My name is Sean and I want to let you into my gluten free world.
Whenever I travel, I travel with my girlfriend. And if I had to give us a name, I’d call us the moaner and the traveller – me being the moaner. Here’s the story around this:
I used to love to do outrageous things without a care in the world yet over the last four years I have had gut ache, sickness, diarrhoea and extreme abdominal pains which has made me a little boring and very grumpy. Long journeys and spontaneous adventures are always accompanied by constant worries about where the next toilet will be.
Numerous visits to the doctor resulted in the same old phrase ‘it could be IBS’. So, of course, I tried eliminating different food types in the hope that I’d become my old self again.
It never worked.
In 2014 my brother was diagnosed with Coeliac disease (UK spelling). I then had blood tests to no avail followed my an endoscopy. What is an endoscopy? It is a thin tube and camera that is inserted via the throat and examines and takes a biopsy from the small intestine. This discovered that I have a hiatus hernia, gastritis and an intolerance to gluten, but not Coeliac disease. My dietitian advised that after six weeks of living gluten free, I could slowly introduce some gluten back into my diet, which is what I did.
Roll forward to the the first week of 2017, and this time a blood test confirmed that I now have Coeliac disease.
Yes, it sounds scary. The idea of absolutely no gluten and no cross contamination for the rest of my life seems like an impossible challenge especially for a person that dreams to travel to destinations where there is very little awareness of Coeliac disease. FYI gluten is found in soy sauce, wheat, barley, rye, bulgar, vinegar, salad dressings and some seasonings, just to name a few.
But, do you know what? I’m not going to be a moaner anymore and I will travel the world in an attempt to do so 100 percent gluten free. And do you know what’s more?
YOU can too.