How to eat junk food in moderation.

What is moderation?
Would eating junk food twice a week be moderation, once a day moderation?
I'm not talking massive amounts, just a small chocolate bar or a biscuit & occasionally a big treat.
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Replies

  • martyqueen52
    martyqueen52 Posts: 1,120 Member
    Eat it daily.... fit it into your caloric / macro intake.

    Don't eat pop-tarts all day to meet your calories, but having one a day won't hurt, despite what people say.

    I eat a ton of chocolate covered coffee beans daily and I'm leaning out and getting bigger. (slow bulk)
  • vegkitten
    vegkitten Posts: 106 Member
    I eat junk food almost every day. Anywhere from 50 calories to 500 calories of junk if I really feel I need it. Work it into your calorie goals, and try to eat as healthy as possible for the rest of your calories. My diary is open, you can see how I do it. It's best to measure it out first though. Don't sit down with a big of chips or cookies or whatever. Take out how much you want, log it then eat it. I find that eating a little bit of junk right before and after a super healthy meal makes me feel more satisfied and happy.
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    That's an interesting question.


    As far as "what is moderation?" I think (granted I haven't put much thought into this) ... Maybe I'd define it as follows?

    Any amount of food you can eat that such that you are meeting your micro and macronutrient needs, satiety needs, performance needs, and calorie needs (by meeting I mean not eating in excess over time) with the remaining food in your diet.

    So for example you eat a nutrient dense diet meeting all of your needs and you have X calories to spare. Moderation is filling your diet with whatever you want without exceeding X.
  • amgreenwell
    amgreenwell Posts: 1,268 Member
    "Junk food" is subjective as some people think that anything not "clean" is junk. For me, junk would be potato chips, candy bars, cake, ice cream, etc...anything that doesn't have a lot of nutrition or is highly processed and packs on the calories.
    If you want it, eat it. Just make sure it fits into your macros and works with your goals. I eat chocolate just about every day in some form. I don't deprive myself of anything, i just do extra time running or biking or swimming if that is what it takes. Best of luck!!
  • stefaniemazz
    stefaniemazz Posts: 179 Member
    You can either fit it in daily, or have a cheat day.

    I eat pretty much no "junk food" during the week and then I will have a cheat day on Saturday.
  • tennisdude2004
    tennisdude2004 Posts: 5,609 Member
    What is moderation?
    Would eating junk food twice a week be moderation, once a day moderation?
    I'm not talking massive amounts, just a small chocolate bar or a biscuit & occasionally a big treat.

    Eating junk food in limited amounts is fine.

    My rule of thumb is cover my protein, cover my micro nutrients - if I then feel like some junk food - I eat it and enjoy it.
  • SueInAz
    SueInAz Posts: 6,592 Member
    "Junk food" is subjective as some people think that anything not "clean" is junk. For me, junk would be potato chips, candy bars, cake, ice cream, etc...anything that doesn't have a lot of nutrition or is highly processed and packs on the calories.
    If you want it, eat it. Just make sure it fits into your macros and works with your goals. I eat chocolate just about every day in some form. I don't deprive myself of anything, i just do extra time running or biking or swimming if that is what it takes. Best of luck!!
    This is where my thought process is going, too. Everyone's definition of "junk food" is different as is their definition of "moderation". If you want the junk foodz, eat the junk foodz. Just make sure it fits in your calorie goal and/or macros for the day.
  • Hornsby
    Hornsby Posts: 10,322 Member
    I would think the amount of "junk" food considered to be moderation would rely heavily on one's TDEE.
  • vmiyanks04
    vmiyanks04 Posts: 6 Member
    Like the folks above are saying, just fit it into your # calories allowed. I also like to have some chocolate with a cold glass of milk for dessert every night... whether it is chocolate chip cookies, Reese's (greatest candy ever), or Oreo's, I always make sure I have 200-300 calories left over for dessert! Helps me be better during the day too, knowing that I have that to look forward to!

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  • Francl27
    Francl27 Posts: 26,372 Member
    I'd say it depends a lot on your TDEE. For me it's 200-300 calories worth (out of 2000), although I'm trying to take a break from junk food as it's been giving me major munchies lately... typically it's ice cream and/or cookies.
  • lemurcat12
    lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886 Member
    What is moderation?

