We are vegetarians. My daughter can't eat gluten, dairy, or cane sugar. Frankly all of those are pretty easy (in comparison) since most restaurants provide gluten and dairy free options. It's the cane sugar that's really hard.
We go to two restaurants. Chipotles. They don't add sugar to anything. And a Mexican restaurant with a great staff. The waitress brought the margarine out to us to read the ingredients and sure enough, it contained milk. (In time we discovered that the tomato sauce had added sugar which is why our daughter was having trouble after eating there.)
The thing to do is to tell the staff that you are allergic to milk and dairy products. Speak with the chef. Ask to read ingredient labels. For new restaurants I call ahead and ask the chef to read me the ingredient panels of the foods used in a dish I would like to order. So far almost everyone has been really helpful. One time at a B&B I asked to see the can the orange juice had been made out of. The woman said she'd already thrown it away. I asked to look in the garbage. She eventually fessed up that she'd mixed the OJ with tang. I was pretty upset since I had called in advance and the woman had seemed so helpful. So trust your gut if you think it's necessary to be obnoxious about getting to read the labels. (My husband thought I was being obnoxious when I asked to look in her garbage. My gut told me to push it and I'm so glad I did.)
Created an instant family (7/89 and 5/91) in 1997. Made a baby boy 12/05 adopted a baby girl 8/08. Ask me about tandem adoptive nursing. Now living as gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and tomato free vegetarians. Homeschooling and loving it.
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