100 lb. Club - What if your family isn't supportive?

10-15-2007, 12:17 AM
I'm having such a hard time. I feel like I'm in this alone. DH and I are living with my parents right now (oh...along with our 2 year old triplets) because we're saving to build a house next Summer. I do all the cooking for everyone. I want soooo badly to prepare meals that are on plan for me but they get snubbed by DH and my dad (my Mom would probably be Ok with most of them). We simply cannot afford and I do not have the time to prepare separate meals. I end up eating things I don't need to eat because it's what the majority wants. And I'm getting frustrated and resentful of the extra time it's adding my weight-loss process. I already had to cut back to 4 days at the gym because that's all my Mom can do in terms of child care.

I feel like I'm never going to get to my goal. I really wanted to be under 200 by Christmas. It's not looking like that's happening at this point.

Any suggestings from others in similar situations? I do OK for breakfast and lunch because we're all pretty much on our own for those and I can make my own choices. It's dinner that messes me up.

Oh, and ironically...Dad and DH both need to lose weight (badly) too.


10-15-2007, 12:51 AM
I don't know how picky they are, but there are a lot of meals that can be made flexible enough for dieters and nondieters. One of my favorites is tacos.

I brown 1 lb of 85% - 90% lean ground beef, with onion, celery, and bell pepper, and when the meat is about 3/4 browned, I add 1 cup of dry tvp granules from the health food store (soy protein, looks like grape nuts cereal). I add about 1.5 cups of hot water and a bouillon cube (chicken, vegetable, chipotle pepper, or beef). I add a packet of taco seasoning mix, about 1/2 cup of salsa and a couple tablespoons of ketchup.

My husband didn't even know it wasn't all meat the first time I made this. Now when I make it, I also add some frozen corn and a can of black beans or fat free refried beans. This makes a huge batch, and I freeze anything that is left over. Every few minutes, until it freezes, I mix up the bag so it can be scooped out one serving at a time and microwaved for a quick lunch.

Usually we invite friends over for tacos, and the non-dieters use flour tortillas, full fat sour cream, cheese and guacamole on their tacos. I save calories by using fat free sour cream and corn tortillas for my tacos, or I make a taco salad.

Roasted (or rotisserie) chicken, or pot roast is another meal that can be great for dieters and nondieters.

A great "oven-fried" recipe that is great for nondieters (no one has ever noticed when I've served it to company) can be made with pork, chicken, or fish. Marinate serving size pieces in light ranch dressing. Roll in seasoned bread crumbs (or even mashed potato flakes with salt, pepper, and garlic).

I line a baking pan with foil for easy clean-up (but it's not necessary). Spray a little cooking spray on the pan. Lay down the coated pieces of meat or fish, and lightly spray again. Then bake at 375 degrees until done (about 25 -35 minutes for fish, up to an hour for very thick bone-in pieces of chicken).

There are tons of recipes and meals that can be easily adapted to dieters and nondieters, just by changing one or two of the sides for the dieter.

10-15-2007, 12:51 AM
What don't they like about the meals? Can you do some "substitutions"? I've found that I can cook healthy food that resembles a lot of our favorites!

- Tacos with ground turkey instead of beef -- and then lowfat cheese and sour cream.
- Grilled meats with steamed veggies and a sauce on the side (I love balsamic vinegar because it's got tons of flavor and I need very little oil)
- Chili with ground turkey instead of beef and some extra veggies thrown in. More beans too...

I honestly think our food is tastier than it ever used to be, because I pay attention to how to get the flavor in!!

10-15-2007, 01:32 AM
If you can manage to eat healthy breakfasts and lunches then I think that, besides trying some substitutions, I'd worry more about portion control at dinner. You can still be very successful that way and it might cut down on some of the stress.

I think it's also important to remember that the fact that they don't want to change their diets doesn't mean they are unsupportive of you. There really is no reason they should eat food they don't like in order to make it easier for you. This is especially true if you're not in your own house. It makes it a lot harder to make the rules.

