Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tuesday's Tips: Disney World and Severe Food Allergies

Today's Guest Post is by Kelsey at Simple Moments. 

Hi! I’m Kelsey, the pretty average college gal who blogs (or is attempting to blog!) over at Simple Moments.  If you want to read my ramblings about the beauty of the Midwest, college life, and some simple moments (did you see what I did there?) you should check it out! Anyway, I was asked by the lovely Lizzie to write a little bit about my unique Disney experience in the hope that it would help you!
Image courtesy of Theme Park Mom on Flickr. Click here for original

A few summers ago, I had the opportunity to go to Disney World with my family. My brother, who was about twelve at the time, is severely allergic (anaphylaxis) to eggs, peanuts, and tree nuts. This can make eating out on vacation kind of difficult, especially if the restaurant isn’t a “safe” restaurant that we are already comfortable with.
Image courtesy of Bradley Jones on Flickr. Click for original. 

My brother has to be careful and check not only the ingredients in food but he also has to watch out for cross-contamination, when an ingredient from one food gets in another. This often happens when a food is fried in the same fryer as another food, when a spoon is used to dip two different foods, or at a buffet. As a lot of the places that we were eating at in Disney were buffets, my parents were a little concerned. With the help of the Disney staff, we were able to go and have a great time without worrying too much about what my brother would eat!
Crystal Palace, dinner buffet. 
Image courtesy of HarshLight on Flickr. Click here for original

My parents called ahead to Disney a few weeks before the trip and made reservations for all of the restaurants that we wanted to eat. They explained to the staff about my brother’s allergies and Disney told us that they would take care of us from there. Super easy, right?
Image courtesy of hyku on Flickr. Click for original. 

When we were actually at the restaurant in Disney, we would simply tell the waiter or waitress that my brother had food allergies. At almost every restaurant, the chef would come out and personally walk with my brother through the buffet line. My brother would point out what he wanted. The chef would go back and make a “safe” version of the food without any allergens and without any risk of cross-contamination.  It was great! Sometimes the chef would make a special dessert just for my brother.

Tusker House dinner. 
Image courtesy of sylvar on Flickr. Click here for original

We found the Crystal Palace in the Magic Kingdom and the Tusker House in the Animal Kingdom were especially helpful.  So…that’s my experience with food allergies at Disney World! The staff also seemed as though they would be especially helpful if you needed to eat gluten free. I hope that this little post helps to make your Disney experience even more magical!

Thank you, Kelsey, for guest posting! 

Questions about Kelsey's experience? 
Have ideas for your own Disney vacation? 
I love hearing from you!  

All photos are used under this Creative Commons License. 

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