Thanksgiving is right around the corner and the beginning of Christmas holiday festivities are not far behind. These two holidays’ present unique problems for people with food sensitivities.
Over the years I have developed a number of survival strategies that I want to share with you. These work around’s will help you maintain your health when you are a guest at someone else’s table. Some of these ideas may work better than others depending on the social situation.
Holiday tips for food sensitive people
- Do let your host/hostess know that you have food sensitivities so they are not caught off guard the day of the event.
- Bring a dish that you can eat to the party.
- If this is a family holiday party offer to help with the preparation and make a couple dishes that are safe for you to eat.
- Remember that simply prepared vegetable dishes can be eaten by people with food sensitivities and those who are vegetarian.
- Alternative gluten free grains like rice, millet or quinoa make good alternatives to “bread stuffing”. ** See my Autumn Harvest Rice recipe below.
- For a grain free option remember riced cauliflower or cauliflower mashed potatoes.
- Pasta subs include zucchini noodles and spaghetti squash.
- Pastry type desserts and entrees can be made with gluten free mixes.
- Grain free pastry options include nut flours and meals and dried fruits. Plus many dishes traditionally prepared with pastry can be made without pastry or any crust at all.
- Carob can be substituted for chocolate.
- Some examples of sauce substitutions are; roasted & pureed red pepper for tomato sauce; use cashew cream as a substitute for dairy based cheese sauces, use coconut milk for cream and other dairy free nut milks for regular milk in recipes. *** See how to make cashew cream recipe below
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Try these strategies to help you from over indulging on high calorie party foods
- Avoid snacking or grazing. Instead, eat three meals per day.
- Optimal eating times are every 4 hours.
- On the day of a party stick with your normal eating schedule leading up to party time.
- Start the day with a good, high protein breakfast instead of a high carbohydrate meal and you will crave less carbohydrates all day.
- Eat a small meal before you leave for the holiday meal or party. This way you won’t be starving when you arrive and tempted to eat foods that don’t support you.
- Drinking some warm broth or broth based soup before your meal helps fill up your stomach.
- Stay hydrated so you are less likely to over indulge
- Choose protein (nuts, cheese, meats/fish) or vegetables and fresh fruits as appetizers.
- Skip the high calorie, empty carb foods like chips and crackers.
- Set a limit on two cocktails for the night and skip the liqueurs that are high in sugar and alcohol.
- For every cocktail drink at least one 8 oz glass of water.
- Reduce calories by drinking spritzers or mock tails.
Here’s one of my favorite recipes you can try!
Autumn Harvest Rice
1 ½ cup Lundburg Organic Short Grain brown rice
½ cup wild rice or black rice
1 celery rib diced
2 carrots diced
1 small onion finely minced (or use a large shallot)
¼ cup golden raisins
¼ cup dried cherries
¼ cup diced walnuts or pecans
2 cloves minced garlic
1 Tbs. grated or mined ginger root
¼ tsp sea salt
1 sweet apple diced (Gala or Fuji work well)
2 Tbsp. real maple syrup
2- 4 Tbsp. butter (divided) or use 2 Tbs. olive oil for sautéing
Cook brown and wild rice (or black rice) according to directions.
~ If you have never had black rice it has a nutty flavor. Just be sure to let it cool completely before mixing in with other lighter colored rice or all your rice will look black!
In large skillet melt 2 Tbs. of butter or olive oil on low heat. Add the garlic and ginger root. Add the onions and cook on med low for 1 minute. Add the carrots, celery and salt cook for 4 more minutes. Add the diced apple and cook another 2 minutes. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine cooked brown and wild rice with vegetable mixture. Add the dried fruits and nuts. Add the maple syrup and remaining butter until combined.
Place everything in a buttered or oiled covered casserole dish. Bake for 25 minutes.
~ This also makes a wonderful stuffing for acorn or carnival squash.
Cashew Creme Two Ways Recipe
Savory cashew cream
- 1 cup raw cashews
- ½ cup water
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Splash of Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
Sweet cashew cream
- 1 cup raw cashews
- ½ cup water
- 4 tbsp raw agave nectar or maple syrup (or a couple of pitted Medjool dates)
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- Dash sea salt
Directions for either cashew cream are the same
- Soak cashews in a bowl of water in the fridge overnight, then drain and rinse
- Place all ingredients in a blender and blend at high speed until smooth and creamy.
Finding everyday solutions to help you attain your wellness goals is what I do. If you need help CONTACT ME