Be True to Your[gluten-zero]self


“Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition."

~ Steve Jobs

Gluten-Free RN shared this quote on Facebook. Yes, Facebook can be useful and is not a complete waste of time. Steven's words struck a very loud chord in me, much like the startup chime of the Apple Macintosh that Steve Jobs created. The late Steve Jobs imparted this bit of wisdom to the 2005 graduating class of Stanford University. Regardless of Steve's intended audience, I feel these words are quite useful for the gluten-free/zero community, even almost a decade later. Steve Jobs was a visionary on many levels.

Members of the gluten-free/gluten-zero community have endured a good bit of bashing as of late. Considering the increase in mainstream awareness, I suppose some abuse might be expected. Late night talk show hosts airing "Man on the street" interviews asking "
What is gluten?" - with embarrassingly incorrect answers. Improperly researched and inaccurate information published in newspaper/magazine/ internet blogs, social media sites like Facebook/Twitter/Tumblr allowing anyone to offer up their [educated and uneducated] opinions on such topics. We can't forget those closest to us - sometimes they can be our toughest critics - perhaps thinking we're just being trendy, wanting attention or special treatment. Yeah, right, we're nothin' but drama queens...

Add to this cacophony, the mainstream medicine dogma that still exists when it comes to gluten-related disorders. Even though celiac disease is one of the most common life-long disorders, it's still vastly under diagnosed; and don't even get me started on Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity. Healthcare professionals do not recognize the "clinical chameleon" that sits in their exam room. The medical community has come a long way, but many are still behind the times holding fast to what they were taught in medical school - celiac disease is rare and only presents with weight loss and diarrhea.
You and I know this is total crap [pardon the pun].

Many in the community will be able squelch all the negativity going on around them. You, who are active in a support group, and those that have properly educated themselves have gone through an annealing process to harden your resolve. I do worry about those that are just starting their journey back to health. For certain, all of that negativity can be emotionally taxing and mentally distracting. Lord knows, I get tired of it. Do they have enough knowledge and commitment to stay the course? Blocking those external voices could mean the difference between success and failure.

Mr. Jobs was right - our time is limited, and we need to maximize every second we are in an earthly-form. "
Sick, tired and grumpy" is not the way to go through life. We need to focus on the positive, stand up and advocate for ourselves when it comes to our health. We must block out the noise that can overpower our inner voice - the voice that tells us what it takes to keep our bodies happy and healthy.

I will leave you with these 5 daily disciplines to stay in a positive state of mind.

1. Start getting spiritual (feed your soul)
2. Write a gratitude list
3. Fill your mind with positive messages
4. Surround yourself with supportive people
5. Stay Active

More details on the disciplines:

Stay strong. Be well. Keep moving forward!

Al Klapperich
Branch Manager
Gluten Intolerance Group of East Central WI