How the 80/20 diet can help you lose weight, and still have chocolate

Here's how the 80/20 method promises to help you reach your ideal weight without depriving yourself.

It might still be the middle of winter, but before you know it, it will be spring and time to shake off your winter layers to get ready for the warmer months, which almost always involved going on a diet.

Instead of starving yourself and depraving your taste buds of your favourite chocolate, why not try the 80/20 diet this year to get the body you have always dreamt of?

Unsustainable diets usually make you gain back the weight you lost anyway.

What is the 80/20 diet?

The 80/20 diet aims to help you rebalance your diet long term. It is not really even a diet, but a new set of eating habits to adopt. The main objective is to lose weight and especially to stabilize your weight, with no more yo-yo dieting or piling on the pounds as soon as you start eating normally again.

ALSO SEE: Daily hacks: How to eat healthy on a tight budget

How does it work?

The rule is simple. It involves making sure that 80% of your meals are healthy, balanced recipes, while the remaining 20% can be “pleasure foods.” With this approach, you are entitled, for example, to two “cheat meals” per week. 

This method is based on the Pareto principle. According to this rule, described by the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, about 80% of consequences are produced by just 20% of causes. Such observations can also be seen in the world of work, in economics and in food.

The method requires eating a balanced diet 80% of the time. As such, fruit, vegetables, vegetable proteins, legumes, meat or fish will make up 80% of your meals. You must eat a variety of foods, in appropriate quantities, and avoid overly processed foods as much as possible.

For the remaining 20% of meals, you can relax and indulge yourself with a rich diet, but one that brings you pleasure. From burgers to chips, chocolate and pizza, there are no forbidden foods as long as the quantities remain reasonable.

To boost the effects of this new regime, add in some exercise, such as walking, running or yoga.

ALSO SEE: WATCH: We did a transformation programme for two months, results are in

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