Sincerely Carolina

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Let Your Hair Down.

by caroline

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I spend a lot of time talking about my diagnosis of celiac disease and how a transition to a gluten-free diet has helped me feel so much better. I can’t believe I spent such a large portion of my life feeling exhausted, sick to stomach, depressed and, quite honestly … in the bathroom.

Ick.

But some of the things we don’t talk about as much is how going gluten-free can help our outward appearances. Not only am I much more smiley :) (wouldn’t you be if you no longer had a very intimate relationship with the toilet?), but my skin is less sullen, my nails are stronger and I don’t have as many what-the-heck-is-that rashes on my skin (although I’m still a sensitive gal).

That’s why I was oh-so-happy when I went to get my hair cut today and my stylist — who I’ve known for about three years — touched my hair and said, “Oh, my gosh, you’re hair feels great! What are you doing different? Did you change your styling products?”

I immediately said, “Well, I’m juicing more!” and laughed. But then I realized, that I had in fact accomplished something much larger: I had been eating gluten-free for nearly a year.

It was a change I had noticed for a bit of time now — My body is now reaping the benefits of receiving adequate nutrition, enzymes and all that other healthy stuff it needs. Before my celiac disease diagnosis, my digestive system was so screwed up that I couldn’t even begin to absorb all of the necessary nutrients I needed. And while I was hurting on the inside, my outsides were proof of what was going on in my tummy.

So, I’m not at all surprised by this revelation, but that doesn’t mean I’m not excited! As a young child I suffered from hair loss that we now recognize may or may not have been the result of celiac disease, and the wear and tear it was taking on my immune system. We’ll never know for sure, but it all adds up. I found this picture at my parents’ house the other day (this is when my hair started to grow back):

(Really, mom?)

This particular episode was from a violent upper respiratory infection that kicked my butt all over the place. Eventually, my hair grew back, even though the battle with health issues was just beginning:

However, as I came into my teens, my hair began to thin and look unhealthy again. This, of course, came hand-in-hand with the multitude of celiac disease-related symptoms that would take years to diagnose, but my teenage ego was much more concerned with the issues that were affecting my outward appearance.

The point? My recent trip to the hair salon gave me one more reason to appreciate my gluten-free lifestyle. Guy or gal, we all love to have fab hair, right?

TELL ME: What have you noticed about your outward appearance since going gluten-free?

 

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