Oesophageal Patients Association
3,556 members2,148 posts

Am I right in thinking that there is a card for Restaurants requesting 'Smaller portion size'?

Restaurant card

16 Replies
oldestnewest

Yes you can get them from the OPA. 0121 704 9860 9am to 3pm Monday to Friday.

1 like
Reply

This is probably a silly question - but when you show the card in a restaurant, are they legally obliged to give you a smaller portion and charge you less? I know some bars/restaurants do small portions for smaller appetites, but those appear on the menu.

Just wonder how a card would work and why one can't just ask for a smaller portion.

Thanks, Kate

Reply

A card works because some people are embarrassed to explain either that they need a smaller portion or that the reason is medical so it allows the transaction to proceed in silence. It may also be necessary if you are abroad and the OPA supplies cards in many languages for that reason. I have met patients who are too shy even to go to meals with their families post-op because of the explanations they have to give. I have met others who are pretty brazen but we are all different.

In my opinion, and don't rely on this, a restaurant has no legal obligation either to provide a smaller portion or give you a discount. That's pretty normal contract law. But I could be wrong. I was wrong once back in around 1983.

Haward

3 likes
Reply

Thanks for the explanation! I guess I just wondered how they would work in principle. My husband has this dreadful disease but we are not yet at the stage of eating out - except for tea and a biscuit etc. However, I myself am small and slim and have never had a large appetite so have always found restaurant sizes (which seem to be geared for 20 stone men!!) much too big for me. So I expect I'm used to asking for a starter-size main or a smaller portion without any embarrassment. Can't say I've ever had a problem either here or abroad. That said, I can appreciate that others may feel awkward.

Once again, thanks for the info - it's useful to know the cards are available in different languages! How very thoughtful OPA is!

Kate

1 like
Reply

Ps. Should have praised you for admitting you were wrong once before in 1983! As for me - well, I just can't remember the last time I was wrong!! 😉 Kate

2 likes
Reply

Hi Debbie, you can down load them on the OPA web page x

1 like
Reply

The OPA supplies these in many languages. I don't use them. I ask for smaller portions or that they go easy on the chips. Many places plate up in advance and can't oblige. Others are very nice about it especially if I explain that I am not looking for a discount. H

1 like
Reply

Hey, here on Galveston Island plate sizes are astronomical and waistlines to match. A lot of times an appetizer will feed the three of us. Honestly. Now we just order and take the leftovers home for a late night snack. No late eating for me. Ghastly reflux.

1 like
Reply

I admire your self-discipline. I eat until I know I am too full. Then I eat more. Then I feel awful. Very occasionally I ask for what we in the UK call a doggy-bag, but by the time I have overdone it I don't feel like that! H

1 like
Reply

For some places I take left overs and have them later, other places I ask for a child sized portion (which is still too big a lot of the time) , sometimes I can even manage a portion as I would just have a main course. If you do say why you need a smaller portion most places are great, it is just hard explaining...

1 like
Reply

Hi Debbie I did get a card from OPA and have had no problems when abroad or eating out here.I just show the card and get a small plate meal.

3 likes
Reply

I just ask for children's menu and explain I've had stomach surgery. They probably think i've had a gastric band!!

2 likes
Reply

My husband has the card but I ring up beforehand and say he will want a child portion on a small plate and each restaurant obliges - I always explain why.

3 likes
Reply

I have the OPA card but found that some Restaurants look at the card and assume you just want to pay less. Tried once asking my local eatery for 'the smallest steak they have" and that backfired - the Chef must have (wrongly) suspected something and served up a huge lump of meat! Best solution for me - 'fine dining' where a tiny dish is served beautifully arranged with much ceremony (and a high price!). No starter, no sweet - and avoid the bread rolls! If dining out with friends then I can order a steak and donate half to someone else. Some of my pals have put on quite a bit of weight with this policy! Ah, but the wine does go down well........

1 like
Reply

I ask for a doggy bag!

Reply

Hi Debbie, I often eat out and have done since I finished my treatment. Restaurants are often very happy to give you a doggy bag, sometimes I ask for a second plate at the beginning and split the meal into what I can eat and what I will take home, if they serve huge main courses I often order a starter as a main, or if everyone is eating starters and Mains I sometimes order a main to come with everyone else's starters and then eat it slowly so I finish my main when everyone else finishes thiers, most restaurants are happy to reheat if it gets too cold or give you some more hot sauce or gravy. When I go to all you can eat buffets I normally agree a reduced price for a single plate and sweet as one plate is fine. The card is useful as sometimes people think you have had barriatric surgery for weight loss and then I choose to eat a pudding instead of a main and cheese , both great for putting on calories, have had a few odd comments which made us smile.

Take care Lizzyxxx

Reply