Food Allergy Living Blog Tagged Results


holidays

Celebrating Valentine’s Day Safely

Posted 2.10.11 | Rob McCandlish, RDN

Not so many years ago, it was pretty common for kids to give classmates valentines with candy, bring in baked goods to share, and have a Valentine’s Day party at school. While a lot of classrooms have cut back on such activities, it’s still a great idea to play it safe this Valentine’s Day and avoid the risk of allergic reactions.

Preparing

Since Valentine’s Day falls on a school day this year, the best thing you can do is to remind your child’s teacher(s) of allergies ahead of time. If valentines are going to be exchanged or a party is planned, the teacher can help share information with other parents to ensure that everyone remains safe from potential allergens. Feel free to offer to send a “safe” treat in with your child if they won’t be able to enjoy other foods.

If your child is going to a friend’s house for a Valentine’s Day party, make sure to check in with the host parents to make sure they are aware your little one has a food allergy and ask what will be served ahead of time. Remind your child that they should keep an eye out for allergens: even if a party has a menu, there’s no guarantee other parents won’t send unplanned treats.

Hosting

Are you a teacher? If so, remember that the safest valentine for a child with an allergy is one that doesn’t include candy. You may find it easiest to institute a “cards only” rule if valentines are exchanged. A Valentine’s Day party can be great without the snacks by involving fun games or crafts. You could also keep the food and ensure it’s safe by purchasing or preparing snacks yourself that you know are safe and instituting a “no treats” rule for parents.

If you’re a parent who’s hosting a get-together for some of your child’s playmates, it’s best to check ahead of time with other parents to ask about allergies. Other parents may be more than happy to contribute allergen-free foods to the menu, or you can forgo food altogether and host the party away from mealtime with some fun activities instead.

Giving

Whether your child has an allergy or not, make sure he/she is giving valentines that are safe for other students in their class who may have an allergy of their own. Lots of valentine multi-packs include candy, which most kids enjoy. However, to keep the valentines your child hands out safe, you might consider sprucing up a “traditional” card-only valentine. You can add to the “cool factor” by including valentine-themed tattoos, stickers, or other approved favors in place of edible gifts.

Have a child that can’t enjoy chocolate or the usual treats? Try out our recipe for a knock-out knock-off of chocolate pudding. Also consider family-friendly activities that don’t involve food. Finally, a t-shirt, CD, game or even small vase of flowers could be the surprise gift your child wasn’t expecting!

What tips do you have to keep Valentine’s Day worry free?

- Rob


Sweet Potato Casserole

Posted 12.29.10 | Food Allergy Recipes

This sweet potato casserole is the perfect side dish to make for your little ones with food allergies. Make it for your own holiday celebration or to take along to any celebrations you might be attending.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups mashed sweet potatoes (pre-cooked, may boil, bake or microwave potatoes with skins on - approximately 4 medium sweet potatoes)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Fleischmans unsalted dairy and casein free margarine
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup organic rice milk

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together and place in 9 x13” baking dish. Preheat oven to 350°F. Topping:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup Fleischmans Unsalted Dairy and Casein Free Margarine
  • 1/2 cup self-rising flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Mix well and spread on top of casserole. Bake 25 minutes or until golden.

Nutrition Information:

  • Calories130
  • Protein 0g
  • Carbohydrates 16g
  • Fat 8g

Makes ~12 servings

Submitted by: Katherine M. Hull

To get more food allergy recipes, be sure to download our new Food Allergy Cookbook!

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Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Posted 12.23.10 | Sarah O'Brien

On behalf of all of us here at Nutricia North America, we want to wish you and your families a very happy, healthy holiday season! We are looking forward to another great year in 2011!

- Sarah, Christine, Mallory and Rob


Gingerbread Cookies

Posted 12.8.10 | Food Allergy Recipes

December is a month of holidays! These gingerbread cookies are easy and fun to make and customizable...just select the cookie-cutter that best represents the holidays you celebrate.

Ingredients:

  • 3 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 2/3 cup canola oil
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp ground ginger

Directions:

Over medium heat combine molasses, oil and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil while stirring constantly. Set aside. Combine flour and other dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and add molasses, sugar and oil and pour into mixing bowl and then add egg and blend together to form a thick dough ball. Wrap dough in plastic and chill for 1 hour (if dough is too dry, add drops of canola oil, if too sticky to roll out, add flour). Preheat oven to 350°F. Divide dough in half and roll out on floured surface. Use cookie cutters and place cookies on a greased cookie sheet. Bake 10-14 minutes and let cool.

Nutrition Information:

  • Calories190
  • Protein 2g
  • Carbohydrates 31g
  • Fat 7g

Makes ~2 dozen cookies

Submitted by: Marie Bedard

To get more food allergy recipes, be sure to download our new Food Allergy Cookbook!

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Holiday Gifts for Children and Adolescents with Food Allergies

Posted 12.2.10 | Christine Graham-Garo

Goodies for allergy kids The holiday season has begun, it is time to start planning the gift giving. When you are getting a gift for someone with food allergies, holiday gifts can be complicated. Here are some really cool and useful gift ideas for those with food allergies (also included; what not to give!)

Holiday Candy Ideas:

(When buying candy, be sure you know the specific allergies of your gift recipient.)

  • Yummi Earth Hard Candies - Yummi Earth hard candies come in fun flavors like Googly Grape, Chili Mango Mambo, or Hopscotch Butterscotch. All are organic, vegan, and free of nuts, soy, wheat, eggs, peanuts, gluten, dairy, corn syrup, and artificial flavors.
  • Vermont Nut-Free Chocolate Coins - Kids of all ages will love these nut- and peanut-free chocolate coins. Vermont Nut-Free Chocolates are made in a dedicated nut-free facility. Caution these have milk.
  • Pure Fun Organic Candy Canes - These candy canes are free of the 8 most common allergens, artificial colors and flavors, and are kosher.

Gift Basket Ideas:

  • Divvies - Divvies stylish gift baskets are full of treats that contain no nuts, eggs, or dairy. They specialize in gourmet cookies, chocolate, and popcorn.
  • The Royal Basket Company - This offers a variety of allergy-friendly gift baskets that are searchable by allergen or diet (sugar free, GF/CF). Plush teddy bears perch atop piles of allergy-friendly toys and sweets for the little ones, while adults may enjoy a basket of "Gourmet Pleasures" with smoked salmon, olives, and crunchy snacks.

