I get anxious when I go out to eat with people. I don't like the looks and the jokes when I ask for a gluten-free menu or look up what I can eat online beforehand. At first, the jokes were funny, but now, when someone asks, "Is that gluten-free?" every time I eat, I'm just annoyed.
I would get sick, fatigued, and bloated every time I ate pasta, bread, and other wheat products.
Slowly, I came to the realization that gluten might be the issue. My mom has an allergy to it, so I figured it was possible for me to have it as well. I talked to my doctor and she agreed that with the symptoms that cutting out gluten would be beneficial, and it wouldn't hurt to try. If the sickness pursued, we'd reevaluate options.
So, from that point on I made a change.
I didn't quit cold turkey, but I started cutting out wheat products from my diet. Within a week I saw a change. I feel more in control of my health, I feel more energized and happy, and I feel more confident in my appearance. And I wasn't feeling sick all the time.
It's been a difficult transition, especially as an incoming college student, but a month later I can say that I have cut out all wheat and soy from my diet. It does make it harder when I want to "treat myself" to something including gluten and I feel absolutely awful about a half an hour later. Regardless, I've learned what foods I can and can't eat, what snacks I like best, and I'm starting to feel a lot more confident about going to restaurants.
I would never have thought I'd have a food allergy, but on top of my hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), I see being gluten-free as a challenge and a healthy way to keep my diet in check and avoid the "Freshman 15." I've had to avoid certain restaurants when I go out (Panera is a nightmare), however, I definitely love this new lifestyle and how it makes me feel.