How to Eat Out with Crohn’s Disease: 7 Tips for Dining Out Safely

As someone living with Crohn’s disease, eating out at restaurants can be a real challenge. You want to enjoy yourself and socialize with friends, but you also want to make sure you don’t eat something that will trigger your symptoms. Here are some tips for dining out safely with Crohn’s disease:

  1. Do your research: Before you go out to eat, do some research on the restaurant you’re planning to visit. Look up their menu online and see if they have any gluten-free, low-fibre or low-residue options. You can also check out reviews from other diners to see if anyone has mentioned the restaurant’s ability to cater to dietary restrictions.
  2. Don’t be afraid to ask questions: When you arrive at the restaurant, don’t be afraid to ask the server questions about the menu. Ask about ingredients, how dishes are prepared and whether substitutions can be made. It’s important to be clear about your needs so that the server can help guide you in making the right choices.
  3. Be mindful of your triggers: Fast food, spicy food, and fatty food are common triggers for Crohn’s symptoms. While it’s tempting to indulge in these foods, it’s important to be mindful of the consequences. Try to choose dishes that are lower in fat and spice, and avoid fried or greasy foods.
  4. Plan ahead: If you know you’re going out to eat, plan your day accordingly. Eat smaller meals throughout the day to help prevent overeating at the restaurant. You can also bring some snacks with you in case there aren’t many options for you to eat at the restaurant.
  5. Don’t be afraid to speak up: If you’re dining with friends or family, don’t be afraid to let them know about your dietary restrictions. It’s better to speak up and ensure you have a safe and enjoyable meal than to suffer through discomfort or symptoms later. And if you’re worried about coming across as a fussy eater, remember that your health is a priority.
  6. Try new things: While it’s important to be mindful of your triggers, don’t be afraid to try new things too. There are many delicious and healthy options out there that may surprise you. For example, quinoa, a grain-like seed, is low in fibre and a great source of protein. Or, try swapping out french fries for sweet potato fries, which are lower in fat and higher in fibre.
  7. Seek expert advice: It’s always a good idea to consult with a registered dietitian or nutritionist who specialises in Crohn’s disease. They can help you develop a personalised plan for dining out and make recommendations for safe and healthy options.

One thing to keep in mind is that you’re not alone. According to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, approximately 3 million Americans suffer from inflammatory bowel disease, and many of them face the same challenges when it comes to dining out. As Dr. David Rubin, chief of gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition at the University of Chicago Medicine, notes, “People living with Crohn’s disease can still enjoy dining out and trying new foods, but they need to be aware of their triggers and make smart choices.”

In conclusion, eating out with Crohn’s disease may require a bit of extra planning and preparation, but it’s definitely possible to do so safely and enjoyably. By doing your research, being mindful of your triggers, planning ahead and not being afraid to speak up, you can still enjoy dining out with friends and family. And who knows? You might even discover some new healthy and delicious dishes along the way.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.