How to diet when your friends don’t
One method is to take a small bite of something indulgent so pals won’t feel rebuffed.
Your friend offers you a huge bowl of fettuccine alfredo his soaked in butter. Your friends give you a fork and ask you to share the cake with chocolate truffle tower at the Cheesecake Factory.
It is difficult to stick to a healthy diet when those around you are engaged. It is even harder when they are determined to ensure that you enjoy, too. But do not stress about it. The eight towers will help you stay on track, without alienating eating not-so-health in your life. Heck, you can even encourage them to join your cause.
1. Go take a bite.
Indulgence loves company, so expect a sense of guilt if you switch to a temptation yielded to your friends. Make it easy on you, then: Take your fork and a piece of everything served.
If you say, “I’m drunk, but it looks so delicious I can not miss a bite, you avoid peer pressure by turning the situation around you are delivering, not depriving yourself. And you shall do not your friends feel bad by delaying their generosity. Moreover, a bite of dessert will not make a dent in your diet, says Lacie Peterson, a dietitian at the University of Utah.
2. Create a diversion.
Could not eat a morsel without whet your appetite for the whole cake? You do not need to explain why you jump serves only to divert attention from your card. As the platter made the turn, strike up a conversation or a fun excuse to make a phone call. Better yet, bring a bag of almonds and say you want a few of those instead. Again, you put others at ease in a feast with them.
By creating a distraction, you’ll be better, too: making a fuss about moderation often intensifies food cravings, which can lead to overeating, according to a 2005 study by the University of Toronto study.
3. Help yourself.
You can always stick to your healthy eating series while having what others have simply set your portions. Fill half your plate with fruits or vegetables, one quarter of meat or protein, and a quarter with starches such as potatoes or bread, Peterson suggests. Bonus if you can exchange for starchy foods whole grain pasta, rice or bread.
If you can not prepare your own plate, there is nothing wrong with asking the server for small portions. Ultimately, however, it might be better to stray from your diet once to offend the host by eating nothing more than a turkey dry shave and a spoonful of peas.
4. Watch your pace.
In group settings, it is easy to get caught up in a frenzy of eating, others unconsciously corresponding plate-to-plate. You can prevent stuff by completing a little ahead, “said trainer Mark Verstegen, director of performance for the Association of NFL players and founder of Core Performance. “Make sure you get hydrated and a small snack like a handful of almonds or a banana with peanut butter, so you are not [that] hunger,” he said.
Watch out for drinks, too. Cocktails can pack up to 500 calories per glass, “says Verstegen. At the bar, drinking slowly or between other beverages high in calories and water. If your friends catch you empty-handed when they drink, they will probably for another round.
5. Praise healthy dishes.
You may think you are a guest polite by saying you wish you could have some of that creamy artichoke dip. But it is better to leave food sabotaging the conversation. It can make the cook feel poorly prepared food for her guests can not eat. Instead, your attention turns to the fresh fruit salad or presentation of a dish low in fat.
By treating healthier items such as indulgences, the host may be more likely to impose them or you unless you let it slip away when it’s time for dessert.
6. Share your feed details respectfully.
It feels good from the start to eat more healthily and naturally you want to share with others. But if your friends are not able to evaluate their eating habits, causing them to avoid foods loaded with fat, salt and sugar might feel like an ambush. Blithely waving away food with a “I do not eat that garbage,” or “Do you know what’s in it?” might actually increase its efforts to influence you.
If you do not want to be harassed about your food choices, do not put your friends there either. Wait until they express an interest in your diet. Then humbly share the details.
7. An activity schedule.
Do not let food be the centerpiece of a social gathering, advises psychologist Susan Albers, author of Eat, drink and be attentive. Meetings are often focused on food, and if you’re distracted, nervous, or just bask in how much you enjoy yourself, you probably won.
Albers suggests making a board game or photos to a dinner. Taking a walk after dinner is another good way to divert attention from the table. And you can bypass the dessert dilemma altogether.
8. Prepare to be firm.
If you are used to sell when the pressure exerted by friends, make sure you do not send mixed messages. Come prepared with a game plan that sets in your mind what you eat and how you will respond to temptation. In this way, they will not interpret your hesitation as a benchmark to push the chips and dip your way.
It is also helpful to guard against saboteurs common, including sleep deprivation, stress, and the proximity of unhealthy food options, Albers said.