My two year gluten free journey


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I cannot believe that I have been writing this blog for two years.  How time flies.  It seems just yesterday that I began this gluten free, dairy free journey.   I have learned a lot about not only living a gluten free lifestyle but also a lot about blogging.  I would like to share my insights with all of you.

ON BLOGGING:

  • Find your own writing style.  You will grow into it as time goes on.  Don’t try to emulate anyone else.  Your true self will shine through in time.
  • It takes time to grow your audience.  Wordpress has a wonderful community of bloggers who will support your efforts.
  • Once you have established your blog, you can grow your audience with Adwords.  I believe it is worth the small investment it takes to reach a wider, worldwide audience.
  • Don’t clog your blog up with ads.  Most people find them annoying.  If I land on a blog that has a lot of flash ads, I tend to leave that site.
  • On that same note, don’t expect to get rich.  Blog because you love it, and want to get your message out there.
  • You can blog about anything you wish.  You can make it public or private.  You don’t need experience, and you can have a free blog.  Don’t let anything stop you from expressing yourself.
  • Take some free WordPress classes.  There are numerous topics, and taking them will help you to learn about how WordPress works, and how you can get more comfortable using it.
  • If you are thinking of moving your blog to wordpress.org, do your homework. Most widgets cost extra.  You might lose subscribers.  You have to do your own website maintenance.  These are just some of the pitfalls.  But you will also maintain complete control of your content and will be able to grow.  It’s an individual decision.
  • I do believe WordPress premium is worth the $99 per year cost, if for no other reason than to be able to chat with experts when you have a problem or question.

ON GLUTEN FREE LIVING

  • I can’t stress enough that the first step in eliminating gluten from your diet is to get tested for celiac disease!!!!!  This is most important!  Eliminating gluten from your diet before being tested can hide celiac disease from being discovered, and might be really detrimental to your health.
  • Never put your children on a gluten-free diet unless they have tested positive for celiac disease.  Growing children need the nutrients that are found in whole grains for their growth.  It is not healthier!
  • Gluten-free is not a fad to those of us with Celiac disease or non-celiac gluten intolerance (yes there is finally proof it really does exist, thank you).  You should not stop eating gluten just because you think it is healthier.  IT IS NOT!!!  I can’t for the life of me understand why you would want to give up gluten.
  • Living gluten free is challenging.  Watching someone else eat what you can’t right in front of you is depressing.  Having to cook every meal from scratch is a pain.
  • You can learn how to live a great gluten free lifestyle.  Even having to give up your favorite foods can be rewarding when you realize you can replicate just about any recipe in a gluten-free version.
  • It is a constant struggle not to gain weight while living this lifestyle, especially when I am testing new products and recipes.  Not that I mind the testing….
  • Most people that are gluten intolerant are also dairy intolerant.  It might not be just lactose intolerance.  I am intolerant to whey.
  • There is no magic pill to stop gluten intolerance.  You can’t just take a pill and eat everything you want.  It doesn’t work that way.
  • Don’t rely on social media for your information; there are a lot of confused and misinformed people out there.  Do your research, but use more than one source.
  • Probiotics tend to make IBS symptoms worse.
  • FODMAPS should be explored, especially if you have IBS.
  • Gluten free is becoming more and more mainstream.
  • New gluten and allergen free products are appearing every day.
  • Having a support system is paramount to living a great gluten free life.

I WANT TO THANK:

  • My husband, who eats and gives me honest feedback on every gluten and dairy-free concoction I put in front him, indulges my almost daily Amazon.com and numerous other gluten free website ordering (and enters them into the checkbook),  who reads my blog faithfully, and who gladly does the resulting pile of dishes.  His support is the very reason this blog exists.
  • My readers, who have given me nothing but kind and encouraging comments.
  • My followers, who have grown from just other WordPress bloggers, to people from all over the globe.
  • To those who believe in me and email me, asking for my advice.
  • Those companies who have provided free samples to me to review.  I thank you for allowing me to give honest reviews of your products.
  • Those companies who have not sent me free samples, or who do not work with smaller blog sites.  I will still continue to use and recommend your products to my readers, and hope that one day we can work together.

IN CONCLUSION

These past two years have been an amazing, fulfilling and wonderful journey.  I have become a more confident cook, baker and person.  I have reached my goal of over 200 followers and 20,000 page views.  I hope to continue to grow and inspire others.  Thanks to all of you!

YOU CAN DO THIS!  I am living proof.

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