[Good morning! Today we have a guest post on a topic I simply cannot help you with until someone puts a ring on it. So I’m handing things over to my lovely blog girl crush! – Rachel ]
Hi, Shedders! It’s Teri from A Foodie Stays Fit. I’ve been married for five years and over time my husband and I have developed different eating habits. I rarely eat meat and prefer to eat clean, whole food most of the time. Rob (the mister) would love a good steak every day with mashed potatoes being the vegetable of choice. Now, he has come a long way with his eating habits (and I’ll tell you how you can get your husband to clean up his act too!), but it still takes a little work to find peace in the kitchen.
It is possible to coexist with a spouse or significant other when you have very different eating habits. Let me help ya out…
Top 10 Ways to Find Marital Harmony When You Eat Green Smoothies But Your Hubby Would Gladly Eat Steak and Potatoes Every Day.
10. Make two versions of meals. It might take a little more effort (and create more dishes to wash), but it’s quick for me to saute up some shrimp or tempeh and ground beef in two different pans to go on with our separate pasta/taco/etc. dishes.
9. Make green smoothies purple by adding blueberries to sneakily get him to drink spinach. OK, maybe it’s not a great idea to be surreptitious about feeding him greens, but find out what veggies he does like and serve those more often.
8. Don’t be a martyr. I never think it’s a good excuse when people say they can’t eat healthy because their family doesn’t like the healthy food they would make. Who says healthy can’t be tasty? Experiment with new recipes and ingredients; try some of the recipes you see on blogs or subscribe to a healthy eating magazine, like Clean Eating. Use spices and herbs for flavor. Buy lean cuts of meats, try new grains (quinoa, anyone?). Spicing things up is key to your relationship and food so don’t be afraid to find healthy things you and your man like.
7. Don’t be a bitch. I don’t think it’s very nice to talk trash about the way your hubby prefers to eat to his face or behind his back. There’s nothing productive about that. Sit down, talk about what’s important to you regarding each of your diets and find ways that you can both be happy. Perhaps it’s making two versions of meals (see #10) or finding ways to healthify a favorite dish. You’ve got to be open about how you feel so you don’t become bitter because you are being a martyr (#8) or alienate the hubsters because you are bitchy about the way you HAVE to eat. Support each other.
6. Go grocery shopping together. I might buy low-fat yogurt and not even think about buying the creamier stuff for Rob. When he comes, he can pick out his own yogurt, granola bars, cereal, snacks, etc.
5. Give in where it doesn’t matter. I used to always buy low-fat or fat-free sour cream which drove Rob crazy. Then I realized that I never even use sour cream because I don’t like it. So I started buying full-fat again.
4. Find out the limits. Find out what just isn’t going to fly and try not to cross the line. For example, a few weeks ago I tried a black bean brownie recipe. It was an epic failure (they were disgusting) and as Rob said, “Black bean brownies? Total blasphemy – hands off my sweets.” :) He is making efforts to be healthy but some things, like dessert, he isn’t willing to give in on (yet…muahahaha!). Maybe your man isn’t willing to eat tofu or he’ll only drink whole milk. Learn what your man’s limits are, respect them, and work around them.
3. Share your knowledge. Don’t beat him over the head or be judgmental, but find conducive ways to share your knowledge. Most people want to be healthy but could use a nudge. While I know that Rob isn’t likely to read In Defense of Food or other books of that nature, he does appreciate when I share condensed versions of what I learn. I truly find food (and its sources) fascinating and since your S.O. loves you, he’ll want to know about your passions. And hopefully he’ll be more understanding when you want to buy the $5 gallon of organic milk.
2. Don’t be a soup Nazi! Don’t be so uptight about your eating habits that you can’t enjoy some of life’s greatest food pleasures together. For us, we love eating ice cream while watching our favorite TV show and do it regularly. And admit that some of his favorite, perhaps not-so-healthy foods are pretty damn tasty and just eat them sometimes!
1. Have him watch Food, Inc. This movie changed my husband’s eating habits overnight. I’m not joking. The movie is very informative but not extreme. It’s inspiring, slightly scary, and enjoyable to watch. Again, knowledge is power and I think once your S.O. knows why eating healthy is so important for you, for the environment, and what impact it has on everyone’s life (including his!), he might want to think twice about that Big Mac he’s eating.
Do you and your significant other have different eating habits? If so, how do you manage it?