Watching triplets four times a week so you can go to the gym is a pretty cool thing for your mom to do. Extra points for that.

10-15-2007, 07:00 AM
Tough situation. I'd have to go along the same lines as wonder why they wouldn't want to eat some healthy DELICOUS meals as well? I make such yummy food, no one would know that it's healthy, or should I say no one would MIND that it's healthy. I make chicken breasts with all different kinds of yummy sauces, lemon, garlic, wine. I make a taco chicken salad. Spaghetti squash with chicken and portabello mushrooms. Salmon. All sorts of things. Perhaps you want to experiment with some different recipes. I'm telling you the stuff I make is good enough to serve to company.

Here's a link to a great thread we have here with out of this world sounding chicken recipes, I suggest you check it out for some ideas.


It really is a shame to let a whole days worth of good eating be ruined by dinner. If they don't agree to your food, I would have to suck it up and somehow make myself some different meals. Maybe spend a couple hours a week making stuff just for you and freezing them in single portions. I would even eat tuna and a huge salad or a veggie burger and a huge salad or with a large amount of vegetables - not much time spent required.

10-15-2007, 08:49 AM
Hey! Four times a week to the gym is really good, under the circumstances, so don't worry about that. Maybe you can do something else on the days you don't go to the gym, like an exercise video of some sort. You may have interruptions, but it would still be good.

You didn't mention what kinds of foods your family like. But I agree with Robin41 that portion control at dinner could be a key for you. Mashed potatoes? Just measure out 1/3 or 1/2 cup for yourself and don't go beyond it. Spaghetti with meat sauce? Same thing--1/2 cup or two ounces cooked pasta, 1/2 cup sauce. Salads? You can always have one for yourself if they don't like salad--and if they do, then you just need to set some aside and use your own lowfat or fat free dressing on it.

Just some ideas...


ThinGirl in FatBody
10-15-2007, 09:05 AM
You just have to make a different meal for yourself. I cook 3 different types of meals every day, 7 days a week... one for my English husband who needs meat/potatoes/butter/lard/bread - one for my picky 13 year old who lives on pasta and garlic bread and one for myself (grilled chicken/veggies)

Yes it's a pain in the butt and a lot of work... but I wouldn't have lost 50+ pounds if I didn't make the effort.

They don't resent me for eating differently, I don't resent them for wanting to eat what they enjoy.

10-15-2007, 09:33 AM
I agree with portion control AND changing up some of the family favorites. You are at an advantage being the one that cooks. You make the decisions as to what goes in those dishes. If your family really doesn't like it, they can hire a new cook! Chances are though, they will just eat what is in front of them instead!

I have 4 kids and a picky husband! I hide a lot of veggies in dishes I make. I shred them so you cant tell what they are. For example when I make sloppy joes, I use 1 lb of hamburger, onion, peppers, cellery, shredded carrots, and shredded zucchini! A lot of the veggies are desguised in the sauce. I have tweeked a lot of family recipes like that.

The other thing is portion control. there are dinners that my family loves that are high in calories, but not bad for you. But I still make them the same. I have a problem with portion control, not the rest of my family! So I get 1 cup serving of it and then add a nice big salad to it! That way everyone is happy.

I think if you don't tell your family that you are changing things up at dinner, they may not even notice. I cook one meal (I know how busy houses can get!) If you don't like what we are having, you are going to be hungery. Sometimes my family complains, but in the end they always eat! Good luck

10-15-2007, 09:43 AM
portion control, well said, maybe you can have a big salad for yourself everynight when dinner is served, then eat a little of what you made for everyone, you might inspire others to eat salad too. I know it must be hard for you to go on when the support is not there. Keep going girl, you are doing great, I can't get into the gym more than 2x a week, and I have no kids, so keep pushing on!

