Food Pushers

You have finally figured out how to resist temptation in several situations that revolve around food and now with the holidays approaching, you are prepared to put your plan into action. But, what about those family or friends who aren’t aware of your new healthy lifestyle and while meaning well, may push you to eat more food than you had planned during your holiday gatherings? These food pushers are everywhere and it may be difficult to say “no” to their offering, especially if it is someone you do not get to see often. Food is love, and when offered to someone, the cook often feels rejected on a personal level if it is not accepted. How do you get around this situation without being hurtful or without tempting yourself back into a situation which may lead to overeating?

Make your goal a priority and be honest
If your friends and family are aware of your weight loss goal, they will hopefully be supportive and help you stick to your plan without being pushy. Remember, you are the only one who has the power over what and how much you eat.
Take a break
Holiday meals are served in multiple courses. Usually appetizers and drinks are set out or served and ready for consumption the second you walk in the door. Followed by a hearty meal and then soon after, the dessert. Take your time and delay the next course. By holding back for a while, you’ll be in a better position to assess just how much, if any, you can eat, and more than likely find you’ll be happy to eat a lot less.

By saying something like, “I’m too full right now, but I may try some in a little while” gives you some time to stall. If you give your craving a chance to subside, it will be easier to give a firm “no”.

A little bit goes a long way
If there is something you’ve been waiting all year to have, do not deny yourself the pleasure, just eat a smaller amount than you normally would. Remember, the first three bites are the most satisfying. Use mindful eating to enjoy the sensation of this food and you will find you are satisfied with less. Be sure to let the cook know you enjoyed the dish; just remember to resist offers for seconds!

Be assertive
More than likely, the food pusher is not trying to sabotage your efforts. Many of us often get overwhelmed with the holidays and use it as a time to go outside of our usual dietary patterns and overeat without thinking of the consequences on our overall health and weight loss goals. If you are in control of the situation, then the situation will not control you.
How do you handle food pushers?
Krista Haynes, R.D.