How Well Do You Cope With Food Allergies, Food Intolerances, Food Sensitivities Or Restricted Diets?

Elika Kormeili, works with many individuals to help with create healthier relationships with food. The holidays present to be a more stressful time for more people. Typically over the holidays, people stress out about their gift shopping and party planning. For those with restricted diets, the holidays can be even more stressful.

Just in time for the holidays, test your ability to cope with food allergies, food intolerances and/or a restricted diet.

Quiz: Test Your Ability to Cope With Food Allergies, Food Intolerance, Food Sensitivities or Restricted Diet

Answer yes or no to each question and then rate the level of distress that each “yes” answer contributes to in your life. Distress rating is between 0-10, with 10 being the most distress possible, and 0 being none.

1. Do you ever feel anxious whenever you are asked to attend a social event that may involve food, such as a party, wedding, or even just happy hour? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

2. Do you avoid social events that involved food because of anxiety, fear, or embarrassment? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

3. Do you ever feel resentful towards loved ones when they eat something in front of you that you can no longer have? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

4. Do you ever crave the foods you can no longer eat? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

5. Do you find it hard not to cheat or break your diet? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

6. Do you have a child with food allergies, diabetes or other food restrictions? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

7. If you answered yes to number 6, do you have difficulties talking to other parents, schools, babysitters or other people about your child’s dietary needs? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

8. If you answered yes to number 6, does your child’s food restrictions cause you overwhelming stress, anxiety and fear? Is it affecting your relationship with your child? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

9. Are you afraid to travel due to food restrictions? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

10. Do you avoid taking trips and vacations due to food restrictions? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

11. Are you experiencing stress in significant relationships due to necessary changes in your lifestyle? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

12. Do you find it hard to just enjoy time with your family or friends because you are constantly worried about food restrictions? yes or no: level of distress 0-10

There are many other factors you may also want to think about, however if you answered yes to any of these, Elika Kormeili can help you overcome these obstacles! If you find that there are areas that you would like to change and improve, give us a call to schedule an initial consultation at 424.274.2276

The Girl Who Cannot Eat Peanut Butter: Interview With Sharon Chisvin

There are many books out there about how to explain food allergies to your child, Elika Kormeili, Founder of Center For Healthy and Happy Living, interviews Sharon Chisvin about her journey and her book The Girl Who Cannot Eat Peanut Butter.
What was it like for you as a parent of a child with food allergies?

At first it was frightening and a little overwhelming because I hadn’t heard about food allergies and I didn’t know any other parents who were dealing with the issue. However, as I began to read about the topic and become better informed, I began to feel calmer and more in control of the situation. It was a tremendous help to join a support group and be able to discuss the issue with other parents going through the same thing”.

What is the toughest part of raising a child with food allergies?

“The toughest part is being ever vigilant, trusting you child to make the right decision and trusting other people (teachers, parents of her friends etc.)”

What was your goal when writing your new book The Girl Who Cannot Eat Peanut Butter?

My goal was to help my daughter feel better about being different than all the other kids in her class, to reinforce for her the importance of being careful with regards to food, and to inform others about what it meant to have a food allergy and the kinds of precautions that need to be taken.”

How would you say your book is different from other books on food allergies?

“I think my book is different than others for a number of reasons. First of all, it is about children, not animals. It rhymes, so it is easier to read, to listen to and to remember. And it deals with a serious subject in an entertaining and positive way. It is educational but also engaging, and is straightforward and simple. It also reminds children that everyone has something that makes him or her different, and that being different is perfectly okay. “

Thank you Sharon for sharing your story and your book.
Have you read Sharon’s book? Would you like to share your experience with food allergies?

Surviving Thanksgiving With Food Allergies and Emotional Eating

Do you feel left out of Thanksgiving “fun” because you can’t eat what everyone else can?
Do you dread going to social events for fear of insulting the host when you find there is no food you can eat? Many of people struggling with food allergies or emotional eating (or heck even those trying to lose weight) find it difficult to participate in holiday festivities while staying on track with their health goals. Therapist, Elika Kormeili, discusses ways to negotiate these events graciously and leave feeling full and nourished.

With so many delicious foods at holiday parties, many people worry about overeating. However, those accustomed to watching what they eat usually overcome this obstacle because they know how bad they feel after eating past their comfort zone. After indulging a few times, they usually realize it isn’t worth it. If after eating your fill of acceptable food you feel left out of the fun, nosh on salads or raw vegetables such as carrot or celery sticks. These foods are safe for most allergy sufferers and devoid of the extra calories that will make you feel guilty in the morning.

Potlucks are usually the easiest events to fully participate in since, if necessary, you can eat only the food you bring, without anybody noticing. Because most desserts are off limits, bring one you’ve made from a favorite recipe. Also consider bringing an entrée, as many main courses contain mixed ingredients, making it difficult to detect the culprits.  When accepting an invitation, gently tell the host or hostess about your situation and your desire to be part of the festivities. Clear communication about your food preferences will not only keep you on course but also be less offensive than quietly passing over the untouchables and going home hungry. Once informed, most people are more than happy to accommodate special needs. More than likely you will be informed of the menu. Upon hearing of dishes you cannot eat, suggest that you bring a small portion of one you can eat.   Keep in mind the purpose of the holidays – celebration of family, friendships, and community.

Happy Thanksgiving from Center For Healthy and Happy Living. Food allergies and emotional eating are not on the menu.

How will you celebrate Thanksgiving?