Gluten-Free Festival

Can we just talk about how much easier it has become to eat stupid? (and by stupid I mean some ridiculous limited diet – GF, paleo, keto, vegan, etc.)

When I was in high school, I went vegetarian. I was lucky enough to go to a hippie boarding school where they always had vegetarian and vegan options that were delicious – so much so that there was at one point an announcement during assembly to “please stop eating the vegan cookies if you aren’t vegan – I know they’re delicious but you’re not leaving any for the people who can’t eat the other stuff.” Seriously – that’s how much they looked out for us (yay CSW!).

That being said, whenever I was home my mother just couldn’t wrap her head around it, so I had to learn to fend for myself. Ultimately, that is what turned me into the foodie that I am (forced cooking tends to do that to a person), so

noragrets

Still, you can imagine how delighted I was that my father found and brought me to the vegetarian festival at the Greater Boston Food Bank (LOVE YOU POPS!!). Let me tell you, it was awesome. I went back several times after with friends.

But I feel like it was something of a one-off. It was a new festival, so still a bit iffy until they got into the swing of things.

And taking on a new stupid diet was frustration all over again. So much research. So much trouble getting back into the swing of asking about what was in my food at restaurants. So much….disappointment really – I thought being veg was hard, but being a Glutard was infinitely harder. People just couldn’t comprehend.

I felt for once akin to my severe-nut-allergic husband. Actually, in some ways it sometimes felt worse: to him, all nuts taste like cardboard, so he knows immediately when he’s about to be in trouble, whereas I didn’t feel the effects sometimes until much later after the food was already consumed.

Although he definitely has it way worse – no epipen necessary for my food allergy, no risk of death.

Today, I feel like there isn’t a day that goes by where I see festivals, events, restaurants, and even stores that are tailored to specific diets. This truly is a wondrous age we are living in.

SO CAN I TELL YOU ABOUT HOW EXCITED I AM ABOUT THE GLUTEN FREE FESTIVAL THAT IS COMING TO TOWN!?!?

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WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

Sponsored by the company Enjoy Life, the Nourished Festival is hopping around North America offering Expo’s, Exhibits, and even Classes on Allergy-Free Living.

enjoylife

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Enjoy Life, they offer a lot of mixes and baking ingredients – including super allergy friendly chocolate chips, which is super awesome for when you’re trying to make anything sweet for stupid eaters (we’re talking dairy-free, gluten-free, nut-free – the works). They do of course have other products, but I haven’t tried that many of them.

Except their chocolate chip cookies. Which were good, I guess, if you like small and crunchy – personally I prefer soft and melty.

But I digress.

From their About Us page:

The Nourished Festivals are the largest and fastest growing special diet consumer events in the US. Started in 2007, the events are professionally managed and have expanded from one to eight cities throughout the United States. In addition to meeting the needs of the Celiac community, the Expo welcomes those with gluten sensitivities, auto-immune/inflammatory diseases and autism.

Tickets are currently on sale, and surprisingly cheap – you can buy day passes or full weekend passes if you want to attend the whole shebang. Single Day Adult is $15, Weekend Pass is $25. They have special ticket pricing for children ($5-7), and a Sunday special for 2 Adults + 6 Children (only $35).

With your entrance ticket you get access to the classes and expo’s, free goodies/samples, coupons for products, and even a free reusable bag to carry around your hooch.

Did I buy my tickets to their Worcester stop this July? You bet I did.

Check out the website for the Nourished Festival to learn more information.

The Classes for Worcester haven’t been listed yet, but a few of the Exhibitor’s so far are listed as:

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Teachers/Classes from the upcoming San Diego visit include:

  • Dr. Peter Kan – Roadmap to Healing Autoimmune
  • Desiree Nielsen, RD – Your Gut and You
  • Jennifer Reynolds – Infuse Flavor into Your Gluten-Free Meals
  • Kathlena Rails, The Allergy Chef – Beyond Gluten Free: Living and Thriving with Multiple Food Allergies
  • Christina Kantzavelos – CELIAC, GLUTEN, DAIRY FREE TRAVEL GUIDE: How to Survive a trip with Celiac and Food Allergies, or Sensitivities

 

I love opportunities to try new foods. And the opportunity to do so without risk? Heaven. Plus, there’s so much more information that can be learned! Not just about options for myself, but also for my friends who are lactose, nut, and….i dunno other free. Plus, I get to have a truly hands-on introduction to Paleo and Keto, as well as a better understanding of auto-immune diseases and how they’re affected by diet. Which I think will be fun, or at least interesting and informative. Which I think is fun (yay learning!).

Now I just need to find someone to go with me….

 

Hope to see you all there!

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