Monday, April 28, 2014

Monday Motivation 04/28/2014

"There are no secrets to success.  It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure."
~ Colin Powell

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free First Tee Energy Bars

Need a snack during your round, match, or game? Gluten free energy bars are becoming more prevalent, but some taste gross or are full of dates (yes, who else is allergic to dates besides me?!?). The First Tee Bar line from SCNS Sports Foods has great energy bars and recently introduced a gluten free bar. 

The Gluten Free First Tee  Honey Almond Bar is chock full of gluten free honey toasted oats, almonds, and organic agave syrup, and tastes just like a gluten filled granola bar! I even had a couple gluten eaters taste them, and the response was the same... Yum!

With COO of SCNS Foods, Bill Stewart

The Honey Almond Bar is gluten free, wheat free, dairy free, and soy free. Each bar is primarily sweetened with organic agave syrup, while other similar bars have sugar or corn syrup.  Each bar has 6 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber!

My golf bag is full of First Tee Gluten Free Bars, so check out for your supply!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday Motivation 04/21/14

"Somewhere behind the athlete you've become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back... play for her."

~ Soccer legend, Mia Hamm

Friday, April 18, 2014

Celebrating Holidays with Food Allergies

It's holiday time again, and I LOVE holidays. Even with my food allergies, I have never felt deprived. I always try to make some yummy allergy free food item to take with me to family gatherings. At Christmas time last year, I even received compliments that my plate of food looked better than theirs (exactly what I was trying to accomplish!). Just because you have food allergies does not mean that you can't eat well!

I find Easter to be the hardest holiday celebration for my food allergies. My extended family always celebrates with a big breakfast gathering on Good Friday. It does not help that breakfast is my hardest meal to begin with. No eggs, no toast, no pancakes or waffles (unless I make them myself, but they don't travel well), and no breakfast meat (how can I determine if the country ham, sausage, or bacon has corn derivatives when there are nearly 100 people eating?). I thought about bringing some yummy leftovers from dinner (dinner for breakfast, right??) or a slice of gluten free cake, but I need to set a good example. Some family members think I am "weird" because of my food allergies, while several others have been recently diagnosed with food allergies.  Celiac, after all, is genetic. After being gluten free almost nine years, I still get an occasional "are you still doing that strange diet?" question. 

Even though I had visions of grandeur about bringing some awesome allergy friendly food, things got busy and I ended up just bringing a protein smoothie. Not the most glamorous, but none the less yummy! I added my favorite NP Pro Protein Powder in Vanilla, pineapple, peaches, mango, and orange juice. Tasty and refreshing! Now, all I have to do is plan where to go for lunch!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

GolferAID: The Food Allergy Friendly Sports Drink!

It is a hot, summer day (ok, not yet, but hopefully soon!) and you need a sports drink.  Water just won't cut it, and all the mainstream sports drinks have high fructose corn syrup or modified food starch (corn).

Me with Dr. Aaron Hinde, President and Co-Founder of GolferAID

The LifeAID Beverage Company has exactly what you are looking for with its GolferAID beverage. GolferAID has no caffeine, no aspartame, no high fructose corn syrup, no sucralose, no crystalline fructose, and no preservatives. Sweetened with blue agave nectar, GolferAID is chock full of vitamins and supplements to keep you hydrated and at your peak performance. It is doctor developed and only 45 calories per can. The light, citrus flavor is a welcome refreshment before, during, or after your round, game, or match.  Even though it is called GolferAID, it is great for any sports, especially those athletes with food allergies.

Check out GolferAID at and on Facebook at and Twitter @golferaid

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Wedding Day Allergy Blues: What To Eat When Attending a Wedding

Does the thought of going to a wedding with food allergies scare you? What if the plated dinner comes out covered in gluten? What if the reception is buffet style with all that cross contamination?

It has been recommended to me to just eat before you go to the wedding, which is a great idea, but what if the wedding is an evening event or you are a plus one and don't really know the bride and groom? Who wants to stand out by not eating or make waves with people you don't even know? This past weekend, I had this scenario. The wedding started at 5pm and eating ahead would have been ok, but I would have been starving by 8pm. I also was attending the wedding with a friend and did not know the bride and groom very well at all. The reception was a plated dinner, which only would have made me stand out more if I did not eat anything.  Also, my allergies are so severe that eating an unsafe meal is totally out of the question.

