DEAR HARRIETTE: I’m worried about my friend’s mother. My friend is turning a blind eye as her mother completely neglects her own health. She’s diabetic, yet I watch her continually make poor food decisions. I don’t understand why my friend lets it happen. My friend will even bring the unhealthy food into the house. Is there anything I can do? Sometimes I want to scream at them and ask if they can see what they are doing to her dear mother. It’s painful to watch. -- Enabler Friend
DEAR ENABLER FRIEND: Diabetes is an insidious disease, and many diabetics struggle to adhere to a healthy diet, even when the consequences can be dire. Rather than judging your friend or her mother, ask how you can be of support. Talk to your friend about it.
When you go to visit, bring healthy snacks, like fresh fruit and sparkling water. Introduce healthy choices to them both. They may take a fancy to them over time. Offer to cook a meal for them sometimes. Make it a healthy feast that is tasty without being high in unhealthy fats and sugars. For ideas on a healthy diet for diabetics, go to: cdc.gov/diabetes/managing/eat-well/meal-plan-method.html.
Resist the inclination to judge or nag. That won’t help the matter at all. Invite them to go for a long walk with you or participate in a different type of exercise. Gently encourage them to eat healthier and keep moving. But know that you cannot force them to do anything.
For more ideas on how to support your friend and her mother, go to: bit.ly/3Fm4yZC.