10-15-2007, 10:32 AM
My hubby won't eat much of the food I cook, so I end up cooking 2 meals most of the time, sometimes I just eat something easy for me, Veggie burger with salad, or tuna, or a sweet potato, you get the idea.. I do not eat red meat, or poultry, but my kids love non-meat foods. I make tofu with veggies,they love it, veggie chilli, they eat it, pasta with beans and greens they love it.... When I make these things Hubby sometimes makes his own chicken soup, or I will make hime some eggs, with meat..... It is a problem with our budget, but I am not going to compromise, because being healthy is too important to me..
That said I think you need to sit down with your family and tell them how you feel, and ask for suggestions what to do... Maybe one day a week you can cook something for you that they all agree to try and if they like it you can keep on trying it. There are lots of great websites out there with healthy recipes that you can fool people. I hope you can find a solution.

10-15-2007, 11:44 AM
What types of things does your family like? I belong to a rock outloud recipe club and can probably give you some ideas if I know what they like.

10-15-2007, 11:44 AM
I guess I am lucky, it's just me and the 2 kids and they are enjoying the healthy foods as long as they get a snack every now and then. I can't imagine what you could be serving that no one will eat. Many times calories and fat can be cut just by preparing food differently. I switched from using butter and oil to Crisco Olive Oil cooking spray and it has made a big difference. I can't believe how long a little tub of butter has lasted me! I used to go through the biggest tub of Country Crock in a week, now the smallest one lasts a month. Whatever you are making, just eat an ON PLAN portion of it and then fill up on veggies. You can do it, even if every one else in the family wants to be heavy!

10-15-2007, 12:02 PM
4 times a week is really good. It's awesome of your Mom to be willing to do that so much.. I bet it takes a lot of energy for her.

As far as the food goes, I am with everyone else. Spend some time looking up recipes. You can find all kinds of ways to add flavor and to substitute healthy ingredients.

I love the website (www.allrecipes.com) If you go under the search engine you can even search by ingredientsólisting things you want to include and foods you donít want. Itís great!!

10-15-2007, 12:10 PM
Okay....after reading everyone else's answers, I feel like Cruella Deville. But, I really have to go with my gut reaction to your question. Monica, if you are doing the cooking...then, you should decide what to cook and they should just be grateful that they don't have to do the cooking and eat what is put in front of them!! Cook two meals....absolutely not! If they don't want what you cook, then tell them to get in the kitchen and cook their own meals. Eating healthy benefits everyone and they should be supportive of your attempts to get healthy. I despise cooking. My hubby loves to cook and he cooks wonderfully(as you can tell from my ticker!) I would never be so rude as to complain about anything he puts on my plate. Your husband and father should be ashamed. Stand up for yourself.

10-15-2007, 12:23 PM
You certainly can cook healthy, delicious meals that are good for you and the non dieters, how about a meal with a green salad, lean meat, fish, or chicken, fresh , or frozen vegetables, you can even add fresh fruit. That is a healthy meal for anybody, if the non dieters insist, they could add a dinner roll and desert of pie or cake, you would just avoid the desert and dinner roll.That is a pretty easy meal to prepare. Congrats on the triplets just try to keep things as simple as possible, you need all the energy you can get.

10-15-2007, 12:43 PM
LOL! I think I'm going to change my sig to read "I agree with GirlyGirlSebas". When I cook, they have a choice. Take it or leave it.

But I will also try to help you meet your DH and his dad where they are....so....

You're gotten some great ideas for changing up meals to make them healthier. What are some of the things you are making now? Maybe we can help you "stealth-healthify" your current menus. But even if they want mac and cheese out of the box, you can still broil salmon or turkey burgers and keep your own portions reasonable. A bowl of cut up fruit would be great for everyone (triplets too!)

I'm proud of you for seeking help over this lil speedbump on your road to health!

10-15-2007, 01:01 PM
I agree with cooking ONE meal for dinner. They can all learn to eat things a little differently, that accommodate your needs as well as their wants. I'd do this by making some known changes ("we're having whole-wheat bread from now on"), and then making some unknown changes here and there, as well (using fat-free cream-of-mushroom soup and not telling them).

