My name is Debbie Wood and I am the owner and founder of a food company called No Denial Foods (NDF). The mission of NDF is to bring joy to others through food. The premise of NDF is to bring enjoyment to others through decadent treats that also happen to be made with simple, clean ingredients, so that you don’t have to feel denied. Our treats are grain-free, naturally gluten-free, and low in sugar and carbs. But what makes them stand out is that they taste amazing! They are for food lovers who value taste, but who also want to feel good about what they put in their bodies.
I started this company a few years ago because of my personal health battle. I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when I was 9. Later in life, after my second child was born, I was diagnosed with celiac disease. I have always loved food, and my happy place is in the kitchen. After I was diagnosed with celiac disease, I had a very hard time finding recipes and gluten-free treats that weren’t loaded with extra sugar and high-starch flours. It was in 2009, when gluten-free was becoming a more common and understood term. Unfortunately, I was unable to consume the gluten-free offerings because of the amount of sugar and carbs they contained and the roller coaster effect that they had on my blood-sugar levels. I felt left out, isolated, and depressed. Here I was, a total food lover who was now having a hard time eating!
I couldn’t find options elsewhere, so I decided to take this issue into my own hands. I started researching low-carb and grain-free recipes on a regular basis, and jumped back in the kitchen and started experimenting. Over time, the paleo diet became more popular and I was able to find more recipes that were grain-free and called for nuts, nut flours, and nut butters instead. The recipes also called for sweeteners that were unrefined, more natural, and cleaner. I found that when you combined the richness of nuts with a natural sweetener, you didn’t need very much of the sweetener to create a rich and decadent outcome. The treats and desserts were so satisfying, and at the same time, they were easier on my blood-sugar levels.
After years of experimenting for myself in my own kitchen, I started to share my creations with friends and family. Orders started coming in before I knew I was selling anything! I remember for the first wedding that I catered, the bride and groom asked how much they should pay me, and I laughed because I just wanted to make something delicious for them to enjoy. The bride, a personal trainer at my gym, was gluten- and lactose-intolerant. I remember her telling me afterwards that she and her husband devoured a whole pie with a fork on the car ride home after the party.
Food is essential for life, but it also gives us so much pleasure and can be wrapped up into so many emotions. We eat when we are happy, we eat when we are sad, upset, angry, or excited.
I was tired of feeling denied and left out, so I started baking for myself. People wanted what I was making and a company was born. I created NDF to offer products, recipes, ideas, support, and a place where people could figure out how to bring the joy of food back into their lives.
I really thought that my customers would be people with food restrictions just like mine. Many are, but most are just individuals who don’t have any food restrictions, but who love the taste and appreciate that these treats and recipes fall into the “better for you” category. A phrase that I have started using is “eat like you don’t care, but you really do :).”
I hope you follow along on this journey with me, try our products, and find benefit from this blog.
Until next time…… Debbie :)