The inconvenient truth of going gluten free

Today I read an article from the ever reliable Daily Mail claiming that gluten free people are more likely to be single as over 40% of people would think they’re ‘high maintenance’ and ‘selfish’. (I’m not going to link to the article, it’s easy to find if you want, but honestly, I wouldn’t bother)

Now, usually I’d see such obvious nonsense, shake my head, pity their ignorance and ignore it. But actually I think stuff like this is damaging to all of the good work organisations such as Coeliac UK do to raise awareness. So I thought I’d write a bit of a response.

The inconvenient truth for the Daily Mail and anyone else who has a problem with us gluten free folk is this:

We don’t bloody do this by choice.

For myself and the estimated 1 in 100 people in the UK who have coeliac disease, we go gluten free because we’d literally be vomiting our guts out on a daily basis if we didn’t. But, you know, sorry for being so selfish.

Coeliac disease is a lifelong autoimmune disease caused by a reaction to gluten. Symptoms include a whole range of downright sexy phenomena such as bloating, diarrhoea, nausea, wind, constipation and fatigue.

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye and when someone with coeliac disease eats gluten, their immune system reacts by damaging the lining of the small intestine.

So yeah, basically it’s a complete riot! Speak to pretty much anyone with coeliac disease and they’ll tell you how much of a ball ache it is and how they just want to eat all the doughnuts.

If there was a magic cure probably every coeliac in the world would take it. But sadly, there isn’t.

Coeliac disease signs us up for a lifetime of missing out on tasty gluten-filled treats, being that awkward one at the party with their own plate of food, paying £3 for a loaf of bread and having to ask the waiter about 16 questions before deciding if we trust the restaurant enough to put our health in their hands. Oh and randomly getting ill and having to produce an excel spreadsheet to figure out what you ate in the last couple of days that caused it so you can avoid making the same mistake again.

Literally nobody in their right mind would do this out of choice.

I usually like to use my blog and social media accounts to spread positivity about gluten free and being coeliac. So it’s felt a little out of character to go on a slight rant, but honestly I think it’s important to try and counter such utter guff as we’ve seen in the Daily Mail with some actual facts.

Coeliac Man out x

3 Comments

  1. Hi David , Reading this at 0130 having been woken by ‘being glutened ‘ symptoms And no ,off top of my head I’m unaware what it is I’ve eaten to cause it. !
    What you’ve written is spot on and I agree that the daily fail has once again got it wrong .
    Most folk I’m with will be only too keen to try and accommodate with their cooking or bring treats . This week a friend turned up with m@s free from choc cookies ! 👍
    Yes there are those who do get it wrong but genuine people are up for learning . The 40% that is mentioned in the article? well tough ! , I would say the ‘being selfish’ is in the other foot and I probably wouldn’t have hung out with them prior to diagnosis.
    Your blog explores and explains the myths that surround coeliac disease thank you! its education that needed to stop the ignorance. . having only been diagnosed 4 years ago after years of awful symptoms, I have benefited from the influx in free from foods available in most stores , The sooner this clean eating fad passes , however, the better . Why anyone would willingly go g free when they don’t need to is beyond me ( tho for many a slice of birthday cake on special occasions is just fine 🙄)
    When eating out The latest seems to be oh it’s ok I’ll just give you the vegetarian / vegan option !! For those of us who have no choice, We are adept at , having ‘questioned the restaurant 16 times’, knowing what we can eat or not.
    being gluten free dies not affect our charisma , personality or sense of humour . If anything it enhances such qualities . Do challenge ms health reporter to a lunch with a whole bunch of lovely coeliacs so that she is the ‘odd one out’ . Must dash …

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for your blog, well said My sister is a coeliac. I run GFQ in huddersfield which is a 100% gluten free fast food takeaway. We find ourselves explaining constantly to the ordinary why and how gluten affects. I dont think its that they dont comprehend they actually dont believe.

    Liked by 1 person

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