“Through my eyes – a take on depression & the gluten link”…
OK some real truths here…..If you or someone you know is suffering from depression, suicidal thoughts, deep-seated anxieties, or disordered thinking of any kind, memory loss, constant exhaustion and therapy or supplements are not helping, your sick of relying on anti-depressants and nothing seems to work, PLEASE read on about what I have to say.
I have been here in this headspace, not now or for a very long time, or ever will be again, and this is not something I have just read about but have genuinely experienced. I want to share this with you from the bottom of my heart. I know I have friends who are in this place, and may this may be the reminder that there is light and maybe you could take strength and give this a go.
For months on end, I stumbled through fog as thick as beef stew that has sat in the pot for three days. You know when you pour milk into tea, and the white slowly swirls and clouds, until it is no longer tea and milk, but milky tea? I was more milk than tea most of the time. I was that clouded with my thinking, foggy brained, fatigued and I was always had achy pains in my body.
I didn’t know how to be happy. I didn’t know what inner happiness even felt like. Everything worried me. Nothing felt good. How come my friends were so happy when I felt so down.
No matter how often I thought just “Be happy, dammit!” I just couldn’t see the surface. And somehow, I knew that there must be an answer to how I was feeling, the grey wool blanket that covered my mind, wasn’t really me. In my better moments and months, I was optimistic, laughing, and alive. I was weighted down, I couldn’t always laugh and smile, I just didn’t have it in me. On the outside I was this happy person but the inside told a different story.
Today an electrician came to our house to sort a couple of power points for us and as our conversation unfolded, it inspired me of what I needed to share. He explained how one of his best mates was severely depressed, couldn’t find any joy in his life, attempted suicide and had been on anti depressant drugs and couldn’t shift that dark lost feeling.
This friend of his was eventually diagnosed with GLUTEN intolerance and from that day forward his whole life changed in ways he could have never imagined. How could something this so damn simple be so profound in finding the light.
I never got diagnosed as Gluten intolerant or as having Celiac disease, and blood tests came back normal when I was tested. But what did I have to lose by giving it a go. I gave up gluten and I did not suffer with that ho hum feeling ever again. In fact, that heavy weight of life lifted for me within weeks of having no gluten in my diet and more than 10 years later I have been predominantly Gluten Free.
Believe me, once you have been through the darkest days, and you feel light flooding the room instead, you choose happiness. Certainly I’m not amazingly happy all the time, and life is not perfect, but underneath any small anxiety or disappointment is the thrumming, loud rumble of knowledge of where I once was.
I once was lost but now I’m found. And once you’re found, you want to stay found. And that is what “no gluten” has done to me. Today I can tolerate a little gluten here and there but if I indulge in it big time, I am amazed at how that feeling can start creeping back in. In fact over the last 12 months or so I have virtually eliminated all grains in my diet and this has truly been powerful. I have no more aches and pains, a clear head and more energy when I’m grain free.
So you’ll have to excuse me if I seem so damned happy now. It’s a choice, a daily, constant, conscious choice, to choose to be alive.
The body of someone with celiacs or gluten intolerance reads gluten as a toxin. When we eat gluten, the body sends out antibodies to attack. Those antibodies, over time, end up destroying parts of the small intestine. Without the ability to absorb food correctly, we also miss out on essential amino acids and vitamins that regulate mood.
Did you know that serotonin, the chemical responsible for regulating our moods, is made in the small intestine? 95% of serotonin produced is made in our guts. That means if something is going wrong in our guts, something is going wrong in our brains.
If this strikes a cord with you then I would like to encourage you to honour yourself in going Gluten free, it could just be the ticket you are looking for. Please feel free to share this with someone you know who is struggling! Or if you feel like sharing your experience with Gluten then please do i would love to hear.