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Eating Healthy When Everyone Around You is Not

I’m sure we can all relate to this…It’s a Friday evening, you’ve had spot-on nutrition throughout the week, and it’s time to hit the town with friends. Next thing you know, they order fun appetizers like mozzarella sticks, spinach and artichoke dip, and chicken wings… and well, a few bites turn into a third of the dish.

So, the question is how do I stick to my nutrition goals when others around me don’t eat healthy?

#1- Set yourself up for success before the occasion. Prior to going out, eat plenty of fruits and vegetables at your other meals to help round out your day in total. Many times, I see clients try to restrict and starve themselves when they have events or eating out occasions coming up. This leads to "hanger", and an increased likelihood of overeating when the meal comes. The fuller you are, the greater self-control you will have.

#2- Hydrate! Arrive to events/restaurants well hydrated. Drinking a glass of water before eating results in consuming fewer calories. Especially if there is alcohol involved, continue drinking water in between as this slows your pace, replenishes fluids lost (since alcohol is a diuretic), and helps with digestion.

#3- Communicate the importance of your nutrition goals. Explain the changes you are making and its role in your life to friends and family. Ask for their support and encouragement. This may be a great opportunity for others to join the journey with you!

#4- Negotiate with yourself. If you are dying to order the french fries as a side, opt for a nutrient dense entrée such as chicken or fish with vegetables. Dining out/social events don’t have to be an all or nothing approach.

Co-author: Ciana Bonfiglio



Hi, my name is Katelyn Greenleaf, Registered Dietitian, Nutritionist

NuLeaf Nutrition strives to...

1. Provide scientifically-backed information to help athletes find a nutrition plan that fits their individual health/fitness goals.

2. Educate people in achieving optimal nutrition in attempts to prevent the development of chronic diseases. 

3. Improve total health by emphasizing balance in the diet and physical activity.

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