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Old 09-18-2012, 01:55 PM   #46
Elinor Dashwood
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I think the chefs are overwhelmed because we saw them running around like crazy. I am sure there are people who use this as a "diet" but I am not sure how you would ever stop it. The Chef's we had issues with were not friendly. I felt as if I was a bother. I still think if you have say a nut allergy, it is easy for them as most kitchens are nut free. If you have a gluten allergy which is just wheat. They can give you gluten free bread/pasta. My sons issue is he is grain free so that doesn't work for us. At Tusker House we just sat there and laughed to the point we cried. It felt like a dream. I was very scared for my son. He was sick after several meals and the Dr.'s have warned me that it could become anaphylactic at any point in time. We were so excited to be able to try Disney! It was a huge flop. We have another tripped palnned right now with zero TS's booked. I just dont know what to do. I would love to go to "Ohana again if I had Brandon but it is so $$$ for my family. Right now, I can't take the risk.
I'm sorry your trip wasn't more successful for your little guy. That stinks. And like you said, Disney isn't a cheap vacation anyway. I had a very poor experience at one of the world showcase restaurants where the chef brought me out food that had my main anaphylactic allergy in it! I almost ate it but decided to inspect it closely first and boy am I ever glad I did!

I'd like to thank you for sharing your candid allergy review too. Sometimes I worry that people only want to share the positive side of Disney when it comes to food allergies and for someone like myself, I'd rather know exactly how it's being handled. If it means I bring more of our own food to the parks/room/villa, then so be it. But I want to know up front, you know?
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Old 09-18-2012, 04:07 PM   #47
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of course we do the same. But it's about as accurate as knowing that all xxx food "usually" has peanuts (or gluten, or whatever). You just don't know what's in DISNEY's food.

Not all rolls are made the same. Not every serving of pasta is the same. Not every stir fry is the same. My meatloaf that I make at home might contain more or less bread / carbs than the meatloaf served in disney and might not come anywhere close to what's found in a book or app. Only simply needs to look at those apps to see the huge variation in carb content for the same food. Even something easy like knowing if a roll is whole wheat vs white makes a difference. How many carbs? How much fiber?

It's not as easy as just looking up the carbs in a book, otherwise we could say exactly the same for any food allergy , "just look it up. Surely every meatloaf contains the same exact things!" That would be a stupid assertion.
That is precisely why I stick to foods that are easy to get carb counts on. I will tell them precisely what I need. I will split with my husband if the portion is too large. I would rather skip the meatloaf and eat some plain chicken or steak, plain veggies and a measurable amount of rice or potato. Between diabetes and FA my diet is rather limited but I'll not complain as my Hb1Ac runs between 6.5 and 7 most of the time.
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Old 09-18-2012, 04:19 PM   #48
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My sister looks at the menus ahead of time and knows what ingredients they should have on hand (for the dishes listed) that she can eat. When the chef comes she tells them what she can eat that's on the menu. It may be one ingredient from 3, 4, or 5 dishes.

She has called the week before and the chefs have also been able to have an additional ingredient on hand for when she is there, that is not normally stocked in their kitchen. She usually only does that in one restaurant per trip (so one meal over 7-10 days), otherwise she makes do with what they have.

I do think it is helpful to be able to tell the chefs, I see you have x, y, z as ingredients on your menu please saute that in X or bake it, etc., rather then leave it up to them in the back.

She does order from GardenGrocer as well so she has her own food for breakfast and snacks.
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Old 09-19-2012, 02:09 PM   #49
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My DD has multiple food allergies and eating in restaurants is stressful no matter where we go. The number of foods she is allergic to has lessened as she has gotten older, so life is easier now. When she was younger I always brought her food with us. I wouldn't trust anyone to be as careful as I would be. She has been to WDW a dozen times, and we don't make it about the food, we make it about the Disney experience. My DD would rather eat food that she is familiar with than risk getting sick. We are lucky that she can eat almost everywhere now, but still have to be careful, especially about cross-contamination. We don't travel anywhere unless a hospital is close by. I would go and enjoy your vacation with your family.
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Old 09-19-2012, 03:15 PM   #50
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Actually, its quite different for kids with Type 1 diabetes in that there are no off limits food or foods which he can't eat. No more than any other person. :-) he simply doesnt produce any insulin, we're not trying to utilize it better, he does that just fine, we simply have to replace it, the way anyone with a missing body part replaces.
My mom is type 1 too. There are still foods she shouldn't eat as they are unhealthy and add no nutritional value. Those are also the foods that are the hardest to figure out the carb count, stuff covered in sauces, etc. I guess she's just found it much easier and healthier to avoid the hard to calculate stuff.
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Old 09-19-2012, 03:40 PM   #51
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My mom is type 1 too. There are still foods she shouldn't eat as they are unhealthy and add no nutritional value. Those are also the foods that are the hardest to figure out the carb count, stuff covered in sauces, etc. I guess she's just found it much easier and healthier to avoid the hard to calculate stuff.
We find him more able to be a kid, and lead a much more normal life, when we are able to figure out the hard to count stuff. Hell, anyone can count an apple. It's the good, fun food, that is hard, and that's why it is worth doing.

