My late ex-mother-in-law once fumed to me about a disastrous meal she fixed for another couple. She spent several days hunting down recipes and ended up cooking a delectable shrimp dish, which the husband refused to eat it because shrimp is high in cholesterol and he had a heart condition.
"He should have eaten it any way," she told me, as if her hurt feelings trumped his weak heart. (Ironically, avoiding high cholesterol foods, such as shrimp and eggs, is now a controversial recommendation for heart patients since our bodies produce cholesterol on their own when we don't consume enough in our diets.)
I was secretly amused that her definition of etiquette was catering to your host's feelings at the risk of your health. What if she had served peanut butter cookies to a kid with peanut allergies? Don't captive house guests have a right to choose what they put in their mouth?
It's a little different when you're on a diet since the connection between what you eat and your health seems less direct. A dinner roll or strawberry shortcake won't put you into cardiac arrest or anaphylactic shock. At least not immediately.
But over time, continually eating certain foods can result in diabetes and other chronic health conditions. And if you're on a ketogenic diet, eating too many carbs in one day can kick you out of ketosis.
The beauty of Medifast is that you can turn almost any meal into a Lean & Green facsimile if you're discreet. Just load up on the vegetables and about six ounces of protein. If there's sauce or breading on either, you can flick it off with your fork. You may not end up perfectly On Plan, but you'll be close enough not to get your panties in a bunch.
If you are the only guests invited to dinner, good hosts will inquire about your dietary preferences. If they then choose to ignore them, you have no obligation to spare their feelings since they obviously did not care about yours.
If you're going to a larger dinner party, offer to bring a dish in case everything served is off plan. A huge salad with grilled chicken would be perfect since you could pretty much subsist on that while everyone else is feasting on fettuccine Alfredo.
The point is, good manners is a two-way street. Any host who is offended that you do not eat everything on your plate should look in the mirror when she points her finger in accusation.
If you handle your finicky foodiness discreetly, everyone can feast on the good conversation and no one's feelings should be hurt.
You can purchase Medifast replacement meals directly from Medifast Centers, the Medifast website or -- for soon to be lower cost -- through the co-branded website of a Medifast TSFL health coach. Medifast does not recommend purchasing its products from third party vendors, but if you choose to do so, you can find them on both Amazon and eBay.
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