Everyone likes going out to eat, especially the person who does the majority of the cooking in the household. It’s nice to have someone else take over that responsibility sometimes, but it sucks trying to find something on the menu if you have dietary restrictions.
I wasn’t born lactose intolerant, so I grew up eating whatever I wanted. When I was in my late 20’s-early 30’s, I noticed that I was having a lot more stomachaches than usual. Eventually I narrowed down the cause to dairy and started being more careful about what I ate.
In recent years, I’ve discovered substitutes for many dairy products so I can still make lactose-free versions of my favorite foods. Lactaid makes awesome lactose-free milk and ice cream, and a couple brands make lactose-free cheese. So at home, I’m safe. I’ve made alfredo sauce and macaroni and cheese using all safe ingredients. Even more impressive, I found a brand of lactose-free cream cheese and made a cheesecake! And it was delicious!
Going out to eat is a different story. I can’t trust that restaurant kitchens use the same trustworthy ingredients I do (because they most likely don’t), so I have to ask what’s in every potential meal before ordering it, and it seems like restaurants think milk or cream belongs in EVERYTHING. It’s frustrating to say the least.
The other part that sucks is when people think I’m vegan because I’m asking about the dairy. Yes, I know that dish has bacon in it! Please pile on the bacon and hold the cheese. Actually, I deserve extra bacon because I can’t safely eat your cheese but I still have to pay the same amount for the meal. There’s nothing wrong with being vegan per se, but I don’t want anyone thinking I am because it’s so far off from who I am. I’d sooner leave my husband for some Prius-driving dude with a man bun than ever be vegan.
It sucks having to make all my own food, but it’s better than paying $12 for a salad or a cheese-less burger when I could make myself a cheeseburger at home for a fraction of the cost with my special cheese. I wish restaurants would start offering more options with lactose-free substitutes. That’s why sushi restaurants are my favorite kind these days. The only thing I have to avoid there is the occasional roll that has cream cheese in it, and that’s clearly listed on the menu. Yay for sushi!!! 🍣😁