When Lynn Feder traced her decades of serious health issues to gluten and dairy—but couldn’t imagine life without good bread (and crackers)—she was inspired to create her own.
Back when Lynn Feder, 57, was growing up in South Africa, no one was talking about food sensitivities or the potential downsides of gluten. All Feder knew was that she felt sick nearly all the time. She had contracted a rare bacterial infection as an infant and was plagued by irritable bowel syndrome, a spastic colon, and a hiatal hernia. As she grew older (and moved from Johannesburg to the U.S.), she developed more health problems including frequent bouts of pneumonia, sinus infections, and bronchitis. Doctors were stumped.
It wasn’t until 2003, when Feder consulted with a nutritionist who put her on a diet free of dairy, gluten, grains, and sugar that she began to heal. Even though she was relieved to finally feel better, the restrictive diet was a challenge. “One of the things I really missed was bread,” says Feder.
So, she started to experiment. “I decided that I would try [to modify] an old recipe my mother used to make which contained a nutty wheat flour with a grainy texture,” says Feder. “I thought about how I could replicate something like that without flour, and I started playing around with seeds.”
After two years, she perfected her recipe and created a business to “help others who are sick of being sick,” says Feder. She named her company Lynn’s Life (lynnslife.com) and sells four bread mixes—Yummy Original, Hint of Rye, cinnamon/strawberry and strawberry chocolate—plus a bagel mix, a cracker mix, and a coconut crisp mix.
All the products are made in a former barn that she converted into a commercial kitchen on her property in North Salem in Westchester County. “We are made of energy and, when you infuse your love and energy in a product, the product is going to be good,” says Feder. “When you bake my bread, it smells delicious.”
During her product research and development, Feder discovered that many gluten-free products on the market contain preservatives which can be irritating to those with stomach sensitivities. She also found that a lot of gluten-free products contain potato starch and nut flours, ingredients that she and many others can’t eat. Feder found a way to eliminate everything in her mixes that she phased out of her own diet, making them accessible to most consumers with food allergies and sensitivities.
All the mixes are high-fiber and low-carb. Feder is particularly proud of her coconut crisp. She considers it to be the ideal dessert thanks to the combo of chocolate, strawberry, and coconut. “Food is medicine,” says Feder. “There’s no reason why you should not feel fulfilled eating food that’s healthy. It’s a matter of how you make it.”
Related: Columbia County’s Gluten Free Bakery Wows With Its Wheat-Free Pastries