But they're all carbs. We just need to figure them and dose appropriately. We're good at it now, but my point earlier was that for many new families the whole process is overwhelming and disney doesn't help that along. But especially with tiny kids, precise dosing is so helpful.
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:33 PM   #52
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I think the chefs are overwhelmed because we saw them running around like crazy. I am sure there are people who use this as a "diet" but I am not sure how you would ever stop it. The Chef's we had issues with were not friendly. I felt as if I was a bother. I still think if you have say a nut allergy, it is easy for them as most kitchens are nut free. If you have a gluten allergy which is just wheat. They can give you gluten free bread/pasta. My sons issue is he is grain free so that doesn't work for us. At Tusker House we just sat there and laughed to the point we cried. It felt like a dream. I was very scared for my son. He was sick after several meals and the Dr.'s have warned me that it could become anaphylactic at any point in time. We were so excited to be able to try Disney! It was a huge flop. We have another tripped palnned right now with zero TS's booked. I just dont know what to do. I would love to go to "Ohana again if I had Brandon but it is so $$$ for my family. Right now, I can't take the risk.
Don't do ts then.

On our first. Trip we only did one because we wanted to have dinner with Cinderella. Another trip we only did one because the girls wanted to eat with the princesses. We aren't there for the meals.
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Old 09-20-2012, 06:20 PM   #53
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Both my oldest and youngest children are special needs. No food alergies but a Child with special needs is very similar in the limitations. There are so many things that we have to do differently. My point is simpley that those of us with disabilites just deal with them as they come up. Weather the are hidden or obvious that is not the point. We deal with them as they come up. Like a pp I have also just stood in the shower and cried. Afterwards nobody knows you were crying. As my oldest is now 25 I realize that it is not the end of the world and I can get through just about anything with a little modifcation. My prayers are with all of you. Don't stop talking about it though because unless we do nothing will ever change.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:23 PM   #54
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Don't do ts then.

On our first. Trip we only did one because we wanted to have dinner with Cinderella. Another trip we only did one because the girls wanted to eat with the princesses. We aren't there for the meals.
Wow, your post is a little harsh although maybe I am over sensitive since it is type and I have no clue how you meant it. I think if you are not there for the meals then that is wonderful for you. But for others meals are important. I am grown and can handle walking by children eating ice ceam knowing I can't have it. But for my children it is much harder. To see all the food/places to eat, all the smells...and not be able to enjoy it is very hard for a child. I only tried the TS because Disney toots it's horn and I thought it would be wonderful. Trust me, I didn't spend over $2,000 on food to be miserable. For us, this trip, my kids wanted to eat like others do.

If you read all of my post you will see we have a trip planned and we have zero reservations. I only wrote my post because if I had read more post like mine, I may not have made the reservations I did and could have more $$ in my pocket and better memories from my trip. If Disney can't handle the allergies part of it then don't advertise that you can. I only want others who may have more complex allergies to understand it's not all roses. And I hope Disney sees that maybe their is room for improvement.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:29 PM   #55
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I'm sorry your trip wasn't more successful for your little guy. That stinks. And like you said, Disney isn't a cheap vacation anyway. I had a very poor experience at one of the world showcase restaurants where the chef brought me out food that had my main anaphylactic allergy in it! I almost ate it but decided to inspect it closely first and boy am I ever glad I did!

I'd like to thank you for sharing your candid allergy review too. Sometimes I worry that people only want to share the positive side of Disney when it comes to food allergies and for someone like myself, I'd rather know exactly how it's being handled. If it means I bring more of our own food to the parks/room/villa, then so be it. But I want to know up front, you know?
Thanks for your concern. I was pretty sure I would not be well liked if I posted a neg review but at the same time I want others to know what we went through. I read so much positive and was really upset. Everytime we sat down I thought well this one will go better. Nope.

I plan on writing a letter to Disney to inform them because maybe they don't know these situations are happening. I hope they use these neg experiences to improve. I think them taking on allergies is huge and for the people who have had good experiences whom normally stay away from eating out I am greatful. Maybe one day we can do the same.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:33 PM   #56
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Wow, your post is a little harsh although maybe I am over sensitive since it is type and I have no clue how you meant it. I think if you are not there for the meals then that is wonderful for you. But for others meals are important. I am grown and can handle walking by children eating ice ceam knowing I can't have it. But for my children it is much harder. To see all the food/places to eat, all the smells...and not be able to enjoy it is very hard for a child. I only tried the TS because Disney toots it's horn and I thought it would be wonderful. Trust me, I didn't spend over $2,000 on food to be miserable. For us, this trip, my kids wanted to eat like others do.

