Watch out for food frenemies

By admin
15 December 2014

Embarking on a new diet requires supportive friend and family. Be careful of frenemies.

One of the worst things about embarking on a diet is the changes you'll face in your social life. More often than not, a get-together will mean eating or drinking something that's not strictly part of your healthy-eating plan. And while it's good to indulge every now and again, you'll only see results with some serious discipline.

It's now that the people who really care about you need to support you. But it could turn into a diet disaster if there's someone in your life slowing you down.

It could be that friend who always suggests you head to unhealthy eateries when you meet up. Or the relative that pops home with freshly baked goods, insisting you try two or three right there and then. Or what about the partner constantly remarking you're getting obsessed and just need to let your hair down?

Of course it's important to heed advice if you really are crash dieting or overdoing it in the gym - it's likely these people really care and want to help. But if you're gradually shedding the pounds and getting healthy, it could be sabotage.

Try and think where the person is coming from. It could be they're worried your new look and new lease of life will mean you'll grow apart or not be as willing to join them for meals and nights out. If you think this could be the case, reassurance is key. Next time they suggest you hit the pub for drinks or try a new burger place, come up with an alternative. You could invite your friend over and cook a healthy dinner or suggest an activity like bowling, where booze isn't on the cards. That way they'll know you're not shaking them off to go and meet your new power walking pals for quinoa.

Jealousy might also be playing a part. If you know someone who struggles with their weight and keeps making snide remarks about how seriously you're taking things, it could be a case of the green-eyed monster. If it's a very close friend, have an honest conversation and tell them how important your new lifestyle is and how happy you are with the way things are going. If they truly care, they will want the very best for you. If things don't improve, get some distance. A little time apart could help you reflect on whether they really are someone you need in your life. After all, if you're shedding the physical pounds, what's stopping you from dropping some emotional baggage too?

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