With restaurants opening up again, we all want a slice of patio season! Sounds simple, but for those of us with food allergies, intolerances or diet restrictions, eating out can be a stressful experience.
The scenario: You’re out with your friends, sipping on an aperol spritz. You’re trying to have a good time & join in on the conversation. Instead, you’re scouring the menu desperately trying to find something suitable for your dietary restrictions before the server comes back around. You don’t want to be stuck with a sad side salad AGAIN.
Eating out with diet restrictions may bring back stressful memories for you. BUT, it shouldn’t have to be this way!
Here are 5 tips for eating out with diet restrictions so you can get back to lounging on that patio!
1 – Do your Homework
Your dietary restriction is important to you – but it might be forgotten by others when choosing restaurants. Take initiative and suggest tried & true spots you know have options for everyone. Looking to try something new? Get online and screen the menu to ensure there are options available for you!
2- Use an App That Caters to Your Dietary Preferences
If you get tired of the same two restaurants, you need to try Honeycomb. It’s a restaurant search app that allows you to filter restaurant menus to your diet. You can specify over 30 allergies – including level of severity, and other preferences. Honeycomb is the first app to show you exactly which dishes are a match for you, and allows you to order directly from delivery apps. You can pre-order it now at 75% off here*. (*Affiliate link)
3- Don’t Be Shy
There’s no shame in having diet restrictions! Whether you are living with an allergy, intolerance or restriction, notify your server or manager when you first enter the restaurant so it’s clear from the start. If they are not able to confidently cater to you, that is a red flag that can lead to you having a reaction.
4 – It’s Better to Over-Communicate Than Under-Communicate
Many people try to minimize their needs, but that can lead to restaurants thinking your dietary restriction is less severe than it truly is. Even if the meal you have ordered doesn’t include the ingredient of concern, notify the staff. This helps to ensure dreaded cross contamination is avoided. Yes, that even means everything that’s been in deep fry oil!
5 – Get social!
If your diet restriction has you feeling isolated and dread eating out, get online & join social media communities for those with your same diet concerns! Local blogs or Facebook groups are a great way to get some tips for allergy friendly local restaurants!
Speaking of getting social, don’t forget to join in on my private Facebook group, The Dietitian Feed Community where I share healthy eating tips, tricks & recipes!
Between your patio hopping, check out some easy 30 Minute Meal ideas on the blog. Happy patio lounging!
Ps. This post contains affiliate links in collaboration with Honeycomb, however all opinions are my own.