Everyone likes to eat out every now and then — even folks with food allergies! Restaurants can be a great source of entertainment. They offer you a meal you don’t have to make, atmosphere to put your mind at ease, and a place to chat with friends and family.
All of which can make for a great time. But sadly, it seems that if you have food allergies, you will have an extra hurdle to get over to actually experience it.
Restaurant staff may not know enough to prevent food allergy attacks.
While you might expect restaurants to have professionals who are aware of all aspects to do with food, including food allergies, a recent study suggests otherwise. For this study, researchers for the journal PLOS ONE interviewed 295 staff members from restaurants around Germany. The collection of responses showed that just 30% of the interviewees could correctly name three food allergens, and only 40% got a perfect score for five true/false-statements on food allergies that they were given.
One particularly notable example of this poor food allergy knowledge occurred when every third staff member indicated that they believed water could dilute food allergens. This response worried researchers. After all, it could mean people with food allergies would suffer a large delay in help as a staff member takes time to serve them water instead of calling for medical help.
The attitudes displayed surrounding the interview were not much better than these results either. The study indicates that restaurant staff members expressed unfavorable responses towards serving customers with food allergies and the validity of customers’ reporting food allergies.
So, if you’re heading out, bring your medication with you.
This study doesn’t cover restaurants throughout the world, which is a relief, but it should serve as a cautionary note. You’re better off going to a restaurant with your food allergy medication at hand. Without it, you could undergo a serious allergic reaction without any immediate assistance.
But maybe your prescription allergy medication like Epipen seems too expensive for you to keep a steady supply for restaurant trips.
If that’s the case for you, reconsider how you get your medication. American prescription prices can be quite high due to more lax pricing regulations, but you can work around that. Just buy your medication from a licensed pharmacy abroad through a pharmacy referral website service like Canada Pharmacy Delivery. This’ll allow you to get your medication for a cheaper price instead of letting your medication supply fall to the wayside.
And with a steady supply of food allergy medication, you’ll be prepared for all sorts of dining delights, no matter how prepared the restaurant staff members are for your food allergies!
Andre Blair s is the lead editor for Advocator.ca. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) from the School of Public Health, Department of Health Administration, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Andre specializes in environmental health, but writes on a variety of issues.