How to be realistic with your expectations on health. The 80-20 rule.


Mary and I have been health coaching for over 10 years. We work with clients who are vegan, gluten-free, vegetarians, pescatarians, want more protein, have food allergies, only want to eat meat and potatoes, got a tick bite and can’t eat certain meats, are addicted to sugar, don’t have time to cook so live on fast food, work two jobs and have kids, are on a strict food budget, have a kid who won’t eat any veggies, want to get off meds for hypertension, cholesterol or type 2 diabetes. You name it, we’ve pretty much seen them. And now, we even see clients with something called orthorexia. (It’s a real thing and you may consider seeking a professional for help)

an obsession with eating foods that one considers healthy.
a medical condition in which the sufferer systematically avoids specific foods in the belief that they are harmful.
noun: orthorexia nervosa; plural noun: orthorexia nervosas

What is happening is we are starting to go crazy. Who is we? Most of us!  Because every marketer, every big food company, every diet is claiming their’s is the best. Everyone is CONFUSED and now…..even sometimes paranoid. Eating a delicious and healthy meal is becoming so stressful instead of enjoyable. It’s time to stop the madness. To think there is actually a word in our dictionary that talks about an “obsession with eating foods that one considers healthy.” What is this world coming too? What do we do? Teach our clients to try to stick with the BEC 80-20 rule. Try to avoid processed and fast foods 80% of the time and DON’T feel guilty when you eat the other stuff around 20%. The stress hormone cortisol that you will produce obsessing every single second you put something unhealthy or not so healthy in your mouth is probably doing you more harm than the food. Stop listening to marketers and advertisers. They are just trying to sell you a product. They don’t care if their product is truly a nutritional food and it makes you feel great…they just care if you buy it. They will make any claim possible on the package so you buy it. Very often these items are what I call,  “pretend healthy.” Follow this rule of thumb; if you eat food that gives you energy, tastes great, helps you think clearly, doesn’t give you stomach issues, and makes your body function at it’s best… know it’s the good stuff—-that’s your 80%. Most of these foods are one ingredient foods. Most of these foods grow in the ground or on trees.  If the food makes you feel like crap and drains you or has you craving processed sugar all day long–that’s your 20%. But even if it sometimes makes you feel kinda bad after… can still enjoy it. And if you have “not so nutritious stuff” in moderation you may not even feel so bad after it. So if your kids bake some cookies, have a few, not the whole tray. When the hot donuts sign is on at good ole Krispy Kreme,(not that I would have to indulge in this soft, warm, sweet, delectable donut) buy one donut, not the whole dozen.

For me, I started with about a 60-40 rule, then progressed to 70-30, then 80-20, and now I probably live somewhere in the 90-10 range. I’ll tell you why. I LOVE to feel great. I WANT to have energy. I CRAVE spending time with my kids at night and not falling asleep by 8 because I ate a bunch of crap that made me exhausted. The good part is….the choice is yours. Do what works for YOU!!!! It’s your life and you get to choose how to live it. So when indulging….enjoy without the guilt.

All my clients always want to know what my favorite indulgences are……so here’s my top five.

1) Slightly underdone homemade chocolate chip cookies. Especially if my boys make them. :)

2) Hot Donut at Krispy Kreme (like you couldn’t have guessed) I stick to just one and thankfully we don’t have a store anywhere close!

3) A mint chocolate chip milkshake (gotta take major lactaid if I go this route)

4) A candy bar. My fav’s are Babe Ruth, 100 Grand, Snickers, and Peanut M & M’s. (I used to eat one once a week, now about 2 a year)

5) Brownies!!! The boxed ones, slightly undercooked. I could literally eat 1/2 the tray but I don’t. (well, not anymore)

Life is short, keep smiling, bake some homemade chocolate chip cookies with the fam and enjoy!!!

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1 comment on How to be realistic with your expectations on health. The 80-20 rule.

  1. Carol Quibell
    01/23/2016 at 10:52 am (3 years ago)

    I love this idea. I am starting it today.


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