>U Mom Knows Best: My Favorite Finds At Expo West That Are Allergy-Friendly

Monday, March 25, 2024

My Favorite Finds At Expo West That Are Allergy-Friendly

 Navigating Life with food allergies can be tough at times. It can be hard to find food options that are free of your top food allergens. Eating out of the home can make you feel excluded. I was pleasantly surprised at all of the allergy-friendly food that I found at Expo West.

 I recently attended an event called Expo West. This health-related event is all about healthy food and healthy products. Expo West is the largest trade show in the natural, organic, and healthy products industry. This is the event where everyone who is in some aspect of the natural products industry comes to network, learn, and have the best time. You can learn more about the Expo West event here.

 Attending Expo West meant that I had to travel and traveling can be hard with multiple food allergies and fragrance allergies. Traveling with food allergies requires planning ahead of time. I always pack plenty of allergy-safe food in my suitcase and I look for grocery stores near the hotel to purchase additional food. To avoid fragrance issues that trigger asthma attacks, I wear a face mask while on the airplane. My favorite way to travel to California is on the train and I reserve a roomette on the Amtrak sleeper car.

Expo West offers plenty of allergy-friendly food 

Expo West is the place to learn about food options that are food allergy-safe. What I love most about this natural food event is the transparency of the ingredients in the products. The brands want you to know what ingredients are in their products and expect you to ask questions. 

 So this girl with multiple food allergies felt safe trying the food samples that were offered. Most brands had their ingredient list right next to the food and if they did not, I felt comfortable asking questions if the food contained dairy, soy, wheat, and mushrooms. The brands knew right away if their products did not contain these ingredients except mushrooms. The mushroom one had folks giving me a puzzled look as they are not on the top 15 allergy list. Mushrooms can hide in foods under many names and I have to be careful. 

New products that I discovered at Expo West that did not contain dairy, wheat, soy, or mushrooms

 Every time I attend this awesome event, I discover new foods and other products that do not contain dairy, wheat, soy, or mushrooms. The food industry keeps getting better when it comes to manufacturing allergy-friendly food. I just love learning about these food products for people who have food allergies. 

To help others, who may have dietary restrictions or just looking for healthy food products, I listed some of my favorite products below.

1. MALK Organics Plant-Based Milk

 A girl needs milk for her coffee and for dairy-free baking. A dairy-free milk brand that I discovered is MALK Organics Plant-Based Milk. This plant milk is made with only 3-5 ingredients. Unlike typical plant-based kinds of milk, MALK products have no gums, fillers, or oils.

Before the show, MALK sent me some samples of their plant milk and I enjoyed it in my coffee. It made it so creamy.

At the Expo, I got to sample their new Cashew and shelf-stable milk. Other MALK products include Unsweetened Almond, Original Oat, Vanilla Almond, Vanilla Oat, Chocolate Oat, and Chocolate Almond. If you want a clean plant milk, MALK is a brand that you need to try. 

Check out MALK Organics

2. Gimme Seaweed 

 I love adding seaweed to my sushi bowls and mixing it into my vegan tuna salad. Gimme’s umami-rich roasted seaweed snacks are so delicious. The sheets of seaweed are also USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified with only 30 calories per serving.

 My favorite Gimme Seaweed product is Sea Salt & Avocado Oil sheets. These big sheets are perfect for sushi rolls. I got to sample their new Korean BBQ roasted seaweed snacks and they were so delicious. This new flavor will be in stores this summer. For now, you can enjoy their other eight flavors which include Sea Salt & Avocado Oil, Teriyaki, and Chili Lime. 

Check out Gimme Seaweed

3. Dr. Prager's Purely Sensible Food

I love Dr. Prager's veggie burgers as they are made with ingredients that I can enjoy. Many of their delicious products are gluten-free, soy-free, mushroom-free, and dairy-free. My favorite items from Dr. Prager's are the Super Greens Veggie Burgers and the California Veggie Burger. 

This year at Expo West Dr. Prager's celebrated their 30th year with a birthday celebration. I was able to sample their new Birthday Cake Littles, which is a healthy cake with veggies inside it. These Littles have a sweet taste and actually taste like cake. I also sampled their new Crunchy Veggie Burger as well as their new Veggie Fries. 

Check out Dr. Prager's 

4. JAMBAR Tropical Trio

These delicious bars were created by the daughter of the original PowerBar. They come in a variety of flavors and they just release a new flavor ~ Tropical Trio. I got to sample these bars before the show and they were the perfect travel snack. I love all the nutrition that is packed into these bars. I also love that they are plant-based and gluten-free.

 Their new plant-based flavor features a bright and breezy blend of banana, pineapple, and coconut. This ensemble of island fruits is enhanced by gluten-free grains and walnut butter for a delicious nutritional punch. Not too sweet and is a good source of fiber. JAMBAR is a premium organic energy bar for today. and tomorrow with the purpose of “Fuel for Optimum Performance.”

