Monday, June 18, 2012

Gluten free!? dairy free?!

On Friday my husband and I had a conversation with my Reproductive Immunologist.

[Side note:  When I was obsessed with jiu jitsu, for like the last 3 or so years of my life, I got a kick out of saying "my chiropractic neurologist" or "my myofascial massage therapist" or "my ortho guy".  But now that I'm a little bit obsessing with trying to make a training partner I can ALWAYS dominate, ha ha... I have a new set of specialists.  And the newest addition to that stable is the reproductive immunologist, who is tasked with stopping my body from killing the embryos it apparently doesn't like.  Anyway.]

This doctor walked us through the latest round of blood test results, gave me some good news (the partial DQ alpha match is not a problem; I won't need super-duper expensive injections to permit and maintain a pregnancy) and some bad news.  The bad news is, my body is agitated about something, and that agitation isn't good for implantation.  His advice-- the next time we try to conceive I should be on some prescription meds like prednisone and lovenox... also I need to be taking monster doses of antioxidants, fish oil and the ACE vitamins... and...

I should reduce or eliminate gluten and dairy from my diet.  "But I don't have any problems with gluten! or dairy!"

Yes, you do-- your cytokine levels show that something in there is agitating your body, and we suspect it's gluten and dairy.  So abruptly on Friday, I came to the end of consuming most yummy things.

No more cookies, sandwiches, Belgian waffles, cereal, cool glasses of milk, yogurt, fried chicken, pizza, pasta, potstickers, etc. etc. etc.

Saturday I moped around the house, eating inordinate quantities of fresh strawberries and roasted almonds by the handful.  Not the most varied diet but I survived.

Sunday lunch with our niece, I had quinoa/corn/black bean salad, with a roasted ear of corn, and some green beans.  The tortellini with pesto taunted me.

Sunday night at the Mexican restaurant I had fajitas on corn tortillas, no cheese, and I don't eat sour cream any way.  They were okay.

It really aggravated me for a while and I'm sure it will continue to do so.  But I am trying, because I want to have a little one, and maybe this is what it takes.

However, all you Paleo people can start telling me about how to make gluten-free flatbread if you want.  Please?  Or whatever it is you eat sandwiches on.  I know-- you're grain-free, not gluten-free.  I'm just hoping for suggestions, from anyone.

14 comments:

Can Sönmez said...

I seriously think I would die if I couldn't eat dairy any more. No morning cereal and particularly no cheese would be totally devastating. You have my immense sympathies! ;D

HomeImprovementNinja said...

Not the end of the world, really. I've been gluten free since Nov. Yesterday, I made some gluten free rhubarb muffins. They make dairy free ice cream too (soy milk or almond milk). There are gluten free and dairy free substitutes for most of the stuff you probably think you can't live without. Most of them are okay, but not as good as the original, except for non-dairy ice cream which is just as good and gfree pancakes (which are fluffier and better!). Coconut milk takes some getting used to, but now i find it delicious in smoothies.

There's a lot of cool recipes on Robb Wolf's website or Mark's Daily Apple. I heard that the book Paleo Comfort Foods is good too, but I haven't seen it personally.

Also, probably not something you want to hear, but if you have gluten issues, you probably have some intestinal lining damage and if you do, you might want to start with something called a GAPS Protocol which cuts out of lot of stuff that's hard to digest for the first couple of weeks and has you eating a lot of stuff like bone broth soups which have choline and help to repair the gut. There's a guy who isn't quite paleo but sympathetic to it named Chris Kresser who specializes in this kind of stuff for pregnancies. Good luck!

HomeImprovementNinja said...

Not the end of the world, really. I've been gluten free since Nov. Yesterday, I made some gluten free rhubarb muffins. They make dairy free ice cream too (soy milk or almond milk). There are gluten free and dairy free substitutes for most of the stuff you probably think you can't live without. Most of them are okay, but not as good as the original, except for non-dairy ice cream which is just as good and gfree pancakes (which are fluffier and better!). Coconut milk takes some getting used to, but now i find it delicious in smoothies.

There's a lot of cool recipes on Robb Wolf's website or Mark's Daily Apple. I heard that the book Paleo Comfort Foods is good too, but I haven't seen it personally.

