Atkins. The Cabbage Soup diet. Paleo. Maple-syrup-Beyonce-cleanse.
There are hundreds of thousands of diets out there, each promising a million promises; of instant weight loss and the key to body confidence.
For years celebrities have credited these fad diets as the ‘secret’ behind their Hollywood bodies, leading us to follow in their extreme dieting footsteps.
Until recently that is.
A new wave of health and fitness stars are coming forward, promoting a more balanced view of nutrition and diet; the 80/20 rule.
Less of a diet and more of a lifestyle change, celebrities from Iskra Lawrence and Olivia Munn to Miranda Kerr and Cameron Diaz are all fans and it’s being hailed as the ‘final solution to crash dieting’. But what exactly is 80/20? Read our Myvitamins guide to dieting’s healthiest trend:
What is the 80/20 rule?
The rule is simple: 80 percent of the time you consume healthy, clean and wholesome food that is good for you and your body. Fruit and veg, protein, high-fibre, low fat and minimum refined sugar. There is no set ‘plan’ just conscious food choices that nurture your body. The rest of the time (20%) you eat whatever you fancy. From doughnuts to Dominos, ice cream to takeaways.
Sound good? Thought so.
Does it actually work?
Not convinced? Take a look at some of the famous faces crediting 80/20 to the key behind their dieting success. Jessica Alba and Miranda Kerr both say that a little bit of what you fancy in moderation help prevent binges and cravings and lead to a more balanced approach to food.
If you know that you can have that cheat meal on a Sunday, you are less likely to indulge every day. Focusing on food as a positive, nurturing and replenishing your body with goodness means you are even less inclined to fill it with junk.
80/20 is also the most sustainable approach to ‘dieting’ in that it isn’t actually a diet, but a lifestyle perspective.
How to start
Not a sporty person?
No problem. But you don’t have to trek up Snowdon to get active. Take the stairs instead of the lift, download a pedometer app like Steps to track how far you walk each day, sign up for a Colour Run with your mates. Hate the treadmill? Got for a swim, try canoeing, play football in the park or hire bikes in the forest.
Each day, your fitness will improve and the pounds will start to drop off.
By the time you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated.
And at that point, your body will crave any water it can get even if it’s from a greasy fry up.
Try to aim for 2 litres a day (that’s around 8 glasses). If you feel hungry, drink a bottle of water and wait for 20 minutes. If you’re still hungry after that time, have something to eat. You’ll be amazed how many times a drink will do.
Apps like Waterlogged can help you track your hydration throughout the day.
If something has a zillion different ingredients you can’t pronounce on the label, chances are it’s bad for you. No matter how “fat free” it claims to be.
Every week the media comes out with a new story.
“I lost 4 stone eating only Mars Bars!”
“Diet Coke now worse for you than Full Fat”
Rather than complicate matters, try and stick to natural, unprocessed, whole foods. More often than not, you get a lot more bang for your buck.
When food shopping, stick to the ‘perimeter shopping rule’ and skip past the junk-filled centre aisles.
Fat Doesn’t Make You Fat
The world used to be obsessed with everything fat free.
0% fat? Why not eat 10 of them?!
The chances are, those “fat free” treats are pumped full of sugar. This article from LifewithGreens explains why.
Start learning about the food you eat and nutrition and you will realise that fat is a necessary and important part of a balanced diet.
Healthy fats like avocados, eggs, nut butters, salmon and nuts fill you you up and leave you feeling satisfied and full for longer.
Check out the Myvitamins blog for health tips and recipes.
Throw The Scales in the Bin
Once you stop defining your self worth by the number on the scale, things get a whole lot easier.
There are several factors which could contribute to weight fluctuation from water intake to hormone levels. Going by how your clothes fit you and your energy levels to get a more accurate account.
And the most important thing of all to remember?
If you have a bad day and eat a whole packet of biscuits before 10am. That’s okay.
Get up and move on. One bad day won’t ruin a lifetime of balanced eating. Everyone makes mistakes, learn from them and move on.