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How to Enjoy (Not Just Survive) the Holidays with Crohn’s Disease

The holidays are a special time to catch up with family and relax from work. This season is meant to be spent having fun, enjoying some time off, and being grateful.

However, when you have Crohn’s disease, the stress of attending family gatherings centered around food can be extremely stressful.

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There are a couple of ways to mitigate this stress before it even starts.

  1. Are you able to host? By having your family at your own house, you can control the main entrées and even delegate what sides and desserts your relatives can bring to help out. You can ask them to leave out certain ingredients that are a problem for you, or just enjoy the dishes you make yourself, knowing they won’t be a problem.
  2. If you aren’t able to host, tell the person who’s hosting that you’d like to bring a few dishes. You now have control of what goes into the food you make and will have safe options to eat.
  3. When traveling, it’s always best to be overprepared. Bring lots of travel snacks like bars, nut butters, fruit, crackers, or any easily portable snack that fits within your diet.

While tolerance of certain foods varies for different individuals living with Crohn’s, there are certain gourmet delights that are generally safer than others. The following recipes are great options for someone with Crohn’s disease during the festive months of the year.

From turkey with gravy and stuffing to maple-glazed acorn squash and paleo desserts, indulge in these gluten-free, nut-free, and even fuss-free versions of holiday favorites!

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Louisiana garlic stuffed beef roast

Beef roast
Image Source: A Sprinkling of Cayenne

Find the full recipe on .

Maple-cinnamon glazed acorn squash and Brussels sprouts with bacon

Brussels sprouts
Image Source: The Roasted Root

Find the full recipe on .

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Whole30 mashed potatoes

Mashed potatoes
Image Source: Perchance to Cook

Find the full recipe on .

Pumpkin pie truffles

truffles
Image Source: The Real Food Dietitians

Find the full recipe on .

No-bake paleo molasses cookies

molasses cookies
Image Source: Evolving Table

Find the full recipe on .

And for even more Crohn’s-friendly holiday recipe, check out these recipes:

  • by Gutsy by Nature
  • by Fresh Planet Flavor
  • by The Gluten Free Homestead
  • by Nutrition to Fit
  • by Paleo Running Momma

Alexa Federico

Alexa Federico is a Boston-based health and food blogger who focuses on gluten-free, paleo recipes and health tips for those with IBD and other autoimmune diseases. She’s a future nutritional therapy practitioner and AIP certified coach who’s motivated to guide people back to health by adjusting their diet and lifestyle choices. You can learn more about Alexa’s recipes, tips, and future health services on her blog, , and follow along with her on , , , and .

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