Hi there, and welcome to The Gluten Free Cosmopolitan! I’m Natalie, a 26 year old gluten intolerant blogger and food lover. I have been living a gluten free lifestyle for about four years now (read below for more on my gluten intolerance story!), and am so excited to share some of my favorite recipes, restaurants, products and experiences as a gluten free millennial trying to live life to the fullest without getting sick. I’m currently based in Denver, Colorado, but will be providing globally-oriented content as I travel and explore the exciting world around me!

If you would like to get in touch, feel free to reach out to me at thegfcosmopolitan@gmail.com.

How It Started:

I first started showing mystery symptoms in the summer of 2013. I was traveling in the Mediterranean after a year abroad in the UK, where I (predictably) loaded up on beer and bread.

It all began with a mysterious itch, a rash of tiny, pinhead-sized and flesh-toned bumps that broke out on my body, primarily around the palms of my hands and on my upper arms. Other, less obvious symptoms followed; an inability to focus, intense and sudden weight gain in spite of consistent exercise, a constant empty or hungry feeling, an outbreak of cystic acne, gastrointestinal distress, nervous tics, bloating, anxiety and worrying numb spots that broke out on my back and in my upper legs, leaving me with a pins-and-needles sensation even when I was in the middle of a brisk walk.

It took me nearly nine months from the outbreak of my symptoms to come to an understanding of what was causing them. I moved apartments and was fortunate to move in with a girl who had Celiac Disease, an autoimmune disease that causes intestinal damage (amongst other symptoms). She suggested, for the first time, that I may have gluten-related symptoms, which I absolutely did not want to believe. How could I live without bread? Without bagels? It seemed like an impossible notion at the time, but I was desperate to start feeling better, and so I decided to try eliminating gluten from my diet.

Four years on, I’m still gluten free and have realized that my diet is not a death sentence, but rather a new chance at living a full and exciting life. I hope that my blog will help anyone looking for gluten-related solutions, and am more than happy to help anyone that is feeling a little lost on their own path towards living a healthy, full life!