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How to Handle Friendly Peer Pressure with Food

By Jenny Craig

When eating by yourself, you most likely feel more empowered to make—and stick—to your healthy choices. But in some situations, such as dinners at a restaurant to a cocktail mixer for work, you may have people who may peer pressure you into eating foods you know are not part of your planned menu.


Your friends, coworkers, family and new acquaintances may look at it like a one-time thing and not understand that you have a larger goal you are working toward. You may hear phrases like: “We’re celebrating! Enjoy these treats!”, “You’ve got to try these—they are the best thing I’ve ever had!” and “I made them from scratch – don’t miss out!” While one bite will not hurt the work you’ve done for your weight loss, it’s all about how you want to feel when making your food and drink choices.


Many of our consultants like to recommend a response system called the PRP technique, which stands for Polite, Reason, Polite. It allows you to have a cordial way to say no when people peer pressure into eating food and allows you to be in control of your situation.


Let’s say that you’re at a party, and someone offers you a piece of cake that’s not on your plan.


First, start by being polite. You can say a compliment and acknowledge the offer by saying, “Thanks, that cake does looks delicious!”


Next, you’ll want to state your reason for refusing the cake. You can say, “Dinner was perfect, and I couldn’t imagine eating another bite.” That way, you’re setting a boundary, but couching it with a compliment of the meal. This makes it difficult for the person offering you food to push further.


Finally, follow up with another polite nod to their offer. “I’ll have to try it next time” is a fantastic way that shows that you’re interested in it, and that you may some time—but that choice will be up to you!


If you would like to discuss other strategies for situations that may come up in social gatherings, schedule a consultation with a Jenny Craig consultant. Find a local center near you if you would like to talk face-to-face, or if you’re unable to make it in, you can meet with a consultant via phone or video chat! We’re here to help you on your weight loss journey, whether that’s from providing over 100 delicious meal options to keep you satiated or how to plan for your weight loss goals, we’re happy to be by your side.

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