If you read all of my post you will see we have a trip planned and we have zero reservations. I only wrote my post because if I had read more post like mine, I may not have made the reservations I did and could have more $$ in my pocket and better memories from my trip. If Disney can't handle the allergies part of it then don't advertise that you can. I only want others who may have more complex allergies to understand it's not all roses. And I hope Disney sees that maybe their is room for improvement.
Per the bolded part above, I'd like to say that I'm a grown woman dealing with food allergies/gluten for the first time in my life and *I* still feel a little bit of pity for myself when I go out to eat and see all that I cannot have. So for kids, I'd imagine it's about a million times harder!

Like I said earlier, I really appreciate these posts giving a detailed and honest review for food allergy restaurants at Disney. I don't want to go in blind and frankly, I'm really considering eating more in our room because then I'll know my food is safe and it will save a bundle of money.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:45 PM   #57
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Wow, your post is a little harsh although maybe I am over sensitive since it is type and I have no clue how you meant it. I think if you are not there for the meals then that is wonderful for you. But for others meals are important. I am grown and can handle walking by children eating ice ceam knowing I can't have it. But for my children it is much harder. To see all the food/places to eat, all the smells...and not be able to enjoy it is very hard for a child. I only tried the TS because Disney toots it's horn and I thought it would be wonderful. Trust me, I didn't spend over $2,000 on food to be miserable. For us, this trip, my kids wanted to eat like others do.

If you read all of my post you will see we have a trip planned and we have zero reservations. I only wrote my post because if I had read more post like mine, I may not have made the reservations I did and could have more $$ in my pocket and better memories from my trip. If Disney can't handle the allergies part of it then don't advertise that you can. I only want others who may have more complex allergies to understand it's not all roses. And I hope Disney sees that maybe their is room for improvement.
I think what the other poster was just trying to say (and how I read it) was that TS might not be your best option at this point. Just the simple fact that TS restaurants might always leave you feeling the way you felt - sad and crying and hoping something would work but having nothing work. In the end you know best what your child can eat, and if that means bringing your own food, or eating in your room or whatever, you know best how to keep your child safe and healthy . If Disney won't cooperate then just find some way to do it yourself, the way you do it at home.

You cannot let a restaurant make you upset and ruin your trip.

I think the issue becomes that kids who have serious and complex food allergies will never be able to eat like everyone else. There just isn't any way around it. And unfortunately no restaurant can always accommodate every allergy especially when things are vast like your child's. A restaurant is under no obligation to provide anything different than what's on their menu. And yes, Disney does make some claims which perhaps they cannot meet. And they're going to have to deal with that. But in the end, you're the mom. You always ALWAYS know best.
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Old 09-21-2012, 02:02 AM   #58
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Per the bolded part above, I'd like to say that I'm a grown woman dealing with food allergies/gluten for the first time in my life and *I* still feel a little bit of pity for myself when I go out to eat and see all that I cannot have. So for kids, I'd imagine it's about a million times harder!

Like I said earlier, I really appreciate these posts giving a detailed and honest review for food allergy restaurants at Disney. I don't want to go in blind and frankly, I'm really considering eating more in our room because then I'll know my food is safe and it will save a bundle of money.
Same here! I've been allergic to peanuts for 22 years (basically my entire life). But I've only been allergic to eggs and shellfish for about 4 1/2 years and I just found out about 11 weeks ao that I am allergic to all tree nuts, wheat, oats, coconut, broccoli, sesame, and ginger. I also just found out about 6 weeks ago that I have oral allergy syndrome and can't eat most raw fruits and veggies.

Needless to say, I miss burger king and McDonald's. I miss cheesesteaks and Quiznos. I miss chicken pot lies and banana splits. I miss hummus and pita. The list goes on. And yes, while it is definitely easier for me as an adult than for a child since I do understand why I can't eat it, it's not "easy" by any means. Some days I deal with it very well but there are other days where I resent everyone around me for what they can eat and I get upset because of it. There are a few restaurants around here where I can eat but I can only eat a couple of things at each restaurant so it's repetitive and boring. I do avoid going out with people a lot if they are going to eat b/c most of the time it's not worth it ans it's just too soon for me to deal with.

