Living Intolerably Defined

I am living intolerably defined by sensitivities to gluten and dairy. Yes, I suffer dearly the consequences of eating dairy and gluten. But, I am learning to make the best of what Christ has in store for me. Not that He wants me to suffer the difficulties of being intolerant to two main food groups of the American diet, but I'd like think that He placed this upon me to show me His greatness, and to teach me patience and faith. 
"'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'" (Jeremiah 29:11).
I haven't been officially diagnosed with Celiac Disease (a digestive disease that damages the small intestine), though I, in some way, believe this is what I have been living with for a while now. I have, however, been diagnosed as Lactose Intolerant (LS). LS has impacted my life greatly by prohibiting my intake of many of the normal daily foods (as does my gluten intolerance) I would usually have. I do miss the creamy, soul satisfying taste of that all too familiar cow's milk, butter and cheese, but giving that up is worth so much more in comparison to suffering needlessly.

Turning 13 marked the age of my journey into the land of Gluten Free (GF) and Dairy Free (DF). At the time, I did not know what my body was trying to tell me, for I was oblivious to the incomprehensible (as it was at the time) idea that anyone could be allergic to bread and milk! Who couldn't tolerate milk and bread? I was clueless to the world that would all-too-soon become my own. 

I didn't think much about the changes to my digestion that was occurring during my early teen years. I just thought it was due to the fact that I had shot up like a weed and because of that, my food wasn't settling as well. Stress, I thought, was another factor. But, at the age of 13, 14, and 15, no one goes through extremely stressful situations. (I am the exception, surely.) 

At a Christmas party, hosted by my grandma, I had the pleasure of experiencing first hand the overpowering, stabbing pains of a severe food intolerance. I thought at first I had overeaten, but then all I had were a small plate of BBQ Weenies and Mac&Cheese. I came home later that night, in such pain, that I cried to my mom for help! Sounds silly, I know. However, my mom had been convinced for a while (after listening and observing), that something was amiss with my digestion....

And there, my GF and DF journey began.

Years down the road, this issue I had with food (which was turning out to be more complicated than I would have ever dreamed of-being allergic and unable to tolerate a lot of foods) grew stronger and more powerful. I had gone from being a chubby preteen to a lean, half-starved teen whose only choice to avoid the pain was to eat less that what my body required. And this was all before the age of 16! I went from 180 to 140 in about 3 months. Good for mu figure, bad for my body.

I have been to countless Doctors trying to get an answer for my undiagnosed illness. The answer? IBS, a touch of Acid Reflux, and maybe, they weren't sure, even an Ulcer. None of which were the reason for my stomach constantly causing me pain. So much for ever finding a cure, or at least knowing what was the cause for such discomfort, I thought to myself. So much was going on in my culinary world. So much was going on. While my parents were as dumbfound as I was about what the cause of my strange illness was, my dad was obviously right about one thing, as he quoted Matthew 4:4: 
"'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"
 A Kodak moment! And yet, he spoke the truth, and I was learning it first hand.

It's been a roller-coaster ride of emotions. It seems to never come to an end! One minute we think we've cracked the code, and the next, are back to square one. This food intolerance continues to this day, although my mom and I believe we are on the right track to finding permanent relief.

About 3 years ago my mom and I stumbled upon the idea of going to see a Chiropractor for my problems. Bingo, we got our first piece to the puzzle. N.A.E.T (Allergy Elimination Techniques). This has been very helpful in eliminating and understanding my body, as well as food allergies and the digestive system. It all seems like voodoo, but it's amazing at how much of a difference I was able to notice. Since then, we've been sold of the idea of going to the Chiropractor instead of the Doctor, especially when he believes in natural remedies!

In between traveling to different Chiropractors and Specialists, I developed another issue. On top of dealing with the Gluten and Dairy intolerance side of life, I was going through some tough times of my own; these were personal problems from my past that had spurred it's ugly head. 

Unfortunately, this N.A.E.T Chiropractor wasn't completely solving the problem. I was still experiencing digestive issues. Bummer. So, keeping with the Chiropractor, we moved on to another Doctor that we hoped would help. Asa Andrewsto help. We quit him and went back to the other guy.

Shortly after doing that we were given a lead to another Chiropractor by the name of Steven Duensing. Double Bingo! I had hit the jackpot! He's told my mom and myself a lot about what has been causing my problems, and he's also helping me with my other issue, too. Dr. Duensing is a Nutritionist, as well as a Chiropractor and a Kinesiologist. Right now, while also working towards an all Gluten Free and Diary Free dies, this Doctor has got me on a protein diet because of my body type. This is to not only give me more energy throughout the day, but to get my weight back to a healthy level. Believe me, 120LBS isn't healthy or a natural weight for me.

Aside from all the Doctor business, I am still in the midst of this undesirable food predicament, however, I am learning to eat and live intolerably defined (Gluten and Dairy free, that is). It's a road traveled heavily by others, and I, exasperated and willing, join this adventure. I want this journey to be a documentation of my recovery, better health, peace, and happiness, as well as my adventures into the world of Gluten Free baking and cooking. Lord only knows what surprises await me on the other side of the fence. This is where He's leading me, thought, so I will follow, and with a quivering faith and a tendency to doubt, I will truth in Him to bring about a positive ending to my long, daunting, excruciating adventure.


  1. Thanks for sharing this. I have a good friend who is allergic to gluten, dairy, eggs, peanuts, garlic, turmeric, bananas, and several other things. You guys amaze me with your patience and sparkling attitude. God is leading you on an adventure through this. To Him be the glory!

  2. Whoa Emily, I'll pray for you! :) Sounds like even though you have to deal with all this tough stuff, you still remain strong in the Lord, and that is awesome!


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