Are you looking for a new way to spend time with friends and lose weight? It may be time to start your own Healthy Plate Club to take advantage of the culinary creativity of restaurants while spending time with others. In fact, with whom we eat and what they eat can have a significant impact on our own choices – for better or worse. Research has shown that we have a knack for mimicking our dining companions in terms of what we order to how much we eat.
It’s time to make that fact work for us instead of against us. This is where the Healthy Plate Club comes in, creating regular opportunities to enjoy a healthy meal, packed with fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains, with others.
Getting started can be as simple as rounding up a few close friends for a monthly dinner or a group of co-workers for a weekly lunch:
- Invite friends, family, coworkers or even just acquaintances. This group can be large or small and should be made up of people who are dedicated to the goal of healthy eating.
- Decide how often your group will meet to enjoy a good-for-you menu choice. Once a month, once a week or more? This will depend on everyone’s schedules, goals and budgets.
- Agree on the routine. Will everyone take turns picking a restaurant with healthy choices or will the group vote? What are the expectations and needs of those in the group?
Your Healthy Plate Club may be an informal get-together or a more structured event:
- Make it educational – Local health experts and dietitians may be open to sharing a meal with your group while discussing a particular healthy eating topic such as How to Find Healthy Choices at Mexican Restaurants. Discuss any associated costs and how the group may share that cost.
- Foodie focus – Prefer a more casual healthy meal focused on food and cuisine? Ask everyone in the group to bring one piece of information about the restaurant, cuisine or food to share with the group.
- Make it supportive – Sharing wins, struggles and new goals in your healthy lifestyle since the last meet up can help hold everyone accountable while providing support as members of the group make long-lasting lifestyle changes.
Healthy eating doesn’t have to be a solo journey. Connect with others to make the science of eating with others work for you and your healthy lifestyle.
How do you make eating with others work for you instead of against you?