SUPER organized!} 
Click here to follow me on Pinterest!! 

Do you have any allergy stories??
Would love to know in the comments section below! 

Comments +

  1. Courtney says:

    One of my good friend’s has Celiac’s and so he’s always bringing GF snacks to share with us! I didn’t realize that you could develop food allergies while pregnant!


    • Dana Ivy says:

      Thanks for sharing, Courtney! I bet you like the gfree snacks just as much, right?! There are some pretty great brands out there that are certified gluten-free! And I know right?! One of my friends went from having perfect eyesight to needing glasses after she was pregnant. So bizarre! Have a wonderful day!! Xox

  2. Dara says:

    I’m so happy you figured out the cause of all those symptoms, because that sounded awful! Now you can move forward! And yeah for loosing a few pounds along the way!

    – Dara // http://www.peoniesandhoneybees.com

  3. Staci Hauk says:

    We are BIG UDI fans, love, love, love their blueberry muffins! Gluten free is actually pretty tasty, don’t you think? Glad they figured out what was wrong and that it was an easy fix! XOXO!

    • Dana Ivy says:

      Ooo yes, those Udi Blueberry muffins are delish too! And yes! So tasty! When you find the good brands, life becomes so much better! Thanks for stopping by the blog! Xox

  4. Stacey says:

    I am not gluten free, but I LOVE the gluten-free pretzels at Trader Joes, they are so delish. Also, love your blog! We are spending a month Chicago this summer visiting my family and the suggestions for things to do with a baby so so helpful!

    • Dana Ivy says:

      Wait, I’ve never tried TJ’s gluten free pretzels!! I totally should!! Thank you so much for the kind compliments about my blog! You are so sweet, Stacey, and I really appreciate it! Oooo you are going to have so much fun visiting the Chi this summer! Some fun things to do with baby: eat lunch and walk around Millenium Park, where you can also visit the bean, the shedd aquarium is always fun if you’re looking for an indoor activity, going to Lincoln Park Zoo is a must! And you can’t go wrong with shopping on Mich Ave! Many summer weekends have art fairs on main streets and areas, so I suggesting checking one of those out too! Hope that helps! Maybe I’ll write a blog post about this?! Xox

  5. Lily Ayala says:

    A few months ago I decided to go gluten-free, not because I’m allergic or anything like that, I just wanted to because I’ve heard it helps with fertility. I can’t say I’m completely GF, but I do make better choices. I need to try Udi’s products!! Thanks for sharing, Dana! Glad you are feeling much better!

    xo, Lily
    Beauty With Lily

    • Dana Ivy says:

      Omgosh I never ever knew that about the fertility thing! Interesting! Yes!! Try Udi’s products.. they are the best, Lily!! And thank you, me too! Xox

  6. katelyn ryan says:

    i’ve always wanted to try the chocolate chip muffin tops, they look so good!

  7. It has to be hard to be gluten free at the same time I see so many more items at the store these days that are. I had a co-worker who was gluten free and he told me all about it. Glad to hear you have found some yummy snacks that agree with you! http://mymonochromaticlife.com

  8. I have such a weakness for pretzels, love that they make them GF!
    Green Fashionista

  9. I have quite a few friends who discovered their gluten allergy randomly! I’ve also heard amazing things about those chocolate chip cookies


    • Dana Ivy says:

      It’s so weird how it happens! One minute you are fine and then next you’re the opposite. So strange! Udi’s is the best!!!! Xx

  10. WhatWouldVWear says:

    I heard of the benefits cutting gluten out, and your story was just eye-opening! So glad you’re feeling better now, Dana! And those snacks sound great too! So glad you found them!

    xoxo, Vanessa


  11. Biana Perez says:

    Thats crazy that it was developed after you had the baby and also a little frightening! I’m glad you’ve been able to make the change and so happy that you’re feeling so much better! Being sick and not knowing what is causing it is really scary! xo, Biana –BlovedBoston

    • Dana Ivy says:

      Right?! I guess many people develop a gluten allergy randomly so who knows?! That was just what the doctor predicted! And thanks friend – are we friends now? haha – I’m glad I’m feeling better too! Xox

  12. Jalisa says:

    Thanks so much for sharing your story with us, Dana! I’m glad that the doctors were able to confirm what it was that you were experiencing and now, you’re able to manage those symptoms with a gluten free diet! These days, I’ve noticed that supermarkets have much more options labeled gluten free than before, making it easier to discover alternatives. I shared with you on Instagram how we’ve been trying to switch over to gluten free in my house because we thought that I had an allergy as well, come to discover I don’t, but after researching what gluten is and how it really isn’t good for anyone to consume much of, we decided to make some changes anyway. Thankfully, my husband is on board, too, because I’m sure you know, men can be so difficult when it comes to changing eating habits, haha! We LOVE Udi’s, too, specifically their white bread, which tastes SO buttery and uber delicious when used to make an Elvis sandwich, yum! I also love their rye! I haven’t tried the other ones you’ve shared here, so I’ll definitely have to check them out the next time I go food shopping. What I don’t like is that they can be a bit pricier than regular or even Ezekiel bread, but I’ve found that Stop & Shop sells them much cheaper than Whole Foods or Mrs. Greens! I also find it to be annoying when dining out that the options aren’t really there for gluten free, other than pizza, but hopefully this will change! Thanks so much for sharing, beautiful, and I hope you’re having a wonderful week so far!



    • Dana Ivy says:

      Jalisa you are oh so thoughtful every time! I feel super lucky to live in a day in age where being gluten-free is super common! Awesome that you and you hubby are going gf too – I predict that in 20 years everyone will be! Isn’t Udi’s the best?! Need to try their white bread! It is expensive but well worth the price! There’s no stop & shop but I usually buy most of my gf food at Target. Ours has a huge selection! You’re the best!! Xox

  13. Shauna C says:

    Wow, what a scary story. I’m glad you were able to figure out what it was that was ailing you! My sister had the same thing happen to her so she went gluten free last year. She says she’s never felt better! I know there are many benefits to cutting it out :)



  14. Mademoiselle Coconath says:

    Thanks for sharing your story!
    Great post!


    Mademoiselle Coconath


  15. Ashon says:

    Thanks for sharing, Glad that you were able to figure it out quick! Great post!

    Kisses Ashon

  16. So glad you are feeling better! I can’t imagine how horrible it must have been to feel so sick!

    • Dana Ivy says:

      Thanks lady! It was pretty horrid but an easy fix once we figured it out! Thanks for stopping by the blog! Hope you’ll be back to read more!! Xo

      And PS my fave flowers are lilacs =)

  17. Charity says:

    So my son, myself and hubby have gone GF. No major health concerns but my son was always complaining that his stomach hurt etc. after he ate so we all decided to make a health change. My daughter isn’t completely on board but our house is slowly becoming 100% gluten free and I ADORE everything Udi’s! It’s the best isn’t it? My son (he’s 12) has a hard time ordering when we are out to eat but is getting used to it. We find that a lot of restaurants-especially Mexican-don’t have a gluten free menu… I’ll have to check out your GF recipes girl!

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