1. Don't advertise your diet. Don't bitch that all you can eat is x amount of calories or y type of food. Bitching about food (or lack there of) you cannot eat will annoy friends and drive them away. If they know you are on a diet, they are more likely to call you out on "taking it too extreme" and start a whole mess of drama. If they offer you food, just decline it politely. If they demand a reason, say things like "I don't like x ingredient," "I'm not hungry right now, but I'll try it later," "I don't want to spoil my appetite for dinner [or other meal]." I hate using the "I'm vegetarian/vegan" or "I'm allergic to x ingredient" because they can sniff out bull shit if they try hard enough.
2. Don't announce to the world that you feel fat. People will either think you're a bitchy self-centered person fishing for complements and sympathy, or they will say "yes, indeed you are fat" and make you feel 100 times worse. If they think you have body issues, they are more likely to attribute weight loss to anorexia or other eating disorder behaviors.
3. Fake eat. Carry food around your backpack. hold a candy bar, a pack of nuts, or a piece of fruit. Be seen with food. Buy a bowl of soup and just bring a spoonful of soup to your mouth while you talk for a while (don't have to actually put it in your mouth). People will believe you will or are eating said item. They will passively imagine seeing you eat it. I've carried the same apple for a week without anyone noticing it, and someone has told me, "I'm glad you're eating again." lol.
4. take advantage of anorexic stereotypes. Common stereotypes:
- They never eat. Only eat in front of them.
- They only eat low-calorie food or ultra-healthy food. Eat a small candy bar (60 cal) or bag of potato chips (150 cal) in front of them. Spending 100-200 calories in a bluff is better than being in complete dietary scrutiny.
- They fear food. Make cookies. Bake something. Talk about a new recipe you found. You can say you tried what you eat and like it. They won't know. If they want to see you eat stuff, you can easily make a low-cal version of the baked good and eat that as a bluff in front of them.
- They only eat tiny portions. This may sound weird, but you can binge in front of people and they won't even notice it's a binge. Just spread out what you eat over a few hours. Don't do this often, but it can really throw some people in for a loop if you eat a lot in front of them. Besides - you can compensate when they're away.
5. Don't skimp out on every food-event. Friends want to take you to dinner? Go. You should be able to recognize what types of food are naturally low calorie and order that on the menu. There's a lot of tricks for what to do when you have a food event that I'll go in detail in another post, but main ones include:
- Time your eating pace with other people at the table.
- Have food sitting on your fork in the air.
- Keep them talking about themselves or any topic not about you.
- Say you love the taste of the meal.
- at a buffet? carry a plate of nibbled food.
6. Blame balanced diet, exercise, or genes. If people constantly ask you "How come you are so skinny?!" blame it that you're naturally skinny. If they ask how you lost the weight, blame it on diet and exercise. If they're interested in the type of diet, you can just list one of the mainstream diets out there (like atkins diet or paleo diet). You can even have fun with this and give false diet tips. I've told someone time I cut out all potatoes from my diet and lost 5 pounds (lie). I've told another person I ate a stick of chalk before dinner and lost 3 pounds that way (lie). Another option: blame a disease. Say you had thyroid problem or a really bad flu and lost weight that way.
****Difference between #1 and #6: you can say you WERE on a diet, just don't say you ARE on a diet. People won't bother you if the diet is in the past and done. They will bother you if it's still on-going because they sometimes see it's in their power to intervene.
7. Don't make a show about not eating. My god, this one irks me in movies: the protagonist goes into a huge hissy fit about eating one carrot or the mother pleas through tears for him/her to eat one more bite. Have dignity! Just eat it, then get out of there. Accept it and move on. Compensate for it after. If you put on a show, they'll think there's something seriously wrong with you and throw you into IP or other treatment option.
8. Play ignorant. Don't blab all this knowledge about dieting, nutrition, and eating disorders. "Normal" people don't obsess about that kind of stuff and therefore don't know that much about that area. If people are spewing obviously wrong information about dieting "OMG THIS APPLE IS LIKE NEGATIVE 20 CALORIES" don't be all preachy about what calories are, how you can't eat negative calories, etc. Just keep it brief, maybe even off in your numbers, such as "I thought an apple is like 60 calories?" Not, "Even compensating with energy spent during digestion, an apple is still only 43 calories."