Some ideas: switch from 2% to 1% milk, start buying whole-wheat pasta or half-wheat-half-white pasta, as Colleen suggested sneak in a percentage of Quorn/TVP to ground beef, making fresh steamed or raw vegetables a side to every meal, choosing steaming and broiling over frying and sauteeing. When you serve meat, grain, and vegetable, you can choose the smallest cut of meat, a reasonable amount of grain, and a TON of vegetables, and let them do what they want.

IMO, in this situation, you're better off asking forgiveness than asking for permission.

Also, I'm sure if you post some family-favorite recipes, we can help you find a way to healthy-ize it.

Can you work out when your husband is around to care for the children, instead of your mother?

10-15-2007, 01:17 PM
Okay....after reading everyone else's answers, I feel like Cruella Deville. But, I really have to go with my gut reaction to your question. Monica, if you are doing the cooking...then, you should decide what to cook and they should just be grateful that they don't have to do the cooking and eat what is put in front of them!! Cook two meals....absolutely not! If they don't want what you cook, then tell them to get in the kitchen and cook their own meals. Eating healthy benefits everyone and they should be supportive of your attempts to get healthy. I despise cooking. My hubby loves to cook and he cooks wonderfully(as you can tell from my ticker!) I would never be so rude as to complain about anything he puts on my plate. Your husband and father should be ashamed. Stand up for yourself.

Normally I would have said exactly the same thing. But I had the feeling from the original post that the cooking was kind of a trade for being allowed to live with Mom and Dad while they save up for the house. I think that kind of negates the moral high ground where you can say "eat it or cook your own", at least in regards to the parents.

10-15-2007, 01:30 PM
My husband is supportive but at 5'11", 135 lbs or so, I don't expect him to eat the same things as me. I make a lot of things that we share but I also make him things that I don't eat like rice, PB sandwiches and I buy him things I don't eat such as cereal and nuts (I eat small quantities of nuts though).

So I make myself lots of veggie based foods with limited amounts of calorie dense items while I give him some calorie dense items because he needs the extra calories. I know you say that you are concerned about costs but good tasting, healthy food can be cost friendly as well. Increase the amount of veggies you eat even if your family won't eat them and decrease the amount of calorie dense foods that your family wants to eat.

10-15-2007, 02:10 PM
Watching triplets four times a week so you can go to the gym is a pretty cool thing for your mom to do. Extra points for that.

Absolutely! I don't know what I'd do without her.


10-15-2007, 02:18 PM
Normally I would have said exactly the same thing. But I had the feeling from the original post that the cooking was kind of a trade for being allowed to live with Mom and Dad while they save up for the house. I think that kind of negates the moral high ground where you can say "eat it or cook your own", at least in regards to the parents.

Yeah, this is why I'm trying to be sensitive to what they like. I could just make my meals and expect them to eat them or go hungry, but I really want them to like what they are eating. The big rub for me is that I honestly (especially with my dad who has weight-related health issues of his own) want to influence them to eat better as well. And then it does make my journey tougher when they go out and buy ice cream, brownies, etc to eat in front of me when they know how hard I'm trying to be good. That's my own issue, though. I know that.

They like a lot of pasta-type dishes (DH is Italian) and casseroles that include no-no's like potatoes, lots of sour cream, cheeses, butter...good old Southern fatty stuff. I'm not sure how I'd ever make appropriate substitutions. I've tried some WW recipes that they did like (didn't know they were WW) and maybe I just have to keep doing that trial and error thing until I compile a good list of things we all can/do eat.

I'm just feeling very alone in this right now and needed to vent more than anything. Living here is helping us soooo much financially. Conceiving and birthing and caring for the medical needs of our triplets has been incredibly expensive and exhausting. But living here is tough for us, too. DH and I get no privacy and there is a ton of intrusion into our parenting decisions. There's also a lot of guilt and my cooking is part of my way to alleviate that for myself. It's not expected of me, but it helps me feel like I'm contributing.

