Dieting is hard because most diets are so restrictive that it’s very difficult to follow during normal everyday life. Birthday parties, holidays, get togethers, date nights, and special occasions are not diet friendly. Good luck sticking to your diet at a kid’s birthday party. I can’t think of one diet that allows pizza and cake, except maybe IIFYM, then you can only eat plain vegetables and dry chicken breast the rest of the day. Unless you’re a superhuman fitness freak then you know that won’t happen. You’ve already had pizza and cake, so the rest of the day is filled with junk food.
That’s why I think balanced eating is far superior than any diet. Unless you have a medical diagnosis and you MUST eat a certain way. If you don’t have a medical diagnosis and you don’t have any food allergies or restrictions, then balanced is the way to go. My biggest criticism of diets is what do you do when you can’t eat a certain way. Some people will say don’t eat, but I think there’s a better way. Make the best possible decision that you can make and don’t stress out about it. When you get back to your normal routine, start eating healthy again with whole, nutritious, minimally processed foods.
Don’t miss out on special life moments because you are on a diet. Food is so much more than just something that you eat. Food is culture, food is tradition, food is social, food is cherished moments with family and friends. Don’t miss out on life because ice cream isn’t on your plan. While being present during these moments is important, eating a balanced diet of whole, nutritious, minimally processed foods is equally important. You must eat healthy a lot more often than you eat un-healthy. Once your birthday party is over then start eating healthy again until your next special occasion. Also, be stingy with your special occasion meals. Sitting on the couch binge watching your favorite show is probably not special occasion worthy, save it for a time that is worth it.
I personally like to be very picky with my special occasion meals. When I do eat foods that are not healthy, I generally like to eat foods that are homemade treats and sweets or something that I really enjoy. I will pass up candy bars all day long for my mom’s homemade pie. I will easily pass on donuts at the office because I know I’m going to eat ice cream with my wife and daughter the upcoming weekend. I will meal prep my lunches everyday during the week because I know we are going out for pizza Friday night. If you’re going to do it, then make it count. Packaged treats from the grocery store is a waste in my opinion, eat something homemade instead. Exercise and increasing your daily movement are also very important for fat loss and overall general health. I suggest some form of resistance training and increased daily movement.