Nutrition Tip: The 80/20 Rule

You may be thinking that we expect you to eat perfectly healthy foods and ditch the rest for life. The fact is, very few people can sustain a perfectly clean diet without cheating or getting stressed out. This is why we recommend the 80/20 rule. The 80/20 rule is a nutrition plan guideline that states 80% of the time you eat the proper foods and the other 20% you treat yourself with foods you enjoy (i.e. ice cream, pizz, etc.). All food is broken down into energy and nutrients that your body uses. As long as you’re smart with that 20%, you can enjoy all of your favorite foods periodically and still have great success.

Here are a few guidelines to follow:

  • You eat roughly 30-35 meals/snacks a week so about 6 or 7 of those can be treats.
  • Your treats should be spread out throughout the week, not all in one day.
  • Don’t go overboard with your cheat meals. The 20% shouldn’t make up 50% of your calories. Slamming down a large stuffed-crust meat lover’s pizza that has more calories than the rest of your meals for the day combined is going to derail any progress you’ve been making. Avoid cheating when you’re starving and haven’t eaten all day to help avoid this
  • Plan your cheat meals so you can get back on track right for the next meal
  • Stay away from greasy fast food, soda, and candy bars loaded with sugar as much as possible. Having it as one of your cheats here and there is okay, but don’t make it every cheat meal.