Thanks for all the feedback.


10-15-2007, 02:27 PM
I totally feel your pain about the boundary-blurring of trying to parent while LIVING with parents. Ugh, I don't envy that. Hopefully you can get into that house as soon as possible so you don't strain your relationship with your parents. The great part about this is that those little kids are getting opportunities to bond with grandparents, which is an awesome thing.

Yeah, I think you could start with doing 50% "real" sour cream mixed with 50% fat-free sour cream, and I bet they wouldn't know the difference. I do that with a lot of fatty-type foods - cream of xx soup, whole wheat and white flour, etc.

Miss Lili
10-15-2007, 02:39 PM
Monica, check out the Oprah website and look for the report on the show with Jerry Seinfeld's wife, Jessica. She did a whole thing on how she adds "camaflouged" vegetables in the form of purees in a lot of dishes to fool her kids, perhaps this would work for your "menfolk" too. And I agree that 4 times a week at the gym is great - don't put yourself down for that, you're way ahead of lots of folks on that one.

Also I just want to add a little moral support to this message - I am a very private person, and I think it would be excrutiating to live in someone else's home and have so much of my "space" invaded! With all the things going on in your life, I admire you for continuing to try so hard, and for making progress, even though it is a bit slower than you might like. You're doing better than you think - just hang in there!

10-15-2007, 03:19 PM
Living with my folks just for two weeks while visiting is a strain (on both sides). Wasn't it Ben Franklin who said "Fish and houseguests start to stink after 3 days"?

Living in someone else's home is tough, not only when you're dieting. And right now, you are the only one wanting to make these kinds of changes, so in a very real way, you are alone. It's great to have an ally in the home, but when you don't, you have to find allies elsewhere. If you need in-person fellowship, you can try TOPS if you can afford it, and it suits your schedule and personality (about $25 for the annual membership and usually under $5 per month in dues. You can visit any meeting at least once free, and if there are several chapters in your area, you can visit them all).

And of course, there's always us.

10-15-2007, 03:52 PM
You definitely have got a difficult situation on your hands, but it is by no means insurmountable.

I DO have a supportive family, fairly supportive that is. There's only so far that family support can take you.

Nobody I know, not a single solitary person is into this "weight loss" and healthy lifestyle like I am. My family was quite good in the beginning of my journey with not bringing home the junk. Once they saw me lose a little weight - that's it, all bets were off. The truth, is I have found this whole weight loss thing to be a completely SOLO act. I'm the one planning, shopping, cooking. I'm also the one resisiting temptation day in and day out, all day long. I'm the one that is doing all the exercising. Although my family has been my biggest cheerleaders, having never been overweight, they really can't understand what a struggle it has and will always be for me. This is just one thing that I need to tackle on my own.

And on that note I will say - THANK GOODNESS FOR 3FC.

10-15-2007, 04:09 PM
I think that the key is coming up with tasty, low cal foods. You really CAN be a low calorie gourmet and create filling, delicious, nutritious dishes that aren't high in calories. There are so many great ideas here, and more coming in every day. I make a broccoli-cheddar-chicken-pasta bake that is 400 cals for a good sized serving, and even the picky three-year-olds in my life will eat it.

Another thing that can help get those who aren't quite on board singing your praises is going UP a level in gourmet-ness and making things that are DIFFERENT than what they have eaten before. Lets face it, fat and starch and sugar do TASTE good, so to just remove those from your cooking, but make the same recipes, is going to make some people reluctant. On the other hand, if they've never HAD the dish you cooked before, they don't have a full-fat comparison, so it might be worthwhile to try some new things. Sure, you might get some clunkers, but you might find a new recipe you and the family all adore. Cooking Light magazine is great for this...all manner of interesting, exotic recipes, as well as some made-over classics that are lighter than the originals.

