A Day in the Life of a Gluten Free Busy Body
How Does She Do It?
Danielle Falknor is a gluten free eater, mom of two, and a full-time nurse at a family practice in a suburb that borders Chicago. The COVID 19 pandemic threw the Falknor’s out of their typical family routine.
But when we asked Danielle about her busy lifestyle with a gluten free diet in the mix, she’s overwhelmingly positive.
Discovering the Problem
Danielle came to her gluten free lifestyle, with a bit of admitted reluctancy, 8 years ago.
“My brother actually triggered this change for me” Danielle explains, “he was having a lot of digestive issues, as I always did as well, and he decided to remove gluten from his diet. I remember at family gatherings everyone was annoyed that we basically had to have two of everything. But when talking to my brother about what he was experiencing and how much better he felt removing gluten from his diet, I knew I had all the same issues. So I decided to try removing gluten just to see if I would feel better. And I did.”
Danielle went on to get tested for a gluten allergy, but she had already been gluten free for so long that the tests were inconclusive. That was a bit frustrating, but she knew gluten was the villain she’d been searching for. She still tried to bend the rules here and there, and unfortunately would always pay for it later.
Danielle specifically recalls her wedding day, and making the choice to eat her “freaking wedding cake!”
“This was my wedding day! I’m going to have a slice of this amazing cake and not worry about dietary restrictions. I mean, It’s my wedding day!” Unfortunately, she started feeling sick, bloated, and tinges of pain soon after. It didn’t ruin her big day, but she decided eating this way really was never worth the way she felt after.
Going Gluten Free
Danielle says going gluten free eight years ago was much different than it is today.
“There are so many great gluten free products on the market, and grocery stores and restaurants are also much more accommodating these days. When I first went gluten free, the biggest adjustment was just the overwhelming number of labels I had to read, and being surprised about how many products contain gluten.”
Now, Danielle says it’s very helpful that there are not only more products, but that products that are naturally gluten free are still labeled, so it really takes the guesswork out of shopping. She also really focuses on eating and preparing whole foods for herself and her family, and that makes it really easy to live a GF lifestyle.
“I actually don’t even follow that many gluten free recipe sites or social media accounts. I typically get my ideas and recipes from ‘normal’ sites and use substitutes for any foods that include gluten. These days it’s pretty easy to find those substitute items for breads and pastas… pretty much anything!”
A Typical Day for Meals
We asked Danielle about a typical day in the life of a full-time working mom - with dietary restrictions - in a pandemic. She noted how thankful she is for local family members, her mother and her sister, who help them manage the days when Danielle is working 10-hour shifts, and her husband is teaching music lessons at the local School of Rock.
“I’ll typically prepare meals that last more than one day, or meals that my sister or mother can just throw in the oven.” Danielle said. “Sometimes my mom just cooks for us and that is AMAZING. Not gonna lie.”
For Danielle herself, her daily intake is pretty planned out.
Breakfast - Husband makes eggs every morning. Sometimes a half a banana or GF toast.
Snack - Snack bar, almond flour crackers, or bag of nuts.
Lunch - 80% of the time it’s a turkey sandwich on gluten free bread, sweet potato chips, and baby carrots.
Snack - Same as before.
Dinner - Anything she wants, with gluten free substitutes, and lots of whole foods like meat and veggies. Hopefully she or her husband have cooked something ahead of time so they can eat as soon as she’s home.
Family Time - Bath and bedtime for kids around 7:30-8
Post Dinner Snack - Ice Cream
Danielle pretty much has this gluten free thing figured out, but we wanted to know “does it ever get… boring?”
“Sometimes!” she responds, “It’s always great to discover a new gluten free snack that tastes really good, or that feels like an indulgence. People are always bringing us food, or ordering food, at work as well, and most of the time I can partake in that at all. That’s probably the biggest disappointment.”
Nubu’s Got You
Of course this is where Nubu comes to the rescue! One of the great things about Nubu is how easy it is to throw in your bag and get going. It’s combination of sweetness and natural ingredients, including 100% natural peanut butter, makes it the perfect on-the-go treat for someone like Danielle. When coworkers break out the morning donuts, Nubu lovers can break out their bag of Nubu, and have no regrets!
We’ll be sending Danielle and her adorable family a gift box of Nubu Nut Butter Bites to thank her for taking time out of an already busy schedule to talk to us!
If you’re gluten free and on-the-go like Danielle, you can find Nubu at Walmart and on Amazon. Kids love them too!
Nubu is Packable and Always Snackable.
Danielle’s Advice for GF Newbies: Don’t be worried. You can still have a very diverse cuisine life. You really can make almost anything. You really do get used to it, and there are so many ways to substitute. Restaurants are very accommodating these days and most even have a gluten free bread option. Don’t be afraid to ask if you don’t see it on the menu, or ask about other GF options. You get better at it reading labels and menus. It becomes second nature.