The UK and Europe are often ahead of the US in a lot of ways, especially when it comes to things that affect our health. I just recently learned that they actually have laws regarding allergen disclosure in restaurants. Man, I wish we had that here – it would make my life so much easier and really open the doors to where I can eat.
While I wait for that to happen I rely on apps that help me find which restaurants are safe for me. While there are several for avoiding gluten, there’s really no easy way to know where or what I can eat and avoid eggs and dairy… at least there wasn’t.
*This is a sponsored post; however all opinions are my own (in other words, I approve this message)
A few weeks ago I was introduced to a new app via Twitter – DineSafeApp. Unlike the various apps to help you find gluten-free restaurants, DineSafe actually lets you create a custom menu based on your allergies, so that you know in advance what foods are safe for you. It doesn’t matter how many allergens you have, and it’s not even just the top 8 allergens, they include over 15 different allergens. They also include special diets like vegan, Paleo, Organic, and Kosher. It will be so nice to avoid those stupid spreadsheets they give you at some restaurants.
The app is still pretty new so restaurants are somewhat limited and located mostly in the Orlando area (great if you are visiting Disney) but they are expanding. Restaurateurs enter their menu information directly into the app ensuring that it’s correct and up-to-date. This makes it so easy for those of us with food allergies to avoid the costly errors that come with accidentally eating the wrong thing.
The app is also totally free for restaurants (and for users), so it’s a win-win for everyone. There’s even an option on the app for users to recommend their favorite restaurants so that the DineSafe folks can reach out to them. There are two ways to find restaurants in the app, the easiest way is to use the GPS feature that automatically finds the restaurants closest to you. Alternatively, you can search for restaurants in specific areas, this is great when you are traveling and want to look ahead.
I also noticed they have a couple of things in the works (always great to see something working to improve). First, they are about to add an option so that users can review the restaurants that are listed, endorsing those restaurants that go out of their way to cater to our needs, and letting others know about those that perhaps don’t. Second, they are adding user accounts to make it easier to track our needs and favorite restaurants.
I’m really excited about this app and look forward to it really taking off and becoming the go-to app for food allergies. Just the possibility of it being that easy to determine what I can and can’t eat is amazing and makes me want to head to Orlando and try every restaurant that is already listed just because I know they will take care of me.