Study shows that Americans are eating out more than ever before. There are many factors to this trend including working more hours, longer commutes to and from work and having less time to prepare a homecooked meal. There’s also a social aspect to dining out with family and friends. However, consumer concerns over food and allergy safety in restaurants are also growing.

These safety concerns include food-poisoning and having an allergic reaction due to cross-contamination. Aside from doing your own research and planning before embarking on a food journey, technology has provided other ways to make you feel safer when dining out. This includes the use of mobile apps.

Food safety apps like HDScores can help you find vital information before you take your first bite. Apps can provide data on restaurant ratings, food inspection notes, and if a place can produce allergy-safe meals. “My son has a peanut allergy and like many allergy sufferers, eating out is a nerve-racking experience. Despite the waitress assurances that the kitchen will prepare a meal diligently you have no real idea how well the kitchen is managed to be able to do so, well, you do now”, says allergy mom and COOD of HD Scores, Glynne Townsend.

If you or a loved one is avoiding a particular allergen such as gluten, you can also make us of allergy-specific apps to help you dine with peace of mind.

Mobile Apps That Help You Eat Safer

Wear a Medical ID in case of Allergic Reactions

While using apps can help you find safe restaurants to enjoy, they should not mean letting your guard down in case of an allergic reaction. Even the most careful restaurant can make mistakes so always carry allergy medications and wear a medical ID.

When Bethenny Frankel experienced a reaction from a rare food allergy, she vowed to wear a medical ID for her own safety. In case of an emergency, a medical ID can alert others of a food allergy and identify your symptoms as allergic reactions. Medical alert jewelry can also help responders locate epi-pens whether you carry them in your bag or pocket. Organizations like the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) recommend wearing a medical alert bracelet (or necklace) as part of an effective allergy management plan.

If you’re not comfortable wearing medical alert jewelry or cannot wear one around your arm or neck, check out medical IDs that can be attached to your mobile phone case. Now you can enjoy using your food safety app and have a medical ID, all in one device!

While safety always takes more thought and careful planning, enjoying restaurant meals with friends and family doesn’t have to be off limits. Don’t forget that these safety steps will ultimately lead you to a safe, delicious, and worthwhile food experience.

How do you safeguard your health when eating out? Leave us a comment below to share your thoughts!