Have you heard of the 80/20 principle? It’s a good one to discuss at this time of year.

Basically, it suggests that if we eat right at most meals – say, 80 percent of the time – then we can lighten up a bit the other 20 percent and go “off menu,” so to speak.

It’s liberating, isn’t it? To realize – Oh, wow! – You don’t have to be PERFECT every minute of every day! You can be “human” and still stay on track to meet your goals.

Keep that in mind in the coming weeks, with the big meals of the holidays coming up. Because if you follow your plan most of the time, you can have flexibility on special occasions.

Conversely, if you play it with a little too much flexibility week in and week out, then you should probably stay closer to moderate on days like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

One meal with mashed potatoes isn’t going to destroy your hard-won gains that you’ve built up over a significant period of weeks and months.

Consistent weight loss or maintenance is more about calories in/calories out over the course of, say, a week than day to day. 

So, do your best most of the time, and realize you have wiggle room here and there when you need it.

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