"How do you eat so many delicious foods, and continue to maintain a quality physique?"
"How do you eat all of those donuts?"
These are all questions I receive on a regular basis and each time I have the same response..."Anyone can eat what I do and see results."
The body gains weight as a way to store additional energy from the calories that we consume. In simpler terms, when we eat more calories than we have burned throughout the day. There is a common conception that foods deemed to be "Junk" allow us to gain weight much faster than foods deemed to be "Clean". This is true to an extent.
The difference between what is classified as junk food and what is a healthier alternative can vary from person to person. Most people just assume that all junk foods are fattening. The reality is that junk food is more likely to be calorie dense than the healthier counterparts. All foods can be fattening, it is simply a matter of the amount of the food you eat.
Each day we are given the opportunity to choose how we are going to spend out calories for the day. These calories should be in direct correlation to our goals. If we are looking to lose weight, we need to be eating less than our body is using for fuel, and vice versa for those looking to gain weight. In reality, we can choose any food that our hearts desire, it is simply a matter of preference.
Planning Ahead and Making Smart Decisions
Effective dieting is a matter of knowing that you are almost always giving up one food for another. If your goal is to lose weight, there is rarely going to be an occasion in which you can eat several calorie dense meals throughout a day, simply due to the unlikeliness that they are in correlation with your goals.
I typically wake up in a very hungry state, craving just about every food you can imagine. Before I even have breakfast, I make the decision as to what I REALLY want to eat for the day. It could be as simple as a sandwich and chips, or as detailed as a corned beef dinner with a big buttered baked potato and a donut for dessert. Regardless of what I choose, there is always one important meal (where I set aside a large number of calories to enjoy it) in which the entire rest of my eating for the day revolves around.
The harsh reality I will have feelings of hunger all day if I choose to eat an enormous spread of food for dinner. Its either I eat less calorie dense foods and feel satisfied, or I eat more calorie dense foods, feel satisfied for a few hours, and then hungry throughout the rest of the day.
In this particular example, I have the choice of eating a donut higher in calories relative to weight (113g/480 Calories) OR something much less dense in calories relative to weight, such as oatmeal, sliced banana, and peanut butter (245g/478 Calories).
This would be a decision between choosing a food that is more satisfying in terms of taste (donut) or more likely to satisfy your hunger (oatmeal & banana).
So the answer as to how I consistently manage to fit donuts into my diet, even when looking to reduce my weight/body fat is simple... I am more than willing to eat a small amount of a food that I really enjoy, rather than large amounts of foods that I personally don't find that appetizing. I know that I am more likely to be hungry throughout the day due to the smaller amount of volume of food I am eating.
How to Track Calories and Macros in Junk Food
When tracking junk food in my diet, I often overestimate by using the highest calorie example I can find on a fitness app in order to reduce the odds of overeating.
Suppose I am eating a donut from a new location/restaurant I have never been before.
Here is what I would track because it is one of the highest calorie examples of a donut I can find:
(**I have an idea of the size of a donut from Starbucks, so I use my best judgement when determining if a donut from a different location may be more or less calorie dense if a scale is not around to apply these nutritional facts in terms of weight.**)
Do You Want To Eat Junk Food on a Diet?
This is a question you really must answer honestly with yourself. Without a structured plan, it is difficult to track how much of what you are eating. More importantly, you should really take the time to consider what kind of dieting preferences you have.
I personally enjoy eating my favorite foods year round, regardless of what my physique goals are. However, it should be noted that I am often giving up the opportunity to have a diet in which I consistently feel satisfied with the portions of foods I am eating. This often leads me to create large meals that consists of foods very low in calories, primarily mixed greens to compensate for my hunger.
If you find yourself to be someone who constantly feels the need to eat to the point of satiety, you are unlikely to accomplish weight loss goals if you are still including foods highly dense in calories. In that case, it may be better to stick with a plan that is centered around foods that feature a high volume of low calorie foods. This, in turn, leads to larger meal portion sizes and higher amounts of satiety.