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Food Allergies and the MAGIC of Disney!

Last week I took my son to Disney World for the first time. He is only 7 months old and beyond the worries of diapers, strollers, packing, etc; he has a milk protein allergy. Since I am nursing, it is pretty much like I have a milk protein allergy. You think, just skip milk and cheese right? Wrong, milk is in many products like spaghetti sauce, bread, fried foods, processed foods, buttery toppings, and many other items. Over the last 3 months of being dairy free, I have struggled with restaurants not being able to accommodate the allergy, servers guessing on if milk was an ingredient, and having cheese mixed into my meal due to sloppy kitchen procedures. Needless to say as much as I love Disney, I was pretty nervous about the allergy. Well due to the magic of Disney, the food allergy was handled perfect and we had a great trip! Now let me talk you through the “Disney Difference”.

milk protein allergy

Planning ahead. You can note food allergies when you make your dining reservations (up to 180 days in advance). That way the restaurant is already aware of your special needs when you check in at the location. If someone you are traveling with has very severe allergy issues or multiple food allergies you can also email Disney ahead of time to get more information. However, for the common top 8 allergens, this is not necessary.

Quick Service meals. If you are dining at a quick service location, you can simply ask to speak to a chef about your options. The chef will come out and explain everything you can and can’t eat and will also offer to make the allergy meal special for you. I had a chef make my fries in a separate fryer so I could still have them! Many locations also had a host of dairy free snacks from my favorite brands back home.

Snack carts. If you are craving a Turkey Leg or other snack, but have a food allergy, no problem all the locations are stocked with allergen books that you can ask to review. I knew this from working at Disney in college, but being on the other side of this was so helpful! You simply ask to see the book, and ALL the ingredients of the product are listed. No guessing, no worries, and no fuss! I was surprised how many things I could eat!
table service meals allergies
Table service meals. These experiences were by far the most magical! Right when you are seated, the chef comes out to speak to you. They explain what you can and cannot eat, walk you through any buffets, and offer to make modifications to the items you can’t eat so they are safe! The meal comes out with an “allergy” stick in it so you know it was prepared correctly. I think the best part was how nice the servers and chefs were. I am so used to apologizing for being a pain, asking for the few items I can eat, or having people get annoyed by the allergy. The chefs were so nice and treated me like a princess! They even made me a dairy free shake at Sci Fi!

As a vacation planner, this trip was very educational. Like I said, working there you learn the procedure, but as a college kid I had never had any personal experience with food allergies. I feel confident sending my clients with food allergies to Disney, knowing their experience will be first of all safe and second of all magical! As a first time mom, this trip was amazing! It was like the food allergy was not even an issue!

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Make it a magical day!

Julie Hauck *o*
Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
MickeyTravels, LLC
1-513-313-9531 (cell)
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