Motivation
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How to say 'NO'


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I am having a difficult time to say no. If friends ask me out to have dinner somewhere, I almost always say yes. Even though I bought already some healthy food to prepare for myself. So, I end up having unhealthy food (because I don't know what kind of oil the restaurant is using or how they prepare it) and maybe a glass of wine/beer as well... And feel guilty again.

My boyfriend loves to have brownies and then he wants me to make them or he makes them himself and I eat 1 or 2 if he makes them, because he made them and I would feel guilty if I wouldn't at least taste them.

Last weekend, I went to have lunch with a friend and I felt good about myself of the choice I made: hummus with pita bread and a carrot juice. But, after lunch my friend wanted to have a milkshake and asked if I wanted to drink one as well, because she didn't want to drink alone. So, I said yes and she ordered 2 chocolate milkshakes. Felt so guilty...

Always this guilt-feeling, I hate it, but can't seem to get rid of it. If I feel stronger, like that weekend where I made good food choices, I feel good. But if a friend asks something I always say yes, instead of staying with my choice.

Does anyone else have this? Could you give me some tips?

25 Replies (last)

Quit being such a pushover.

You don't have to pull a diet excuse on your friends.  Tell them you're busy.  Put the money you would have spent on dinner out in a jar and use it later to get yourself a non-food reward (new exercise pants, a trip to the movies, etc.).

You can still eat brownies, but cut them smaller.  They'll last longer that way, anyway.  Freeze half the batch if you're still afraid you'll eat them too quickly.

The next time your friend wants you to drink a milkshake with her, order an iced tea and drink with her, but not the shake.   If she's too self-conscious to drink a milkshake alone, let her order something else, or get over it and just drink the milkshake on her own.

I agree with Ootek, and would add this: if your friends ask you to eat out with them, check the restaurant's website and pick a healthy meal ahead of time. If your bf is a baked-goods fanatic, switch him to Hungry Girl's brownie or cake recipes*.  And if your dinner partner wants dessert but doesn't want you to sit there bored (which I totally get cause I'm the same way with my husband) order a post-prandial cup of coffee or hot tea, or a bowl of fruit while you keep them company. You don't have to make bad choices just because they're in front of you!

*(HG vanilla cake: http://www.hungry-girl.com/chew/show/2258
HG cheesecake brownies: http://www.hungry-girl.com/newsletters/raw/94 2
HG brownie muffins: http://www.hungry-girl.com/show/surprises-sho ckers-and-swaps-yum-yum-brownie-muffins-recip e
More HG sweets: http://www.hungry-girl.com/newsletters/raw/11 52#snickers)

ok, thanks for the good advice... I will do it next time I have a situation like that.

And thanks, fai1, for the nice recipes. Will give them to my boyfriend :)

#4  
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I know how you feel! My coworkers and customers are always bringing in "treats", but I have told them what I am trying to accomplish and because they care about me and want me to succeed they don't offer me "treats". I'm not saying that the people close to you don't care, but if you explain what you are trying to do and why, they might stop being pushy and respect your decision to feel better about yourself! Good luck!! :-) And don't feel guilty, it already happened....just spend some more time (on those days) at the gym!! Guilt is a wasted emotion...
I was wondering why others wishes are more valued than your own? Remember that you're the only one responsible for your choices. And ultimately you are the one who benefits or loses from those choices.
I don't think you need to be saying no all the time to these invites with your friends if you would like to attend. I would read up on the menu of where you are going and plan ahead as to what your going to have :) most friends are understanding of the diet or money "card" if they are truly friends :)
#7  
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Some fabulous advice so far.  I would also add that There are healthier choices (in most cases).  Maybe just educate yourself before hand.  As for  the shake, simply say "I'm rather full but I will have... ." and then select something like a light drink or even water. 

The brownies can be made a bit more healthy by getting one with a higher fibre content and substitute applesauce for the oil/fat.  Or better yet... let boyfriend eat them and you opt for some nice plain greek yogurt with some fresh or frozen fruit. 

Your eating choices are up to you.  There are ways of stating your preference without making people feel put out.  If friends want to go somewhere where you know there are no healthy choices... opt out.  You have prior plans.  Hubs/boyfriend/friend wants dessert and you don't, say no... I'm full and have the tea coffee someone already suggested.  If you want to splurge for one meal out... do it, log what you had or write it off as a one-off and get on with your healthier lifestyle.  Don't beat youreself up over it.  The main point is all of this is up to you. You don't have to please everyone else all the time.

