For families who have kids with food allergies, going out during the holidays can create a lot of anxiety because most festivities involve food.
The following tips will help to reduce your children’s exposure to food allergens, as well as the stress on parents, so everyone can enjoy a safe and happy holiday season!
Wear allergy apparel – Consider dressing the little ones in clothing imprinted with a food allergy alert. Food allergy organisations offer colourful t-shirts with food allergy alerts, along with stickers, patches and buttons.
Cover or wash hands – Prevent skin contact with food allergens by covering your baby’s hands with gloves or socks. In addition, young children like to explore using their hands and mouths, so teach and encourage them to wash their hands frequently while attending food filled events.
Role play with children – Prepare children ahead of time on how to say no when offered food and sweet goodies. Practice saying “no, thank you” by role playing the various social situations children may encounter.
Talk to the host – Before attending a party or other holiday celebration, have an in-depth conversation with the host concerning your child’s food allergies.
Bring your own food – Unexpected circumstances often arise, so be prepared by bringing your own allergen-free alternatives when going out for the holidays.
Help prepare the food – Offer to help prepare the cuisine being served at food focused celebrations.
Host the holiday dinner – Invite family and friends to your place for a holiday dinner or get together. Additionally, notify attendees ahead of time concerning foods or ingredients not allowed in the home.
Feed children before going out – Do not let children leave home hungry. Instead, feed them healthy allergen free food prior to going out, which helps them to resist sweet temptations.
Be on the lookout – As difficult as it may be, it is important to always remain alert to snacks, desserts and other food available in unfamiliar surroundings. Likewise, keep an eye on what children with food allergies are doing.