As most of you know, I’ve been in the process of creating a rocking mobile app specifically for the celiac and gluten-free communities. The idea was to launch it in early summer but COVID had other plans. We are on the final legs of going live and it will be available in early September.
Have no idea what I’m talking about? Have heard of the app but want to know more? Have 10 minutes to kill?
It’s time for the “Gluten Dude Mobile App Self-interview”. And away we go.
Who are you?
Wow…you don’t waste any time. The name is Scott Hayes. Within the celiac community, I’m Gluten Dude, a passionate celiac advocate. I was diagnosed with celiac disease back in 2007 and after 4 years of still struggling mightily with my disease, I officially launched my blog in 2011 to share my experience and my frustrations. It turns out thousands of other celiacs had the same frustrations and an online community was born.
Over the years, I’ve written over 700 blog posts for this site dealing with everything from eating out to eating in, celebrities (and their BS when it comes to gluten-free), doctors, social anxiety, relationships, traveling and a whole bunch more. Oh…I’ve also published a book – From Crappy to Happy: The Naked Truth About Living with Celiac Disease.
Personally, I have an amazing wife (Mrs. Dude) and two daughters who are my shining stars (the Dudettes). I live in NYC and when I’m not talking about celiac disease, I’m a small business owner and a closet entrepreneur.
Can we talk about the app now? Talking about myself is not my favorite thing to do.
Understood. Can I ask 2 more quick questions about you?
Have you ever been in a Turkish prison?
Do you like movies about gladiators?
No. But love the Airplane movie references. I’ll remember this when it comes time to tip you.
Ok…let’s talk about your app. Why did you build it?
I built it for one simple reason: to better the lives of those living with celiac disease and anyone else who must eat gluten-free. The idea is to create a close-knit community where people in the gluten-free community come to discover, to learn, to share, and to connect, all to make their lives easier and healthier. Living a 100% gluten-free life certainly has it challenges: physically, mentally and socially. Using the Gluten Dude app will help alleviate those challenges.
Can you name some of those challenges and how your app will help?
With pleasure. Let me break it down for you.
- CHALLENGE: EATING OUT SAFELY
Eating out is one of the more stressful parts of having celiac disease. One crumb is all it takes to set off the autoimmune response. Everything that is fun and spontaneous about eating out can be overshadowed by the anxiety of whether you can get through your meal unscathed.
A directory of only 100% gluten-free restaurants, guaranteeing you a safe meal. Each restaurant includes images, a description, reviews, ratings, directions, etc. Some restaurants even include a video and their menu. The app currently covers the US, Canada, Paris, Italy, London, Spain, Germany, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Australia, with more locations coming. Eating without fear. What a concept.
- CHALLENGE: FINDING GLUTEN-FREE BEER
Beer, sadly, is not gluten-free. The most popular “gluten-free” beers on the market today are actually “gluten-removed” and are not safe for those with celiac disease. There are a handful of amazing 100% gluten-free beers out there, but they can be really difficult to find.
The Gluten Dude app shows the stores, bars and restaurants where people can purchase gluten-free beer. The user will be able to search by any location and each location will show which specific gluten-free beers each establishment carries. Cheers!
- CHALLENGE: GETTING BAD/WRONG ADVICE
The internet is littered with falsehoods, outright lies and dangerous information regarding celiac disease. People are looking for answers to their problems, quickly and accurately, and they are not sure where to turn or who to trust, putting their health in jeopardy.
A forum where fear mongering and misinformation will be strongly discouraged. Varying opinions? Absolutely…that’s what makes the world go round. But no “McDonald’s French Fries are gluten free” kind of stuff. There are a number of topics where you’ll be able to chime in with questions, answers and advice. The forum includes Ask the Community, Ask Gluten Dude, Newly Diagnosed, Is THIS Gluten Free?, Share a Recipe, and more.
You also have access to informative (and hopefully entertaining) videos from yours truly (Gluten Dude), where I answer reader emails, throw out some celiac rants and talk about the world of celiac disease.
- CHALLENGE: ISOLATION
Celiac disease is a very misunderstood disease and can be quite isolating. I’ve received so many emails over the years from people whose own friends and family don’t take their disease seriously; who don’t get invited out to eat because they’re “too difficult”; who are bullied at school simply because they can’t eat gluten. And most of the time, there is no one there to turn to, to listen to you, to understand you.
Live chat. This app will connect you with others in the celiac/GF community, allowing one on one private chats. You’ll even have the option of providing your zip code, allowing people to search for others by location. Imagine traveling to a new town and not knowing anybody. Pull up the app, search your zip code and make a new friend!
What else does the app do?
It’s also a gluten-free food vending machine. It accepts bitcoin.
For real Dude…
You’ll be able to create a profile, contact me, suggest a GF restaurant, accept notifications (like when someone comments on your forum post or sends you a message), and even block others from texting you (just in case!).
And I will send out notifications when a new GF restaurant opens up in your area.
Where will the app be available for download?
Will it be available on both Apple and Android phones?
How much will the app cost?
It’s free to download and you get a 7 day free trial with access to the complete app. After that, there are three subscription plans you can choose from.
There’s the Monthly Plan, where you can test the waters a bit. This Plan is $5.99/month.
There’s the 6 Month Plan, where you can wade toward the deep end and save 17%. This Plan is $29.99 for 6 months.
And finally there’s the Yearly Plan, where you can dive right in and save 30%. This Plan is $49.99 per year.
I was going to offer a Lifetime Plan and charge $5,000,000, get one subscriber and retire, but thought best not to go that route.
Will there be any advertising on the app?
Nada, nil, zip, zilch. And restaurants and breweries do not need to pay to be on the app either. The idea is to have an app that was built FOR the GF community, to be supported BY the GF community.
What if someone really wants to use the app but just can’t swing it right now?
They can contact me and I’ll see what I can do to help them.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Just one more thing. Head on over to glutendude.app to be notified when the app is live.
Do you have any more questions for me?
Have you ever seen a grown man naked?
That’s it…I’m outta here. (But man…do I love that movie!)