I do the same. even though I had a healthy food when some one offer me dinning out or un healthy food i can't say no. now days I try to eat only a little bet of it. or make a healthy choice in the resturant.

Original Post by quiltmom:

Some fabulous advice so far.  I would also add that There are healthier choices (in most cases).  Maybe just educate yourself before hand.  As for  the shake, simply say "I'm rather full but I will have... ." and then select something like a light drink or even water. 

The brownies can be made a bit more healthy by getting one with a higher fibre content and substitute applesauce for the oil/fat.  Or better yet... let boyfriend eat them and you opt for some nice plain greek yogurt with some fresh or frozen fruit. 

Your eating choices are up to you.  There are ways of stating your preference without making people feel put out.  If friends want to go somewhere where you know there are no healthy choices... opt out.  You have prior plans.  Hubs/boyfriend/friend wants dessert and you don't, say no... I'm full and have the tea coffee someone already suggested.  If you want to splurge for one meal out... do it, log what you had or write it off as a one-off and get on with your healthier lifestyle.  Don't beat youreself up over it.  The main point is all of this is up to you. You don't have to please everyone else all the time.

 

I hear you loud and clear!!!  We had friends over for breakfast last week and I made up some very healthy and low cal recipes.  We all sat around the table talking about loosing weight, calorie counting and how important it is to eat healthy.  We were then invited to the same friends' place for dinner a few nights later and were served up macaroni and cheese with ceasar salad.  What do you say?  We ate what was served, but in small portions, and thanked them profusely for going to the trouble.  Portion size is my effort to behave, and most of the time it works.  When portion control doesn't work, I eat and enjoy and start my calorie counting over again the next day.  And yes, it is still an emotional roller coast ride of emotion, but I think this process is all part of re-learning how to eat properly. We're very new at it.

Original Post by jaqw5:

I hear you loud and clear!!!  We had friends over for breakfast last week and I made up some very healthy and low cal recipes.  We all sat around the table talking about loosing weight, calorie counting and how important it is to eat healthy.  We were then invited to the same friends' place for dinner a few nights later and were served up macaroni and cheese with ceasar salad.  What do you say?  We ate what was served, but in small portions, and thanked them profusely for going to the trouble.  Portion size is my effort to behave, and most of the time it works.  When portion control doesn't work, I eat and enjoy and start my calorie counting over again the next day.  And yes, it is still an emotional roller coast ride of emotion, but I think this process is all part of re-learning how to eat properly. We're very new at it.

I would suggest bringing along a healthy "gift" dish next time.  Let them know up front that you'll supply the veggies or salad.  Then you'd have something healthy to supplement their not-so-healthy food choice.

You don't have to say no to going, just say no to unhealthy choices while you're there.  For the friend who wants to go indulge after eating, a simple, "I'm stuffed, but I would love some nice cold water" should suffice.

It seems your biggest problem is saying no to yourself. :)

As for the brownie situation, ask your bf to satisfy his brownie addiction elsewhere.  If you can't do that, cut the brownies into bite sized pieces and freeze them.

My hubby takes his desserts into his office so I don't have to watch him eat them. He fills his pizza cravings at work. He understands that I need to lose weight and I'm trying very hard and that we just don't have the same 'burn rates' when it comes to calories.

I portion out home-baked goods into his and hers serving sizes.  Somehow, when things are in portion-sized baggies, I am able to limit my intake more successfully.

 

#13  
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Anyone who not only insists you go out to eat with them but also makes you feel guilty if you don't eat or drink what they do, is NOT a friend--it's an ENABLER. These people are toxic to your recovery and should be avoided the same you you avoid foods that are counterproductive to your progress.   A friend is someone who understands and respects your goals. If they suggest going out to eat, they should be prepared to compromise on going to a place where you can get the healthy foods you need, and they should never make you feel like you have to order what they're ordering.

I think you're hot

Can you prepare a healthy dinner at your house for your friends? Or can you choose the place you go out to eat and decide on a restaurant that has lots of healthy options and nutritional facts online ahead of time? Can you compensate for eating more calories by working out extra the days you go out? You can go out to eat and lose weight, it just can't happen 4 times a week unless you're really careful about the choices you make. But going out once a week wont prevent you from losing weight as long as you're careful the rest of the time.

Just explain to your friends that you're trying to lose weight and it's just easier to eat healthy foods at home. And then make other suggestions of things you can do to get together. Work out together. Go on a walk. Have them over. Go shopping. Go do an activity.

