Yo! The first part of this discussion really resonates with me, e.g.: "Is that on your diet? I thought you were on a diet? How can you eat that stuff and expect to lose weight?"
I agree with Roth that this type of comment generally reflects the envy, confusion, anger and/or self-righteousness of the commenter ... especially the self-righteousness, a common human state of mind. I believe to an extent that I've reached a point where I don't suffer too much from the "corollary" of judging myself and thinking others are judging me ... although I notice that I never want to post my menus on these kinds of forums because I really have terrible nutritional habits. So I can't honestly say that I say horrible things to myself other than echoing my mother's immortal words: "You don't eat right. That's what's wrong."
Funny, I have a close friend/mentor who is midway through her 80th decade and who constantly says: "You don't eat right. That's what's wrong."
I previously mentioned my brother who comments a lot about what I eat. I think this has a lot to do with the fact that eating in its various forms contributed to our younger brother's problems and ultimately death.
The above, I guess, constitutes the long answer to the first two parts of Exercise 53. Now for the replies: I usually don't. My friends and relatives say what they say out of love, even though they don't usually know what they are talking about. I just let it go; it doesn't matter to me. Very occasionally I tell people to worry about their own eating and leave mine alone; I only do this if it's someone who isn't one of the people mentioned above and if they're really bugging me!
Sometimes that's a slimfast kind of thing: As you probably have noticed, I'm obsessed with vanilla canned slimfast, even though I'm giving it up. But I can't tell you how many times people I barely know feel called upon to comment on the health value or lack thereof of this product. This was worse when I worked full-time in a newsroom. Now that I mostly work at home, only Old Dog bugs me about slimfast ... she recognizes the cans and wants a taste.
Exercise 54 kind of applies to the bullemic me that was in the past, where hopefully, she'll stay. I don't sneak food now, although I could be more open about letting the world know exactly what dumb things I often eat. I'm getting a lot better about that (eating dumb things, as well as being open).
I love the response about suspecting the commenter's judgments have more to do with them than me.