Food sensitivities are hard enough to deal with, then the holidays roll around and it seems even harder.
First, there is Thanksgiving, with turkey and stuffing and all the great sides, not to mention those yummy desserts. Next up — the Christmas parties that continue all the way to the Christmas dinner table.
The holidays can be tough, especially when a food sensitivity diet is still foreign to both you and your family. But with preparation and honest communication, you can enjoy all the festivities even if you have a food sensitivity.
Here are 3 things that can help make the holidays easier for you and your family.
- Help the family understand your needs:
At a time when families gather, it’s important that they understand your special dietary needs so you can avoid unwanted reactions. Educate them about your food sensitivities and explain why it is crucial to avoid certain foods. Help with the meal plan, grocery shopping and preparation of meals. If your family just doesn’t “get it,” then you may need to take your health in your own hands. Don’t be afraid to bring your own meal if need be.
- Take away the fear of accidentally eating something that contains a forbidden ingredient:
It’s natural to be concerned about accidentally eating something you are not supposed to have during parties. Remember, it is okay to ask questions about food preparation and ingredients. If you’re not comfortable and feel that something may make you sick, don’t feel bad about skipping it. Your health comes first. As mentioned earlier, you can always bring your own food to ensure you have safe options.
- Avoid the temptation to cheat because it’s just too complicated:
It’s easy to be tempted by all the gluten dishes and dairy desserts during the holidays, especially if your food sensitivity diagnosis is new to you. After all, how do you resist Grandma’s famous stuffing or your aunt’s pumpkin pie?
That’s where communication comes in. See if you can work together to make gluten-free and dairy-free versions of your favorite dish so you won’t feel like you’re missing out. Carry a nutritious snack with you. Offer to bring your own dark chocolate chip cookies to a party so you don’t feel deprived. Continue to remind yourself how important this is for your health and well-being.
Giving in to temptation could end up making you severely ill and unable to enjoy the holiday festivities. This happened to me last year. I flew all the way to California to be with my family on Thanksgiving. After giving into temptation and eating all the goodies, I got sick by the end of the first night. I was sick the whole weekend. Not a fun way to spend time with the family!
Food sensitivity diets are a lifestyle that must be followed for the sake of your health. If you keep that mindset throughout the holidays, you can resist any temptation and make good choices.
My book has several gluten-free and dairy-free recipes and is available for purchase on my website. I wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season and many blessings for the New Year.
Be in Health,