Top Five Reasons I Look Great on a Gluten Free Diet

Since I began blogging, I have been reading Darren Rowse’s blog, ‘Problogger.’ He has a lot of useful tips for bloggers, so if you are a blogger or just a blog reader go check out his fantastic blog. He is hosting a ‘Top Five’ writing contest this week so to support his great blog and also to promote celiac disease awareness, I am submitting my ‘Top Five’:


Note: Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that is caused by a reaction to the gluten protein. Gluten inflames the intestine, causing a malabsorption of nutrients. Once thought to be a rare disorder, Celiac is now thought to affect as many as 1 in every 100 though it is significantly under-diagnosed. The only known treatment for Celiac disease is a lifetime adherence to a gluten-free diet. Read more about Celiac disease here.

I used to get irritated when people would compliment me on losing my baby weight from my first pregnancy and then immediately discount it when they found out I was on a gluten-free diet. Oh, of course, you are thin! Of course, nothing! It takes discipline whether you are following a diet for health reasons, due to celiac disease, or to just plain lose weight. However, some things about having Celiac disease does make it easier. I will let you in on the secret.

2414874402 Top Five Reasons I Look Great on a Gluten Free Diet1. Convenience- I think one of the reasons America is overweight is the prevalence of convenience (read ‘junk’) foods. When you go on a gluten-free diet these foods might as well cease to exist. Nearly all convenience foods contain wheat or gluten of some kind. These high-fat, high-sodium foods are off-limits on the gluten-free diet. I am sure you can imagine your dress size dropping too.

2. Low prices- Specialty gluten-free products are much more expensive than mainstream products. I don’t know about you, but I think twice about eating a second cookie after paying $4 for a box of six small cookies. I buy and eat in moderation!

strawberry thumb Top Five Reasons I Look Great on a Gluten Free Diet3. Strawberries- Well, ok not just strawberries, but naturally gluten-free things like strawberries. I am talking about things God has put on this earth that don’t come with labels at the grocery store. I never appreciated the full flavor or value of a strawberry until going gluten-free. I eat my five fruits and vegetables a day now that I am on a gluten-free diet. Instead of grabbing a cookie or some other processed food, I grab a handful of strawberries. Aw, the simple things in life! (By the way, this goes hand-in-hand with #2 – compared to prepackaged junk food, fresh fruit and veggies cost next to nothing–in both the short and long term.)
4. Immunity to most Marketing Tricks. Since I avoid most of the central aisles of the grocery store that contain the processed foods, I am not subject to most of the marketing ploys that food companies and grocery store chains are using*. I cannot just grab the newest brand or newest product in the shiny new packaging without calling or sending the company a letter or email inquiring about their manufacturing practices and the product’s gluten content. It really kills the ‘impulse’ in the impulse buy. (Which subsequently kills the ‘buy’ too.)

5. Ubiquity- People living on a gluten-free diet can not stop at every restaurant or buy gluten-free products at every corner grocery store. Since gluten-free food is not available everywhere, you don’t eat so much or so often. So many people in America talk about cutting back on their fast food intake, but one quick diagnosis of celiac disease and that problem has been eliminated for you! I estimate that about 95% of the food served at fast food restaurants contains gluten and the other 5% of the menu items have been cross-contaminated. Just imagine packing a healthy cooler filled with sandwiches, fruits, vegetables, and homemade baked goods when going on a road trip. Who does this? Celiacs do! Some celiacs even take their rice cooker on the road with them! How much weight would you lose if you could never eat fast food? I bet the thought has made you reconsider throwing away those college jeans for one more year…I certainly haven’t thrown mine away yet.

*If you are interested in learning more about how the food industry manipulates consumers into impulse buys and other unwise purchases check out Marion Nestle’s book What to Eat

* Also, check out Lucy’s Free From Blog! She wrote a great post for the contest, Top Five Places to Eat Gluten Free.

*Also, check out Karen’s post at Gluten Free Food Reviews, Top Five Gluten Free Foods to Make Your Mouth Water.


 Top Five Reasons I Look Great on a Gluten Free Diet

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24 Responses to “Top Five Reasons I Look Great on a Gluten Free Diet”

  1. Are we sisters? I love this! :D VERY GREAT!

  2. OH WAIT…I forgot to add…without even trying AT ALL, i’ve lost 10 lbs on the gluten free diet. Now…Imagine if I was TRYING to lose weight! LOL…only 60 more to go!

  3. I too have lost weight since going on the gluten free diet. I also feel good about myself.

  4. I WISH I could have lost a ton of weight . . . I am not a sterotypical celiac with the classic symptoms. One of my celiac symtoms before diagnosis was gaining lots of weight with no obvious cause ( the #1 symtpom that brought me to the dr!). I have only plateaued since going GF a year ago. When I review foods for my site, I always share with my family and friends because I have to be so so so careful with my diet. Maybe some day!

  5. I also forgot to add- Your top 5 is well written and flows well. I liked it! It’s true about the grocery shopping- shopping the perimeter and avoid the center section of the store. It feels good to pass by all the junk and not even want to buy it. :)

  6. Hi – thanks for the link and kind words. Darren’s group-writing projects are such fun and always interesting.

    I think most of the expensive, ready-made gluten free cakes, cookies etc are also stuffed full of calories – at least the ones you can buy here in the UK. It seems like they are loaded with extra fat and sugar to “make up” for the different texture. Homemade cakes/cookies are much better for you, though they’re not exactly calorie-free. My children love to bake, so I’m always snacking on the things they’ve made – you’re so right about the need for discipline!