    Making sure you first get an adequate amount of nutritious food (enough protein, micronutrients) and making sure that you don't overeat.

    You know, like mom said, eat your vegetables before you get dessert.
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,525 Member
    if eating so much of a thing means I'm going to eat ALL of my calories for the day and not be able to eat something else later it's too much.

    I.e. can I eat all my daily calories in ice cream and oreos in one setting and still be hungry later? you bet your sweet bippy I can.
    - so it's to much.

    But- if I eat 1200ish calories and then can fit in 3 oreos and 8 oz of milk? and still make it to 1500 without making myself crazy- that's moderation.

    If I need a sweet treat and I only have 1450 calories left- will I ONLY eat one oreo? YES.

    Eat to fuel your body and fill it out with the rest of what you want.
  • Tisiwa
    Tisiwa Posts: 46 Member
    I agree, that you should fit it in daily.. consider your goal and choose wisely. Have that thing and maybe go eat a large bowl of veggies for dinner, with some protein. there are no restrictions ( speaking for myself , I just, chose what I MUST have and compromise with the other food options, to get that win win result. Check the Macros and calorie intake.. and log honestly..
  • Meerataila
    Meerataila Posts: 1,885 Member
    OFY: Optimal For You.

    I'd try to sell you my OFY plan for $19.95 + S&H, but I can't, because it's OFM: Optimal For Me. You have to figure out what works for you.

    I have some questions you could ask yourself to start with, though:

    1. How much is enough to be happy? The bigger the portion size it takes, the less often you'll be able to indulge in moderation.

    2. How does the treat affect you? Any unpleasant side effects? Like excess hunger, craving, foggy headed, queasy, low energy, less than stellar workout performance? Worse mood? If you have an issue with a food you love, you might prefer to eat it less often.

    3. Look at your calorie budget. Now look at your nutrition needs. Now look at how willing you are to supplement with vitamins to meet your nutritional needs while staying within calories. The less calories you need and the less willing you are to supplement, the less likely it is you can fit regular treats in more than tiny portion sizes.


    Personally I crave like mad and I like huge portion sizes, and I try my best to get as many nutrients as I can from my food, so every day or even every week treats is not the definition of moderation for me. But you might be different. There, I saved you $19.95. Drat, I'm never going to make any money this way! :laugh:
  • Serah87
    Serah87 Posts: 5,481 Member
    I eat a Reese's Peanutbutter cup every day, serving size 1 cup, 80 calories. That's what moderation means to me. :wink: Plus I love them. :drinker:
  • ILiftHeavyAcrylics
    ILiftHeavyAcrylics Posts: 27,732 Member
    Either would be considered moderation to me. It can mean different things to different people.
  • Moderation is unique to each of us.. test it out - if it doesn't work, adjust and test again. Assuming you are here for a lifestyle change you have your whole life to figure it out.
  • Jess__I__Can
    Jess__I__Can Posts: 307 Member
    Moderation to me:

    Pre-log your "must haves," whether they be junk food or not, and plan the rest of your day around it.
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,525 Member
    OFY: Optimal For You.

    I'd try to sell you my OFY plan for $19.95 + S&H, but I can't, because it's OFM: Optimal For Me. You have to figure out what works for you.

    I have some questions you could ask yourself to start with, though:

    1. How much is enough to be happy? The bigger the portion size it takes, the less often you'll be able to indulge in moderation.

    2. How does the treat affect you? Any unpleasant side effects? Like excess hunger, craving, foggy headed, queasy, low energy, less than stellar workout performance? Worse mood? If you have an issue with a food you love, you might prefer to eat it less often.

    3. Look at your calorie budget. Now look at your nutrition needs. Now look at how willing you are to supplement with vitamins to meet your nutritional needs while staying within calories. The less calories you need and the less willing you are to supplement, the less likely it is you can fit regular treats in more than tiny portion sizes.


    Personally I crave like mad and I like huge portion sizes, and I try my best to get as many nutrients as I can from my food, so every day or even every week treats is not the definition of moderation for me. But you might be different. There, I saved you $19.95. Drat, I'm never going to make any money this way! :laugh:

    PS- for those of you reading- this is a GREAT post.