Allergen Friendly Toys and Books:

  • Allergy-friendly stuffed animals: Because many children with food allergies also have asthma, and some plush animals may be stuffed with nut shells or soy-based fibers, certified asthma friendly stuffed animals take the worry out of shopping.  Build-A-Bear® offers an Allergy-Friendly Stuffed Animal Puppy that might be perfect for a little one.
  • Children’s books – Children’s books about food allergies make great gifts at any time of the year. This holiday season a book that was suggested is Clever Jack Takes the Cake, a fairy tale that features a princess with food allergies. If you are buying for a toddler with soy allergies, avoid books printed with soy-based inks.

Speaking of books; here are some notable ideas:

  • Subscription to a food allergy magazine - Living Without or Allergic Living are great resources for the newly-diagnosed or those looking for new tips and recipes.
  • Books about food allergies - There are many good books about food allergies on the market these days. Someone with newly-diagnosed food allergies might like Food Allergies for Dummies, while someone who has been managing allergies for years might enjoy a personal memoir.

What not to get for people with food allergies (unless their parents tell you it is OK):

  • Toy food versions of their allergens
  • Modeling clay or play dough (many are made from wheat or contain soy)
  • Paints or crayons (may contain dairy or soy)
  • Temporary tattoos, make-up or body paints (anything that goes on the body requires extra scrutiny from parents)
  • Bubble bath (many contain dairy, soy, or nuts, or may just irritate sensitive skin)
  • Homemade food. Even if all the ingredients are safe for your gift recipient, the risk that something else made its way into the food (cross-contamination) is too great.
  • Lotions, soaps, or massage oils. Nuts, dairy products, or soy are often in bath and spa products.
  • Scented candles or perfumes. Many of us also have environmental allergies or asthma, and artificial scents can aggravate our symptoms.

Let us know if you‘ve come across any other fun and original gift ideas. The more we know the better!

Best wishes this holiday season!

- Christine

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted 11.25.10 | Nutrition Specialist

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! We hope you are enjoying a happy and healthy holiday with your loved ones. We are thankful that we have a great community of readers. We love hearing and learning from you!

What are you thankful for this year?

- The Food Allergy Living Team


Halloween with Food Allergies

Posted 10.26.10 | Sarah O'Brien

We shared our top 4 Tips for Celebrating Halloween Without a Food Allergy Scare. But with Halloween coming up this weekend we wanted to share a round-up of all the great “Halloween with Food Allergies” tips we’ve seen recently. Here is some more great advice from our favorite blogs and advocacy groups!

Tips for a Food Allergy Safe Trick or Treating

  • Kids With Food Allergies recommends pre-positioning safe candy at friends houses along with other advice for safe trick-or-treating and school parties.
  • Gina Clowes of Allergy Moms has 15 Halloween Safety Tips in her latest newsletter. She recommends pulling a “switcheroo” and buying two of the same treat collectors, letting your little one trick-or-treat, but then swapping their loot out with the safe version once you get home.

Have you read any great ideas for having a safe, but fun, Halloween? Be sure to share the links!

- Sarah


Food Allergy-Friendly Sweet Treats

Posted 10.12.10 | Sarah O'Brien

With Halloween right around the corner, we wanted to share some allergy-friendly Halloween candy that you can make and buy for your little ones. A few years ago there were limited options for children with food allergies. Now there are hundreds of different companies that make sweets that are both safe and delicious.

Candies and Chocolates

  • Amanda’s Own Confections. Great chocolates that are all natural and completely dairy-free, tree nut-free, peanut-free, egg-free and gluten-free!
  • Divvies. Cookies, popcorn, cupcakes, candies and more that are dairy-free, egg-free, peanut-free and tree nut-free. Check out these cute ghost-shaped chocolates!
  • Vermont Nut-Free Chocolates. These delicious chocolates are nut-free. The company was founded by the mother of a child with a severe peanut allergy.
  • Whey Out Chocolates. These diary-free, soy-free and peanut-free chocolates are made by another mother of a child with severe milk and nut allergies.

Recipes to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth Safely

What sweet treats does your family love?

- Sarah


Celebrate Easter and Passover with Recipes for Kids with Food Allergies

Posted 4.1.10 | Christine Graham-Garo

Easter and Passover celebrations are happening this week, and there will surely be an influx of goodies and feasts that come along with them. But if you have a little one with food allergies, this can be a tough and challenging time. We wanted to inform you about some great ideas (and where to find them) for an enjoyable and allergen-free Easter or Passover.

One place that I found lots of information was www.kidswithfoodallergies.org. There was plenty of information on Kids with Food Allergies’ (KFA) website for an allergen free Easter or Passover. They have lots of recipes for allergen-free dishes celebrating the holidays. The amount of activities and resources to choose from ensures that the whole family can get the most out of the holiday, even when food allergies are a concern. Check out the Peach Potato Puffs recipe for Passover. I thought it sounded different and delicious!

Peach Potato Puffs (from Kids With Food Allergies)

By Danielle (deestricky1)

  • 2 cups mashed sweet potatoes
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt dash ginger
  • 2 tsp dairy-free, soy free, corn free margarine
  • 6 canned peach halves

In a medium-sized bowl, mix all the ingredients except the peaches. Whip with whisk or mixer until nice and fluffy.

Take whipped potato mixture and pile some into each peach half. Arrange the filled peach halves in a greased or sprayed 6x10" baking pan and dot with additional margarine. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes.

When celebrating Easter, if your child has an egg allergy it can be a very tricky time. But with some helpful tips and ideas, they can still take part in all of the traditions. If you are decorating eggs, instead of real eggs paint wooden versions, or use stickers to decorate plastic ones. Instead of candy, fill Easter baskets with toys and other goodies like sidewalk chalk, books and jewelry. Or you can check out allergen-free candies from companies like Divvies, Premium Chocolatier and Sweet Earth. You can also make your own candies – Go Dairy Free has some great recipes.

I found these fun tips on KFA's website. Here are links to view the booklets I found so helpful.

I have received a number of calls from parents asking if Neocate Infant DHA ARA contains certain grains which are not allowed during Passover. Neocate Infant DHA ARA formula does not have any grains (wheat, barley, oats, spelt, rye) in the formula. If your little one is on an elemental diet composed of mostly formula, then this can be a unique situation. Feel free to read the Passover booklet to get more information about adhering to a restricted diet during the holidays.

I hope these ideas help make your celebrations fun for everyone! Do you have any other creative ideas for an allergy-friendly Passover or Easter? Enjoy the holidays!

-Christine


Great Kid Treats & Snacks for an Allergy-Safe Valentines Day!

Posted 2.11.10 | Mallory West

Valentines Day is a fun holiday for kids and most schools have some kind of celebration, where students share valentines, candy and other treats. For a child with food allergies (and their parents), this day can be stressful. You want to ensure your child stays safe from potential allergens while making sure they get to enjoy all of the fun. Here are some ideas for a safe and fun Valentine’s Day celebration!

