Thanksgiving to New Year's Eve. The best time of year, but how are we, as Celiacs, supposed to love the holiday season when we feel like we're allergic to everything around us? Gingerbread cookies (and houses), stuffing, pies, cakes, the list goes on and on. What's the first ingredient in all of those things? Lots and lots of bleached and unbleached, incredibly processed wheat flour. Perfect. Solid. Dope.

Remember, there are gluten free substitutes

cake, crust, pecan, chocolate, pumpkin, pastry, sweet, pie
Eva Reynolds

So, what is a Celiac to do? We're just trying to get in the holiday spirit without saying goodbye to our health. Countless peppermint mochas from Starbucks aren't always going to cut it, but luckily, some companies are making gluten free versions of holiday staples.

For example, Mi-Del has come out with a gluten free graham cracker style crust, perfect for pies of all kinds. I tried it on Thanksgiving with a homemade pumpkin pie filling — so stellar. In addition, Ian's developed an allergen free savory stuffing (my personal favorite holiday food). Get more hype than this little girl, I dare you.

But, listen, I'm not going to sugarcoat it

chocolate cake, chocolate, cake
Judy Holtz

I'll be real, though, holiday tables are tough to navigate for people with Celiac. Does that gravy have a wheat thickener? Is that cornbread actually only made with corn? A sense of nervousness often overwhelms the average Celiac when attempting to fill their plates during the holidays, and, seriously, that's totally understandable.

A specific gluten free item or two isn't going to change the fact that a lot of what is on the table isn't gluten free, and that can be really frustrating. However, there are some staple items, present at nearly every holiday meal, that are naturally gluten free. Turkey is naturally gluten free, and so are sweet potatoes (and who doesn't love a nice sweet potato? That's right, no one). We can't neglect to mention fruits and vegetables, which are probably better for you than those Santa cookies anyway.  

Remember, this holiday season, if you're a Celiac, you're a warrior

Having Celiac, honestly, makes a person extremely resilient. Listen, I get it. During the holiday season, it's hard to maintain a perpetually cheery smile when everyone around you is eating something that would make you violently ill. So, it's solution time. Try to host your own holiday dinner, and when your guests ask you what to bring, make sure you ask for naturally gluten free items, so you can take care of the pies, stuffing, and cakes.

Your whole table will be Celiac friendly, and there's nothing more exciting than that. However, in those unfortunate situations where not much on the table is gluten free, take it in stride. You're still the coolest human at the gathering, and you're even cooler for having Celiac (because you're forced to make due, meaning you're forced to be flexible — an ultra-valubale life skill that many don't possess).

It's a lifestyle (hair flip emoji)

cereal, sandwich, butter, wheat, bread, toast
Stephanie Schoenster

Remember, having Celiac isn't something to be upset about, it's just something you have to manage. Plus, you're kind of trendy — because a lot of people are adopting your lifestyle by choice. Feel blessed to have a bunch of cool, new gluten free holiday themed items to make this holiday season the best one yet, and when the going gets tough, just remember you got this.