There are also ways other than making your total portion smaller to cut the calories on what you serve yourself. For example, lets say the meal-du-jour was spaghetti and meat sauce. I'd serve everyone what they choose, and for myself, take a tiny bit of pasta and a heap of cooked peppers and yellow onions, and top that with the sauce. I get my big plate of food, along with extra nutrition, and hey, maybe some of the other folks at the table will dish themselves up some extra veggies too. Serve that with a salad and you've got a meal!

10-16-2007, 07:54 AM

Three things I have learned in my life are:
1)If I can't find the support in one place, then I look for it wherever I can get it. We can be your "supporters" here---I live in Georgia
2)If Plan A doesn't work, go to Plan B, etc. If Grandma can't watch your 3 active little ones, then include the kids in activities for all of you that will still give them and you an outlet plus you will burn calories in the meantime---walk to the playground, ride bikes together, play chase in the back yard.
3)Sneak nutrition in your meal planning. As a mom you are going to be resorting to this eventually any way and get creative in how the others will be eating as well. I have made nutritious meals and other people didn't even know it unless I mentioned it to them. Usually, they are surprised. Plus, think of how much good you are doing for them too. They'll thank you later.
4) P.S. Keep all of this to yourself for the time being. Granted, they may need to lose weight but no one likes to be "told" they do until they are ready to hear it.

Good luck!:hug:

10-16-2007, 11:03 AM
Hey Monica.. Your triples are adorable (my 4 year old now wants to be a monkey for Halloween)

I googled "Low calorie Italian recipe" and got back 1,620,000 hits. Maybe that will help!

Good luck!

10-16-2007, 12:09 PM
You've received a LOT of good advice here. I'm going to sum it up in minute, but first I wanted to say that cooking is like any other approach to a problem. You have various tools in your toolbox, and the more options you have the more flexible you can be to whatever situation occurs. It's like dieting. If all I do is count calories, that's only one tool... and when all you have is a hammer, everything starts looking like a nail. *grins* But we have lots of tools in our dieting toolbox -- more veggies, choosing whole grains, eating leaner meats, exercising more -- all of which lead to the goal of "fewer calories".

Cooking is like that, too. The goal is to feed them well, with things they'll like, and not totally blow you off your dieting path.

Here are some of your options (many of them outlined in more detail by other posters above):

Cook the same foods you have been, and the same recipes, and alter your own intake. Eat small portions of the rich food.

Cook the same foods you have been, but alter the recipes to be healthier. You can cut the fat, stretch the meat, add more veggies, etc.

Cook the same main dishes you have been, but add healthy side dishes. This worked REALLY well for me when I was on a strict vegetarian diet and my husband was not. What was a side dish for him was my main dish. And he found that he really liked some of it, but there was no pressure on him to make it the only part of his meal.

Introduce some new, healthier main dishes. This will be REALLY easy if your family likes Italian food. It's not all pasta and cheese. Get an Italian cookbook from the library (so you can see the pictures), and find something that looks like it would be a good fit for your family. Get them involved with the choice, if you can. This is how I get my 6-yo picky eater to participate in cooking -- she picks a new food every week or every other week from my collection of cookbooks (most of which are low-fat, ethnic, or vegetarian) and we make it. It's helped introduce new foods into our repertoire. (Turkey wrap sandwiches are our newest favorite.) My only caveat on this one is to do it gradually. A new dish every week or so should be enough. People tend to only eat about ten dishes, really, so new ones are not always welcomed with open arms.

Don't overlook the amazing potential of soups and stews. Especially as it gets colder out, soup can be a great start to a meal, and will cut down on how much of the main dish you want to eat. By the same token, stews can be a really great meal, and don't have to be all that fattening. Chili is usually a crowd-pleaser, and you can hide a jumbo-jet's worth of veggies in that brimming bowl.

