I live in an area hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. Before the storm, we got more serious about disaster preparedness than we had been in the past since it looked like it could be a massive storm. We stocked up on batteries, flashlights and bottled water like everyone else did…
But I also had something else to consider: How would I feed myself if we were stuck in our house with no electricity for days on end?
I could think of lots of easy food for the rest of my family, but for my gluten-free self, it was a little more challenging. I’m glad that I gave this some serious consideration, because we did lose electricity for almost a week. We stayed in our house for a couple of those days before leaving to stay with family who had heat and electricity.
Although we continued to be able to use our gas range, due to lack of hot water and light we didn’t want to make too many dirty dishes so we cooked only minimally. Here are some of the items I am most appreciative that I stocked up on before the storm…
- KIND Bars – Low-glycemic and high in protein and fiber (and we all know sources of gluten-free fiber are difficult to come by, regardless of a storm), these were my favorite snack and meal replacement during the storm. They also fulfilled my craving for sweets.
- Larabars – I ate these without guilt for a quick and delicious burst of energy.
- Mary’s Gone Crackers – These enabled me to have something to eat cheddar cheese or peanut butter on, since most gluten-free bread needs to be toasted to be edible but crackers do not.
- Canned vegetables, such as canned corn. Delicious right out of the can!
- Peanut butter
- Eggs, which can stay without refrigeration for longer than you might expect and are easy to fry up on the stove.
- Carrots, celery and bell peppers – They last a long time without refrigeration.
- Apples, pears and bananas – Both adults and kids snacked on these voraciously throughout the storm!
- Dried fruit, to help with my sweet tooth as well as to keep us all “regular”.
- Baked chips (potato and corn) – Easy carbs for quick energy.
- Corn Chex – My favorite gluten-free breakfast cereal!
- Powdered milk – To mix with water and consume with my cereal.
- Tea, including Tummy Tamer tea for indigestion and calming chamomile teas for the mounting stress related to the storm.
A few non-food items proved handy, too:
- Prescription meds – Those of us who needed them made sure to have at least a week of medications on hand.
- Probiotic supplements
- Matches – These enabled us to start our gas stove burners, which use an electric starter.
- Baby wipes – Unscented, for sensitive skin. Great for flare-ups of gastrointestinal symptoms.
Many Are Still In Need – How Can You Help?
We are among the lucky, who made it through the storm with very minimal damage to our property and none to our bodies. For this we are blessed. There are many Hurricane Sandy survivors who are still unable to live in their homes and who are without sufficient food. This is even more difficult for survivors with food allergies or celiac disease, since as Living Without magazine covered last year, food banks are difficult territory for people like us.
Fortunately, a number of gluten-free bloggers have banded together to provide gluten-free food to food pantries and shelters. Consider supporting their efforts, which you can read about here.