First and foremost, you want to make sure your child stays safe during any classroom valentine exchanges. Kids with Food Allergies compiled a list of 7 tips to follow in order to keep your child safe at school on Valentines Day:

You may want to bring in some allergy-free treats for your child so he/she doesn’t feel left out.

Here are some allergy-friendly* treat ideas:

If you are looking for an alternative to candy and sweets, your child can bring valentine-themed stickers, pencils, etc. Another idea is to talk with your child’s teacher about making a valentine-themed craft that everyone can participate in and enjoy. This way, the celebration isn’t totally focused on candy and treats.

For example, the class could make these valentine-themed crafts:

  • Valentine mobiles
  • Valentine wreaths
  • Friendship boxes

What allergy-friendly Valentines Day ideas/tips do you have to share?

-Mallory

*These allergy-friendly recipes are free of the most common allergens but as always, double check to make sure all of the ingredients are safe for your child.


Milk Free Recipes for the Holidays!

Posted 12.24.09 | Mallory West

On behalf of all of us here at Nutricia North America, we want to wish you and your families a very happy, healthy holiday season! We’ll return January 5th with another year of blogging! Until then, we’ll leave you with some festive recipes and a toast to 2010!

“May this year be without reflux and gas, Let colic and eczema be things of the past! Allergy relief and GI health await, Cheers to 2010 from your friends at Neocate!”

Milk-Free Hot Chocolate

Heat water on the stove or in the microwave. Remove from heat, allow to cool and add Neocate powder and sugar. Stir well. Top with marshmallows (check the label to be sure the brand is appropriate for your child’s dietary restrictions).

Calories: 170
Protein: 5.2g Fat: 7g
Carbohydrate: 22.5g
Calcium: 183mg
Vitamin D: 1.8mcg

Milk-free Peppermint Shake:

Add all ingredients except Neocate powder into the blender and mix until smooth. Next, add Neocate powder and mix on low setting until blended. Pour and serve. Makes 1-2 servings. If your child drinks smaller servings, pour half and store the remaining shake in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Tip: Remember using the Old-fashioned peppermint sticks as a straw? Try using it with this shake! Check ingredients because brands will vary. Alternatively, you could use candy-striped straws, which you can find at most party stores!

Calories: 409
Protein: 8g
Fat: 18g
Carbohydrate: 54g
Calcium: 295mg
Vitamin D: 206mcg

See you next year!!!

- Mallory


Have a Happy Allergy-Free Easter!

Posted 3.26.09 | Nutrition Specialist

The weather is getting warmer and the flowers are beginning to bloom. It’s Spring time. I’m sure you are ready for the warm weather, but are you ready for an allergy-free Easter? Often, holidays like this one are hard for allergy parents. It’s tough to tell your little one that they can’t have the chocolate bunnies like the other children. However, by doing a few fun Easter activities, your child will have just as much fun as the rest of the children!

As we’ve said before, allergy parents should focus on the fun - not the food - during holidays. I was flipping through Parents magazine the other day, and came across a great idea for safely celebrating Easter. Have a tea party! While this might not sound like the traditional Easter celebration, it’s a great way to create a fun and exciting day for your little one.

Spend the day making decorations for the party. You can create name tags, invitations and fake flower bouquets. And of course, you can use plastic teacups for the drinks. For the food, focus on allergy-free treats. You can make your own sandwiches or cookies with allergen free ingredients. Check out this Web site for allergy-free recipes.

The traditional Easter egg hunt is another great way to get your children involved in the celebration. However, instead of filling the eggs with candy that could trigger a reaction, use stickers, bouncy balls or other fun toys.

For other great allergy-free Easter ideas, click here.

How are you having an allergy-free Easter? I’d love to hear your ideas.

- Nita


Allergy-Free Valentine’s Day!

Posted 2.12.09 | Christine Graham-Garo

Happy early Valentine’s Day to all the allergy parents out there. As we’ve discussed before holiday that revolves around food can be tough for children with food allergies. However, you can show your allergy prone little one just how much you love them even without the chocolate hearts and other edible treats.

Here are a few suggestions to have a fun and relaxing Valentine’s Day:
- Create homemade valentines out of paper. Children love arts and crafts. Use this special day as an excuse to create fun notes for classmates, friends and family members.

- Take a family outing to the park or museum. It’s a great way to celebrate the day without focusing on food.

- Cook your own allergy-free treats for your little one. Visit Recipe Zaar for some ideas. This Web site has hundreds of allergy friendly recipes and you can search by typing what food you would like to avoid.

For 10 other ways to have a food allergy safe Valentine’s Day, click here.

How are you having an allergy-free Valentine’s weekend?

- Christine


Happy Holidays!

Posted 12.23.08 | Nutrition Specialist

Thank you for a wonderful year of blogging! We will be back with new and exciting blog entries after the holidays. Have a safe, healthy and happy holiday season.

- Nita, Christine, Sarah, Steven and Ulrike

 


It’s Officially Holiday Season…

Posted 12.5.08 | Nutrition Specialist

And you’re already exhausted! Between decorating, shopping, preparing the family holiday card and attending countless holiday parties, you are out of free time! And on top of that, you still have to make sure your allergy prone little one is safe and reaction free during a time where holiday treats are unavoidable.

The good news is, you have a lot of family time coming up. Your little ones will be on Christmas break, which is a perfect time to re-enforce allergy safety. You can’t always control other people, but you can teach your child how to avoid those pesky allergy danger zones.

Here are a few tips:
- When cooking your child’s allergy free meals, have them help! It’s a great way to teach them what foods they can and can not have while having fun.

- While running out to get those last minute presents, explain to your child why staying away from certain foods matters. You can’t be with your child every minute of every day, so it’s good to make sure they are fully aware of what they need to steer clear of.

- Prepare a few quick and easy holiday games to play with your little one. It will show them that they can have a great time during the holiday season, and any season for that matter, without focusing on food.

For more on allergy-free fun during the holidays, check out our other blog entry on the topic.

How are you creating an allergy-free holiday celebration?

- Nita


Turkey, Mistle Toe, and Food Allergies?

Posted 11.11.08 | Christine Graham-Garo

Well, it doesn’t necessarily go in that order. Often, holidays can be tough for families that have a child with a food allergy. However, if you fall into that category, the holidays don’t have to be a wash! Even though the holidays often revolve around food, you can still make them enjoyable for your allergy prone little one. You just have to prepare!

