Food is not just something to nourish our body with but eating can be a pleasurable experience and even an adventure for your taste buds. Globalization and travel have made it easier for anyone to try out various cuisines and ways of eating. However, if you are determined to stick to a healthy diet, you will find it tough to stick to your plan when you are surrounded by food lovers or foodies for short.
Though healthier food choices or options for those with food allergies find it easier to eat out given their preferences, they are still surrounded by temptation when they eat out with their family members or friends. That perfectly marinated lamb chop looks, after all, much more appetizing than the boring salad. Moreover, you can be called out by friends for picking out these healthier choices instead of indulging in good food.
If you ever find yourself in these situations, here are some tricks you can follow to stick to your diet and still enjoy the night out with foodie friends.
Have A Bite
Unless you have food allergies, taking a small bite will really not hurt. Most of the time, your friends just want to share the wonderful taste of their dishes, especially if it is an exotic dish. Make them and yourself happy by simply letting yourself a small bite.
Divert Their Attention
If you find it difficult to stop after one bite, then it is better to just skip completely. A good way is to create a diversion just about the time dessert comes around. Start an interesting discussion or maybe even excuse yourself to go to the restroom or make a phone call. You can also bring your own “dessert”, like a bag of nuts and say that you are craving for them instead. This way, you indulge yourself with your own snacks and escape the pressure of eating the cake.
If you are in a buffet or at a dinner party, you can stick to your diet by preparing your plate yourself. This way, you can load up on the vegetables and fruits and add a bit of protein and starch on the side. If you are eating out, you can ask the server to simply reduce the portions or maybe even swap some of the carbs for more greens. Asking does not hurt and in the end, you get exactly the amount of food you want to eat and avoid food waste as well.
Snack Before Eating Out
Tons of people tend to eat less before going to the restaurant because they want to indulge and if you do the same, you will find yourself eating more than you planned to. If you simply drink some water and eat a small snack like a banana or a handful of almonds beforehand, you will reduce your appetite and end up eating less.
You should also watch out for cocktails, as some of them can have as much as 500 calories per glass. You can order one and sip slowly or drink water in between. Do not get caught with an empty glass as you might get pressured into getting another one.
Be Humble About Your Diet
Your food choices are your own and though you might feel passionate about it, sounding condescending to others will just lead to arguments. The most important thing is to promote respect, that they leave you to eat what you want and you also respect them and avoid criticizing their food choices. If they express interest in your diet, then share it and focus more on how it makes your body feel rather than focusing on how “healthier” your choices are compared to theirs.
Plan An Activity
In many cultures, food is the center of a gathering and thus, many end up just eating more and more. But if you add an activity, like a board game or planning a walk after the meal, you provide everyone with something else to do other than staying at the table and eating.
If you easily cave in to peer pressure, your friends will always think they can sway you. So be firm as much as possible so that they know that you will always refuse even after a few tries of persuading you. They will eventually ask, just in case, but know to give up eventually.
If you are sticking to a specific diet, it does not mean you can no longer eat out especially in the company of foodie friends or family. By following these steps, you can still enjoy the food and the time together, without blowing your food plan at all.