When everything else fails, supplement. Eat what they're eating, but make sure you have a variety of healthy side dishes. Eat a big salad or bowl of soup, or have more veggies. Even the richest food won't break your calorie count if you eat only a small portion. (This is how I get away with cheese fondue once in a while. It's one of my husband's favorite meals, but it's SO fattening. And it really can't be made less rich without losing its "fondue-ness." So I limit how much fondue I eat, and instead of eating it just with bread, I have only one slice of bread and then lots of broccoli and apples for dipping.)

And if you have a favorite recipe that they love, that you want ideas on how to lighten, bring it here and let us look at it. I'm sure we could help.

10-16-2007, 03:19 PM
You are all amazing! Thank you so much for a great advice. I talked to Mom about the menu planning and she came up with a great idea. I surfed the 'net for some (mostly WW) recipes that sound like things our family likes. I put full meal combinations (entrees and sides) on index cards. I'm going to try each meal and make notes on the back of the card as to who liked which dish. We'll keep the ones that are well-liked (ditch the others or maybe try to make modifications) and will do a rotation of these meals. I'm also going to try some of the substitutions (FF sour cream, ground turkey vs. ground beef, etc) that you all suggested for family favorites.

I talked to the trainer at my gym this morning and she printed out a 4-day/week workout schedule that works all the muscle groups. I can do weight training and then cardio each of those days and get a full workout while I'm there. I'll try to get the kids out and moving with me on another couple of days a week. I also ordered a dvd to use with my medicine ball for a toning workout I can do at home while the kids are napping.

Thank you again. This site and the support it offers...FABULOUS!!!

{I think the fact that my size 18 jeans felt loose this morning (I was in size 24's a few months ago) put a little spring back in my step.}


10-17-2007, 12:48 PM
If you're trying to find things that they'll eat, take your favorites now and make substitutions.

My DH doesn't really enjoy eating like I do, so I make exceptions.

I use light sour cream if it's a topping (like for tacos) and just limit the amount that I eat. If it's going in a dish (like in beef stroganoff) it is fat free sour cream.

I switched everything to either low fat or fat free. DH was reluctant to switch from 2% to fat free milk (heck, I'd switched him before from whole milk to 2%!), but he doesn't really drink milk. He has it in cereal, etc. I just started buying what I eat and drink and eventually, he followed suit.

As for cheese, I recommend low fat (look for 2%) or fat free - and sometimes a mixture. :)

If your family is a meat/potatoes/veggie type family, load up on more veggies for yourself and just skip the potato. Or, just eat a small amount and eat more veggies. If they like a sauce on their veggies (cheese), I'd go ahead and put it on the side.

10-17-2007, 05:23 PM
Are you using a lot of sauces? How about just leaving sauces and gravies off of your portion. Or here's a trick I'm trying lately. About 1/2 hour before your meal, drink a serving of tomato juice or have some plain/vegetable soup. It'll fill you up a bit so you eat less of the main meal.

You can do it in spite of them!!

10-17-2007, 06:25 PM
Monica, if you are doing the cooking...then, you should decide what to cook and they should just be grateful that they don't have to do the cooking and eat what is put in front of them!! Cook two meals....absolutely not! If they don't want what you cook, then tell them to get in the kitchen and cook their own meals. Eating healthy benefits everyone and they should be supportive of your attempts to get healthy. I despise cooking. My hubby loves to cook and he cooks wonderfully(as you can tell from my ticker!) I would never be so rude as to complain about anything he puts on my plate. Your husband and father should be ashamed. Stand up for yourself.

I couldn't agree more. They're big boys, yes? Then they're perfectly capable of making or buying their own meals. Please don't let their infantilism stop you from getting healthy! :mad:

10-17-2007, 08:13 PM
I would agree if this were her house, but being a long-term guest in her parent's home and receiving (apparently) free day care of triplets does change the situation, as she has already mentioned. It isn't just common courtesy to take her mom and dad's tastes into account when making meals, a "take it or leave it," approach can hurt feelings and make the living situation tense.

I think the suggestions given here to compromise or make healthier versions of family favorites is a much more diplomatic way to deal with the problem.

