My blog last week on drink driving also covered the common peer pressure to drink alcohol. There is also a bizarre amount of peer pressure to eat unhealthily foods or overeat.
For some reason people feel better about eating unhealthily if others join them and therefore often try and sabotage others diets or healthy eating. I'm not sure why people do this or why no one ever pressures others into healthy eating, but the pressure certainly makes eating healthily more difficult.
I've never had a problem standing up to this kind of pressure but it doesn't mean I'm always that popular. If you find yourself under pressure and want to avoid any confrontation or awkwardness what can you do?
- if you are on a diet don't tell anyone unless you're sure they will be supportive, for some reason people will often try and sabotage or criticise their friends diets
- if people comment or criticise your healthy meals or snacks make it clear that you're enjoying what you're eating and therefore won't be interested in an unhealthy alternative (which you should be - you shouldn't eat something unpleasant tasting purely because it's 'healthy')
- if someone is pushing unhealthy food on you say that you can't eat it because you have an intolerance to it or simply say that you don't like that food, both of these reasons are much harder to argue with than 'I'm trying to be healthy'
- if you're being pressured to eat second helpings then just say you're full, whilst a lot of people will eat beyond their appetite without thinking it's a very logical reason not to eat more
And next time someone tells you they're on a diet or healthy regime maybe offer them some words of encouragement rather than offering another slice of cake!