A is for Auto-Immune
Celiac Disease is an auto-immune disease that affects 1 in 133 people in the US alone. According to D. Tom O’Bryan, once someone has one auto-immune disease, they are likely to develop others.
B is for Better Health
The diagnosis of Celiac disease or gluten-intolerance starts your gluten-free lifestyle, which will improve your overall health. Life is amazing when you regain your energy and feel better each day.
C is for Cross-Contact
Cross-contact is very important to understand in living gluten-free to keep your body healthy. Cross-contact is when you mix gluten-free foods with gluten-filled foods. Using the same colander, toaster or cutting boards for both gluten-free and gluten-filled items causes cross-contact, or as some say, cross-contamination. A restaurant fryer used for both gluten-free and gluten-filled foods will cause cross-contact, meaning these foods are not safe for you to consume on a gluten-free diet. There are certain steps to take to eliminate cross-contamination while dining in a restaurant to stay safe. (This is covered in depth in the Gluten-Free Formula: From Diet to Lifestyle Course)
D is for Diagnosis
It is important to get the right diagnosis from your doctor. Talk to a doctor who understands gluten-intolerance and Celiac Disease. Never go gluten-free before testing as your results will not be accurate. ALWAYS test first! Otherwise, you need to eat gluten again for testing to be correct. NO ONE wants to eat gluten after they are feeling better being gluten-free.
E is for Elimination
Eliminating gluten from your diet and lifestyle is important to allow your body to heal and keep you healthy. You MAY NOT eat gluten every so often on purpose. Even if you do so and have no symptoms or reactions from this, you are still harming your body.
F is for Food
Change your food and change your life. There is a lot to learn about gluten-free living. But, once you get the hang of it, you are set. You can do this! Stick with real, whole delicious foods and limit gluten-free junk foods.
G is for Gluten
Gluten is found in wheat, rye, and barley. It is the glue that holds our bread and baked goods together (which is why gluten-free baked goods fall apart without binders added). Gluten is found in everything from processed foods, lunch meats, canned items, medications, and beauty products, just to name a few. Take it out of your life – and see how amazing you can feel!
H is for Health
Everyone deserves to have their health. Living gluten-free for Celiac Disease or gluten-intolerance can give you your health back.
I is for Intestines
Your intestines have been through a lot from digesting gluten. Time is needed to heal and restore the balance in your gut. The healing time can be different for everyone. Probiotics and certain supplements can help in this department.
J is for Junk Food
Living on gluten-free junk food will not offer any improvements to your body. The inflammation will remain and the intestinal healing may not take place. Limit the junk and concentrate on whole, real, fresh foods that will offer health to your body.
K is for Kitchen
Health begins in the kitchen! Your kitchen should be your safe place. Set it up for safety and best practices for your gluten-free life. Get in the kitchen, cook, and bake your way to health.
L is for Learn
Learn as much as you can about gluten-free living to build your strength, build your health and live a happy life. Understand your condition and share that knowledge with those around you.
M is for Money
Gluten-free living can be expensive. But, there are many ways to save money once you know where and how to shop. Grab my GF Savings Cheat Sheet right here.
N is for Non-Celiac Gluten-Intolerance
Testing negative for Celiac Disease causes people to think that they don’t have an issue with gluten. Yet, continuing to feel terrible whenever eating gluten could mean that you are intolerant to gluten. This means that gluten does bother you and you cannot eat it, but you do not have Celiac Disease. You still need to follow a completely gluten-free lifestyle to keep healthy.
O is for Options
There are many options in living gluten-free. Every day more companies are developing new products to help make our gluten-free lives better!
P is for Planning
Meal planning and organization will keep you on the right path to gluten-free living. Planning your meals and snacks means you know what you will be eating, not struggling to figure out what to eat. This also helps to eat healthier. We tend to grab what’s quickly available when hungry, which often isn’t the best option.
Q is for Quality of Life
Knowing that you need to live gluten-free is a fabulous thing. By doing so you are bringing health back to your body and improving the quality of your life. No more belly aches, no more exhaustion, no more missing out on all the fun things that gluten has taken away from you.
R is for Reading Labels
Reading labels is definitely a skill you need to understand and improve for gluten-free living. Thankfully the labeling laws are now easier to find foods properly labeled GF. Products now have stricter requirements to be labeled or certified gluten-free. Still, read the ingredient labels to make sure you are making good choices for healthy living.
S is for Support
Support is a necessity in our gluten-free journey. No one should have to figure out how to live gluten-free on their own. Find Gluten Intolerance Groups or Food Allergy groups in your area or online. Share and educate your family and friends so they may offer support as well. And, of course, I am here for YOU!
T is for Teaching
Teaching family and friends goes hand in hand with support. When your surrounding group understands what you are going through, and what you need to change and adapt, they can offer more support. Share what you learn. Cook and bake for your loved ones so they see that living gluten-free is not a deprivation, but a delicious journey.
U is for Unaware
Many people are still unaware of Celiac Disease. People don’t understand it or know how to live with this auto-immune disease. Unfortunately, there are still doctors who do not know enough about the disease as well. Find your support, a knowledgeable doctor, and educate those around you. There is still a lot of awareness we need to spread.
V is for Victory
Gaining your strength, energy and health back is a HUGE VICTORY for your gluten-free life! Yeah!
W is for Way of Life
Living gluten-free will be your way of life once you are diagnosed with Celiac Disease or Non-Celiac Gluten-Intolerance. Once you understand gluten-free living and have tools in place, you can create a very healthy lifestyle.
X is for “X Marcks the spot”
My website www.glutenfreemarcksthespot.com was created to share all things gluten-free for YOU. The struggles of my own journey in being diagnosed, understanding gluten-free living, and now living this abundant life, have led me to find my own path and that of my three gluten-free children. No one should have to struggle or feel alone on this journey! I am here to share all I have learned to help YOU navigate your gluten-free life with less stress and overwhelm.
Y is for YOU
You are important and deserve to live a healthy, happy life. Go Gluten-Free! Set yourself on the right path and follow your journey to health.
Z is for ZZZZZZ. Get your rest!
Your rest and sleep are extremely important in living gluten-free. At first, your body has a lot of healing to do. Rest is needed as your body regenerates and energizes while you sleep. Deep sleep is needed for this to happen. You should wake feeling rested. Plan your bedtimes and stick to them. This will keep your hormones and energy levels balanced, and continue to help heal your body.