When Laura Savinovich of Murrieta learned she had rheumatoid arthritis three years ago, it marked a drastic change to her diet.
At Snackin’ Free, a bakery she and her husband, Pepe Savinovich opened in August on Kalmia Street in Murrieta, she is offering food she learned how to cook out of necessity.
The new local business was celebrated during an Oct. 16 ribbon cutting ceremony attended by area Chambers of Commerce. Members of the media were also invited to sample the gluten-, dairy-, grain- and soy-free menu items Savinovich prepares on site.
“It is a labor of love, I enjoy doing it,” Savinovich said.
She explained that when she was diagnosed with the debilitating disease that was affecting the small joints of her feet and hands, she was told she needed to lose some weight—38 pounds to be exact.
So at 51 years old she joined a gym, where she learned about The Paleo Diet.
The way of eating lends itself to the Paleolithic era, when humans ate fresh game, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and oils. Dairy products, cereal grains, legumes, refined sugars and processed foods were not part of that menu, according to Thepaleodiet.com.
“I learned through research that I may have to cut out dairy and soy so I did,” said Savinovich, a longtime housewife whose husband is retired military.
She said since then, her my rheumatoid arthritis has been under control.
“I haven’t had any flare ups in three years,” she said.
Instead, she spends her days trying to keep the shelves at Snackin’ Free stocked with all-natural cupcakes, cookies, quiches, snack bars and muffins.
But by far, the most popular items are her salad dressings, she said. For $6.99, customers can purchase a 16-ounce jar of her Garlic, Greek or Ranch dressing.
“We can’t keep those on the shelf,” Savinovich said.
The couple is also proud to support local whole foods merchants.
“I buy all my ingredients locally, some from Roots, some from Sprouts, some from local farmers markets,” she said.
Snackin’ Free—where locals can also stop by just for a cup of coffee or tea—is located at 41539 Kalmia St., Suite 102, in the same shopping center as Maxx Pizza Co.
Learn more, such as hours of operation, by visiting Snackinfree.com.