How to Handle Friends and Family Who Don’t Support Your Keto Diet

Have you ever had someone make a comment and judge you when you ordered a fast food meal? What about going back for seconds (or thirds) during a family gathering? Or when you bought tortilla chips in bulk… for yourself?  The answer is probably no. 

The funny thing is, no one blinked an eye when I did any of those things, but the second I whisper the Keto Diet, everyone feels the need to tell me how unhealthy it is.

It bugs me that eating my weight in sugar and overeating is considered acceptable, but saying i’m cutting out the sugar and processed food seems to be a food crime.

When we started living the keto life, I (we) made the mistake of telling anyone who would listen about the word of keto (PREACH!) We didn’t care who knew because we faced it together. Yes friends, I was THAT person. 

The interesting thing about my new lifestyle was that suddenly, everyone was worried about WHAT I was eating and my labs but no one gave an ef when I was 50lbs heavier and eating like an a-hole. 

Not once did anyone ask me about cholesterol when I was fat. No one was worried about my heart heath when I was heavy and out of breath doing laundry.

When the weight started coming off, those same people suddenly wanted to know “how” I was doing this. It made me realize it had less to do with ME and everything to do with them.

They felt insecure, and hurt people hurt people.

Why People Will Try To Sabotage You

You will come across people who truly don’t understand your lifestyle and you will also come across the pseudo-supportive bunch. You know the kind. They say they support you but then constantly try to sabotage or undermine your progress by pushing things that don’t fit into your lifestyle, because “just once won’t hurt”. 

They also don’t understand that I’m not “missing out” on anything good. I decide the food I use to fuel my body. And yeah, I don’t eat a lot of the things I used to, but one of the things that made my keto diet journey a success was finding ways to make my favorite food keto-friendly. This is my way of eating now. 

I don’t mean the people who offered foods that aren’t keto friendly, that’s fine. Most people don’t know and it’s not their job to worry about what I can eat. 

I’m talking about people who know exactly what you don’t eat and PUSH it because “treating yourself once won’t hurt”, or who feel the need to ridicule you in front of others for the way you eat. 

Be Direct

I have had many people share this very struggle with me, and it’s unfair. Would you make fun of someone with a food allergy or an addiction? I would hope not. Why do people think it’s their right to have ANY input into what I fuel my body with?

Those people need a double portion of worry about yourself, with a side of mind your own business.

Listen, if you want to go off plan, that’s on you. If that’s what you want to do, it’s ok as long as you feel comfortable with your decision, but you should never feel pressured by ANYONE to do something you’re not comfortable with, eat, drink, smoke, ect.

People who support you should support you, not try to set you up to fail. Unfortunately, you will find that some people (maybe even your own family or spouse) don’t want to see you succeed because of their own insecurities. Remember this is about YOUR success. 

I hear people say it’s just one meal, or one day. For me it’s a slippery slope. Most of the things people pushed on me no longer hold value.  I politely just say no thanks. If they keep pushing food, I just tell them, I don’t want it but it seems like you do. Go ahead and enjoy.

Plan Ahead

That’s where the inner strength comes in. You have to go prepared. When we first started living the keto life, we would pack some purse food (Quest chips, beef sticks, keto bars and ChocZero) so we always had options when out.

We would try to plan ahead, if eating out, checking the menu ahead of time. If going to a BBQ, knowing we could go bunless and would bring a side we could eat. Again, we never felt like it was up to whoever was hosting to worry about our dietary restrictions. 

Yep, that’s how I started phasing it. If someone pushed something, I would simply say I’d  have to pass on that dish because of dietary restrictions. I’ve had people ask if I was diabetic, and tell them no, but that I  have to watch flour/sugar because I feel sick when I eat those things, which is true. 

Family gatherings seem to be a trigger for people. I have had many people share that it’s a struggle because people get offended if you don’t eat certain things. If you were lactose intolerant would they push you to eat the dairy foods? This is about THEM. 

Most of us come from a long line of emotional eaters. When we’re happy, we eat. Sad? We eat, bored… you get the picture.  We are not being rude. We are fixing ourselves and avoiding foods that we KNOW don’t work for us. Some people won’t understand. Some will judge. Some will reach out to you for help because they see the progress.

The Keto Diet is YOUR Diet

Living any lifestyle is easier when you have the support of friends, family and coworkers, but it’s not essential for success. If you want to make a change, do it. If you need a cheerleader, send me a message and I will root for you. Set yourself up for success. Plan ahead, always have purse (or car) food.

If you have people doubting you, it’s their issue, not yours. If someone starts to question your choices repeat after me: WORRY ABOUT YOURSELF & MIND YOUR BUSINESS! Or you can go the dietary restriction route. Either way, you know what works for you so Keto on my friends.

3 Comments

  1. Thank you for this. Family members can be a challenge, its very hurtful to know your own family has an agenda to sabotage your efforts. I really was in need of this, especially today. Blessings, Maria

  2. My husband chastises me for not eating what he perceives as healthy – which to him is small portions and low calorie. He still thinks I eat too much and don’t make enough good choices. He cannot understand how full fat dairy would be desirable. Of course he’s 6 ft 160lb and this has never ever been an obstacle for him. How can I respond when he’s criticizing my choices?

  3. My family is heavily against the keto diet. I lost weight on keto a while back then gained it back(and then some) and it’s frustrating really as I try getting back into, I have literally no support. My family always talks about my weight, my appearance, and don’t support me in anyway that would help me out. Keto was the only diet I did that lost me weight. My mom talks about a friend who lost weight “by cutting sugar” and at our hallowwwn party man eat only meat and veggies. My mom always says “eat healthy” when she hardly knows what that means. I just struggle hard because I have no real emotional suppprt when I try losing weight. I do plenty of exercise and yet my biggest fault is sticking to this diet of mine. It’s the only diet I did in the past where I got results.

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