1. The lady who lunches.Yes, it’s great to be spontaneous and head out to lunch when someone asks you to join them, rather than eat the salad you’d brought from home. But if you can’t really say no, have strategies to ensure you don’t eat the wrong foods, or too much. Like planning what to order at the nearby places you’re likely to go, like a small soup, sushi or a pasta with a tomato-based sauce, not a cream one. Choosing something with lots of vegetables, whole grains, beans or lean meat is the best choice. And think about portion size – like choosing an entrée rather than main meal. You still enjoy good company, but don’t ruin your diet.
2. The free food fiend.They always know about the catered meetings and pick up all those delicious morsels left over – and offer them to you. That’s fine if you incorporate them into your daily eating plan, but not so good if you just hoe into them because they are there, even if you aren’t hungry. If it’s mid-afternoon and you’re tired and think food will be a good pick up, try distracting yourself with a strong mint or even brushing your teeth.
3. The baker.They’re famous for the tempting treats they create at home, and take your polite ‘no thank you’ as a personal insult. Don’t be pressured to eat something you might not even want, that will add extra kilojoules, just to make them feel better. If being nice won’t work, a little white lie might. Smile and tell them you’ve just had a biscuit, but you’ll take their offering ‘for later’. Then give it away or take it home as part of the evening meal.
4. The lolly pusher.Always keeps the supply of free sweets topped up and offers you one whenever you pass by. You may be forced into avoidance – walking the long way round so you don’t feel tempted – or you’ll need to count a few into your diet plans. Keeping a supply of healthier snacks on hand can make it easier: mixed nuts, dried or fresh fruit or even wholegrain breakfast cereal may counter the craving for something sweet. Encouraging HR to take a similar stance may help too.
5. The sharer.They want a treat, but only if someone joins them. If it tastes good and makes you feel good, halving a treat isn’t a bad thing. But eating half a big bag of chips or a giant cream laden cake slice isn’t a good idea all the time. Similar strategies to the baker can be applied here.
6. The party planner.
Birthday cakes or even treats for the office to celebrate some achievement are hard to decline. Try indulging with a small plate, stick to one serving and holding a drink in one hand make it easier. Then count the kilojoules into the evening meal that night, limiting your dinner to plenty of vegetables and lean meat.