Here are some tips to help all families have fun without focusing on food:

- Turn the focus from foods to holiday songs, crafts and activities.

- Try using substitutions for the egg, nuts, milk and/or wheat in your favorite holiday recipes (depending upon your child’s allergy).

- Make new holiday traditions that everyone in your family can enjoy, such as taking a walk together or playing a game. For your little one, a new tradition is just as special as an old one!

And, if your child is on a specialized formula, like Neocate, bring it to all holiday functions, even if it’s supposed to only be a short get-together. When family and friends get together, you never know how long the holiday festivities will last!

Recently, I read a great article from Today’s Diet & Nutrition titled “Holidays Safer for People with Allergies” By Carol M. Bareuther, RD. It was a helpful and uplifting article for a family with food allergies.

The article gave some great ideas on how to create a safe allergy environment in and out of your home during the busy holiday season. Here are a few:

- If your family receives an invitation to a holiday party, provide the host with some food tips ahead of time. That way, if your little one isn’t eating, the host knows why!

- Offer to bring your own allergy safe dish.

- ”Revamp grandma’s classics!” Just by changing an ingredient or two, you can create your favorite holiday dish, allergy free!

While holidays are usually filled with laughter and cheer, an allergy scare can turn the festive mood upside-down. We recommend using these tips to make a few simple changes for a happy and safe holiday.

And remember, be prepared for the unexpected! Always bring your child’s medicine or Epipen.

Have a great turkey day! - Christine


Food Allergy Travel Tips: You Can Take It With You

Posted 11.4.08 | Guest Blogger

Here is a great guest blog entry for all of your upcoming holiday travels! 

Gina Clowes is the founder of AllergyMoms.com. We would like to thank her for guest blogging for us and sharing her family's allergy story.

Note: This article was originally written for Health Central: My AllergyNetwork.com. To view the article there, click here.

When you or a loved one have food allergies, it can be tough to avoid allergic reactions on the road. Here are five tips for managing food allergies while traveling (and they ensure that you have fun!).

After my son was diagnosed with food allergies, our traveling days came to an abrupt halt. To get back in the swing of things, we started slowly getting our feet wet by staying at the homes of close relatives . Gradually, we ventured out to hotels and condos. Today, we could probably camp out overnight with the contents of my purse! Traveling with food allergies does take more preparation but it’s worth it! If you’re feeling timid about taking food allergies on the road, here are a few tips to nudge you on your way.

Planes, Trains and Automobiles

A lot of allergy moms shy away from plane travel but if you fly first thing in the morning, and carry on your child’s food and drink, it can be quicker and easier than driving. Check out the airline’s policy on peanut or other allergens and always make your reservation over the phone. You can explain your child’s allergies in detail. Bring your own meals, snacks and wet wipes, so that you will reduce the risk of an allergic reaction. Make sure that your child’s Epi-Pen or Twinject is with you in its original packaging along with a letter from your doctor. We’ve never had anyone question my son’s medications, however, we did have the TSA agents confiscate several bottles of water that I had with us right after the restrictions on liquids went into effect.

Hotels and Condos and Relatives, Oh My!

If your child has multiple allergies, a hotel (or relative) with a kitchen is a must. I’ve heard of allergy moms making due with a refrigerator and a hot plate but I don’t recommend it. Vacation home condos are wonderful but often pricey. “Home-away-from-home” hotels, like the Residence Inn, are everywhere and most come with a full kitchen. Other hotels offer in-room refrigerators for a nominal charge or will store your cold or frozen foods if need be. We always request a non-smoking room, with foam pillows and no bedspreads on the bed. Several hotel chains offer “pure rooms” that are even more allergy friendly.

Happy Meals

If you do plan to venture out for meals, it pays to do the legwork ahead of time. Get a good guide book or research restaurants online. Several restaurant chains, like Outback Steak house, specifically address food allergies on their websites along with their menu. I always ask to speak with a manager or chef when ordering as we’ve found that many times the wait staff is unsure about specific ingredients. Many moms I know swear by a chef’s card as another layer of communication. And when in doubt, bring a few extras with you just in case. Safe bread, margarine, salad dressing and a treat for dessert will save the day in a pinch.

In the Bag

There is no getting around it; we don’t travel lightly. So first of all, type out a list of everything that you and your family need for traveling. Print out the list and cross off the items as they’re packed.

Your child’s special needs should be at the top of the list. Things like latex-free goggles, sunscreen, special soap, shampoos, Epi-Pen and other medicines, are not easily replaced so make sure you have what you need. Keep your child’s allergist’s number handy in the even that you have questions or need a refill while you’re on the road.

You can ship a box of staples directly to the hotel from home or from Amazon.com. Your rice milk, pasta, breads, cookies and crackers will all be there waiting for you. We always bring a cooler of frozen foods: safe hotdogs, casseroles, gluten-free, casein-free chicken tenders etc. If we fly, we simply duct tape the lid of the cooler shut and check it with our other baggage.

If you run out of room in your suitcases, cut back on the clothes you bring and throw in a load of laundry or two while you’re away. If you use a special detergent, pour enough for two loads into an empty bottle and wrap it with Glad Press n’ Seal.

Are we there yet?

Now, it’s time to relax right? Well, as my sister says “It’s not vacation, it’s relocation.” All the same stuff in a different place. Preparing to travel can seem like more work than planning a small wedding but you and your family deserve to travel and have fun. The memories of all of the extra packing and cooking will be gone in a few days while the memories of your kids playing on the beach or on their first airplane ride will be with you for ever.

- Gina Clowes


Halloween: Focus on the Fun, Not the Food

Posted 10.14.08 | Nutrition Specialist

Costume? Check. Pumpkins? Check. Chocolate bar? Oh no! If your little one has food allergies, unfortunately, this is probably what you are thinking.

Holidays like this – with so much candy and goodies – can be tough for kids with food allergies (and tough for parents who want to make sure their child enjoys the day). Many of the candies and foods during Halloween contain milk, milk products, and other food allergens. But it is possible to make sure Halloween is both safe and fun for your food allergy kids.

Of course, safety always comes first. But our goal is for you and your family to have a healthy and happy Halloween! Check out the following tips.

First, let’s talk about safety:

- Be prepared in case an emergency happens. Have a set plan in place that all participating people know about before the activities begin.

- Be sure to talk with teachers/other parents about what needs to be done to ensure your child’s safety at any Halloween parties or school activities.

- Remember, even a little bit of a food allergen can cause a reaction. Talk with your child so that he/she understands the dangers of taking just a small taste of a food he/she might be allergic to.

- Always have Epinephrine on hand in case your child has a severe reaction to one of the food allergens.

