Monday, July 26, 2010

Eating Out

Eating out has become an anxiety ridden experience for us. It generally goes something like this: We finally pick a restaurant, and I start getting the knot in my stomach. Then we ask about the use of nuts and peanuts. If the sever knows the restaurants procedures and seems to understand what we are talking about, we stay. We order and wait. When the food comes the knot in my stomach gets worse. After about 20 minutes of Cormac eating, I start to relax. Sounds fun right? We don't eat out much anymore, but am always looking for ways to make it more enjoyable.

Here are some tips and advise I've received since this all began.
1. If you have time, call ahead. If you prescreen your restaurants it will decrease your chances of having to leave.
2. Make or get cards made. A friend and a coworker have suggested making business like cards to give to the chef. You can make and print them yourself using a program like Microsoft word, ordert soem online or even try Staples. You can make business cards, or make them bigger using the labels wizard. Another great option we use is the Food Allergy Buddy from Supermarket Guru. This came from a mom in an online group I am a part of. All you do is type in you e-mail and then click away. It's free and you can customize it with your specific allergies as well as emergency contact numbers and the names.
3. Once you find a few safe places that you like, make them your place. Become regulars, and let the staff get to know you, and your special needs. Make sure to tip well too! Your needs make their jobs harder. Show them that you appreciate the extra steps to make sure you or your kids stay safe. Always remind them of your allergy. Even though you may be regulars, the ingredients of their dishes may change at any time as well as the staff. We have a pizza place that we like and works with us.
4. When on the go, figure out your go to food. For us it's pizza. Nine times out of ten, that's what we do since most don't use any kind of nuts or peanuts or peanut oil. However we always ask.
5. Lastly bring your food. It's usually not a problem. If you are nervous call ahead. We carry a little lunch box for Mac just in case. Another mom told me to bring a safe dessert since it is not likely Cormac will not be eating dessert out. It's just not safe.

As always ask before eating or serving your kids anything. I hope this helps you enjoy eating out a bit more. It's not always easy but it can still be enjoyable.



  1. My son is highly allergic to so much (soy, dairy, wheat, eggs, peanuts)I don't even take chances at resturants...we always take his own food. Even food that is safe for him may be cooked beside something that is not and the cross contamination factor scares me too much!


  2. you are such a great resource for food allergies!

  3. Kim, I would have a much harder time eating out if Cormac had more allergies. I wouldn't chance it either. I'm grateful it's just nuts!


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