Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Unless you are a single person who lives and works alone and never eats with other people, you will have plenty of hours in your life spent having meals with your family, husband or wife, co-workers or maybe even clients and roommates. When you are dieting those around you could purposely or unconsciously sabotage your efforts to eat healthy and lose weight.

Sabotage is one of the things I talk about in my weight loss classes. It seems like a big word for what may be perceived as an easy problem to deal with but I think it fits the bill perfectly.

If you are a heavy person living with one of those people who can eat whatever they want (and they do!) while you're trying to cut back on unhealthy choices, it's like an accident waiting to happen. If you know your skinny husband (or insert whoever you wish) has a half gallon of Dreyer's Double Fudge Brownie in the freezer and he is eating it in front of you daily, chances are you are going to have some too from temptation.

I have a newish client who needs to lose around 100 lbs. Her husband is a bigger guy and probably weighs as much as she does. She is really determined to reach her goals but he is the one who shops and cooks because he works at home. She mentioned to me the other day that her husband keeps bringing home cakes and pies from the store. And, of course, it's hard for her not to eat them because she's a sugar person.

Her husband is really supportive of her weight loss goals and he was the one who initially contacted me to work with his wife. He wants her to succeed and yet he is committing these acts of sabotage against his wife. I'm not sure he realizes that he is doing it. He definitely needs to drop at least 50 lbs. of body fat himself so it's not just his wife who needs the weight loss.

In this situation it's an overweight person doing the sabotaging, not a skinny person. The real problem is that there are two sugar addicts in the same house, one the dealer and one the customer.

So I told her that she needs to be very clear with her husband about what he is doing by bringing in cakes and pies, etc. to the house. It's impossible for her to say "no" when he's eating it and serving it to her.

I gave her some practical advice if she wasn't willing to have the conversation with him: to dump the offending foods in the garbage or disposal as soon as he brings it home from the store to prove a point. OR to have ONE PIECE and then immediately throw the rest away in the outside garbage can. She thought the latter was a great idea but I think the former is the better option.

Neither of them are ever going to reach their goals with how things are right now. If it keeps happening, then I will have a short but sweet conversation with the husband and tell him my concern. It's a sticky situation but I am determined to help my client.

They are addicts and they need to treat themselves like addicts. Which means they cannot have food like that in the least until they learn to keep their addiction under control.

If you are someone who has a saboteur in your life I hope my tips for my client are helpful for you.