When you're a guest in someone's home and making a meal as a token of your gratitude, it really doesn't show much gratitude if you're not willing to take your hosts' preferences into account.

I like a lot more variety in my diet than my parents. My mom is also dieting, so when we're visiting, most of what she prepares is healthy, but OMG boring. My husband and I usually cook a few meals while we're down there, and we try to take everyone's preferences into consideration, because it's the right thing to do as a guest in their home. My family is very open with emotions and thoughts, so if I make something they don't like, I'm going to hear about it. I don't take it to mean that they're ungrateful, because they're not. Some people may think it rude, but it's much better than my husband's family who will all pretend everything is fine and just hold a grudge forever, as their faces get tighter and tighter with fake smiles.

Also, learning to make food that dieters and nondieters can appreciate is a skill that comes in handy in many situations. I have dozens of diet recipes that I take to potlucks and picnics and offer guests, and no one would know that it was "diet" unless I told them (or they had gotten the same recipe from their weight loss group)

I make my "diet" tacos for company, and no one knows, unless I tell them, that the filling is low fat and 50% or more "fake" meat. Usually I do have to tell them though, because someone always asks for the recipe.

My marinated veggie salad is also always a great hit. I use one or two frozen mixed veggies any blend (I like Walmart's stir fry blends, especially the asparagus or snap pea blends, and they're only 1.47 a bag), and right from the bag into a bowl add light dressing (generally a bottled or homemade italian or other vinaigrette, though french works great. I never use fat free unless I make my own). To that I add whatever I feel like (raw chopped onions, green pepper, celery, fresh or canned mushrooms or pickled mushrooms, yellow banana peppers (also fresh or pickled), artichoke hearts, whole grape tomatoes..... The whole thing sits in the fridge overnight to thaw the frozen veggies, and it's ready the next day.

If the dressing is not fat free, I always take a slotted spoon so I can drain the veggies really well before I put them on my plate. It's another of my favorites, because I'm so often asked for the recipe, and sometimes even with the invite, I get the request to bring "that salad"

There are tons of these recipes on this site. In fact, there's a current thread trying to get to 101 chicken recipes. The last time I checked there were 80 recipes on the site, and some seem pretty tasty.

Diet cola chicken shows up a lot. Where you take 1 can or 1 cup of diet cola and the same amount of ketchup or barbecue sauce and simmer or bake chicken pieces in the sauce. I usually add onions and green peppers, and have used other variations (like one cup orange diet soda, 1/2 cup catsup, and 1/2 cup teriyaki marinade, onions and bell peppers, makes an awesome sweet and sour sauce)

10-18-2007, 02:08 AM
you got lots of great ideas already but I wanted to chime in.

My teenagers do not like a lot of "obviously healthy" foods. But I fake it. I make sloppy joes with ground turkey and a can of beans in them. They love it. I make lots of pasta but I use Barilla Plus because they think it is "normal" and it does not taste like wheat pasta, but very healthy. I do not put veggies in the sauce or they hate it, so I make a dish of steamed veggies separately. Matter of fact, I make steamed or roasted veggies for just about every meal and eat a ton of those myself, as well as side salad. If you cook up a bunch of mushrooms, zucchini, yellow squash, peppers, onions... then use that as most of your meal with a bit of pasta and sauce over it all, it is very filling.

We make tacos with ground turkey and use 2% Kraft cheese and lite sour cream. I often make myself a taco salad while they have tacos. When you make potato casseroles you can use the 2% cheese, lowfat sour cream, fat free cream soups. Then, on the side, serve steamed broccoli. If you usually put meat in the potatoes, serve the meat separately (ham or chicken) and then you can have a small portion of the potatoes and eat the other stuff mainly.

I often serve a fruit salad with dinner too and that goes well.

Also if you are making any kind of pasta with sauce, you can make spaghetti squash for yourself to use instead of noodles. It can take most any kind of sauce and is yummy.

Good luck!

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