Taegan shares how she stays positive with coeliac disease and how her prescription helps with her gluten free diet.
When did you get diagnosed with coeliac disease?
How did you feel about the diagnosis?
Distraught, honestly. Almost all the food I loved had gluten in, and it was such a big lifestyle change that I was terrified.
What was your relationship with food like before you were diagnosed with coeliac disease?
I loved cooking, but every other day, we'd have something that my partner could manage (usually microwaveable). I was never one to venture out of my comfort zone.
Have you ever felt like you have missed out because of coeliac disease?
In some ways, yes. Simple things like not having a meal deal for lunch at work or a microwavable meal after a long day means that I have to put more effort in. I have to spend more money for staple foods like pasta and bread, plus there's the expense of a separate toaster, etc.
Did you notice a difference in mood and health after sticking to your gluten free diet?
Yes. Most noticably was energy levels, which massively improved my mood long-term. The extra hassle of being a Coeliac far outweighs the downsides of eating gluten.
How does your gluten free prescription help you manage your gluten free diet?
It takes the pressure off, financially. Week in, week out, the basics start to add up. It also gives me peace of mind as they're wholly separate from the weekly shop, and therefore I don't have to worry if a bag of crisps pop or a bread bag comes undone.
What does eating “well” mean to you?
A balanced diet, but actually liking what you eat.
What’s your favourite Juvela product and what do you make with it?
We love the Juvela gluten free pasta ranges (especially the fusilli).
And finally, what’s your top tip for staying positive?
Learn to laugh at your mistakes. The first time I made a gluten free apple pie, I didn't realise that some GF flours don’t have a binding agent in them. The result? The butter melted and came away from the mixture, leaving a burnt husk on the top and a sad pool of soggy apples on the bottom. Now, whenever I make something new, my youngest child always says, "mummy, don't let the butter fall out this time!"