Are you tired of cooking meals every night? Do you want to go out to eat but you're concerned that your dietary needs will make it impossible for you to find a suitable place? If you have a newly diagnosed food allergy, eating out can seem complicated enough that you may have given up on the thought of ever eating out again. Fortunately, having a food allergy doesn't have to mean that you have to give up on simple pleasures, like eating out at restaurants (such as Asahiya Japanese Restaurant). Here are some ways to make sure that your dinner goes smoothly:
Avoid buffets: For most people, buffet restaurants are great. You get to choose from a wide variety of foods, eating a little bit of each thing. Unfortunately, with so many items placed in close proximity to each other, it's all but impossible to avoid cross-contamination. Even though a certain item may be listed as being allergen-free on the buffet restaurant's website, you can't tell if an item that you're allergic to was accidentally dropped in the serving dish and then subsequently removed. While mashed potatoes are usually safe for most people to eat, someone may have dripped a little gravy into the potatoes before you arrived or accidentally dropped a few pieces of corn in, which were then hidden by later customers. If you have a wheat, gluten or corn allergy, you could then get sick from eating these mashed potatoes.
Call ahead of time: Many restaurants these days advertise that they're food allergy-friendly. Their online website may say that they have several offerings that are gluten free or that aren't cooked with certain ingredients. However, it probably doesn't say exactly how many people are able to prepare these dishes. While a restaurant may have several chefs, they may only have a few that have been properly trained in how to prepare their allergy-free offerings. By calling before you leave to go to the restaurant, you can make sure that they are going to be able to accommodate your needs. Since preparing allergen-free foods can take longer than preparing the other menu items, you may also want to get an idea of how busy it is and how long you might have to wait for your meal.
Make and bring allergy cards: An allergy card can be printed up as a business card and can be carried around in your wallet. It should list your allergy or allergies, as well as some of the foods that might contain that allergen. For example, if you are unable to eat gluten, you might list wheat, barley, oats, and rye on your card. Give this card to your waitress when you order at restaurants, so that the chef knows what not to put in your dish. It can be hectic in a restaurant kitchen and while a chef might normally remember that there is gluten in barley, the high-pressure environment may make him overlook this ingredient in your food. By giving an allergy card to the staff, they'll have an easy visual reminder that they should leave the shrimp out of your paella or the gravy off of your mashed potatoes.