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Special Dietary Requirements

We probably all know someone that has some special type of ‘dietary requirements’ or who is unable to eat certain foods. This can be because of food intolerances, sensitives, allergies, religious reasons or personal choice. It’s important that we understand the types of dietary requirements and what they actually mean so we can accommodate when preparing meals.

1. Vegetarian – individuals don’t eat meat, poultry and fish. Eggs and dairy are usually consumed and some individuals allow some types of fish (pescatarian diet). Typically people choose this type of diet because of religious reasons, health issues or moral concerns to harming animals.

A great way to boost the families immunity is to make fresh broths and soups – an easy recipe I love to throw together leak, potato, carrot and ginger and throw in ‘Pacific vegetable broth’ as my base.

2. Vegan – Similar to a vegetarian diet, however no animal products are consumed, including meat, fish, eggs and dairy products. Both vegetarian and vegan diets need to be carefully monitored by a nutritionist or GP to ensure they are getting adequate nutrients (especially vitamin B12 and iron)

3. Dairy free – individuals who are lactose intolerant follow a dairy free diet – this means they don’t consume any products containing cow’s milk, goats, sheep milk such as yoghurt, milk, cheese and ice cream. Plant based milk products including almond, cashew, coconut and soy milk are a great alternative for them.

4. Gluten free – Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye and barley which includes breads, cereals, baking goods, pasta and sauces. Individuals who have ‘coeliac disease’ (autoimmune condition) cannot ingestion gluten as this causes damage to the small intestine. Those who are ‘sensitive’ to gluten can experience milder symptoms such as bloating, diarrhea, constipation, nausea, brain fog and headaches, therefore do better when gluten is avoided.

One of my favourite Gluten free products is the spouted g/f pizza bases to include in the shopping basket is by Home St.

5. Food allergies – this is when the body’s immune system reacts to a certain food or a substance in a food. It can range from a mild case to a more severe or even life threatening reaction. They are most common in young babies and children but can appear at any age. The most severe allergic reaction is anaphylaxis, where the individual struggles to breath and feels a drop in blood pressure and heart rate. The most common types of food allergies include: peanuts, eggs, milk, fish, shellfish, wheat, soy and tree nuts.

6. Food sensitivities and intolerances – this is where the body has problems digesting certain types of foods and may experience some bloating or gas. Foods include lactose, gluten and histamine foods.

7. Religious or personal reasons – Certain religions have different standpoints on foods and how it’s prepared there follow specific types of diets. Judaism requires fish and meat to be ‘kosher’ (clean and pure) before eaten, Islam prohibits pork and other meats need to be halal (prepared according to Muslim law)

8. Organic foods refers to the way the products are grown and processed. Usually this means without the use of pesticides, artificial chemicals and fertilizers.

This month South Stream Market has a special promotion for their ‘Wital organic tea’ range of buy 3 get 1 free. Wital is a luxury brand of tea, hand-picked from across the globe, flavours ranging from earl gray, lemongrass matcha, chocolate rooibos cinnamon and green turmeric and orange. A tea for all occasions!

South Stream Market ‘free from’ section caters for a wide range of individuals and dietary needs. Its breaks down the items into special diets, toddlers/kids, vegetarian/vegan needs, organic foods, halal and gluten free. Check out their healthy range of food items.

Want to find out more or ask a question? Click Here to get in touch with Chrissy.

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