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Extreme dietary restrictions

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I've recently had medical problems that require a very extreme diet change.  Very extreme.  Listing the things I can't eat is far too long, the list that I can eat is much shorter.  Since this has happened I've tried explaining to friends and family and they have a hard time wrapping their head around it, which is fine and understandable.  I even sometimes can be confused (I'm still learning) of the approved food items.  A lot of what is a huge NO is in sneaky items like sauces, dressings etc.  And in my neck of the woods, no one wants to eat what I can eat. 

So I'm wondering, to make it easier on everyone and my hosts (cause I still really want to accept invites and go places!) could I bring my own food to gatherings?  I've never encountered this before, I only know of people who have a few restrictions and my restrictions are way too much for anyone in my surroundings.

Anyone else in a similar boat and any tips to make it work?

gramma dishes:
No tips, but I think a brief explanation that there are extreme extreme restrictions (and that they are truly medical, not whimsical) and suggesting that you bring your own food so that you can still be a participant in the event is fine. 

The important thing is that you want to spend time with these people and that you don't want your medical condition to cause anyone else to have to jump through hoops to accommodate your food needs and that's, I think, the idea you want to convey.

I am so accustomed to one group with extreme allergies bringing their food that I wouldn't even notice. I tried very hard to cook for them myself that I just gave up.

Please just tell them that you must do this. I don't even think you have to share. It doesn't sound like your meal would be appealing to to anyone anyway.

Every once in a while someone in that group will bring gluton-free cookies to share or an herb flavored rice dish, but that is all.

I've been living with a very restrictive diet for the last two years.  Like you, the list of what I can eat is shorter than the list of what I cannot eat.  When people ask me what I eat, I tell them "tree bark and water".   ::) 

But on a more serious note, I don't bother with bringing my own food.  Even though I have a long list of what I shouldn't have, none of it (with the exception of starfruit) is life-threatening.  Therefore, if I absolutely CANNOT find something that doesn't have one of the forbidden items in it, I'll either work around it if I can or take an extremely small serving and eat later.   I also always ask if I can bring something.  That way, I will know that there is at least one dish that I can eat with abandon.

My DH eats a very strict diet that he absolutely cannot modify in any way.

When invited for dinner, he eats before or after and just spends the time doing a lot of socializing.


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