Here are a few of the most damaging comments you might hear, and how to respond to them:

  • Comment #1: "Have you tried that new diet? It's faster than what you're doing." Nutrition expert Frances Largeman-Roth says that comes from people who don't understand the long-term health risks of crash dieting, which include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and depression. A good response? "Thanks for the tip. I'm sticking with a plan that'll help me lose weight and keep it off.
  • Another diet-damaging comment: "I just baked these brownies for you." A Health magazine survey found that more than half of dieters get pressure from friends, family, or coworkers to eat foods that aren't on their diet. If that happens to you, say, "Wow, those look great!" Then, politely explain that you don't eat sweets, and suggest someone else who might be delighted to dig in.
  • Then there's: "Will losing a few pounds really make a difference?" Which basically means: You're so big, who'll notice! Greg Hottinger is coauthor of Coach Yourself Thin. And he says the best response for that one is, "It makes a difference to me."
  • And the last form of sabotage often comes from your significant other: "You look better when you're heavier." Weight loss experts say that kind of comment is motivated by their own insecurity. They may worry that you'll get thin and healthy, and run off with someone else. To ease their mind, explain it's not just about your looks, it's about your health. And you want to be as fit as possible so you can grow old together.