Now to the fun stuff:

- Have non-food items on hand for your kid to have fun with. Think dollar store toys, stickers and coloring books.

- Plan an alternative activity from trick-or-treating. You can have a Halloween slumber party or a scavenger hunt in your allergy-free home.

- Prepare a container full of safe treats to give your child after he/she has gone trick-or-treating. That way, they can have something to look forward to while out with their friends.

- Consider having a “swap-party” where your child can swap candies he cannot have for “allowed” candies. This way everyone gets what they want!

- Some kid’s food allergies are so severe they rely on an elemental formula like Neocate®—which means they either can’t have any food at all or limited food amounts and types. In these special cases, you can put their formula in a festive cup or mix it with ice for a fun slushy, but you really want to focus on the activities.

To prepare further for Halloween and the upcoming holiday season, check out more tips/resources from Kids with Food Allergy and Allergy Moms.

Any spooky questions? I’d love to answer them!

Be well,
Dr. Y


No chocolate bunny for Easter?

Posted 3.18.08 | Nutrition Specialist

During the Easter season, eggs and chocolate are everywhere! As a parent, you always want to create a fun holiday atmosphere for your child. However, when your child has a food allergy, Easter can be a tough time. Let’s face it, “Easter eggs” and chocolate bunnies are a big part of the celebration! But, with a little bit of creativity, your child can have as many memorable moments and traditions as any other child celebrating Easter.

The Basket

There are many ways to create a great Easter basket for you kids without the chocolate! Books and stuffed animals are always a great option. Who wants a chocolate bunny when they can have a stuffed one! Along with Easter comes the beginning of spring- so bubbles, sidewalk chalk and any other outside toy would be a great addition. Your child will be able to play with their Easter baskets long after the chocolate is gone.

The Eggs

When it comes to decorating eggs, you can use wood eggs, plastic eggs or even Styrofoam eggs instead of hard boiled ones. Create them early with your child and use them as a decoration around the house. It will be a constant reminder of how fun “fake” eggs can be to decorate.

The Tasty Treats

Okay, admittedly, giving up the chocolate and goodies isn’t going to be easy. The good news is there are now companies that make allergy-friendly Easter treats that some kids with food allergies can have. However, since every child’s allergy is different, be sure to check the labels and make sure the treat is ok for your little one.

And of course chocolate shakes are always fun. The amino acid-based formula Neocate Junior is available in a chocolate flavor (it is artificial flavor, so no danger there) that you can mix with ice to make a cool shake.

Allergymoms.com has a bunch of food allergy safe recipes for Easter and I have heard some parents have also used Neocate Chocolate to make some other fun recipes. I’d love to hear about them below if you’re willing to share. Just a word of warning, don’t put Neocate Junior Chocolate or any other amino acid-based formulas in the freezer. (The freezing process doesn’t cause allergic reactions, but it does cause loss of some of the formula’s important nutrients.)

If you have any other fun allergy-free Easter ideas, please share below!

Take care,
April


Valentine’s Day with Food Allergies

Posted 2.14.08 | Nutrition Specialist

Valentine’s Day is here and I’m not sure what has me more off-center: deliberating about what to buy my wife or realizing that my kids are moving beyond Snoopy cards and conversation candy hearts at what seems like lightening speed. Just when did their Valentine’s go from hugs and kisses from Mommy and Daddy to carnations and mixed CDs from gangly pre-teens at my front door?

But I’m hesitant to long for the simplicity of little candies because, for parents of kids with food allergies, Valentine’s chocolates and other treats (at any age) can spell serious danger.

Fortunately, there are many resources out there to help your kids have a happy Valentine’s day free of any allergic reactions. Below are a few worth checking out. You’ll notice some key themes throughout these resources that ring true for facing so many holidays and activities when your child has a food allergy. These are communication (with your kids, their teachers and other parents), planning, involvement (in your child’s classroom or activity), and creativity (for alternative foods, activities etc.).

Guide to celebrating Valentine’s Day From Kids with Food Allergies

ABC’s for a Safe Valentine’s Party From Allergy Moms Valentine’s Gift Guide From Beyond Allergy

Recipes for Safe Valentine’s Treats From Kids with Food Allergies

Happy Valentine’s!
Dr. Y


Thanksgiving With Food Allergies

Posted 11.19.07 | Nutrition Specialist

Hello There Blogosphere,

My name is Steven Yannicelli (Dr. Y) and the word "blogosphere" is relatively new to my vocabulary. But, thanks to a little nudging by my friends and colleagues, here I am writing my very first blog.

Why? Well, after many years as a registered dietitian specializing in pediatrics, a research scientist, and now director of science and education for a nutrition company, I've amassed some knowledge on food allergies and related digestive conditions in babies and kids. These allergies seem to be taking the world by storm - the number of kids affected just keeps growing and growing. And there seems to be an awful lot of parents out there in the blogosphere looking for info. So, here I am.

November is a great time to start a food allergy blog. We’ve just survived Halloween - my favorite holiday, but a major challenge for families with children with allergies and other digestive conditions. And we’re closing in on Thanksgiving – the great American celebration of gluttony.

Growing up in the Bronx, Thanksgiving was a blast. We ate, we watched the Giants, we ate some more, my mother yelled at my father to turn the TV down, we ate even more…you get the picture. The bird at the center of the table was a beast and there was so much gravy, we could have used it to slip-n-slide down Castle Hill.

Since my wife and I want our kids’ arteries to last them a while, we try to have a little more healthful Thanksgiving now. Still, it’s a wonderful day of feast and football. But how do you make Thanksgiving fun for the entire family when you have a child with a food allergy?

First, let’s talk about the school activities:

1) If your child’s school is having a special Thanksgiving meal, get on the planning committee to make sure that there are at least a few “safe” food for your child on the menu. Replace the foods your child can’t eat, with a “safe” dish you can bring to school that day. It’s always best to be positive and look at what your child “can eat” rather than what he or she “can’t eat”.

2) Encourage your child’s teachers and administrators to put more focus on giving thanks and less on pigging out. (Not a bad lesson for any kid.) Help them plan a volunteer activity, collect canned goods and blankets for a charity, etc.

3) Thanksgiving art projects are great, but make sure they don’t involve dangerous products (i.e. egg-based paint or wheat-based modeling clay).

Now, for the family celebrations:

1) Move the focus of Thanksgiving Day from meal-time to family-time. Embrace your inner-Kennedy and play some football in the back yard. Take a walk together or play some board games. If you’re Super-Mom or Super-Dad, you could even create your own Thanksgiving board game.

