Dear Media (who’ve written negative articles on the gluten-free diet),
It has come to my attention numerous times over the past year that you are really not a fan of the gluten-free lifestyle. You openly mock us in articles and insist that those of us who actually live a more health-filled life abstaining from gluten are somehow mistaken about what this diet can do for us. You openly pour more fuel on the fire for unsupportive individuals who think that getting sick from gluten is all in one’s head.
I’d like to take this moment to openly inquire why it is that you feel so compelled to put down our personal positive experiences, what you have to gain and lose from me (or anyone else for that matter) personally being gluten-free, and why you can’t just support the gluten-free community on our collective journey to be healthy in whatever way we see fit.
I acknowledge that understanding the unique experience of having digestive difficulties, let alone an autoimmune condition that threatens your livelihood, might be tricky to explain especially if you don’t suffer with any of these conditions nor know anyone else personally who does. But I can tell you from my own personal journey, those who I’ve coached and others whom I’ve spoken with about their own story that being constantly sick is no fun. It ruins your day, meals, relationships, social life, family traditions, and ability to work out and focus at your place of employment. You can’t take trips or enjoy an evening at someone else’s home. And these ‘problems’ just scratch the surface for some really wonderful people who feel like their lives have become a daily waking hell.
Sure, poking fun at us might get you more views and comments and ‘likes’, but ultimately you feed an incredibly unproductive conversation that only stands to validate the feelings of those who see supporting someone with a gluten issue as the biggest pain in the butt. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve personally been told that ‘it’s all in my head’, not just from friends and certain family members, but even doctors. To those non-believers, my husband will loudly testify to how much gluten really is an issue for me if my word is, for whatever reason, not enough. I can also put you in touch with many others who share my own plight if you need further collaboration.
We can all certainly agree that certain individuals and business owners have been mis-quoted by you stating things about the gluten-free diet that are NOT accurate. Most importantly, it’s not a diet that will guarantee weight-loss nor should it be used for such purposes unless one suspects that it’s causing inflammation. However, any individual is allowed the right to determine for him or herself if a problem is actually there. They need not have celiac disease in order to give it a try.
Furthermore, I personally don’t appreciate your mis-informed suggestions that going gluten-free will somehow create nutritional deficiencies. Every time this point is made in an article, you talk about how one will miss out on fortified foods that contain essential nutrients. For the record, fortified foods are overly processed versions of real food which required nutrients to be replaced after they were stripped away. The fact that you are suggesting that people must eat fortified food implies that the real food (like veggies, non-glutenous grains, fruit, meat, nuts, seeds, etc) are somehow not good enough since, you know, we can eat ALL of those things while being gluten-free. Plus, I’d love to offer my own bloodwork up as a scientific example of how you can still be healthy.
So in the future, please consider the real point of your attacks. I know that it’s your job to investigate both sides, but if you really paid any attention to the food-based conversations being had in this great nation, you’d know that each person is not meant to eat the same way. AND that it’s better if we didn’t. Our unique genetic codes, distinct familial heritages, individual health circumstances, and ways of living vary so greatly that it’s really not worth the energy to fit square pegs into rounds holes.
A better place to begin would be the initiation of a dialog about being gluten-free AND eating healthy. That’s why I began Gluten Free School — to show the world that it is totally possible to be healthy in a way that just happens to be gluten-free. And I know plenty of other brilliant people blazing trails in the gluten-free world that feel exactly the same way. So, please stop marginalizing what has tremendously enhanced the lives of millions of people and give us a fair shake, if you must.
I think many of us would appreciate your understanding.
Found of Gluten Free School