(Closed) Food allergies! (rant)

posted 5 years ago in Wellness
Post # 2
Member
1017 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

I have severe food allergies so I’ll just giv eyou my perspective.  I have a severe allergy to peanuts so if I go to an event with food such as a work event or meeting that has a catered lunch, I will ask the organizer if they are able to request the caterer does not include any peanuts.  If this is not possible, no big deal, I will eat beforehand or bring my own food.  If it is work, I will for sure ask because it’s either pay the caterer more, or I expense my lunch.

I’ve also been to events like birthday parties where I will not ask.  As for weddings, I have never once had to ask because the couple getting married have approached me first about my allergies, which was appreciated more than you could even understand.

I get a bit annoyed when people with self inflicted diets that are not medically necessary, or even mild allergies, make a big fuss because it ruins it for those who can literally die if they eat a certain food.  Some food allergies are easier to accommodate than others too – eliminating peanuts is easier than gluten free etc.  If someone brought a food I couldn’t eat, I would never speak up though and complain.

Sometimes, bringing your own food or not eating can be humiliating and has ruined events for me.  It really really sucks when every single person there asks why you are not eating or brought your own food.  Simple answer – allergies – but then it gets into, well couldn’t you eat this etc. and also many ask why I didn’t simply ask the host before I came! I’ve actually been made fun of a lot throughout the years and it causes a lot of stress

People get mad either way I guess – ask and they get pissed like you, or don’t ask and people wonder why I’m so passive I can’t ask myself.

I will say though, you will cater to those who don’t eat meat by offering a meatless option, but you won’t consider medical reasons?  Strange.  When I get married, I will have a space for someone to write any dietary considerations, but if it is asking too much then of course I won’t be able to accommodate all and Im sure people will understand.

Post # 3
Member
1017 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

I do have a funny story though – one of my exes would always have big extended family dinners and normally I was working but I could make it one time.  Although they knew I couldn’t have peanuts they made a dish with so much peanut sauce and peanuts.  When I got there and realized that I politely said I won’t be able to eat dinner because of it but will still stay and enjoy the company.  I had three of his relatives literally stand up and yell at me that I was insulting his aunt who cooked the meal.  Full out yelled at me!  Needless to say I left immediately and cried at home lol Wasn’t funny at the time but I find it hilarious now because it was so extreme of a reaction!

Post # 5
Member
2573 posts
Sugar bee

I used to work in resturants and I feel your pain, I had a lady that was vegan ,glueten free and allergic to a whole host of items .I told her that the only thing she could safely eat under the restrictions was a plain salad ( of course she didn’t want that).

I am now suffering from unexplained gastric problems I am pretty sure I might be gluten interolerant. Let me tell you IT SUCKS!

I do agree that if you have these issue you know what you can and can’t eat and I would just avoid items I know make me ill.

Post # 6
Member
268 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

I am allergic to soy, sesame, and tree nuts.  I carry an epipen because the reaction is in my throat.  I was just diagnosed about 6 months ago after having a reaction daily to pretty much anything and everything I would put in my mouth (because soy is literally in everything).  Let me give you my perspective.

I never expect people to cater to my needs.  If you are severely allergic, then theres a good chance you won’t trust someone else touching your food, cross contamination, etc.  Because it’s very easy to make mistakes. 

I think it is common courtesy to let people know what you are having at the event so they can plan accordingly.  I’ve brought my own food to family dinners, brought Chipotle to friend’s houses when they were cooking.  Honestly, I just ask whether or not they can provide me with something.  If they can’t, cool, it’s my allergy, I’ll figure it out.  I’ll bring my own food, it’s just always helpful to know what’s being served beforehand!

 

Post # 7
Member
11519 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2014

MangoBreezy:  I think what you said is great.  So many people today claim to have allergies or put themselves on special restrictive diets that it makes it VERY hard for people who legitimately have life threatening allergies to be taken seriously.

My mom’s god-son is severly allergic to milk, but many people assume he’s just ‘dairy free’ and don’t take it seriously which has caused problems.

I also have a friend who has celiac and cannot eat gluten at all, the gluten free craze has made it easier for her to get food she can eat but a lot harder for her to be taken seriously in restaurants.

Most people I know who have multiple food allergies are pretty good at working their way around a buffet or potluck and will find things they can eat – that or they bring something themselves.  Peanut allergies are pretty common and easy to avoid (Our wedding cake was from a nut-free bakery and we had no nut free guests, it was just a coincidence).

We had a shellfish allergy (easy) and one other that I can’t remember, but neither was a problem to deal with.

Post # 8
Member
2528 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I think it would be nice if people who have a multitude of allergies/wont eat certain foods would provide information about what they do eat. So they should say, “I don’t eat this, this or this but I can eat that and that.” that way you know what you’ve got to work with.