2) Check out your local book store for some food allergy cookbooks. Many of them have great recipes for the Turkey Day table that are safe for everybody to eat.

3) If you’re traveling to Grandma’s or Aunt Sally’s, offer to help them make a “safe” dish and bring whatever else your child needs along for the trip.

So, these are a few of my tips. What about yours? What are you doing to make Thanksgiving fun for everyone? And how about those food allergy cook books – any favorites? I’d love to hear from you.

Come back again where we will be talking about managing a special diet during the other holidays!! Until then

“Be Well”
- Dr. Y


Picnics with Food Allergies

Posted 4.26.11 | Christine Graham-Garo

old fashioned picnic pasketSpring is finally here! It is exciting to see all the fresh flowers coming out and bringing new color all around. A great activity to do on these Spring days is to go on a picnic with your family. Even if you don’t live near a park, you can still enjoy eating out in the sun even if its in your back yard!

As you may know, living with food allergies can create challenges for any social activity that involves food. So we wanted to share some picnic ideas to help you and your family have a safe and fun filled time.

  • Bring your own condiments in individual-sized packs. That will help prevent cross-contamination when people share large containers of condiments like mayonnaise and ketchup.
  • Use a plastic tablecloth on public picnic tables so food particles left by previous picnickers won't cause allergic reactions once your family sits down.
  • Bring separate spoons and other utensils for food items that are shared to avoid cross-contamination.
  • Grill foods for guests with allergies first or cook the items on a fresh piece of aluminum foil or iron skillet to avoid cross contamination.
  • Bring anti-bacterial wipes and gels for easy cleaning.
  • Inform all those in the picnic party not to share food. If the party is larger, well-meaning friends could offer the wrong foods to your little ones. Food allergy awareness clothing works well in these scenarios.
  • Allow guests with allergies to dig into the food first, before cross-contamination of the items can occur.
  • Make sure you have emergency phone numbers handy. If you are in a state park, jot down the rangers station or visitor centers number before starting your fun day.
  • As always, bring emergency medication and keep it safely stored while you are outside.

What is a picnic without delicious foods? Here are a few picnic allergy-friendly recipes to get some meal ideas going!

As always ensure each ingredient is tolerated by your child before serving.

Allergy-Safe Quinoa Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 C water or vegetable broth
  • 1 C quinoa (you may also substitute with rice)
  • salt
  • 2 shallots
  • 2 small or 1 large cucumber
  • 1 T fresh parsley
  • 2 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 T raspberry vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried mustard
  • salt and pepper

Preparation:

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring water or vegetable broth to a boil. While liquid is heating, rinse quinoa in a mesh strainer or chinois several times to remove any traces of saponin. (If you don't have a fine strainer to rinse your quinoa, use a coffee filter.)
  2. When liquid has come to a boil, add quinoa, stirring constantly. Immediately reduce to a bare simmer and cover. Cook for 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender and almost all the liquid is absorbed. Remove quinoa from heat, stir, and let quinoa or rice sit, uncovered, for about five minutes.
  3. While quinoa is cooking, peel and finely mince the shallots. If cucumbers are covered with wax, peel; if not, you may peel or not as you prefer. Seed and dice cucumbers. Finely mince parsley or cilantro.
  4. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, vinegar, and mustard, stirring rapidly until dressing is blended. Combine quinoa or rice, vegetables, and dressing. Chill all ingredients in refrigerator for at least one hour (overnight is ideal). Serve cold.

Serves four as a main dish, or eight as an appetizer salad.

Fruit Salad with Allergy-Safe Champagne-Lime Dressing

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 4 bananas, peeled and sliced in rounds
  • 3 apples, cored and cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 3 kiwi fruit, peeled and sliced
  • 2 mangoes, peeled, cored, and cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 1 small bunch seedless grapes (about 1 pound), stems removed
  • 1/2 C champagne (you can also use sparkling apple cider or any non-alcoholic sparkling beverage)
  • juice of 2 limes
  • 1/4 C sugar, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg

Preparation:

  1. Mix all fruit in a large bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, mix champagne, limes, sugar, and nutmeg. Taste, then increase sugar as necessary until dressing is only slightly tart.
  3. Toss dressing with fruit and refrigerate until serving.

Serves 4 to 6 as a centerpiece dish of a breakfast or brunch, or up to 12 as one of many party snacks. Will keep for about one week in sealed containers in the refrigerator.

Hopefully these tips and recipe ideas will help by making picnics less worrisome and more relaxing and fun. It’s always great to get out of the house and breathe in some fresh air and get some sun (not to mention free Vitamin D to help your bones)! Don’t forget to bring some fun games to play while you are out or take an adventurous hike and enjoy the outdoors.

Have you had a picnic with a person with food allergies before? How did it go? What picnic tips could you share? What foods were a hit?

-Christine


4th of July with Food Allergies

Posted 7.1.11 | Christine Graham-Garo

With the Fourth of July around the corner, we wanted to share some food allergy-friendly ideas and recipes for you to enjoy during the holiday weekend. We wrote a blog in the past that may help to find general food allergy tips if you and your family are planning a day out of the house.

In honor of the Independence Day, I compiled a couple food allergy-friendly recipes with a red, white and blue theme. As always, check the ingredients to ensure they are allowed in your little ones diet. Also, recipes can always be tweaked to meet your needs, so if you have other ideas on how to make it better for your family, feel free to experiment.

Being the Nutritionist, I tend to stay away from high fat and nutritionally void treats. Fruit recipes are always a great way to add beneficial fiber as well as important vitamins and minerals to a healthy diet.

These recipes are all diary free and egg free.

RED Strawberry Shortcakes

This recipe is definitely a family favorite, with that same classic taste without the dairy. I prefer to use my own dairy-free vanilla ice cream if I have the time, but for weeknight desserts or quicker treats, a dairy-free store-bought variety works just as well. Feel free to use whatever fruits you like along with the strawberries; peaches, mangoes and other berries are always a nice variation.

Ingredients

About 3 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and cut into halves

¼ cup and 2 Tbsp. white sugar, plus more for sprinkling

1 ½ cup all-purpose flour

¼ cup and 2 Tbsp. white sugar

2 ½ tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. salt

6 Tbsp. dairy-free soy margarine, cut into pieces

½ cup unsweetened plain almond milk, soymilk or rice milk

Dairy-Free Vanilla Ice Cream, either store-bought or homemade

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment and set aside. In a medium mixing bowl, toss the strawberries with the 2 T. sugar until well coated. Cover and place in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, make the biscuits. In a food processor, mix together the remaining ¼ cup sugar, flour, baking powder and salt until well-mixed. Add the dairy-free soy margarine, pulsing until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. With the machine still running, add the non-dairy milk alternative gradually, until the dough just begins to hold together and pull away from the sides of the bowl.

