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Healthy Ways to Make the Treats You Love

ice cream

By Kari Oakley

Enjoying food is one of the incredible luxuries of living life to the fullest, but it can be difficult if food is working against you in some way. Regardless of whether it's food allergies dragging you down or a medical illness preventing you from enjoying the foods you love, trying to find ways around those limitations can take some creativity. It may not always be easy at first, but it is definitely worth it to be able to indulge in some of your favorite treats. Following is a list of some of the common issues that people face when it comes to dietary restrictions, along with some ways you are able to overcome these obstacles...

Lactose Intolerance

Lactose intolerance is when the body lacks a specific enzyme needed in order to break down the proteins found in dairy products. This can cause major digestive issues and cause them to feel sick. Enjoying treats like ice cream and even just a cold glass of milk can produce several unwanted side effects. One easy way to get around this is to start with dairy substitutes. Plant-based milk, such as soy or almond, can still taste delicious and be used in cooking and baking. In fact, plant milk can be combined with carrageenan, which is typically used as a thickener, to make ice cream. You can add in the flavorings of your choice and you're well on your way to enjoying a tasty treat.

Gluten Sensitivity

There are several types of gluten sensitivity to consider, and making the distinction is important because it can affect which types of substitutes you make. First off, gluten is a type of protein found in many grain products. It is specifically found in wheat, barley, and rye. Depending on procedures in the fields, gluten can be found in oats as well. Obviously, this can have a huge impact on eating. People with a sensitivity may still be able to ingest some gluten without seeing major side effects, but those with an allergy or something like celiac disease are unable to consume gluten without potentially life-threatening complications. Ways to substitute for gluten take time to figure out, but once you do, it's mostly smooth sailing afterward. The first step is to read labels, every single one you come across for food you will be eating. Next is to make simple switches one by one until you have eliminated it completely. Try opting for different types of crackers instead of bread for sandwiches, or making your own granola and trail mix bars for snacks instead of the typical store bought ones. You should also be on the lookout for different flours to use for baking, such as rice or almond flour.

Vegetarian/Vegan Lifestyle

The vegetarian and vegan lifestyles have many different options and "rules" that people incorporate into their lives. All individuals avoid meat, but some also avoid dairy and/or eggs as well. Vegans avoid all of those things in their diet and sometimes in other areas of their life as well. Ways to make this lifestyle easier include full-range exploration of the produce section of your local grocery store. An ingredient like eggplant is a vegan essential and can be used to make meatballs for a pasta dish. There is also no shortage of soup recipes and ideas for different salad creations. An additional way you can make meals is to blend up a smoothie or juice that is packed with fruits and vegetables. This will not only broaden your horizons on food, but give you a great selection of vitamins and nutrients as well.

As you can see, there are several different reasons that people may have trouble enjoying their favorite treats; however, there is usually a creative way to tweak the recipe in order to still provide some semblance of delicious.

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