Fussy eaters and trend followers are causing me a massive problem.
I’ve always been allergic to eggs, seriously allergic. I go into anaphylactic shock if I eat anything containing them, so eating out has always been rather tricky for me.
Recently however, it’s gotten much harder to get my allergy to be taken seriously in restaurants. As the popularity of gluten free diets and veganism spreads, I have found that the restaurants are treating my allergy as a dietary accessory.
I am not saying that it’s not a great idea to watch what you eat but, when people go into a restaurant and make a fuss about their food being gluten free or vegan based, just on the basis that they’re avoiding them rather than for mandatory health reasons, I find that my dietary needs are thought of as superficial as opposed to an actual health risk.
Waiters have previously said to me, “So you’re intolerant of eggs?”, or “It’s only got a bit of egg in it, I’m sure you’ll be fine with it.’ Here’s a clue, I won’t.
Being intolerant isn’t the same as being allergic; my dietary restrictions are an actual health risk and need to be taken seriously and unfortunately, the growing culture of fad diets is demeaning to my real food needs.
Don’t get me wrong, veganism and vegetarianism are both great ways to live. Reducing your red meat intake has positive effects on your cholesterol, while spinach, lentils and kidney beans contain more iron than your average steak.
But my point is there are always options on the menu for these diets and in turn, there is no fallout fuss.
The real damage is done when people demand their food is checked for things that wouldn’t cause them any physical harm but don’t suit their individual tastes.
I’m not attacking those who choose specialist diets; it’s just that being stubborn in restaurants about personal dietary choices is having a negative impact on those who have no choice but to check their food.
I’d much rather people chose conservatively on menus, it’s what I do. I pick something I know is egg free, having checked the online allergen information before I go, to save making a fuss in store.
Life would be so much easier if food fussers did that, and if you’re unnecessarily avoiding a food item, please save a thought for those who don’t have a choice.