You might have heard of the 80/20 diet recently, as a number of celebrities have recently taken to it. In fact, think of it less as a “diet” than a lifestyle change.
Really, it’s based on eating healthy portions of mostly fruits and vegetables and practicing moderation and balance. If you are on the 80/20 diet, you won’t have to scramble for a book or website to check if you can eat something. Since you are committing to a healthy lifestyle, you’ll just want to reward yourself 20% of the time. So, how does the 80-20 diet work?
The 80-20 Diet & How It Works
Celebrities like Olivia Munn, Miranda Kerr, Tom Brady, and Jessica Alba are fans of staying natural when it comes to diet and beauty, and it’s no different with the 80-20 diet.
In fact, Olivia Munn recently touted losing 12 pounds on the diet before filming X-Men Apocalypse. Fans noticed that her face was leaner and more defined, and started asking questions, so she took to Instagram to explain.
“I lost 12 pounds this past year while training for Xmen. I kept it off by coming up w/an hour workout I do a few times a week. The weight loss leaned out my cheeks and jawline. Working out is also great for your skin because it increases blood flow to your face which helps rejuvenate.” – Olivia Munn
So, how does the 80-20 diet work?
The goal of the 80-20 diet is to be easy and sustainable. This is not a fad diet, or something that requires colon cleanses or sucking on lemons.
When you are on the 80/20 diet, you should feel that the unhealthy “20%” part is a reward for the “80%” healthy eating.
Essentially it means that 80% of the food you eat should be a healthy variety of vegetables and fruits, and the remaining 20% can be a little more indulgent, like a slice of pepperoni pizza or a couple of cosmos with friends at a bar.
The 80-20 Diet; Leave the Calculator at Home
While many people look for a more exact way of measuring foods with calories or Weight Watchers (get coupon!) points, or boxed meals from NutriSystem; the 80-20 diet is a lot less rigorous. Here’s an example:
If you eat 3 meals a day, that means that up to 4 of your meals each week can be less than healthy.
If you eat 5 smaller meals a day, (which some dieticians recommend) then 7 of those small meals can be indulgent each week.
So, what are the unhealthy 20% meals? Don’t go crazy and end up at the Chinese buffet 3 times a week. Think more like pizza, a bagel for breakfast (deceptively unhealthy!) and maybe a burger once for dinner.
To make things easy, just make it a practice to eat healthy, and record each of the times you stray as a reward.
The 80-20 Diet: Requires Some Self-Restraint, But Offers Freedom
Without a coach, trainer, or meetings you’re on your own to make smart choices.Good thing that Jessica Alba has a trainer who helps her make smart choices with the 80-20 diet. Her trainer, Yumi Lee “You can’t be 100 percent all of the time, but you can be 80 percent all of the time.”
How can you doubt eating advice from someone named Yumi!?
When asked about the 80-20 diet, Miranda Kerr said, “Food is my friend, and consistency is the key. I believe that everything in moderation is best.”
If you find yourself at Burger King or the Ground Round 3 times a week, you have more of an abusive relationship with food, and that’s got to change. Think of the 80-20 diet as being part of a healthy lifestyle, not as a fad diet, or a quick weight-loss program like Medifast (get coupon).
The 80/20 Diet: Drink Less Alcohol
If you are thinking about starting the 80-20 diet, those evening drinks are going to count on the “20% ” side, as they are full of calories and even sugar. But hey, as long as you are smart and keep them in moderation, that Friday happy hour can be your indulgence.
Just count each time you have more than one drink as one of your “indulgences.”
The 80/20 Diet: Don’t Forget Exercise!
No sustainable diet is complete without the exercise component. In fact, when questioned about the 80/20 diet, celebrities like Olivia Munn stress that they get exercise several times a week including the gym, running, or eating peyote and doing interpretive dances to Prince albums.
Hello, I’m Missy Woodruff! I have an English degree from Tufts U. in Boston, and have worked as a teacher for 25 years. I also enjoy blogging in my free time. I especially like writing about wellness, as it’s something that I’m very interested in for the health of myself and my family more…