The 80/20 rule, also called the Pareto Principle, is a term often employed in the business world. Usually, it is used in reference to the concept that 20% of your customers will account for 80% of your sales. However, this rule is now being used for all kinds of cool applications such as achieving a healthy lifestyle.
The interesting thing is that when it comes to healthy eating, the Pareto Principle gets flipped on its head: You should be focusing on the 80% rather than the 20%. Essentially, you can achieve a healthy lifestyle if 80% of your choices are healthy ones. As stated in the Huffington Post‘s article,
A healthy lifestyle is achieved by the sum total of all of your choices. Losing weight, getting healthier or becoming more fit is not a quick fix or a gimmick; it’s the culmination of your habits and your daily decisions. This rule is about moderation. Yes, you can have that dessert. No, you cannot have dessert every night. Yes, you should work out most days. No, you don’t have to beat yourself up if you skip a day.
So why is this 80/20 rule such a big deal?
As we know, it can be hard to eat clean all the time. If you lead an active social life and have friends who enjoy going to restaurants, it’s almost impossible to stay on track on the weekends without coming off as a wet blanket. So it’s okay to cheat sometimes, as long as more often than not, you make healthy decisions and employ moderation.
Every once in a while, we break out of our routine due to special circumstances. Say you always go to the gym on Saturday morning. But this weekend, you’ve got brunch plans with a friend from out of town. That doesn’t mean that your healthy lifestyle has to go to the dogs, as long as you get back on the saddle as soon as you can.
The 80/20 rule isn’t something that you’re on or off, it isn’t a diet, and it isn’t some weird gimmick. It’s so simple and easy to remember, because you’re basically just making a conscious choice to lean towards healthy decisions and habits, and really, nobody can fault you for that. And truthfully, once you realize just how good healthy eating feels, it becomes easier and easier to make those healthful decisions.
It stands to reason that if you stick to healthy eating most of the time, and exercise on most days, then you will be healthier and will most likely be close to the weight you want to be at. The 80/20 rule of healthy eating is a doable, non intrusive, and simple way of living a healthy lifestyle.
Read the full article here.