Here is what I did: The week before the event, I got the details from my wedding date about location and times. I called the reception location myself and spoke with the event director. I explained my allergies, which wedding I was attending, and that I wanted to contact them directly so as not to bother the bride and groom during their final preparations.  The event director went over the menu with me and explained that, yes, the main dish would not fit my allergies.  She said it would not be a problem to prepare a special plate for me. What a relief! The night of the wedding, at the reception, I asked one of the event staff if the event director was available, met her in person, and told her which table I would be seated. The reception went smoothly and I received my "special" meal, which looked as good as the original and was quite tasty! This facility went the extra mile and I really appreciated it. I did not stand out too much, and it was nice to enjoy a meal with the rest of the party.

Chatting directly with the reception location gave me an opportunity to get a feel on whether or not I would feel comfortable eating the meal, as well as make sure all of my allergies were addressed. Had the process not been so smooth, I would have eaten beforehand and grabbed a late night snack afterward.  It really depends on the location and their knowledge of food allergies.

* Thank you to Starmount Forest Country Club in Greensboro, NC for taking such great care of me and my food allergies!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Monday Motivation 04/14/2014

"Always make a total effort, even when the odds are against you."

~ Golf legend, Arnold Palmer

Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday Motivation 04/07/2014

"For many people, change is more threatening than challenging. They see it as the destroyer of what is familiar and comfortable rather than the creator of what is new and exciting."

~ Dr. Nido R. Qubein

Sunday, April 6, 2014

EAT: Fonuts in Los Angeles, CA

What do you do when you have a sweet tooth and you are in Los Angeles? Head over to Fonuts. According to their Web site (, a fonut is a doughnut that is baked and/or steamed, never fried. The best part of Fonuts is that it offers gluten free and vegan fonut options! The gluten free fonuts contain almond flour, and the bakers take great care to prevent cross contamination from their non-gluten free fonuts. 

The gluten free fonut flavors include: chocolate with sprinkles, lemon, vanilla latte, chocolate hazelnut, peanut butter chocolate, pumpkin, banana chocolate, chocolate coconut, coconut passion fruit, and banana cinnamon. 

Fonuts is located near Beverly Hills on West 3rd St. and is always a stop for me when I am in the LA area. 

8104 West 3rd St. 
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Friday, April 4, 2014

Goldilocks Goodies

I was so excited to return from my trip to Southern California and find a bag of Goldilocks Goodies Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies waiting for me! Goldilocks Goodies are all natural, gluten free, grain free, egg free, dairy free, soy free, and corn free (no high fructose corn syrup). Yum! The cookies are made with only five ingredients: peanuts, maple syrup, semi-sweet chocolate chips, brown sugar, and Himalayan Sea Salt. They have a great nutty taste with a bite of chocolate, a great blend of sweet and salty. 

Goldilocks Goodies is based out of Lancaster County, PA. Once going gluten free, the owner, Emily, had a hard time finding yummy, natural ingredient gluten free items. Using no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives; no high fructose corn syrup; and no artificial sugars, Emily can make just about any baked good allergy free in the Washington DC surrounding areas or ship on the East Coast. She also makes Double Chocolate Pecan Cookies that along with the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies can be found throughout the DC area. Check out Emily's Web site at for locations and more info. 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Food Allergies?? No worries, mate!

Eating out with food allergies is risky, but Outback Steakhouse, a national chain, makes it much easier. It's parent company, Bloomin' Brands, also owns Bonefish Grill; Carrabba's Italian Grill; Fleming's Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar; and Roy's Hawaiian Fusion Cusine. 

Outback Steakhouse has a gluten free menu, but if you have other allergies, no worries, just speak to your server or ask for a manager.  One of the great things about Outback is their gluten free menu is extensive, so you won't feel limited or deprived by your options. With my many food allergies, my favorite meal at Outback is the Prime Rib medium, no au jus (it is not gluten free), a side of fresh horseradish, and a sweet potato. Other gluten free menu items include: salads, bunless burgers, steaks, ribs, and seafood. They even have a gluten free dessert, the Chocolate Thunder From Down Under, and a gluten free Joey (kids) menu! The one downside is that their Aussie Fries (french fries) are not gluten free.  As stated before, please check with your server or manager if you have other food allergies. The servers are well trained and can assist you with ingredients.