Each of us has, at least at some point, been insecure about our weight. For most of us, the struggle is keeping those digits down on the number scale. It is an exhausting process because how you look does affect your others perceive you, and more importantly how you perceive yourself.
It can affect our self esteem, send us down the depression hole and make our lives a living hell.
This is why many of us are constantly searching for ways to not just lose weight, but to do it fast.
This is what the diet industry thrives on and why its worth is in the billions now.
Every fad diet and every pill positions itself as that magic potion you were always searching for. Making wild claims it lures in the vulnerable minds only to leave them at a place much darker than where they started with.
Don’t get me wrong. These fad diets can work. In fact, despite feeling miserable, the users might lose a few pounds, but the moment they get off the diet, the pounds come back on, this time much worse than before.
The truth is humans are wired to eat delicious foods. That’s just who we are and there is nothing wrong with that.
The problem though is that fad diets are extremely strict and limiting, and weight loss is more of a mental game than a physical one. It is a tough process to change your lifestyle, and fad diet can make it a much more excruciating one.
By depriving yourself of food, you actually become obsessed with it, which means that your chances of giving up on the diet becomes much higher, and so does your chances of going on a binging spree.
Diets like that do not deal with the root problem of why someone might be overweight. For example, some people may use food as a coping mechanism to deal with stress, low self esteem and confidence. In this case, dieting does not help with emotional eating.
What is the 80:20 Rule
What does work is balanced and sensible eating. Instead of depriving your body, strategically plan your meals so that you can have the best of both worlds. This is why the 80/20 rule works. It requires you to eat healthy 80% of the time, and 20% of the time you can cheat or rather indulge yourself in not-so-healthy foods. For example, if you eat 3 meals a day, then in 4 meals every week you are allowed to cheat.
Rather than a diet, it is a lifestyle choice. You are not depriving your body from anything, or counting calories. There are no real restrictions in this diet other than the main principal itself of eating healthy 80% of the time, which makes the chances of your sticking with this rule really high.
Another important reason why 80/20 rule is so popular is because it helps keep the weight off on the long term. Plus, it helps with cholesterol, blood pressure and diabetes. It will also keep you feel energized because majority of your diet contains healthy foods. It recommends a nutrient rich meal filled with lean proteins, fresh fruits and vegetable, low-fat diary products and unprocessed grains.
Does This Sound Too Good To Be True?
Here is the thing. The 80/20 rule has received some negative reviews, mainly because it promotes the idea of eating whatever your heart desires 20% of the time. I agree with this. If you work hard and stick to your healthy meal plans all through the weekday, and when the weekend comes around, you sprint to McDonalds, and have a few Big Macs, and fries or order 3 boxes of pizzas just for yourself, then what’s the point? You just become a pendulum that swings from one extreme to another.
It is important to eat mindfully even during the cheat days. Be aware of the fat and processed sugar you are putting in your body. Go have pasta at your favorite Italian restaurant. It is okay. But don’t mindlessly binge on junk food because it will negate all the hard work you put in the rest of the week.
To make this process easier, clear your kitchen of ice cream, oreos, granola bars and all other snack type foods. If you have kids, like I do, lock their treats away in the cabinets so that it is outside your view. That way if you are hungry, you will most likely reach for a fruit than a cookie.
The bottom line is that adopting an 80/20 lifestyle will help you lose weight because it promotes healthy eating attitudes. It is not build on the principle of rigidity but rather it is all about flexibility. Through incredible results, it teaches you the power of decision making. It is all about making the right choices, and with 80/20 you get to make both healthy and un-healthy choices…while still looking Hot!
Remember, don’t eat like there’s no tomorrow. Instead, eat in a way that will make you feel better tomorrow!