I have always had things that I could not eat, but recently I’ve had to navigate living with multiple dietary restrictions. Now that I can’t eat peanuts, tree nuts, strawberries, dairy, and gluten, I have had to start becoming resourceful.
Many people would see this list of dietary restrictions and just give up. I will say, it is defeating, and it has taken a lot of work to get used to. When I found the things I liked and the stuff that worked though, it became so much easier.
The only thing that I have a problem with is that I end up eating the same things over and over again, and yes, they do get tiring after a while.
One thing that can help a lot is to look up quick and easy recipes for your dietary restrictions. Finding recipes that you can easily make- and may already have the ingredients in your home for- is a great way of introducing new foods in your diet.
You also have to be willing to try new things. I used to be such a selective eater- I would eat the same five things over and over again. It wasn’t until I had to deal with all of my dietary restrictions that I finally began to expand my palate. Now that I have been willing to try new things, eating has become a lot easier.
One of the biggest struggles of eating with dietary restrictions is eating outside of my house. Many restaurants either do not have any options for different diets, have one or two options, or don’t know enough about dietary restrictions to know how to answer questions about them.
I have found some local and chain restaurants that have things I can eat. My favorite places are restaurants that have allergen information on their websites and menus, like Chick-fil-a, Chipotle, Organic Krush, and Jersey Mike’s Subs. This way I can ensure that what I am getting is safe for my restrictions.
I am lucky that my dietary restrictions are not that severe- except for the nuts- but I know a lot of people who are not that lucky. When you are living with restrictions, it is important to learn how to navigate food in a world that is not that accommodating.