Here we are on New Year’s Day again, feeling full, exhausted, and thinking about all of the changes we need to make with the start of the year. I have to say, however, that I am not the biggest fan of New Years’ resolutions. I feel that people tend to make outlandish resolutions, and set themselves up for failure. I read an article that in 2015, only 8% of Americans that made resolutions actually achieved them. So no, I am not vowing to lose 50 pounds this year, or change everything about myself. That being said, I do think that the beginning of the year is a great time to take account of the different aspects of my life, and sort of refocus.
With food allergies being an important aspect of my life (whether I like it or not), I like to take some time at the beginning of the year to assess how I am doing with my allergies, and make sure that I am staying safe.
That being said, here are my five food allergy resolutions for 2017! Take ownership of these, share them with friends and family, and we can start this year off on the right foot.
- Do some double-checking. Having had food allergies all of my life, I have my list of safe places to eat, but I need to remember check to make sure that these places are still safe. Whenever I see that a restaurant makes any changes to their menu, I like to double check to make sure they have not added any new allergens. Unfortunately this year, I have lost multiple safe places because they added peanuts to their menus. Each time I found out, it reminded be that I cannot be too careful and I should not rely on my checking a place years prior.
- Look over allergy medication and action plans. This one should be fairly quick and painless, but can save your life. Check the expiration dates on EpiPens and any allergy medication. You can also review any action plans or instructions that you may need in order to refresh your memory.
- Try some new recipes! This is one of the things that gets me excited, and also helps me to feel in control of my food allergies. Pinterest is an excellent resource to find new recipes (click the link to check out my profile with tons of safe recipes). I also like to read through food magazines and adapt their recipes to work with my food allergies. Amazon has great cookbooks for food allergies, including Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking, The Allergy-Free Pantry, The Allergen-Free Baker’s Handbook, and many more. And of course, you can try any of my recipes here on my blog!
- Be kind to yourself, and stay positive. Working with food allergies can definitely be a huge drain. Whether you or a loved one has food allergies, this brings a ton of added stress, and it can be easy to get discouraged and frustrated. Start the year by making it a point to be kind to yourself and focus on the positive. When I am getting frustrated with my allergies, I think of the people in my life that go out of their way to keep me safe, the safe foods that I can eat, and the safe places that I can eat at. My favorite ways to be kind to myself are to take a walk at the park or the beach, try a new recipe, or to take a lavender epsom salt bath.
- Get connected and spread awareness. As I said before, having food allergies can be a drain, and it can also be very isolating when you do not know any others dealing with allergies. Having recently started my blog, I have realized that there are great resources and communities out there that supports people with food allergies. Social media is a great way to get connected, and I’ve found that Instagram and Facebook have great food allergy communities. Food Allergy Research and Education is a great resource for those with food allergies, as well as those supporting loved ones with food allergies.
I hope these resolutions can start off your new year in a positive way – taking control of your food allergies, and getting involved!
Here are some of my favorite pictures that I’ve taken on my walks this year, on my new Canon EOS Rebel T6!