A new lifestyle can certainly present challenges when faced with birthday parties, company events, business meetings, or simply any meal outing with friends or family who do not share the same lifestyle. In our society it seems almost everything revolves around gathering together for a meal or a snack. People like to “break bread” together and you certainly don’t want to offend anyone by turning down their friendly, good-willed suggestion. That is why it is important to keep focused while living the paleo lifestyle.

These opportunities where you may not be the one in control of providing the food options can be somewhat tricky; however, you do not have to abandon your ways simply because of your new-found lifestyle choices. It is important as with any diet or lifestyle to be prepared mentally as well as physically for social situations and to be knowledgeable about your choices so you can share them confidently with others when questions arise…because they will! 
 Some suggestions for handling these social situations:
  • Expectations are important! Prepare your friends or family ahead of time by making them aware of your nutritional and lifestyle decisions and goals. Not only will this make a potentially awkward situation easier, it can also be a great conversation starter!
  • Invite guests to come to you! If you don’t mind entertaining suggest that you would like to have guests into your home where you have control over what you’ll be serving. If guests would like to bring a dish, simply ask them to prepare something with simple, whole ingredients such as a salad or another vegetable dish, rather than having them do a web search of “paleo foods” and potentially become overwhelmed with the myriad of paleo-ized treats and side dishes.
  • Bring your own food/snack! This will not only save you money but also the stress of trying to find a paleo option while on-the-go. Instead of meeting for lunch at a restaurant where you will be forced to scrutinize the menu (stay tuned for another blog post on dining out paleo!), suggest meeting at a local coffee shop or even better, a park or other outdoor area where you can both bring your lunch and you can eat what you like and your friend can have it their way too! 
  • Connect with us on Google plus to share other suggestions or stories of how you’ve handled paleo dining socially.
Don’t let social situations scare you away, simply be kind with your requests and be prepared to explain how thepaleo lifestyle is benefiting your health! Who knows, you just might change someone else’s life too!