But Disney is the one place I can usually get something that is safe. I had the most amazing steak and garlic mashed potatoes at storytellers cafe in Disneyland. And the chef was amazing! I know Disney is not perfect but I've personally never had issues with Disney dining but that just my experience. But I also go in having looked at the menu and see if there is anything they would be able to modify for me from what they have. Burgers w/ no buns, grilled chicken, steaks, fries, and cooked veggies are my staples. I might be eating those for a week but I will gladly eat it just to be in Disney! I do bring my own snacks because basically nothing snack wise is safe for me but that's okay with me most of the time. I make sure I have cookies, cotton candy, candy, chips, etc so I can still have "junk" when we are there.
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Old 09-21-2012, 08:06 AM   #59
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I think what the other poster was just trying to say (and how I read it) was that TS might not be your best option at this point. Just the simple fact that TS restaurants might always leave you feeling the way you felt - sad and crying and hoping something would work but having nothing work. In the end you know best what your child can eat, and if that means bringing your own food, or eating in your room or whatever, you know best how to keep your child safe and healthy . If Disney won't cooperate then just find some way to do it yourself, the way you do it at home.

You cannot let a restaurant make you upset and ruin your trip.

I think the issue becomes that kids who have serious and complex food allergies will never be able to eat like everyone else. There just isn't any way around it. And unfortunately no restaurant can always accommodate every allergy especially when things are vast like your child's. A restaurant is under no obligation to provide anything different than what's on their menu. And yes, Disney does make some claims which perhaps they cannot meet. And they're going to have to deal with that. But in the end, you're the mom. You always ALWAYS know best.
I researched and researched. We have taken many, many trips to Disney and have not eaten in any restaurants. My research told me Disney could handle it; based on so many positive posts and Disney itself. I do not consider my child to have 'severe' or vast allergies at all. Although I guess one could say any allergy is severe. He can't have grains, peanuts or seeds. (It's certain seeds but we just stay away from seeds at disney to make it easier) He can have dairy, cheese, eggs, meat, fruit like apples and oranges, veggies like broccoli and carrotts,potaoes: I could go on and on. I did not think he was complex and how would I know if we didn't give it a try. I did give it a try, it was awful and I have stated our next trip will not include TS which is unfortunate unless I see Disney has made a change and then we will try again. Being a family of eight, I can't make reservations last minute as we would never get in.

I did not let it ruin the trip completely. But if you have spent over $2,000 and all the time and research that goes into it, and the excitement in your childrens eyes, and to go through what my family did, I think there is no one in this world who would not feel upset and that it put a damper on things. And really no on really knows how bad it was because you were not there and it's hard to type it all in one post. My husband says for those who say it isn't about the food, their trip, why in the world do we have the popular dinning plan and something to eat every ten steps! Most people who vacation do enjoy special treats when they are out.

Disney doesn't state that if you have one food allergy we can handle it but if you have three you are out of luck. I wanted to post my experience because it is important for others to know what we went through.

On a funnier note, not funny at the time, we had our bag of food confiscated one day. They even called out the bomb squad! We had our bag in an umbrella stroller with disney coffee cups in one side and our duffy bears on the other. We went to eat at Le Cellier. (the bag had our snacks and dinner) It was pouring rain so we parked the stroller by the tables for the kid cot stations undercover. The lady running kid cot didn't say a word and I didn't ask. We have done this before with no issues and were not the only one there at the time. We had a very long and not so good time at Le Cellier and were inside for over two hours. When we came out our stuff was gone. Long story short, an overzealous cm called it in as a suspious package. We had already unpacked the bag at bag check and had removed each container. It took almost an hour to get it back. Security had taken it to the front of the park somewhere. They had the dogs come out and everything. I can see the dogs now smelling my grilled chicken salads and going crazy! My guess is duffy gave us away! LOL We felt like we couldn't win for losing. The rest of the trip I was so paranoid about our food.

For those with children that have allergies like my son, who can not enjoy meals out, I sympathize with you all. We spend hours planning food to bring, having to pack it each morning, and sometimes my other children pay for his allergies by missing out on experiences. My son did not develope allergies until the age of four and it has taken us six years to figure it out completely, so I know the difference. And for those that have had a positive experience at Disney I am so glad for you and I hope it continues so that all families can have the same experience. I hope Disney takes any of these negitive experiences and makes them better. I am not mad at Disney. I already have another trip planned to try and wipe away some of the negitive of this last trip. But, they could do better. If you have stayed with me thus far, thanks for reading my book!
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Old 09-21-2012, 09:06 AM   #60
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I hope you didn't think I was trying to dismiss your concerns, but I just wanted to pull out one part of what you've just said:
We spend hours planning food to bring, having to pack it each morning, and sometimes my other children pay for his allergies by missing out on experiences. My son did not develope allergies until the age of four and it has taken us six years to figure it out completely, so I know the difference

It's taken you, his mother, 6 years to figure it out completely. You spend hours planning food. Disney - their chefs - cannot possibly do this. But if you're saying it's not complex, then what's the issue? You know what your child can eat.

Look, I'm totally sympathetic to the fact that kids have special needs. I live it. I get it. I wish everyone in the universe cared as much as me about what my child has to go through, but the simple fact is that they don't, and they're under no obligation to do so. So I do the best I can because in the end, it's my responsibility.
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