Here's an idea that might even make it easier.  Say yes and ask to SHARE a meal, milkshake, desert item, etc and then suggest a nice walk & talk afterward!  Suggest meeting at a park and bag-it (that way you are taking the food you want to eat) and they are bringing their own.  I agree with one of the comments - guilt is a wasted emotion.  The more guilty you feel, the more you'll pull away from your goal.  You are allowed to eat, HAVE to eat and sometimes a brownie is just a brownie.  There are ways of making the brownies better for you, or just portion control.  Enjoy life.  You deserve it!

Thank you so much for the advice. I will think more before I do or give in to something my friends want.
That's the only thing I miss about the West: you know what they do in your food and how they prepare it. I live already 3 years in China, in a small town, so when I am invited to dinner with Chinese friends, I sometimes don't know what meat, oil and whatever they use. A brownie and milkshake sounds like a big treat, but if I am not careful, I will eat unhealthy every day...
I will definitely try the portion control! The Chinese way is to have a bowl of rice and take from the dishes on the table, so I can never know how much I ate. Chinese never eat salads and they love to eat the fat and skin of animals, not the meat. It's a challenge every day, so I hope to be not that busy anymore in the future and cook more for myself. And try to find good oil :)

Anyway, apart from that, China is great to live in! Never want to move from here...

Thanks again for you support

it's hard to say no I always want to eat the food other people are eating. I do feel so much better when I eat more fruits and vegetables  

Sometimes you have to tell a little white lie like "i don't feel good" or "I'm so full" people know your not telling the truth but they get the message.........

Original Post by dakini88:

Thank you so much for the advice. I will think more before I do or give in to something my friends want.
That's the only thing I miss about the West: you know what they do in your food and how they prepare it. I live already 3 years in China, in a small town, so when I am invited to dinner with Chinese friends, I sometimes don't know what meat, oil and whatever they use. A brownie and milkshake sounds like a big treat, but if I am not careful, I will eat unhealthy every day...
I will definitely try the portion control! The Chinese way is to have a bowl of rice and take from the dishes on the table, so I can never know how much I ate. Chinese never eat salads and they love to eat the fat and skin of animals, not the meat. It's a challenge every day, so I hope to be not that busy anymore in the future and cook more for myself. And try to find good oil :)

Anyway, apart from that, China is great to live in! Never want to move from here...

Thanks again for you support

oh, I hear you! I've been living in Wenzhou for 4 years now and counting calories is darn hard if one is going out for dinner or if one can't cook for themselves. None of the products (or very rarely) have nutritional values on the packaging. I usually have to be very creative how I log things, usually I find a similar option and go for the "unhealtiest" one I can find. On the other hand...how does one log chicken feet or duck tongue? Tongue out My usual trick: I log everything as a large pizza with everything on it. Better to overestimate than underestimate is my thought.

Original Post by annatw:

Original Post by dakini88:

Thank you so much for the advice. I will think more before I do or give in to something my friends want.
That's the only thing I miss about the West: you know what they do in your food and how they prepare it. I live already 3 years in China, in a small town, so when I am invited to dinner with Chinese friends, I sometimes don't know what meat, oil and whatever they use. A brownie and milkshake sounds like a big treat, but if I am not careful, I will eat unhealthy every day...
I will definitely try the portion control! The Chinese way is to have a bowl of rice and take from the dishes on the table, so I can never know how much I ate. Chinese never eat salads and they love to eat the fat and skin of animals, not the meat. It's a challenge every day, so I hope to be not that busy anymore in the future and cook more for myself. And try to find good oil :)

Anyway, apart from that, China is great to live in! Never want to move from here...

Thanks again for you support

oh, I hear you! I've been living in Wenzhou for 4 years now and counting calories is darn hard if one is going out for dinner or if one can't cook for themselves. None of the products (or very rarely) have nutritional values on the packaging. I usually have to be very creative how I log things, usually I find a similar option and go for the "unhealtiest" one I can find. On the other hand...how does one log chicken feet or duck tongue?  My usual trick: I log everything as a large pizza with everything on it. Better to overestimate than underestimate is my thought.

Duck tongue nutrition (this is for 100 grams, average serving size is 9 grams): http://www.lossweightmeals.com/posts/calories -and-weight-loss-efficacy-of-duck-tongue/

Chicken Feet (scroll down for vitamins and minerals): http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/poultry-p roducts/7210/2

If you go to google, type in the food followed by "nutrition" you'll almost always find at the very least calories.  Wink

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