The Celiac and The Cyclist


GFG: When you met, was one of you already living a gluten-free lifestyle?

Katie: I was diagnosed with celiac disease a few months prior to us dating. I had just started eating gluten-free and was still learning a lot when I met Stefano. He learned a lot with me along the way.

GFG: How did he or she react to this news that you would be living a gluten-free lifestyle from now on?

Katie: Stefano was already aware of the GF lifestyle. One of his best friends had dated someone who was severely allergic to gluten. As a professional cyclist, it was also a diet that many in the cycling world chose to live. He knew that it was a different lifestyle but a very "liveable" one.

GFG: What did Stefano do to reassure you that your GF lifestyle wouldn't be a problem?

Katie: I think that him taking me to a GF restaurant on our first, second, and third dates were more than enough, he didn't need to say anything after that. Our second date he took me to this tiny hole restaurant that I had never even heard of that had GREAT GF pasta dishes that I hadn't experienced in months. It was the perfect way to say he cared and supported me and my lifestyle.

GFG: Did Stefano like the first gluten-free meal that you prepared?

Katie: I am not sure what the first meal I prepared for him was, but I believe he liked it. I remember we started dating right before the holiday season and when we got invited to a holiday party, he asked me to make my GF brownies to take to a party, so that must mean he liked my cooking from the start lol.

GFG: Where was your first gluten-free date?

Katie: Our first date, lol, he actually took me to one of the nice, restaurants in town that was also one of the first to have gluten-free food explicitly on their menu. It was so nice to eat somewhere and not have to worry about eating gluten by accident. Also, despite my managing to accidentally drop food on him as I was giving him a bit of my yummy GF meal, he still liked me afterward.

GFG: What was the first GF meal he cooked for you?

Katie: I honestly can't remember, nor can Stefano. After eight years those things start to fade a bit.

GFG: Does your partner live a 100% gluten-free lifestyle along with you?

Katie: I would say he lives a 95% GF life. There are times where it is easier (and often cheaper) for him to get the "regular" meal so he will take that option when it comes up but other than that he lives GF with me. He is very very very supportive of my GF lifestyle.

GFG: What does your partner do to help you maintain a GF life?

Katie: He is always looking up places that have GF foods when we travel to make sure that I can eat there. Also, despite how expensive GF food can be, he never complains, if anything I complain more than he does. He is and always has been a huge supporter of me and the fact that I have to live the way I do.

GFG: What is your favorite GF meal that you enjoy together?

Katie: When we first started dating, his mom sent me her recipe for lasagna, and I adapted it to be a gluten-free recipe. It is definitely a go-to in our house because it makes a lot and can be easily frozen to save for later. Plus it's his mom's recipe, so I definitely can't go wrong.

Katie Barberi is a Certified Nutritionist, Health Coach, and Group Fitness Instructor. She is the creator of Forever Living Deliciously. Her husband, Stefano Barberi is a professional cyclist, and they are parents to their son, Micheli.