Addis Ababa - Post Report Question and Answers

What do people who suffer from environmental or food allergies need to know?

Not sure. I guess it depends on the specific allergy they have. - Dec 2023

Be aware as allergens are probably in most products. - Aug 2023

GF people would struggle even though pure injera is supposed to be teff only. - Aug 2022

There is pollution to be aware of! Most Ethiopian food is gluten and dairy free. It is really easy to find vegan options. Nuts are not very common. In restaurants it might be a little challenging to find food if there is a unique allergy, but most food is really natural and made with few ingredients. - Jul 2022

The elevation caused me to not sleep through the night for my entire tour. It was incredibly difficult. - Feb 2021

Come with meds and treatments (ie: eye drops) as you may not be able to get your preferred items locally. Many people develop skin sensitivities due to the high altitude/greater UV exposure so moisturisers and stronger sunscreens are needed. - Aug 2020

You will find it hard to find food alternatives here. Bring what you need in your shipments or suitcases, and if possible order the rest from your trusted supplier. There is a ton of construction in this city, so all the nasty materials they use are floating throughout the air. Bring plenty of inhalers for asthma, your preferred allergy medication and Benadryl for emergencies. - Feb 2020

I wouldn't trust anyone but myself with preparing my food if I had food allergies. Honestly, I don't think this city is where you want to go. Maybe find another amazing city in Africa! - Feb 2019

Pollen does not seem to be a big issue here, but mold is. Even in high altitude mold grows extensively during the rainy season. This year it is lasting four to five months instead of two to three. Those with food allergies should just be mindful when eating out. There are so many food allergies to have that it's hard to say. - Aug 2018

Bad quality of air and people burn their trash outside and they cause respiratory problem. Many stray dogs are out and some get bitten as they walk outside. I think you can control food allergies, eating at home. - Jul 2018

I would be careful if you suffer from asthma. - Jan 2018

This is not a good place for people with asthma or other breathing problems. I'd be wary about eating out if your food allergies are serious. - Sep 2017

See above. This place is filthy and the air quality, horrendous. Also, when we first got here, there was an aflatoxin outbreak with the local dairy. We buy milk at the embassy (UHT) but the cheese and yogurt? We were buying local. Apparently, if your health is fine, this isn't too much of a concern but women who were pregnant, breast feeding and people who were immunocompromised were recommended to avoid local dairy. We do a six-month or so Kenya meat/cheese order, which is ok but don't come here thinking it's Whole Foods quality...just near Whole Foods prices. - Aug 2016

Not the place for you. - Aug 2016

Nothing in particular springs to mind. I'm not sure I would trust eating out if I had a severe food allergy, simply because I'm not sure you could ever communicate clearly enough with the waitstaff about your limitations. - Feb 2016


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