Winter is a time to gather with friends and family, but the associated potlucks and comfort foods can also be a minefield for those suffering from chronic pain. Many common ingredients–gluten, soy, and dairy, to name a few–can trigger painful inflammation. So where can you find good resources for pain-healthy recipes?

An excellent website to start with is My Pain-Free Kitchen, a blog and a website that is largely gluten-, soy-, and dairy-free and “mostly paleo.” The author of the site started it as a way to share her tips for losing weight, but her focus changed when she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2010. Rather than simply rely on prescription pain medicines, she turned to pain-healthy recipes to alleviate the symptoms of this chronic illness. Recipes are organized by category (baked goods, burger recipes, etc.) and feature some especially delicious-sounding seafood recipes.

Maintaining a healthy weight is another essential component in the fight against joint pain. Health Through Food’s blog offers tips and tricks to do that, and the “Recipe” tab offers festive winter favorites like cranberry relish, pork fried rice, and zucchini-potato latkes.

Jessica’s Gluten Dairy Free Kitchen: A Culinary Adventure is another site that offers just what it advertises: recipes adapted to be gluten- and dairy-free, even down to chicken and waffles. This site indexes recipes in the usual manner but also offers a seasonal listing to allow the reader to shop in-season produce for the height of flavor and nutrition. The author also notes which recipes are vegan, paleo, and grain-free.

And finally, for those festive occasions that call for sweet things, Cassidy’s Craveables features pain-healthy sweet treats, like fudge, pecan pie, and gingerbread bars with “cream cheese” frosting. Many recipes are entirely free of gluten, processed sweetener, dairy, and soy and are also easily adaptable for those with nut allergies.

Cooking pain-healthy recipes can be easy and delicious for everyone; there is no need to sacrifice taste. Which pain-healthy recipe will you start with?

Image by Pedro Fernandez Photo via Flickr

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