How to Deal With Food Restrictions in Social Settings

Do you ever feel self-conscious when you’re in a restaurant, surrounded by friends, and analyzing the menu? All you can think about is figuring out what you can and can’t eat, and how you can piece them together into some semblance of a meal. Uuugh, food restrictions!

I’ve definitely felt this way before.

Even to this day I sometimes feel like I’m being difficult when I ask a lot of questions about the menu. Things like, “Is the fish dredged in flour?” or “Are there peppers in the sauce? Can you serve it without?” Most people don’t care about such things!

In this episode of S&S TV Summer and I discuss this fear of judgment, how to talk about it at the dinner table without making it into a big deal, plus a little bit of perspective (as always!).

Take a look, and then let me know in the comments below how you deal with food restrictions in social settings. And don’t forget, if you have a friend who is getting used to new food restrictions, how about you forward this over to them?


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  • This was great, thank you!

    I do find one thing that happens is defensiveness – for some reason, some people take it personally that I don’t eat certain foods, or think that my not eating them is a silent criticism of the fact that they eat them. I try to let folks know their meals look or smell good, or tell them to enjoy it, if I’m feeling that sort of vibe, or will even say that just because I don’t eat something doesn’t mean I think no one can or should, just to clear the air. 🙂

    • You’re absolutely right. I think people do take it as a judgement on what they’re eating. Sounds like you’ve found a graceful way to deal with it 🙂