When it comes to diets, married life doesn't always favor the woman. One study demonstrated that not only do they eat more fat , but calories increase during domestic arguments. Add to this the shock of new eating habits that marriage implies - a topic on which he's not usually willing to give much ground.
Experts from the University of Newcastle, authors of the study, explain that in the beginning the couple makes an effort to work with each other when it comes to food. They try to eat at the same time; they agree to try "new" foods.
The research shows that in this first phase, men try healthier foods like fruits and vegetables - foods that weren't to be found in their refrigerators when they were single. Women, however, experience the opposite. They tend to gain weight and eat more fatty, greasy and sweet foods. Despite all this, a certain balance is maintained.
But this idyllic scene starts changing over time, giving way to what can be outright war. "I want fried foods." "Why didn't you make chicken with gravy and potatoes?" These sentiments are signals that he's becoming the number one enemy of your diet.
The problem can escalate when on top of everything, he makes some comment about your weight, and you blame him for having to cook fried food all the time to satisfy his enormous appetite.
This is a good time to keep in mind the following advice, so you can stick to your diet and work around him:
- Instead of heavy side dishes like rice, mashed potatoes or beans, make salad. Always make sure to include lettuce, tomato, onion or some other vegetable you like, to go with meat or fish.
- Don't put the serving bowl on the table. Make up the plates in the kitchen, so you avoid the temptation to have seconds.
- Make a lean, roasted chicken early in the week and serve it bit by bit, taking it out when you need an alternative to chicken with sauce or a high-calorie stew.
- Don't hesitate to cook your part in the oven while you fry his in a skillet. It will take you only a bit more cooking time, without a lot of extra work.
- Even if he insists, leave wine for the weekend and have diet sodas or fruit juices with your meals.
- Always have fruit or frozen yogurt for dessert, so you don't get tempted by the chocolate cake.
- Remember that you, like most women, have an ace up your sleeve. You're the one that does the grocery shopping, which means that you can decide what the family eats.
These tips will help you easily beat the eating monster, who won't give up what he's used to for anything in the world.
They'll also be useful given the other reality
that the Newcastle scientists observed: women are more likely to
eat things high in fat and sugar when dealing with tense emotional
situations in their marriage.
The report also indicates that as time goes on, both women and men gain weight at the same rate. Experts suggest that this could be due to changes in eating patterns or to a tendency toward exercising less.
Amelia Lake, lead author on the report, explains that couples who live together should take advantage of the initial honeymoon period, as well as the period immediately following this, to make positive diet and lifestyle changes, working together toward this goal and supporting each other.
Couples that have been together longer should remember that it's never too late to join forces and make changes.
Whatever the case may be, and after all the complaining he does in the beginning, he'll thank you over time as your good habits rub off on the general health of the household.
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