Depression is a condition which affects about 15% of the population. Women are more likely to be affected than men (1). It is quite common for people who have been diagnosed as having Coeliac Disease to find themselves feeling depressed and anxious (2, 3). For many, there is a link between food and a sense of control over their lives. Celiacs are faced with something over which they feel no control. A diagnosis of celiac disease, the restriction the new diet places upon you, and a sense of isolation created because you feel you are not able to join in with everyone else can bring on symptoms of depression.
You Are What You Eat
Poor absorption of vitamins and minerals can make the celiac sufferer feel unwell, feeling depressed can be a side effect of not having the correct balance of foods which affect your mood and have a significant impact on how you are feeling emotionally. For some of you simply sticking to a strict gluten-free diet will be enough.
Find A Helping Hand
For others outside help in the form of counseling and psychological support can be very helpful.
Get into The Driver’s Seat
Taking control of your life, finding alternatives to foods you previously enjoyed and living with celiac disease rather than letting the condition rule your life are the key. See it as an opportunity to take control of your life, to eat better, fewer processed food, less junk food.
A Positive Attitude Makes All the Difference
Consider your cup – is it half full or half empty. You are on a restricted diet but at least your condition can be completely controlled without resorting to drugs or surgery. Even a shopping trip can be an adventure rather than a drudge– what new gluten-free food can you find?
A Spirit Of adventure
Discover yours! Try new things, take up new interests, meet new people.
On a personal note, I have become much more adventurous since being on a gluten-free diet – I’ll try anything once! I have extended my range of food; I can eat better and more healthily.
All of these strategies can make a huge difference to your state of mind and they are all within your grasp. Take control and get the most out of your life.