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9 Top Holiday Food Gift Ideas Gone Wrong


While the most popular place for holiday shoppers this year are discount stores, followed by department stores, about 45 percent of shoppers still plan to purchase some gifts at the grocery store, according to the National Retail Federation’s 2009 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey.

holiday treats

A bowl of your homemade muffins may be filled with love, but giving them to your gluten-intolerant neighbor would not be.

In fact, while overall holiday-related shopping is expected to drop more than 3 percent this year compared to 2008, candy and food spending is expected to increase. Shoppers will spend an average of $10 more on foodstuffs this year than last, for a total of just over $90.

A food item can indeed make a very thoughtful, not to mention delicious, gift. But before you start pre-heating the oven or heading over to your local gourmet shop with ready-to-be-filled gift baskets in hand, make sure you are not making any of these food-related gift-giving blunders.

9 Food Gift Ideas Gone Wrong

1. Candy or Sweets for a Diabetic. People with diabetes of any form must avoid most sweets, so please do not make it any harder for them to resist the array of holiday sweets already around this time of year. Instead, the cookbook “Alive in 5”: Raw Gourmet Meals in Five Minutes, full of delicious raw-food recipes, shows you are tuned in to their needs and interested in their well-being.

2. Sugar-Free Candies for Someone with IBS. Many sugar-free candies contain maltitol, a sugar replacement that’s only partially digested and absorbed. This allows the undigested portion to ferment in the intestinal tract and attract water, which can cause uncomfortable intestinal issues for someone with IBS. If you really want to show you have their well-being in mind, give them a few bottles of AbsorbAid Probiotic from Good bacteria like these can help with gut function and stability, and studies show they can help treat irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

3. Resist the Fruitcake Urge. You may be tempted to purchase, or bake, those colorful, festive little loaves, but consider yourself warned -- if you buy fruitcake as a gift you may find it at the brunt of every fruitcake joke at every family holiday for years to come.

4. Alcohol for a Former Alcoholic. Many people enjoy and appreciate a special bottle of wine or liquor as a gift, but be sure the receiver first enjoys a drink now and again and, second, does not have a drinking problem of any kind. Likewise, certain religious groups do not drink alcohol, so be sure you’re familiar enough with the receiver to know whether alcohol will be an appropriate gift.

The Perfect Gift for the Foodies on Your List?

You can avoid all the potential food gift-giving blunders by instead opting for the MiniMate Refrigerator Unit.

This amazing gadget has been featured by the Food Network's Paula Deen as a "Hot Pick" and was given the National Health and Wellness Seal of Approval.

The MiniMate deodorizes (replacing baking soda boxes in the fridge) and kills potentially dangerous food-borne bacteria. This extends the freshness and life of many foods 3 to 4 times longer!

Plus, the MiniMate:

  • Features an activated oxygen generator to eliminate odors, keep foods fresher longer and kill bacteria in your refrigerator

  • Naturally kills odors without any cover-up scents or fragrance

  • Reduces food spoilage and prevents cross-contamination of food odors

  • Breaks down pesticides and herbicides on produce

Find Out More About the MiniMate Refrigerator Unit Now!

minimate refrigerator filter

5. Sausages and Other Holiday Meats for a Vegetarian. This will not be appreciated and may be offensive. Vegetarians on your list would much rather have the MiniMate Refrigerator Unit to help keep their veggies fresher, longer! Similarly, be sensitive about giving meat products to those who only eat Kosher foods or avoid pork or pork products.

6. Baked Goods and Cookies for Your Friend Who’s Trying to Lose Weight. While the thought is there, the extra goodies may sabotage your friend’s extra efforts. Instead, treat him or her to their very own set of fitness DVDs from SheaNetics is a one-of-a-kind fitness program that addresses both your physical body and your mental well-being, making it an incredibly thoughtful gift for the health conscious friends and family on your list!

7. Specialty Coffee for the Work-a-Holic. You may think your gourmet coffee idea is a clever “support system” for the 24/7 work-addict. But this sentiment is only furthering what could be a dangerous situation, leading to chronic stress and burnout. A better choice? The Pure Relaxation: Guided Meditations for Body, Mind & Spirit CD by respected meditation expert, Mary Maddux. This is the #1 relaxation CD on the market today and it helps calm the mind, soothe emotions and create a state of deep relaxation in the body.

8. Candy and Sweet Drinks for Kids. Their parents may not appreciate the sugar-high that will follow once their kids down your innocent gift of sugar-water disguised as hot cocoa. Instead, visit for a variety of 100% natural and 100% delicious beverage choices that kids and adults will love!

9. Baked Goods and Breads for Your Gluten-Intolerant Friend. Gluten intolerance, also known as celiac disease, is a genetic digestive disorder that is triggered by the consumption of any foods that contain gluten -- a protein found in many common foods that contain wheat, barley or rye such as bread, pasta, cookies and pizza crust. A much more thoughtful gift would be Gluten-Free French Desserts And Baked Goods, a wonderful cookbook by Valérie Cupillard, a prize-winning French author, created especially for those of you on a gluten-free diet.

If you want to get the “gift of the year” award, we recommend baking a batch of one of the sweet treats in this book and giving it to them along with the cookbook!

Recommended Reading

What NOT to Do When Shopping for Holiday Gifts: 11 Key Steps

How to Choose the Right Gifts for Men: Six Simple (and FUN) Steps

Cyber Monday Don't SNOOZE, You'll LOSE!
What the Big Box Retailers Don't Want You To KNOW! Why Most Retailers Are Running OUT of Stock: Nearly SOLD-OUT! How to Buy the Best While Saving Up to 70%-80% NOW Online

"Secret Benefits" of Aunt Neti's Pot ... A Gift That Passes Along an Ancient VERY Healthy Tradition

Critical: 9 Shocking Shopping Secrets You want to KNOW NOW!


National Retail Federation October 20, 2009

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