3. On a lightly floured surface, turn out the dough and pat into 8 small round biscuits. Transfer the biscuits to the prepared baking sheet, sprinkle lightly with sugar, and bake about 18-22 minutes, or until golden. Allow the biscuits to cool on the baking sheet. To serve, place two biscuits on each plate with a scoop of dairy-free vanilla ice cream and a helping of the sugared strawberries.

WHITE Bean and Garlic Dip 

Ingredients

2 cups cooked (1 c dry) white beans, ie. Great Northern, Cannellini, Navy, or Butter Beans (canned beans may be used)
2-3 garlic cloves
1/4 c olive oil
1/4-1/2 c bean cooking liquid, broth, or water
1 Tbsp fresh thyme or 1/2 Tbsp dry
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp sea salt
Fresh cracked pepper


Optional: olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme for garnish

Directions

If starting with dry beans, soak overnight, then cook beans per desired method, saving any leftover bean cooking liquid. If using canned beans, drain beans, and rinse well. 

Place cooked beans in blender or food processor, along with garlic, olive oil, 1/4 cup liquid, thyme, and Vitamin C crystals. Pulse a few times, then blend until well smooth. If mixture is too thick, add additional liquid as necessary while blending. Add salt and pepper salt and pepper to taste, and blend again to mix. 
To serve, scoop into serving bowls, and drizzle with additional olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme leaves. Store leftover dip in the fridge for up to 5 days, or freeze in an ice cube tray and store in a freezer bag for up to 3 months.

Pineapple-Strawberry (or BLUEberry) Granita

Ingredients

1 cup strawberries or Blueberries, hulled
1 1/2 cups pineapple juice
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water

Directions

Purée strawberries (or blueberries) in blender or food processor; pour in pineapple juice, blend and set aside. In small saucepan over medium heat, bring sugar and water to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and let syrup cool, about 20 minutes. Whisk pineapple-strawberry mixture into sugar syrup and pour into to a shallow metal pan. Place pan in freezer, mixing with a fork every 30 minutes until frozen, about 2-3 hours.

If you have any other recipes to share, please let us know, we would love to hear them.

Enjoy the 4th of July weekend!!

-Christine

 


Birthdays with Food Allergies

Posted 8.23.11 | Rob McCandlish, RDN


Happy Birthday without CakeAs we’ve mentioned before, mixing food allergies and birthday parties requires a bit of effort.  This includes both hosting a birthday party (with guests with food allergies) and sending your food-allergic child to a birthday party.

We wanted to round up a few recipes that could provide a potential solution. It would also be great to have an allergen-free dessert, whether you’re hosting the party or sending your little one to a party.  This way everyone can safely enjoy a treat.
 

Cakes & Baked Goods

Most cakes and baked goods call for dairy, eggs, and wheat, which are three of the top eight allergens.  In fact, fish and shellfish are the only two of the top allergens that do NOT regularly appear in baked goods! Here are a few alternatives to a traditional birthday cake that could make a great stand-in.

On page 14 of the Neocate Food Allergy Cookbook, there’s a great recipe for a frosted birthday cake, made with a cake mix from Cherrybrook Kitchen – free of dairy, nuts, and eggs. But don’t count out serving cookies, brownies, bars, cupcakes, or cobbler, all of which appear in the same great cookbook. Another great place to check is the Kids with Food Allergies website, which offers a variety of recipes.

Not interested in handling the baking yourself? There are several companies that can bake a great, safe alternative and have it shipped straight to you, candles not included. A few places whose treats are allergen-free to varying degrees are Divvie’s Bakery, Home Free, Liz Lovely, and Betsy & Claude Baking Company.  You can also check grocery stores that cater to special dietary needs, such as Whole Foods.
 

Delicious Desserts

Who says that an equally delicious dessert can’t make a stellar stand-in for cake? Not us! Here are some ideas for other great foods that most kids would never refuse.

See our Neocate Nutra Recipe Guide for allergy-friendly ice creams and puddings.  Also check back into the Neocate Food Allergy Cookbook for great shake and smoothie recipes, many submitted by parents.  Top suggestions include the Banana Chocolate Shake or Chocolate Covered Strawberry Slushy.  If you really feel like going all-out, you can use one of these frozen desserts alongside a baked good, in place of the usual cake and ice cream.

Feeling REALLY adventurous? Try your hand at a homemade ice cream cake by combining recipes for an allergen-free ice cream, cookies, and frosting.

What have you used in the past when the traditional birthday cake wouldn’t do? Let us know in the Comments section below.

- Rob


Time for Back to School

Posted 8.26.11 | Nutrition Specialist

It’s time for back to school and whether it’s your child’s first day of school or they’re returning to school for another year, introducing a child with food allergies into a new environment can be nerve-racking.  This is why it is important to educate and remind your children’s teachers and caregivers about food allergy precautions and safety before school starts.

Here are some simple steps you can follow to make sure that the transition is a safe one for your child:

  1. Schedule a back-to-school checkup with your pediatrician or allergist to make sure that your current treatment plan is still effective.
  2. Document your child’s allergies and treatment plan in school or daycare paperwork.
  3. Provide teachers and caregivers with brochures and information on your child’s allergy to prevent accidents.
  4. Create a one page “Cheat Sheet” with information about your child’s allergies for substitutes or new employees.
  5. Discuss what to do in case of an emergency.  Ask your pediatrician about keeping an EpiPen on-site.  Be sure to train the caregiver on when and how to use one.
  6. Make sure that your child fully understands what can trigger their allergy.
  7. Look at upcoming lunch or snack menus and identify safe options, also provide the school with a list of safe foods that your child can enjoy at any time.
  8. If no safe options are available, pack food from home and warn your child not to trade food with his/her classmates.
  9. Offer to bring in allergy-safe treats for holidays and special events.  This way you know that your child is safe, and they won’t feel excluded from the fun!

Communication and education is the most important part of going back to school with food allergies.  Hopefully these tips will provide you with some ideas on how to best educate your child’s new classroom on living with food allergies.

If you have any creative strategies to help prepare for a safe school year, we’d love to hear about them in the comments! 


Halloween with Food Allergies Blog Roundup!

Posted 10.24.11 | Nutrition Specialist

 Halloween is right around the corner and your little ones are probably getting excited about their costumes, class parties and trick-or-treating.  And while these  can be fun experiences for children, we know that for parents of children with food allergies these events can be more frightening than ghosts and ghouls.

