Tuesday, February 26, 2013
How Peer Pressure Can Affect Your Diet and Weight Loss.
If you are on a nutritional diet or simply enjoying a healthy lifestyle to help with your weight loss, then you probably know that peer pressure to eat foods that are not good for you is a major part of your life. It is not important, whether it is from your family directly surrounding you, or your friends and co-workers. They may not mean anything by the pressure that they apply, but they just do not understand the importance of your decisions.
If you are worried about the food that goes into your mouth, don’t worry—there are ways to overcome peer pressure. It simply takes a little know-how to get people off your back!
One of the first things we want to consider is that, if you and your family love to eat at restaurants, you may think that this lifestyle is not good for a healthy diet. In many cases, you would be correct. It can quickly help you to gain weight if you do not make the right choices. However, you can still enjoy restaurants occasionally and maintain your healthy diet and continue to lose weight. It’s all about making a good food choice, which starts with learning about the nutrition you, need to stay happy, physically healthy, mentally stable, and active. And by getting your family actively involved with your choices it can also take much of that pressure away.
When you pick up the menu, start by skipping over the drink section. Although you may be tempted to enjoy a beer or mixed beverage with your dinner, these usually have many empty calories, which is not good for your body. The exception to this rule when it comes to alcohol is wine, especially red wine, which can be fine if you have a single glass and can actually help prevent heart disease for some patients. Also skip over the appetizer menu, unless it’s to over a side salad. The appetizers at restaurants are usually high-fat foods that are not meant to fill you up and can in fact make you crave even more high fat foods. Instead, simply focus on your main course or, if you must indulge, share a single serving with the entire table of people.
Parties are a major source of peer pressure, especially with alcohol. However, remember that alcohol contains hundreds of empties calories in just one drink. When you go to a party, people might be pressuring you to have a drink and relax, and it can be difficult to say no when they are constantly trying to convince you. One way that you could possibly change their pressure tactics is to offer to drive to a bar instead. This way, you’re the designated driver, so people won’t want you to drink and, the fact of the matter is that they will probably be purchasing you waters and maybe even helping to pay for your gas. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.
Another time when you may feel pressured to eat is at work when the boss orders lunch for everyone at a meeting or when you have to visit a client. Instead of giving in to temptation, simply politely decline the food by letting your boss know in advance or order a meal that is healthy and split the portion in half so you have a meal for tomorrow’s lunch as well. Just because you have a large meal in front of you there is no rule that says you must eat it all at once. Besides being healthier for you it can also help your money situations by not having to buy an extra lunch the next day.
Baby showers, weddings, birthday parties, and other special events can also wreak havoc on your diet, even if you are good at resisting temptation on your own. When someone hands you a piece of cake and they won’t take no for an answer, it can be difficult to know what to say. Here, little white lies might be appropriate. For instance, saying that your stomach was upset earlier in the day will convince a person that you don’t want to eat at the moment or pretending to have a chocolate allergy will get people to allow you to enjoy the party without a hassle surrounding food. Try to be polite but let them know that it will only feel worse if you do indulge.
Remember, however, that while refusing bad foods is fine, you should be eating good foods. If you do not, dangerous eating habits and disorders can develop, which will give you, your friends, and your doctor a real reason to worry. It’s ok to say no to peer pressure, but don’t say no to food in general. Following this general guideline will help you to better follow a nutritious diet and to follow a weight loss program and better be able to fight that peer pressure that comes from all angles. You will feel better, look better, and who knows, by setting an example you could help someone else to make better choices also.
Posted by Fay Maxson at 11:33 AM