In many relationships, there’s going to be one spouse that is going to eat healthy, and one who is less likely. I’ll fess up here, I’m not the healthy eater usually. Keelie has way more will power in this area than I do.
Honestly, when we married, I didn’t even know what balanced eating looked like. She was able to encourage me to eat healthy a little at a time over the years. Shana Johanson is with us today to share a few tips on how you can do the same.
When you’re in a committed relationship, you want nothing more than the best for your significant other. You are, after all, building a life together. So you know the importance of keeping healthy for the days you hope to share.
Yet some people find themselves in a battle. While they may have embraced the need for healthy eating and the impact of a good diet on future health, their partner might be a little more reticent. It’s disheartening to sit eating a salad while your partner digs into a burger. They might not eat to excess or have weight problems, but it’s nevertheless obvious that they don’t eat well.
Out of your natural concern for them, you want to bring them around to eating in a way that gives their body the fuel it needs. But if your partner is set in their ways and determined to eat whatever they please, how can you make the argument without causing an argument?
There are a few ways. Hopefully, if you find yourself in this situation, at least one of these will be able to assist you in encouraging your other half to make a change for the better.
The Eat-With-Me Technique
One of the biggest causes of a disparity in how you eat can be eating at different times. When you have different work schedules, it may not make sense to synchronize your eating habits. If they get up earlier, before you have even risen for the day, they might have had a donut or two without you being there to stop them. If you work late, then they might have already had a pizza by the time you get home.
It can help massively if you try to eat together. This doesn’t have to be at exactly the same time. Though that helps, it’s not an essential. You can nevertheless ensure that you’re eating the same foods, by batch cooking things that can be eaten hot or cold. Pasta bakes are a good option. In this example, they could eat when they get home from work and then you eat the cooled version when you return.
The Experimental Technique
It’s a simple truth that some people eschew healthy eating because they genuinely don’t like the food. If they have been used to a diet of fast food, then there’s no denying that a plate of vegetables just isn’t as appetizing a prospect. The “bad” foods are filled with additives that can effectively make people addicted to them. This makes it hard to make the argument for health when their brain is still craving junk.
What you have to do is try and find food that they will eat. This can take a lot of experimentation with recipes and different items. They might not like chili, for example, but maybe there is something you can do to make it taste more appetizing to them.
Sometimes the changes can be even smaller, like a substitution of one variety of food for another. If they think they don’t like fruit, then something as simple as introducing them to a tangerine rather than an orange can make all the difference. Try experimenting with different varieties of apples, pears, potatoes, and tomatoes.
They might think they definitely won’t like something because they disliked something similar to it. By trying new things, they may realize there’s actually a big difference between the varieties!
The Hobby Technique
If you can introduce healthy cooking as a hobby, you have a better chance at success. To an extent, this goes hand-in-hand with the experimental technique. Someone is going to have to whip up all of those delicious new meals, so why not cook together?
Try it on a weekend day, when neither of you is tired from work and have some time to dedicate. You can make it a fun, pleasurable experience by being playful and willing to try different things. The first couple of times, it might even be worth promising to order a pizza if they don’t like what you come up with together. Hopefully, you’ll be able to cook healthy food that’s good enough for that not to be a necessity!
Give it a try
There is no single tried and tested way that will work on every kind of personality. One – or a combination – of the above should be enough to set things on the right track. Keep it fun rather than demanding, and your partner could be on the healthy road before they know it.
Austin and Keelie have been sharing life together for nearly two decades. In that time they've gone from high school sweethearts to a family of five.
Austin loves making Keelie and the boys laugh whenever he can. Occasionally he writes things.