On the Road: GF & Healthy Eating Apps

find me GF

I just updated my earlier post on the smart phone app 1) Find Me Gluten Free. I don’t want to repeat myself, so follow the link if you want to see my opinion/review on the Find Me Gluten Free App.

Now to other apps. I realized yesterday that I needed to get off my bottom and review gluten free restaurant apps. I still like Find Me GF, but it has it’s limitations, as the developers haven’t finished it, you cannot use it while driving on the highway unless you want heartburn before you even get to a restaurant. Maybe the developers are trying to do too much with one single app, but on the other hand, if they can pull it off; then all we’ll need is ONE app to go to the grocery store, find safe restaurants in our hometown and also on the road. Will just wait and see. Like I said before, get it while it’s free because I believe the developers are creating something great with this app and if they succeed, you’ll be paying through the nose for this app 🙂

Okay, moving on to other apps I found and played with. Out of maybe 8 apps I downloaded, I have whittled my list down to FOUR. Find me Gluten Free, Gluten Free Restaurant Items, Healthy Out and Gluten Free Registry.

I also have two other apps that I believe are a great addition to these Gluten apps. They are apps to find restaurants, hotels, ATMs, gas, ect while on the road. So I figure, I can see the restaurants I CAN eat at and then locate them on my highway app. I know some of these apps allow you to find addresses and give you driving directions, but they take you away from your app and it’s frustrating. Especially if you’re the driver! Talk about an accident waiting to happen! I was near a Chick-fil-A in a mall yesterday. None of my gluten free restaurant apps found it except for Gluten Free Registry. I was stunned. We had to use my husband’s highway app to actually find it (even hidden in a mall).

2) Gluten Free Restaurant Items. iTunes and Android. Both are $2.49GF Rest Items
Developers Note: Want to eat gluten & allergy free fast food? Find safe items from one of top 10 iPad apps in Food category featured in Incredible iPad Apps for Dummies! Enter your allergen concerns into the iCANEat fast Food menu database for 34 U.S. chains. Hide items that contain gluten, wheat, egg, milk, nuts, peanuts, soy, fish and shellfiish based on your preferences.
The developers update this app frequently. It seems to list a lot of Restaurants–125 of the most popular. You can choose a restaurant through “Find Near Me”. You can also ear-mark your favorite restaurants. It also lists GF menu items.
Once again, though, this app is not driver friendly. Use it to find restaurants around you at home, visiting friends or traveling and THEN go there.

GF registry3) Gluten Free Registry ($1.99) iTunes and Android  and web site.
The website states that their mission is to put people and gluten-free friendly restaurants, bakeries, caterers, grocers and more together. Utilize their free, searchable, moderated database of over 32,700+ gluten-free friendly business locations to find one near you or your travel destination. So far over 1.3 million people have used their website and apps.
Their apps don’t have a lot of reviews–iTunes 77 and Android 10. Their app seems pretty good. In search you can choose “Show All”, “Restaurants”, “I Want Pizza”, etc, so its proximity locator is pretty good. While in Chattanooga, it was the ONLY app that found a local Chick-fil-A in Hamilton Place Mall. Now that’s pretty good!
In my opinion, I wouldn’t pay the $1.99 for this app if I hadn’t already. Their web site seems pretty low-speed. Useful but not to pretty. I’ll keep it on my iPhone for future reference though.

4) *** Healthy Out*** (free)iTunes and AndroidHealthy Out
App description: Healthy Out helps you, find healthy restaurant and prepared grocery store meals that fit your personal preferences. It covers the widest range of diet and nutrition filters in any app. Use our unique calarie and points filters to find a meal in your goal. See detailed nutrition information for dishes including calories and points and eat out confident that you made a healthy choice!
I am the most happy with this app even though it isn’t perfect. While looking for restaurants the other night at home, it didn’t find Mellow Mushroom or Chick-fil-A. BUT, you have lots of food choices like Atkins, gluten-free, Paleo, South Beach, Low Carb…. You can even choose to watch calories, what kind of cuisine you want, even down to what ingredients you are looking for in a restaurant.
This app lists a lot of restaurants, tells you how far away they are and what dishes are available using your filter. It shows a map of restaurant choice, telephone number, website. The only negative is that you cannot get driving directions within the app. When you choose directions, it takes you away from the app, so when you want to go back to the app, you have to click the home button on your phone and choose the app again. BUT, there is a map of the restaurants and you can make it big enough to virtually see where the restaurant is.
Again, this is not an app a driver can use. You’ll have to pull over to use it, or rely on passengers to find information for you.

4 paws down) Dine Gluten Free (free)iTunes and Android
My opinion. This app is too new. DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME WITH THIS APP.

2 paws down) Locate Special Diet (free) – iTunes and Android          They list three categories: Restaurants, Drinks and Grocery. The Grocery segment is not available yet. When I tested it for restaurants in my proximity, it found LongHorn Steaks, Mellow Mushroom, Outback Steakhouse but NOT Applebee’s. This app does have a filter for different types of food like German, Thai, Chinese, Tex-Mex…. You can even choose dietary preferences such as gluten free, organic/local, paleo, vegan and vegetarian. Under RESTAURANTS you can get directions, link to restaurant’s website, add to favorites. This app doesn’t spport many restaurants. When this app is fully developed, maybe it will get a better rating from me; but for right now, 2 paws down.

Two apps that can be used in conjunction with the GF Restaurant Apps!
These apps are just your normal, everyday highway travel companions. They list every exit off the highway you’re on and what is available at each exit. What in the world did we do before smart phones?!

iExitiExit ($0.99) ignore the free app. It hasn’t been updated since 2011. iTunes and Android.
Road AheadThis is a great app. It tells you what’s coming up at each exit so you can use your Healthy Out app to find restaurants and see what exit your restaurant is on! It also shows gas stations and hotels, besides camp sites, truck-friendly stops, rest areas and auto services!

Road Ahead (free) iTunes  Sorry, no Android version 😦
This app cannot be used by a driver. But, it can use your GPS to locate you or you can choose a highway you will be on and also your destination so it can tell you where ATMs are, dining, fast food, grocery stores, gas stations, police stations, movie theatres!

I hope my reviews are helpful to you and make your gluten-free life just a bit easier.

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