Also, probably not something you want to hear, but if you have gluten issues, you probably have some intestinal lining damage and if you do, you might want to start with something called a GAPS Protocol which cuts out of lot of stuff that's hard to digest for the first couple of weeks and has you eating a lot of stuff like bone broth soups which have choline and help to repair the gut. There's a guy who isn't quite paleo but sympathetic to it named Chris Kresser who specializes in this kind of stuff for pregnancies. Good luck!

Georgette said...

Thanks :)

Fortunately for me, I have no problem digesting gluten or dairy, and there are no indications I have any damage from my prior life. In fact I have a stomach of cast iron which happily eats from street vendors in the 3rd World, drinks from mountain creeks, devours extra-rare hamburgers etc.

I just have raised cytokine levels (specifically TNF and interferon gamma, and cd56+/16+) which mean embryos find it more difficult to implant. Once I'm past the first trimester, I'm happily back to dairy and gluten all day. :)

leslie said...

Doc is right, gluten & dairy are probably the biggest culprits for something like that. Best book for explaining -- "It Starts With Food." (Also, FYI, Robb Wolf often talks in his podcasts about couples adopting the Paleo diet & getting pregnant soon after.)

I actually go gluten-free, too. I think most Paleo recommends it, but "grain free" sometimes is a little easier to explain.

Blogs with recipes (and some cookbooks):
Wheat Belly Blog
Nom Nom Paleo
Everyday Paleo (also a cookbook)
Paleo Comfort Foods (also cookbook) -- recipe for fried chicken
Make it Paleo (Food Lovers' Kitchen) (cookbook)

Lex said...

Maybe I'm the only one, but whenever I hear such diagnosis by doctors, I've very skeptical. Nutrition science is very complex and there a lot of factors involved. It seems that every decade the "culprit" changes. That said, I'm sure the doc is onto something.

DagneyTaggert said...

Okay you can do this.

Almond milk
Coconut milk
Rice
Gluten free crackers
Gluten free granola
Tabouli salad (easy to make without the barley)
Hummus
Most Mediterranean food sans the flatbread
Indian food
Lebanese food
Turkish food
Thai food (Yum Nua salad!)
Vietnamese food

Think substitutes. Rice for any bread item. Alond milk or coconut milk for dairy.

Diving into the ethnic food really helped me. Instead of racking my head over what to eat, I started hitting up places that served gluten-free by default.

Anonymous said...

What Lex said. But I would also like to point out that some nachos (Xochitl for one) are gluten free... if you don't mind replacing wheat with corn.

Georgette said...

I can totally eat corn. But nachos without cheese seems wrong somehow. And don't even think dairy-free cheese.

Georgette said...

I'm a picky eater! can't stand alternative milks, Indian food, Lebanese, Turkish, Greek, Ethiopian. Don't care for most Thai flavors though I learned to like pad thai while in Thailand... no interest in coconut flavors, curries etc. BUT-- I am giving gluten free pasta a try-- corn, rice flours and the quinoa flour variety. And thank goodness I love me some quinoa...

Paleo would kill me, I confess!

Love you all for your helpful suggestions! And appreciate your pity for my picky, snooty, idiot ways!

Shark Girl said...

That's a difficult one. No gluten--okay I might be able to do it; no dairy--possibly. But the two together? Oh, man.

However--on a positive note: many restaurants now have gluten-free options on their menus.

Good luck.

JAB said...

Hate to say it girl..... ;)

Quinoa is excellent.
In general I do not eat a lot of bread, but now I just eat half a bun on a sandwhich usually. You will be amazed at how much better you feel without gluten and dairy!!!

Megan said...

"No more cookies, sandwiches, Belgian waffles, cereal, cool glasses of milk, yogurt, fried chicken, pizza, pasta, potstickers, etc. etc. etc."

Almost cried at that line.

That said, I'd almost given up on paleo baking before I tried black bean brownies. They'll get you by in a pinch.

It'll be worth it for the new training partner...hang in there:) I've heard that acupuncture can take the edge of cravings.

Martial Arts Women and Fight Movies said...

Look up some paleo diet recipes. They are all gluten and dairy free. Avoiding dairy and gluten is extremely healthy, if only all of America would do the paleo diet there would be a 0% obesity rate.