 Fortunately, with a little advance planning, you and your little ones can have a safe and spooky Halloween, without the risk of an allergic reaction.  Check out some of these blog posts for tips to help you prepare:

  1. Celebrating Halloween without a Food Allergy Scare
  2. Halloween with Food Allergies
  3. Food Allergy Friendly Sweet Treats
  4. Safe and Spooky Halloween Tips
  5. Halloween: Focus on the Fun, Not the Food

What are you planning for Halloween?  Be sure to share your tips for having a fun and safe Halloween in the comments! 


Thanksgiving with Food Allergies: Blog Roundup!

Posted 11.22.11 | Nutrition Specialist

 Thanksgiving is this week and we understand how stressful attending or hosting a Thanksgiving dinner can be when you have a little one with food allergies.   Fortunately, with advance planning, you and your family can have a safe allergy friendly holiday.

Also, check out some of our past blog posts for tips to help you prepare:

  1. Thanksgiving with Food Allergies: An All-Encompassing Resource List
  2. Thanksgiving With Food Allergies: School & Family Celebrations

Do you have any allergy-friendly recipes or holiday tips to share?  Let us know in the comment section!

-The Food Allergy Team 


Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted 11.24.11 | Nutrition Specialist

On behalf of all of us here at Nutricia North America, the makers of Neocate, we want to wish you and yours a happy, healthy and allergy-friendly Thanksgiving!

 We are very thankful that we have a great community of readers.  We love hearing and learning from you!

 What are you thankful for this year?

 -The Food Allergy Team 


How to Reuse empty Neocate Cans

Posted 12.13.11 | Christine Graham-Garo

As we’ve mentioned before, here at Nutricia North America, we strive to take measures to reduce our impact on the Earth.  In our last blog we wrote on how Neocate cans are recyclable.  We highly encourage all Neocate (and Duocal) users to recycle those empty cans!

Also, as you may have heard, one rule of thumb when striving to be environmentally responsible is to reduce, reuse, recycle – in that order.  So, we wanted to share some ideas on ways to reuse your Neocate cans.

 

Art class*

Have your child and their friends create their own piece of work to hang in their room. Gather a bunch of art supplies and let them go at it, while being safe of course.

Musical Instruments – Drums or Maracas*

Save the plastic lid and grab a pair of sturdy sticks and start drumming away.  You can also make a maraca out of the Neocate cans by adding beans or pebbles for another sound effect. 

Pot for plants/flowers*

Decorate the outside of the can and safely poke a hole at the bottom of the can to allow for drainage.  Fill with potting soil and plant the seeds or repot another plant.

Storage*

Re-purpose them to store toys such as building blocks, marbles, or toy cars.  You can also reuse formula cans to keep your scrapbooking or craft items in place.  They make great storage containers for buttons, ribbons, safety pins, beads and/or other small items you have lying around.  You can even print out pictures of these items from the internet, and then use them to decorate.  It’s an easy way to decorate and label what is inside of the can.

Holiday Gift basket*  

Paint the outside of the can for the holiday season and fill with treats, holiday goodies or a personal gift for the receiver.  You can even attach a handle for easy carrying.

Piggy Banks*

Turn an empty Neocate formula can into a cute piggy bank for your child or even for yourself!  Paste pictures of your kids onto the outside, and then use a box cutter to create a rectangular shape size cutout in the plastic lid.

Collect old cooking oil or store dry foods*

You can reuse empty formula can for collecting unwanted oils from fry baskets.  Pour leftover oil into the can, and then freeze it to avoid spill or smells.  Toss when the can is full.

For a more Eco-friendly approach, place a sheet of wax paper in the empty can before you pour in the oil.  Simply pull and throw out the frozen stuff, and you can reuse the formula can again.

Another nifty idea to repurpose infant formula tins is to use them as storage containers to keep crackers, dried beans, pasta, rice, and other dry allergen friendly goods.  Decorate the outside label and label it with the new contents.

Do you have other ideas on ways to creatively reuse empty Neocate cans?  We would love to hear!

- Christine

*Be sure to clean the cans out thoroughly before reusing them.  We recommend doing this by leaving the can in soapy water for a few minutes.  Then, scrub the interior of the can being careful with any sharp edges and let it sit till 100% dry.  Also, being the interior liner of all Nutricia’s products are BPA free, you don’t have to worry about storing items in there for long periods.

 

 

 

 

 


Festive Allergy-Friendly Holiday Recipes

Posted 12.22.11 | Nutrition Specialist

On behalf of all of us here at Nutricia North America the makers of Neocate, we want to wish you and your families a very happy, healthy holiday season!  We hope these festive allergy-friendly recipes brighten your holiday!

Milk-Free Hot Chocolate

Heat water on the stove or in the microwave. Remove from heat, allow to cool and add Neocate powder and sugar. Stir well. Top with marshmallows (check the label to be sure the brand is appropriate for your child’s dietary restrictions).

Calories: 170
Protein: 5.2g Fat: 7g
Carbohydrate: 22.5g
Calcium: 183mg
Vitamin D: 1.8mcg

 Gingerbread Cookies:

  • 3 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 2/3 cup canola oil
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp ground ginger

Directions:

Over medium heat combine molasses, oil and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil while stirring constantly. Set aside. Combine flour and other dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and add molasses, sugar and oil and pour into mixing bowl and then add egg and blend together to form a thick dough ball. Wrap dough in plastic and chill for 1 hour (if dough is too dry, add drops of canola oil, if too sticky to roll out, add flour). Preheat oven to 350°F. Divide dough in half and roll out on floured surface. Use cookie cutters and place cookies on a greased cookie sheet. Bake 10-14 minutes and let cool.

  • Calories190
  • Protein 2g
  • Carbohydrates 31g
  • Fat 7g

Makes 2 dozen cookies

Submitted by: Marie Bedard

Milk-free Peppermint Shake:

Add all ingredients except Neocate powder into the blender and mix until smooth. Next, add Neocate powder and mix on low setting until blended. Pour and serve. Makes 1-2 servings. If your child drinks smaller servings, pour half and store the remaining shake in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Tip:Remember using the Old-fashioned peppermint sticks as a straw? Try using it with this shake! Check ingredients because brands will vary. Alternatively, you could use candy-striped straws, which you can find at most party stores!

Calories: 409
Protein: 8g
Fat: 18g
Carbohydrate: 54g
Calcium: 295mg
Vitamin D: 206mcg

 

  



About Us

Food Allergy Living is a resource for parents of children with food allergies, brought to you by Nutricia, the makers of Neocate. For more in-depth information about our purpose & authors, see our About Food Allergy Living page.