As a mental health counselor and an individual with adult-onset food allergies, I find myself thinking a lot about communication and food restrictions. Two years ago I experienced the onset of my severe food allergies to hot peppers and their derivatives (and also tree nuts). In the time since, I've experienced awkward conversations, difficult apologies, and an incredible amount of support.
I'm convinced that I have to work just as hard at communication and at allowing others to help me. If I expect others to work in respecting and understanding the impact of food allergies on my life, then I have to be thoughtful about my approach to communicating with them.