Post # 9
Member
7873 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

Legitimate allergies don’t bother me.

But I used to have a vegetarian coworker who seriously complained if the catered vegetarian option contained veggies she didn’t like- mushrooms, eggplant, various others. Got tired of that picky bitch.

Post # 10
Member
2528 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

MsGinkgo:  We had a nut free cake. There was one guest who doesnt eat them but I’m not sure why. I decided that Id rather go nut free (our cake maker made sure her kitchen was thoroughly cleaned so there were no nut traces) I think nut eating should be an opt-in as opposed to opt-out. I personally would never buy anyone anything with nuts in (e.g. Chocolates) unless I knew they liked them. Nuts are a personal taste thing if you eat them and I tend to go more for a “no nuts unless I know for definite”.

Post # 12
Member
1039 posts
Bumble bee

As someone who isn’t a picky eater but is severly allergic to certain seafood, it really irritates me when someone says they are allergic when they actually just don’t like the ingredient.

It gives those of us with actual allergies less credibility – which lead people to assume that someone who can’t have milk is just “dairy-free” or someone who can’t have fish is just a picky eater.

 

Sad but true: I have actually witnessed an adult (woman in her 30s who I work with) who decided that lying about not wanting broccoli on their plate telling their server that they were “very allergic” – you could just stop eating like a 5 year old or just pick it off your plate.

In my experience, “severly allergic” means that if you cross contaminate my food with a certain ingredient, I get hives and/or and my throat closes up and I stop breathing. There’s a very clear difference between the two.

Post # 13
Member
2375 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I’m severely allergic to peanuts and tree nuts. And by severely, I mean anaphylactic, head to the ER right now level. That being said, I don’t expect anyone to alter their event (wedding, dinner, cookout, whatever) for me. All I ask is that you know what’s in the food, and if you don’t know, just say so. It’s not a big deal if you don’t know, I just won’t eat it. And I do let people know ahead of time, so if they’d like to notify the caterer, they can. But at the end of the day, it’s my health and my issue. I would never expect someone to change their plans for me.

Post # 14
Hostess
8575 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

I have no problem when someone actually has an allergy, I DO have a problem with people who just “think” they have an allergy, have a special needs diet, or otherwise just don’t like a food.

For instance, for years my brothers girlfriend has told us SO many times about how she can’t eat fish. About how her throat will swell up, and how she can’t even get near it. Fine, we have catered to her for years and years think she had a severe allergy. About a year ago, we all went to a buffet.. and she mistakenly stuck a piece of fish on her plate. She cut into it, and went to take a bite thinking it was chicken. I noticed it was fish and told her she probably shouldn’t eat that. She said, “Oh, I’ll be fine, I just might get a rash or something”… and SHE ATE THE FISH.

I was just appalled and had no words. I am slightly allergic to red dyes in food [not all, just a particular number]. I won’t DIE from it or anything, I’ll just get blotchy and ichy for awhile. I couldn’t imagine pretending to be deathly allergic to something that just gives me a mild side effect.

It’s kind of like the boy who cried wolf.. but with allergies. So many people claim to have them that we almost always give a side-eye to people who really do have them. It’s hard to tell the differance between people who actually have life threatening allergies, and people who are just picky/have dietary restrictions or otherwise aren’t fully honest about their allergies.

Post # 15
Member
458 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

I don’t think planning my wedding was all that horrible, considering I KNEW that I had 2 gluten free guests (both with Celiac’s, not just dietary), and my SIL is vegan. We already had a vegetarian option, but wanted to make sure there was the 1 vegan option for SIL (she is vegan for a medical reason, not just because. She used to be vegetarian but since her diagnosis has gone full vegan), and 2 gluten free options for the Celiac’s guests. I reached out to the 2 gluten free, who I explained could have the normal meat dishes (the vegetarian option was a pasta which I’m sure was not gluten free) but just gluten free (I believe the sides were the problem not the meat). I guess if there was a guest with other restrictions, I would hope they would have reached out to me in advance to ask me to see if I could accommodate. Other than those 3, it was fine. We had a chicken, beef, fish, and pasta dish for all others with dietary restrictions.

It seems wedding caterers are used to the dietary restrictions by now, although I didn’t have any dairy free or peanut free guests that I was aware of to worry about as well. I know my SIL packs foods all the time that she carries in her purse for occassions when she needs to eat but can’t eat anything being served. She’s said restaurants are the worst, because at most places all she can eat is a cheese-less salad, but she’s ok with that. A good amount of restaurants where we live are starting to offer at least 1 vegan item, so she’s been doing better with it. She really never complains to be honest, and she really is prepared because she’s aware that not everyone can accommodate her needs all the time.

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