Tips for Teens When Eating Out
by Erika Ladouceur, Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC
- If you or an adult is calling the restaurant ahead of time for a reservation, you might want to mention your allergy then. This way the staff/chef will know in advance and possibly set up a meal for you and if not, they will be more prepared when you go for supper etc. (Less to worry about the night of, especially if it’s a birthday party or celebration.)
- Make sure that you carry your epinephrine auto-injector with you.
- When you arrive at the restaurant, you can mention to the waitress who is serving you about your allergies, so it doesn’t come up at the same time as all the other orders. (Simply means the waitress is more likely to find out from the chef immediately because he/she doesn’t have to place other orders etc. You have their attention...)
- Make sure you use the words “fatal” or “deadly” or “anaphylactic” when specifying your allergy. This will have a bigger impact then if you simply say: “I have an allergy to peanuts...” They will be more likely to understand the situation better.
- Ask for sauces or salad dressings on the side... That way if you see you can’t have the dressing or sauce, you won’t have to return the entire meal. They can just give you vinegar or oil or something else.
- When in doubt STAY AWAY! If you don’t think something is safe even though the waiter or waitress seems to think it's ok, avoid it. We know and understand our allergies as well as the foods that usually contain them..
- Double check, even if you have been told prior that the food is safe.
- Stay calm if you’re not feeling right, but tell someone right away even if you’re not sure if it really is relevant.
There are a number of different ways of approaching different situations from eating out, to going to a friend’s house etc. These are a couple things I keep in mind when I eat out. Precautions are a good thing...
from Allergy & Asthma News, Issue 2 2007