Wednesday, 29 August 2012

A nudge in the right direction

Luckily for me hot doc is a pretty healthy soul and a good cook, which means I'm lucky enough to have healthy dinners cooked for me and don't find it hard to stick to my healthy habits.  But I know that having a not so healthy partner can be bit of a hindrance if you're trying to stick to a healthy diet.

So for anyone else in this predicament I thought I'd ask someone I know has had this experience to give her tips...

Miss Haribo here,

Despite the name Miss Haribo is pretty healthy. Even if she does like her 20% “naughty” time.....

Talking of naughty time...I have a rather lovely boyfriend (no this blog is not about that!), but despite our many shared interests being healthy and in shape is not one of his.

I can almost hear the shouts of “Miss Haribo you should love him as he is” “what happened to loving the person inside?” but ultimately I think if you want a long-term future with someone I want that future to not involve them dying early or having debilitating health problems, and for it to be active.  

I’ve made some headway, and he’s made loads of progress....

But what can you do about an unhealthy partner? (Apart from replace them with a hot Brazilian personal trainer)

As an economist I turned to information and incentives.....

First: information, or education. Sometimes they just don’t know about what the healthy or better option is or how diet affects you. In my case pointing out to my boyfriend that the reason he felt tired all the time was the effect of coffee and also the huge amount of carbs he ate he was able to see the patterns in how he felt and see the cause. Result: no coffee during the week and a substantial reduction in the carbs.

Second: incentives. Give them a reason to want to take the healthy option or start something. Although I don’t recommend sobbing at them and going “you’re really fat” while on holiday together.

Third: Fit healthiness into everyday choices. In my case I decided that we would start to try out new breakfast places, and that the most convenient way to get to them was by running.

Fourth: Small steps. I pointed out how much money he could save by not getting takeout everyday and switched him to supermarket ready meals instead. This has the bonus of him getting used to a more normal portion size and the nutritional information on the packet means he is less easily fooled into thinking something is a healthy option.

Fifth: Re-education. OK so one should never say anything about your boyfriends mother and I’ve never tasted her cooking, but british ladies of a certain age tend not to be all that great at  cooking vegetables. As a result I have a very reluctant vegetable eater on my hands. I always try and cook a really tasty vegetable dish whenever he comes over, and if we go out for dinner I always make sure we have some vegetable curry dishes or some vegetable sides.

Sixth: Solidarity. Sorry, but it’s not fair to ask them to eat a bowl of muesli when you are putting away a full English.

Seventh: allow the 20% naughty time............

Miss Haribo

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