This Post May Contain Traces of Gluten

I’m giving up gluten for a month. Maybe longer.

Many of my earliest posts on this blog are about my 30-day challenges: behaviour changes I undertake for a month. I’ve been on a hiatus for awhile, which initially was for the purposes of installing some new habits but then later was just because I forgot to restart.

Last week at work, I realized that I’d nearly stopped eating gluten. The cafeteria at Twitter (where I’m interning for my penultimate co-op placement) has a lot of very healthy food, including grass-fed beef and many gluten-free options. Since I try to eat a kind of “relaxed paleo”, I gradually started eating fewer and fewer of the dishes containing gluten. I haven’t been a huge fan of bread for years, so this was a fairly easy transition to make.

I hear, however, that for many people the biggest changes result not from severe reduction of gluten intake but from complete elimination. This is obviously true for those with coeliac disease or a wheat allergy, but various bits of evidence (google for this if you care) suggests that there’s a decent probability of having some effect occur for me anyway. New models suggest that there’s a spectrum of gluten sensitivity.

At any rate, since this is an relatively very easy experiment for me to perform right now, with potentially very valuable results, it seems like something worth doing. I’ll decide later in the month if I want to continue being gluten-free or not. It strikes me that most gluten-sensitive people notice a pretty sudden and dramatic effect when they start consuming it again, so maybe I’ll do that just as a further experiment.

The official box for my Gluten-free Challenge:

For all of October 2013, I will not consume gluten.

Small text: I will try very hard to avoid products that say “may contain traces”. I’m going to disprefer products made in the same factory as gluten, but not avoid them outright. I reserve the right to drop this challenge in life-or-death / starving situations.

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I'm Malcolm Ocean.

I'm trying to figure out how humans work so I can help make humanity work. More about me.

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