The holidays are over, but with New Yearâ€™s, Superbowl parties, Valentineâ€™s day and Easter right around the corner, the food just keeps on coming. If youâ€™re anything like me you love celebrating with yummy, seasonal food! Whether that means bringing friends and family together for gatherings or baking your very favorite cookies, cakes or breads to give out to everyone from neighbors to teachers to grandparents.
As weâ€™ve struggled with gluten intolerance and over the years Iâ€™ve become much more aware of the quality of ingredients I put in my body. Then there are my friends who also have dietary restrictions. Iâ€™ve encountered everything from Paleo to gluten-free, vegan, dairy free and nut free. Trying to keep everything straight can make your head spin so Iâ€™ve stepped away from this tradition a little bit.
Since high school I have always made baked treats to give away, but I stopped a few years ago after my daughter was born and we discovered her gluten intolerance. To me thereâ€™s nothing worse than getting or receiving a gift thatâ€™s going to go right into the trash because nobody wants to eat it. I havenâ€™t done it in a while but this year Iâ€™m determined to make homemade body products to give out insteadâ€“from body butters to scrubs and bath bombs these will always be a great gift.
As for hosting a party, itâ€™s actually a lot easier than you might think. If youâ€™re sending out an invitation, include a simple line such as â€śplease RSVP with any dietary restrictions.â€ť Having been on both sides of the fence, I promise itâ€™s much more awkward for everyone involved if the person with the allergy or restriction has to call the host and ask what theyâ€™re serving so they can accommodate by brining their own food. If youâ€™re inviting in person, take a minute to ask about food restrictions. Most likely someone will offer to bring a dish if they follow a very strict diet.
The wonderful thing about special diets is that theyâ€™re so common nowadays that you can find so many great websites and youâ€™ll probably fall in love with a dish or two that you might have otherwise never tried. If you donâ€™t know where to start here are some great websites that cater to different dietary needs and have fantastic recipes!
Jacqueline Banks is a certified Holistic Health Counselor focused on nutrition and green living strategies. She works with women in all stages of motherhood, from mothers struggling with conception, through pregnancy, lactation and beyond to ensure the best health and nutrition for both mother and baby.