The idea of starting a gluten-free and dairy-free convenience food delivery business came to West Hartford mom Jill Spunberg “out of nowhere” late one night in December 2019.
“My husband said, ‘Are you crazy?'” Spunberg said.
Apparently not. Deals, Health is the way, is doing well today with around 70 weekly subscriptions. In 2021, she delivered around 400 meals per week.
Her husband, former opponent Eric Spunberg, now helps deliver fresh meals early two days a week before he starts his day job as an insurance actuary.
“I wanted to help people with food sensitivities,” she said. “I like the fact that I can make a difference in people’s lives. It’s not just a business for me.
Spunberg changed her diet to be gluten- and dairy-free in 2016 after she developed eczema with her toddler son after giving birth. She also struggled to lose weight, Spunberg said.
The new regime took care of everything. She also felt less bloated and less tired. Although she is careful with her diet, she does not like to cook and bought gluten-free and dairy-free ready meals from a grocer until they stopped the supply.
Spunberg started the business in July 2020 when food delivery services took off during the COVID-19 pandemic. Spunberg hired a chef to design recipes and do the cooking. She has rented commercial kitchen space in Hands on Hartford, where she oversees the kitchen and helps prepare, package and create the fresh food menu.
Now, Spunberg uses chefs on a rotating schedule.
“I really don’t like to cook. Isn’t it funny? said Spunberg.
The company delivers fresh meals throughout Connecticut and parts of western Massachusetts.
Brenda Holian of West Hartford, a nutritionist who sometimes recommends the service to clients, said she started using Healthy is the Way about a year ago when the family’s exercise schedule was busy.
“It’s delicious. It’s convenient. It’s healthy. I love it,” Holian said. “When you finish the meal, you don’t feel like it’s too heavy, but you feel satisfied.”
Allison Taylor, from Canton, said she had recently taken on more intensive work and, with two young children, “it is difficult to prepare food, let alone healthy food”. She found herself spending all of Sunday preparing food for the week, and the other food preparation services she tried required work and time.
“It felt like a home run,” Taylor said. “It’s so much food. It is healthy food.
Taylor said with the cost of a grocery delivery, the service was worth it. She orders three family meals a week at about $150 with delivery, and has leftovers for lunches.
Taylor said the salmon was the best she had tasted and that at age 6 her daughter loves “pink chicken”, in reference to salmon.
Rocky Hill customer Erica Manchester said she follows a gluten-free diet due to allergies and has three meals a week delivered to use as lunches.
“It saves me time because I don’t have to cook meals and I can enjoy a variety of delicious and tasty meals at a reasonable price,” Manchester said.
Spunberg shops for the freshest ingredients. She said she uses locally sourced fruits and vegetables, as well as organic produce, when possible.
“I’m starting to figure out what I want on the menu,” she said of the rotation of offerings in single, double and family sizes.
One of the most popular fresh dishes is pan-fried salmon or chicken with roasted vegetables and sweet potatoes. Teriyaki beef and broccoli are another big seller, along with salads where customers choose their protein. Then there are the popular Cranberry Walnut Mini Muffins. All dressings and sauces are made from scratch in-house, Spunberg said.
She said some customers don’t have food allergies or sensitivities, just to be healthy.
She said she’s actually doing a little less business than she was during the pandemic, but that’s okay because, with two young kids, “it gives me a balance in life,” she said. she declared.
Spunberg, who eats her own company food, said she has been feeling “good” since changing her diet in 2016.
“I don’t feel bloated anymore. I have more energy. My body feels strong,” she said. Many symptoms of her polycystic ovary syndrome have also disappeared.
“I’ve had clients say they feel so much better,” she says. “It’s really something that excites me. I’m so passionate about it, it’s really not like a job for me.
Orders can be placed on the Spunberg website at https://healthyistheway.com/ or by calling 860-325-2516.