Check out JAMBAR

5. Mayawell Prebiotic Sodas

Mayawell makes clean-ingredient prebiotic soda and is the only Mexican-owned better-for-you soda on the market. They are so delicious. I received a sampler pack of all the flavors and I had a hard time choosing which one to try first. This sampler arrived just as I was heading out the door to hop on the train to Expo West, so I grabbed the Pineapple Mango flavor. I was happy that this flavor did not contain green tea as it was late afternoon and caffeine messes with my sleep after 3Pm.

 Their carefully crafted prebiotic beverages pair sustainably sourced Active Agave™ inulin with flavorful botanical ingredients to boost gut health and keep it tasty. Unlike traditional sodas loaded with sugar, stevia, and other nasty BS, Mayawell is a natural and organic alternative that will leave you wanting uno más and feeling zero guilt about it.

The brand uses organic, hand-harvested agave from Mexico, which doubles as both a prebiotic fiber and its sole sweetening agent. In addition to its clean ingredients, Mayawell's nutritionals are also spectacular, offering 4-5 grams of fiber, 4-5 grams of sugar, and less than 45 calories per serving! 

Functional Flavors Include Pineapple Mango, Raspberry Cucumber, Watermelon Mint, Strawberry Ginger, and Pear Lime. 

Check out Mayawell Prebiotic Sodas 

6. (re)zip Reusable Storage Bags 

 I am not a fan of waste and disposable products that end up in a landfill or even in a recycle bin. So finding solutions for storage in the kitchen and traveling is high on my list. (re)zip Reusable Storage Bags is a brand that I loved checking out at Expo West. This company makes food-safe, lightweight, leakproof, freezer-safe reusable storage bags that have way better features than other reusable bags. 

 These bags from (re)zip are not only leakproof and airtight but they are easier to store than typical silicone bags. These eco-friendly bags are a green alternative to the one-time use of food wraps, such as plastic sandwich bags or plastic wrap. You will love all the many different products and many sizes of lightweight bags. The storage bags are made of 100% food-grade PEVA and are great for food storage, traveling, gym stuff, baby gear, pet supplies, and more.

 My favorite products from (re)zip are the 39-cup bread storage bag that can store any type of bread, the TSA-compliant zipper quart storage bag, the tall pantry bags, and Take Me with You Bags. These bags will help me with food storage, traveling, and baking homemade gluten-free bread. One (re)zip snack bag can help you replace up to 300 storage bags.

Check out the (re)zip Reusable Storage Bags

7. Verb Bars

 I am obsessed with Verb Bars and I had to make sure to visit this booth to check out their new flavors. These caffeinated bars are my go-to energy for my morning workouts. Verb Bars are a delicious alternative to expensive energy drinks. Verb Bars are a healthy caffeine fix and have the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee. 

 Verb bars are delicious and are made with healthy ingredients. These bars come in many great flavors like Vanilla Latte, lemon, peanut butter, and Birthday Cake. You will love that they are vegan and gluten-free. One taste and you will be hooked on them. 

Check out Verb Bars and save 40% with code TARA77427 

8. Olbas Inhaler 

 I discovered Olbas Inhaler at Expo East in 2021. This product has been a huge help for my asthma attacks. This pocket-size herbal inhaler is my natural asthma inhaler. When I have an asthma attack, I always use the Olbas Inhaler to open up my airways. I was not planning to visit their booth but I had to make a stop as I had misplaced my current Olbas Inhaler while walking around the expo hall. I was so thankful that Olbas gave me a new inhaler.

This natural inhaler contains pure essential oils that help open up the airways. I have several of these inhalers and stash them in my purse, gym bag, car, and bedroom. So they are always nearby when something triggers an asthma attack. I have way too many asthma triggers from smoke to fragrance to food allergies so Olbas Inhalers are a must-have product for me. 

Grab Olbas Inhaler Here

9. Wundereggs

These plant-based hard-boiled eggs are amazing! They are 100% vegan and look just like real hard-boiled eggs. They also have a similar texture and taste. I admit that I may have sampled from their booth several times, so many times that they offered me some product to take back to my hotel.

 Made 100% from plants, WunderEggs was inspired by our founder, Hema Reddy’s, desire to create high-quality, convenient, and minimally-processed plant-based foods that are good for your body, the planet, and the chickens! 

Check out Wundereggs

10. Carbonaut Gluten-free Bread

 Discovering that I was allergic to wheat was tough for me as I love eating bread and butter. Since my wheat allergy causes severe asthma attacks, I had to eliminate all wheat-containing products from my diet. The next challenge was finding gluten-free bread that tasted good and had the same texture as wheat bread. I was so happy to discover Carbonaut Gluten-free bread at Expo West. 

This wheat-free bread is so amazing and satisfying. This bread is also low-carb, dairy-free, and soy-free. They also make bagels, tortillas, and even pizza crusts. The bagels are so soft and the tortillas are flexible. Carbonaut makes being wheat-free so much easier. 

