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Being the parent who wants to give your child the healthiest options while helping them avoid their food allergies isn’t always easy. This time of year can certainly test your parenting strength. You’ve probably already felt it! The holiday season can be a minefield, with cookies and candies at every turn. You’re trying to come up with gift ideas for everyone on your list, and then you realize you haven’t even begun thinking about what’s going to go in the Christmas stockings! Are there healthier, allergy-friendly stocking stuffers? Don’t worry about Christmas morning. We’ve got you covered!

The key is to have allergy-friendly, healthier alternatives so your kiddo doesn’t feel deprived (and you don’t feel like a bad Santa!). Food allergies are more common than you might think and can lead to a wide range of symptoms that many parents don’t even connect with food allergies.

What to Avoid

Skip inflammatory foods. The great thing about our healthier alternatives is that they are also free of the most common inflammatory foods, such as sugar, wheat, and dairy.

Avoid processed foods. Again, limit the sugar –even if it’s organic. Instead, look for sugar alternatives like our favorite, xylitol. Some of our suggestions still have organic sugar, which we recommend restricting or avoiding, but these are great “start somewhere” options, so we’ve still included them in our list.

Nix the artificial colors and preservatives. Artificial dyes are linked to hyperactivity and cancer, while there’s research linking preservatives to allergies, asthma, and even cancer. These ingredients aren’t worth the risk, so we encourage choosing healthier options free of preservatives.

Pass on the pesticides and GMOs. Choosing organic means that you pass on both pesticides and GMOs. Some studies have shown that children have higher levels of pesticides than their parents. Pesticides, like glyphosate (the major ingredient in Roundup), have been linked to an increased risk of cancer, hormone disruption, birth defects, nervous system toxicity, and antibiotic resistance. Roundup-ready crops are genetically modified, which has its own problems. Stick to organic, and you’ll know your treats are non-GMO.

Mom wrapping Christmas gifts with oranges nearby

Our 7 Healthier Options for Allergy-friendly Stocking Stuffers

Here are some fun, Wellness Way-approved, allergen-free stocking stuffer ideas.

1. Dr. John’s Candy: This company makes the top of our list because Dr. John’s candies are sweetened with our favorite sugar alternative, xylitol. Xylitol doesn’t have the harmful impacts of processed white sugar; it actually benefits teeth and health. Dr. John’s has lollipops, hard candies, taffy, chocolate bars, and more… primarily sweetened with xylitol, but they also have non-xylitol options. (Reading labels is a must, though, as their chocolate and caramel options may have dairy and other allergens.)

2. GloryBee HoneyStix: A sweet option without the processed sugar, GloryBee HoneyStix can come in a variety of flavors. These healthier treats can travel easily in your bag, so you always have a healthy alternative on hand.

3. Yum Earth Candy: YumEarth offers organic candy canes without toxic colors and preservatives. They even have a healthier Gingerbread House kit! Their products are now free from the top 9 common allergens, so you don’t have to wonder whether they’re gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, or tree nut-free. They are also Non-GMO verified and USDA organic.

4. Ocho Organic Candy: Ocho offers fun, festive, USDA organic, allergy-friendly stocking stuffers, many of which include chocolate. They even have dairy-free, plant-based caramels! As always, read labels carefully to avoid other allergens (such as egg white, peanuts, tree nuts, etc.).

5. Entertainment Options: Mini puzzle games, Legos, finger puppets, slingshots with felted ball “ammunition”, card games, art supplies, headphones, or books are fun non-food items that make great stocking stuffers.

6. Accessory Ideas: Christmas socks, bowties, ribbons, scrunchies, and jewelry are some accessory ideas for stocking stuffers. For young girls and teens, look for non-toxic nail polish, lip balm, or lip gloss. You’ll even find fun natural mini deodorants this time of year! (Think eggnog or candy cane).

7. Make Your Own: Our recipe section has some great allergy-friendly treats you can make at home. There are so many treats to choose from, including our peppermint chocolate bark and Vegan Salted Caramels. You can even use the vegan salted caramel recipe to make Paleo Turtles and go full gourmet! Our cut-out cookies are gluten-free, but they’re so good, you’d never know.

Healthy Holidays and A Healthy Lifestyle

A healthy lifestyle doesn’t take a break for the holidays, but it also doesn’t have to take the fun out of them. It’s becoming easier to find healthier options for allergy-friendly stocking stuffers every year! You can still enjoy holiday treats around the Christmas tree (including hot chocolate) and make wonderful memories. Remember, it’s not all about the gifts and goodies! Take the opportunity to get physical activity as a family and go ice skating, snowshoeing, sledding, or downhill skiing. If you have enough snow, make a snowman! Enjoy spending time together while staying on track with your new healthy lifestyle.

For the adults, check out our healthy holiday gift ideas.

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Disclaimer: This content is for educational purposes only. It’s not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your Wellness Way clinic or personal physician, especially if currently taking prescription or over-the-counter medications. Pregnant women, in particular, should seek the advice of a physician before trying any herb or supplement listed on this website. Always speak with your individual clinic before adding any medication, herb, or nutritional supplement to your health protocol. Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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