Thursday, August 19, 2010

How to stop your friends and family ruining your diet

Taken from here. I've copied and pasted this here, as MSN has the practice of removing its posts after a period of time.

Posted By Gaby Leslie, Tue 17 Aug, 2010 04:16PM BST

One of the biggest obstacles to any weight loss plan is getting around the many subtle and not-so-subtle ways that family and friends may use to sabotage dieting.

The journey to shedding those excess pounds can be difficult and depressing, when a dieter requires support from friends and loved ones to help them along their way.

But a sudden change in lifestyle may intimidate others and they can react in different ways. For example, they may become insecure, jealous, unsympathetic and sceptical of a quest to lose weight.

One of the biggest obstacles to any weight loss plan is getting around the many subtle and not-so-subtle ways that family and friends may use to sabotage dieting.

While they may not be aware that they are doing it, the tactics used by those closest to you could be the potential downfall of your efforts to lose weight.

Do you constantly worry about falling prey to temptation? Like when a pushy mother-in-law lays on the guilt when you refuse a second slice of her home-made cheesecake? Or a friend force-feeds a fattening dessert down your throat at a restaurant?

When your nearest and dearest pressure you into eating more, you drift between wanting to please them and not wanting to consume unnecessary calories.

So what can you do to silence food pushers?

Here are 10 handy tips for dealing with forceful food-pushers:

1) Pair your refusal of the food with a compliment. For example, say “I’d love some cheesecake, but I’m so full from the delicious chicken parmesan that I can’t eat another bite

2) Say no! If a slice of pie or a second helping of potatoes will ruin your diet, just flat out refuse it. If the person trying to serve you is offended, just remind them how much you need their support to meet your healthy lifestyle goals.

3) Be firm. Don’t succumb to peer pressure. If you've said you're not ordering dessert, stick to it. Giving into the "go on, it won't hurt" crowd will just make people think that you want to be talked into it.

4) Give away your goodies. You might have ended up with enough chocolates for your birthday to keep you on a permanent sugar high for the rest of the year. Stash any large boxes somewhere safe, and take one with you when seeing friends to share them out.

5) Don't let every social occasion revolve around food. It's great to eat together, but if that's all you and your friends do, try suggesting an active event: bowling, ice-skating, even a trip to a theme park.

6) Going out for drinks with friends? Stick to diet drinks or fresh fruit/vegetable juice without added sugar. Alcohol is very high in calories and can prevent you from making healthy food choices. Cut your calories by half by cheating with a diet gin and tonic at only 50 calories.

7) When eating out with friends, try to sit away from the bread and butter. It is really easy to keep on munching on this without even realising while chatting with your friends.

8) Do you find yourself at your mother's or grandmother's for a Sunday roast? Why not offer to bring a salad, vegetable, or healthy dessert?

9) Perhaps you could spend some extra time in the gym, go for a jog or skip a treat the next day if you feel like you have overindulged.

10) If friends and family express judgmental feelings, the first thing you should do is realise that these statements are more about their own feelings of inadequacy. Try not to take it to heart. Instead, focus on the fact that you are doing something healthy for yourself.

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