Christmas can be a difficult time for those of us with food intolerances. Often you share many meals with others culminating in the Christmas Day festivities. This results in a number of meals you don’t have a lot of control over. So far this year I’ve been to a number of Christmas parties where there was literally nothing I could eat which results in a hangover from minimal alcoholic beverage consumption.
If you’re new to food intolerances or have recently changed your diet, as so many people are now that there’s so much more education around intolerances and how to deal with them. Here’s a few tips on handling this new way of life over the Christmas season 🎄.
Check the menu first
This seems like the obvious but checking the menu before you go to a restaurant is the best way to know what you can and can’t order when you get there. If there’s absolutely nothing you can eat on the normal menu you can call and ask what options they have ahead of time. Sometimes if the chef knows you’re coming they will put something together for you. They want you to enjoy the experience as much as everyone else.
Control as much as you can
Depending on the situation there’s quite a bit you can control. Sometimes this can be as simple as taking your own snacks to a Christmas party or going and having a meal before hand so you can still have fun with everyone else but you’re not crazy hungry the whole time.
Don’t be shy about submitting your dietary requirements for catered meetings or events. The people around you will be happier that they can cater to your needs.
What to do with the food gifts
I love receiving surprise gifts throughout December but often these gifts are hampers full of Christmas foodstuffs. Just this week I got a ‘bouquet’ of Nutella filled donuts. I was very grateful but I was well aware that I couldn’t eat them due to my intolerances (I had 1/4 of one and felt sick all afternoon).
These gifts are perfect candidates for regifting and sharing. Hampers can easily be split up so you can take the things you like whilst letting colleagues, friends or family enjoy the other items.
Don’t forget to have fun
Having food intolerances in any way isn’t fun and it’s likely you’ve been dealing with them for quite some time. Don’t let it consume you over Christmas and remember to have fun! If you can’t have your favourite treat anymore have a bit of a google and see if you can make a dupe with friendly ingredients. I’ve been able to find a vegan friendly Christmas fruit mince tart today so I’m pretty happy with that!
Note: Thanks so much for reading, I wanted this post to be a bit more comprehensive but GoDaddy updated my wordpress today and I can’t update posts on my laptop so I’ve posted this entirely from my iPhone. Don’t worry, there will be many more posts around food intolerance to come.