My husband is generally a healthy eater, which is great for me because his habits are contagious. But I know if I ate the way he does all the time, I'd surely put on weight.
For instance, if dinner is especially delicious, he'll go back for a second or even third serving. There's also times when he just craves greasy fast food.
Of course, I'm not the food police--my husband is a grown man after all--so he can eat what he wants.
But, with this in mind, I've discovered a number of strategies for sticking to my healthy habits when dining with my husband, so our marriage doesn't make me pile on the pounds. And studies have shown that relationships can indeed affect your health, for example, by increasing the chance of weight gain.
Take the reigns on meal planning
When it comes to preparing meals at home, I typically have quite a bit of influence over what my husband eats. For instance, I do most of the meal planning and cooking because I enjoy it, so I often have more say over what we eat as a couple. This means that I incorporate lots of fresh, healthy, and whole foods into our diet. Thankfully, my husband is pretty easy to please, so he's always willing to try the healthy meals I cook and, at the same time, my diet is filled with nutritious, calorie-friendly fare.
Remember marriage is 50/50, but calories are not
My husband and I split just everything in our lives 50/50, but not calories. He's bigger than me, so his body requires more calories to properly function, so he can have bigger portion sizes. When we eat together, I remind myself that my body doesn't need as many calories since it's smaller, which helps me keep my portions in check. For example, if we go out to dinner and share an appetizer, we won't split it in half. We'll go 60/40 instead. My husband can eat more than me without gaining weight, so I make sure my portions are smaller than his.
Modify your meals
I love a lot of the same foods that my husband does, but I've learned that there's a healthier alternative to just about every not-so-healthy dish out there. If we're having tacos for dinner, for instance, I'll use ground turkey instead of ground beef and then replace the processed taco shell with a fresh lettuce leaf and load it up with meat, veggies, and guacamole. I like to enjoy these kinds of foods with my husband, but I "healthify" them, so I don't pile on the pounds by eating like a guy.
Read Tina’s daily food and fitness blog, Carrots ‘N’ Cake.