Check out Carbonaut Gluten-free Bread

11. Dude Wipes

These wipes are a must-have product for travel and at home if you don't have a bidet. They are flushable wipes that are made with plant-based fibers and keep your tushie clean. They are way better than toilet paper.

You would not wash your face with a dry washcloth so why clean your butt with dry toilet paper? Dude wipes are made with 99% water and plant-based ingredients. They are gentle on your skin and will leave you feeling refreshed after doing your bathroom business. Unlike baby wipes, DUDE Wipes are sewer and septic-safe and begin to break down when flushed. Say goodbye to toilet paper and say hello to DUDE flushable wet wipes.

Get your Dude Wipes Here

12. Just Spices

The colorful containers are what caught my eye as I walked past Just Spices booth at Expo West. Then once I noticed that that they had an Avocado Spice, I had to stop and check out their booth. I am a huge fan of everything spice and I had to sample their Avocado Spice. So I grabbed a container and tried it on the Wundereggs that I had at the hotel. This spice was finger-licking good!

 Get creative in the kitchen with Just Spice blends. These spices bring a world of new flavors to hundreds of delicious dishes in no time. I was able to sample a couple of many spice blends. 

+ Avocado Topping - Crunchy topping for avocado

+ Egg Topping - Spice up your eggs with the perfect kick of spices 

+ Pasta Allrounder - Instant flavor for all your favorite pasta dishes

+ Vegetable Allrounder - Spice up vegetables in an instant with a delicious spice blend

+ Spicy Pizza Topping- A tasty blend of garlic, pepper, and Italian herbs

Only had one accidental exposure

 There were so many options of safe food for me to sample. I was able to discover many products that were wheat-free, dairy-free, and soy-free. I loved the booths that had their ingredient list next to the product as that made things easy for me. Having food allergies and tasting at a big event like Expo West requires one to read the ingredient label before taking a bite. I also bring with my Epi-pen and Benadryl.

 The one ingredient that I had to always look for on a product that was allergy-friendly was mushrooms. Mushrooms are a hot new thing in the health food industry and brands are using them in everything like coffee, cookies, and even crackers. Since they are not recognized as one of the top food allergies, it can be hard to spot them in products. I accidentally took a bite of an allergy-safe cookie that had shitake mushrooms in it. 

 Thankfully, I reread the ingredients of the cookie and was able to take my double dose of Benadryl and a cup of coffee quickly. I still had a reaction an hour later but I was able to work through it with my Olbas inhaler.

Stay tuned for more Expo West product discoveries

 There are so many other products that I liked that I will be writing another post of my Expo West product discoveries. Look for future articles.


AiringMyLaundry said...

This looks cool. It looks like you found so many awesome things! I'll have to try some of these.

Anita Fonte said...

It can be very difficult having food, allergies. My spouse is allergic to shellfish and before we make reservations, we make sure that the food is not cooked in same pot as shell fish. As we do not want to run to the ER.

Ramil Hinolan said...

If I had the opportunity, I'd definitely try out Wundereggs and Carbonaut Gluten-free bread. They align perfectly with my dietary requirements.

Melanie Edjourian said...

I can imagine having allergies can be hard especially at first. It sounds lie you found some great products there.

LisaLisa said...

My daughters could benefit from a lot of these foods. They have food allergies pretty bad at times, these products look like they might work well for them. Glad you were able to find them!

Beautiful Touches said...

Expo West deserves praise for showcasing a variety of allergy-safe food options, raising awareness and providing valuable information for individuals with dietary restrictions. Their efforts help create a more inclusive and accessible environment for those seeking safe and delicious food choices.

Laura JL Books said...

It sounds like you had an amazing time, and found so many lovely things. I limited some of things, so that it does not set off my allergies.

Dana Vitolo said...

This event looks fantastic! We just found out that our daughter has a tree nut allergy, so I have become more interested in allergy-friendly foods.

Marysa said...

Such interesting products! I've never heard of plant based eggs before, and those are quite fascinating. The only ones I am familiar with are the seaweed snacks and Dr. Praegers, both are so good!

Hannah Bures said...

Some of these products I have never heard of! However the seaweed is a must in our house. We love all the different flavors of it from that brand. Not so much the other brands.

Anonymous said...

These look great! Glad you got these allergy-friendly, healthy food items at Expo West.

Natural Beauty And Makeup ❤️

Lady In Read said...

I definitely would love to go a couple of these events.. i went to something similar a couple of years ago and it was fascinating to see, taste, and try out different products .. so many innovations to help us stay healthy

Alexa (lovinglylex.com) said...

I wrote all of these down! I have so many food allergies and it makes traveling so hard.

Ivan Jose said...

I love all the items that you got from the fair. They all look interesting but the vegan hardboiled egg really snatched my attention.

Unknown said...

I love food and I love checking out new goodies to try. It would be fun to go to that expo, for sure. -LYNNDEE

Christy G said...

My son had some of the seaweed strips from our local grocery store. He enjoyed it but I did not. I’ll have to find this brand for him.

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