It can be a challenge to eat out when you are trying to follow a specific Crohn's diet. Here are a few tips to make it easier. (And for information on healthy eating while you’re traveling, check out the Winter 2011 issue of Crohn’s Advocate magazine.)
Investigate the menu
Before you go to a restaurant, see if you can find the menu online. This will give you a head start on figuring out what menu items work with your Crohn's and your diet plan. If you can't find the menu online, try calling the restaurant.
Decipher the lingo
Check menus for steamed, baked, or broiled dishes. If you don't think you'll be able to eat the food at the restaurant, eat something beforehand or see if you can arrange to go to a different restaurant.
Plan ahead for special events
For picnics, weddings, or other social events that you're not in charge of, ask the host about the menu. A friendly call to the host can often tell you all you need to know about the menu, and you can even ask about bathroom facilities. There’s no need to be shy—just polite—when communicating your Crohn’s diet needs.
Note: these tips should not replace advice from your physician. Always check with your physician before making any changes to your eating habits.
See also: Feel-good recipes, Traveling with Crohn’s, Dealing with your emotions