"I Can’t Eat That"

This is a rant that’s been a long time coming. First, the article. I just posted a new article about how to eat gluten-free and low-glycemic index. It’s not easy. But it doesn’t have to be a dramatic pity-party, either.

This is how I eat. That’s all.

But people who focus on the “can’ts” only see life in those terms.

If I thought about “I can’t have gluten” all day long, I’d stare at the daily donut delivery and wish I could have it. This longing eventually leads to one of two responses – breaking down and eating something that will make me ill, or breaking down and buying a box of Kinnikinnick donuts and eating the whole box in one sitting.

Obviously, this mindset is not healthy, or there would be a potential healthy outcome!

Ever notice that the vast majority of gluten-free food in the grocery store is junk? Cookies, cake mixes, brownies…. it’s all catering to the “but I can’t have that” mindset, and it’s luring unsuspecting celiacs to a sugary doom….

“But can’t you cheat? Just a little?”

Sure, if I want to be sick and miserable for the rest of the week. That’s like someone with mono asking you to make out, or in the case of extreme allergies, it’s analogous to unprotected sex. Don’t go there!

Just. Don’t.

I hate it when people think it’s ok to ask me to cheat on my allergies “just a little.” Ok, and why don’t you cheat just a little on your taxes?

I’m not “being good” on a diet of deprivation and starvation.

I’m eating food that makes me feel satisfied, healthy and energetic. I’m eating food that doesn’t make me ill. And there’s a WIDE array of this kind of food out there that isn’t boxed and bagged in the grocery store next to all of the “I can’ts”. It’s in the produce section, at the meat counter, in the deli. It’s at the farmer’s market.

And because I am eating nutritious, delicious food, I don’t think about food that I can’t have. The daily donut delivery? They look plastic and gross to me. The Kinnikinnick donuts? Nice for a treat now and then, when I can find the chocolate ones…. but the box stays in the freezer for way too long because I save them for special occasions (and for right after a high-protein meal).

I don’t see life in terms of “I can’t”. I see life in terms of “ooooh! That looks like fun!”


3 thoughts on “"I Can’t Eat That"

  1. LOVE your article and this post. The whole “can't you cheat?” thing drives me NUTS too, and I'm not even GF! But I have several close friends who are, and I get so mad on their behalf when a waitress says something like, “Oh, I'll just pick the croutons off the salad for you.” Um, no. People just don't get it! Foods you're allergic to are like poison. Cross-contaminating somebody's food is like putting “just a little bit” of arsenic in somebody's coffee. Come, on cheat a little. Just a little arsenic.

    (dramatic eye roll)

  2. You made me smile with the “Can't you just cheat a little” thing too! I have Celiac Disease and have to eat GF, and my family is always asking me that! Why is it so hard for people to understand / accept that we don't want to make ourselves sick?
    I first saw you on Nutrimirror, which is why I came to your blog. I'm also GF, DF, and SF. It's nice to find someone who can understand. 🙂

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