    Another reason for looking great gluten free is that for some people – me included – their skin improves …

  7. Krista-lol, That is pretty sweet! I love when you just start losing weight without trying.

    Grew Up Rural- I think feeling great starts with feeling healthier!

    Karen- Thanks! I definitely have to try and lose weight at times too. I try and use moderation with my diet and I did a pretty intense weightlifting routine after baby #1 five times a week. It worked amazingly well-probably because I got an hour of alone time everyday. I will go back to that once this baby is born!

    Lucy- Your Welcome! You are right about store-bought gluten-free baked goods. And my skin does look better!

  8. Natalie,
    I love your top five list! BTW, I have readers who not only take their rice cooker on the road with them, but their bread maker as well!

  9. Natalie,

    I’m so happy that I found your blog through the Problogger project ( made it easier for me, too, as I haven’t gotten through every one of the 800+ submissions yet).

    I am on the same page with you, 100%. While I’ve never been diagnosed with Celiac disease, I do avoid flour as part of my regular way of eating. If I ever do eat it, I immediately develop a cough and congestion.

    All of your points that you covered are spot on. I am looking forward to more people like you who are standing up and speaking up about getting off of the processed food and getting back to basics.


    All the best,


  10. Great post! :)

    It’s nice to look at the bright side, instead of what we can’t have. :)

  11. I write an allergy site, and learned a lot of what I know about allergies from a son who has a gluten allergy. You’ve just listed all the reasons that having a gluten allergy isn’t so bad! You can live well and live without gluten, as you so ably show in this post.

  12. Happy Mothers Day!

  13. I love your Top 5 list. It goes hand in hand with my thoughts lately. I have lost a few pounds but I think the best thing is not having such a verocious appetite on this diet. Food no longer has any power over me.

  14. That was well said! I agree with everything on your top 5. I would love to print this out and hand it to the people who say “That is why you are so skinny!” or “I wish I had your disease!” (yes people have actually said that to me)…. The way you put it, is the way I think:)

  15. Great Blog, Love you reference to gluten free and snack ideas… good to see someone out there with sensible gluten free ideas.

  16. Rock on!!!!

  17. I have just discovered I have an intolerance to Gluten and in three weeks I’ve dropped two cups sizes in my bra. Weird…hmm. Not sure how not eating gluten drops the kilos. Any ideas?
    How low can you go? I mean how much weight do people loose when they stop eating gluten? Is it just a couple of kilos? Is it more? What is the average weight loss?

  18. Great posting. Never looked at those great points you made and contributed it to being GF. Just wanted to add another. When a person consumes prossesed/eating out there’s something about it that makes you crave more of it all the time. That was my biggest challenge was to let go of the chemical then the mental dependeny. Its been a good journey since being diagnosed. All things in my life have changed mental/emotional/physical/spirtual. I imagine its like that for a lot of us.

    Loving your site!!! Thanx for all u do! Much apprieciated!

  19. Amy,
    It’s water weight. I lost 20 lbs the first 2 weeks (bathroom breaks often) and lost 2 cup sizes and 2 shoe sizes after 4 months…..
    I’m still over (very over) weight, and I’m looking for “how to” diets while still getting the fiber I need, even though I still take vitamin supp’s on a regular basis.
    You need to do that, take vitamins, you will become anemic from lack of vitamin b and iron, which wheat is in abondence of.

  20. Fantastic article and so true, all the information I was given when first diagnosed (6 years ago) said I would gain weight. I didn’t. Its made me eat a lot healthy as I eat much more fresh fruit and vegetables. Thanks for the positive article

  21. love your article.
    Im 17 and have recently been diagnosed with celiac about five months ago, so ive had time to get use to it. My prpblem though is that recently ive gained about seven pounds and i dont know how to lose weight even though i am on the diet… its hard since i can not really choose what my mom decides to make for dinner or buys at the store since gluten free food is already quite expensive and we have a big family who all eats a gluten free dinner to support me.. i was just wondering if you had any tips on how to lose weight. thanks : )

  22. I went gluten free and dairy free to try it out before we put my special needs child on the diet. I was amazed at how much better I felt. No more fatigue and foggy headedness and my stomach was no longer so bloated.
    My weight dropped by 10 pounds, and my hair and skin looks so much healthier.
    Just a warning to new gluten free people that you will want to keep your intake of yeast and sugar down most of the time. Too many processed gluten free foods are a bit higher in this and it can feed candida in your body, thus causing weight gain/female infections, etc.
    We just started gluten free with my kiddo and I am so excited! It’s great having someone else to cook for now. I will be trying all your recipes.

  23. I’ve just started a gluten free/dairy free regimen (partially to lose weight) and I’m curious about how you dropped the 10 pounds. Can you tell me what you at on a typical day? I’d really appreciate it. Thanks!

  24. Found out I have Celiac’s a month ago, and my Hashimotos (or Hypothyroidism) symptoms got worse. I can not tell you how fatigued I was for the longest time until my doc told me to cut the gluten out. In just 4 weeks, I have the most energy I have had in such a long time. I completed a 7 hour(!) hike up a mountain yesterday! Something I would had never been able to do before. The GF diet has really changed how I feel and act, my coloring and skin looks soo much better although I still have joint pain and muscle cramps. But those will go as well. My med for the Hashimotos was corrected so I should feel 10000% better in six months time. I haven’t lost any weight yet, but I think because I have more energy for exercise I will lose the 50 lbs I have been wanting to lose for years. This blog will definitely see me through, especially when I need that extra push of motivation. Wish me luck. :)

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