This question is just my curiosity, as I'm married. When dating, do you put diet up there with religion and wanting or not wanting kids? Where does it belong? Would you or do you date non-Paleos?
My husband eats SAD (still!) and I would not have picked him if I was putting diet up there with religion (or whatever criteria). But that being said... our relationship works even with food differences. Luckily I'm the cook, so that probably has something to do with it.
Would love to hear your thoughts on how this question applies in your life, whether you are currently partnered or not.
My girlfriend was vegan when we started dating, so that would be a no. She has been converted, however. Science is a cold, logical mistress. It cares not for ones silly, vegan superstitions.
Given the chance to do it all over again, I would change so many things about how I picked a partner for life.
If I was to start dating now, I think I would definitely look for someone that was concerned about health and fitness. I don't think his views would have to be the same as mine on everything. I have changed my nutrition plan quite a bit over the last 10 years, so I would want someone that was willing to learn and try new things.
I agree with people talking about the importance of respect and tolerance, however if I were interested in someone as a life-long partner, who had a terrible SAD diet, I would feel as if I were watching them slowly hammer the nails into their own coffin every time that they ate. I don't mean to be melodramatic - ok, maybe just a little ;) - but it already drives me nuts to watch those I care about eroding their own health on a daily basis, so my own sense of self-preservation hinders me from becoming emotionally invested in someone engaging in self-destructive behaviour, be it smoking or living off frozen pizza and deep-fried Mars bars.
On the other hand, Paleo is very much a fringe movement (especially where I live) and I suspect that confessing to be Paleo outright would probably be the other person's a deal breaker on a first date. In short I would be very happy with someone who cared about their health (even if this manifested itself in eating the SAD version of a healthy diet), who was flexible enough to accommodate my food "eccentricities" and who was open-minded and scientifically-inclined enough to question conventional wisdom without his brains falling out in a mush of incoherent paranoia about chem trails and Elvis hiding behind the grassy knoll.
So, having decided on that, all that remains is to meet this rugged yet sensitive man of science...
when i met my now husband, i was vegetarian and he ate the frat-boy version of SAD, meaning a lot of meat sandwiches, favoring sausage, and beer. then i started to eat meat, favoring high quality stuff and he became vegetarian, then pescatarian. now im paleo and he is GF pescatarian who only eat meat from an animal he knows personally. relationships and diets evolve. its far more important to me what kind of shoes a dude wears. crocks are a deal-breaker.
ETA: i should say, that other than the very beginning of our relationship (frat-boy SAD), my husband has always been interested in healthy, good food and being politically and ethically responsible with where he puts his food dollars. the specifics of our diet have changed as we learn more and get older, but overall we both count food and diet as a Very Important Thing. food has always been such a big part of my life that i dont know if i could be in a long term relationship with someone who ate nothing but processed foods and/or was a very picky eater with bland tastes.
I was vegetarian for over 20 years and dated many carivores so it wasn't an issue for me. My partner is a hunter however he eats SAD. :-(
I think what is important is tolerance and respect for the other person verses only being with someone who eats the way I do.
i love my gf but me being paleo is a point of contention at times. i guess she's at about 70%. but with her being severely gluten-intolerant and having some signs of auto-immunity i've been trying to get her to go with the full buy-in. her response is that my food isn't "fun". sigh... the struggle continues.
My fella and I have been together for almost three and a half years, and he's seen me go from restrictive-type bulimia to vegetarian to Paleo. I'm very glad that he didn't decide to ditch me for not conforming to his SAD diet. ;)
Yes, I'm concerned about his health. I think, if his diet was of great issue to me, that would be the motivating factor to not pursue the relationship. I would hesitate to date a chain-smoking, non-seatbelt-wearing, corpulent alcoholic, just because I'd be worried about longevity (and yeah, I guess the attraction thing plays a part, too >.>), and I regard SAD on about the same level. However, I love him, not the food he eats.
While his diet isn't a definitely not a deal-breaker, I'm still taking measures to improve his health, though, just because it is important to me. I'm currently trying to ease him off gluten. I'm not nagging him or making a big deal about it; I simply haven't prepared him any meals with gluten in it for over a month now (and not necessarily on purpose or deliberately deceptively, either; I merely do not regard gluten as food, and therefore do not cook with it). I finally pointed it out to him about a week ago, and he seemed pleasantly surprised and said he loves the food I make for him. I was also thrilled when I looked back and realized he had eaten entirely Paleo on Sunday without even trying. It just happened spontaneously, which is how it should be. :)
I have several key points that must be hit (I honestly thought I would never find anyone)
There is a long list of other things that kind of fall into as well but honestly I don't think I could do without the above. My girlfriend falls into all of those and it rocks.
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