7. Following a treat-free eating plan
Allowing yourself an occasional treat, such as a special dessert or french fries, may protect you from overdoing it on the wrong foods because you’re always feeling deprived. Having access to some tempting foods, such as candy, rather than banning them outright, may help you avoid temptation. (Just don’t keep your personal trigger foods in the house.) A study in the Journal of Consumer Research examined the differences between real and abstract food temptations. It found that when women were exposed to candy (such as M&M’s) but were asked not to eat it, they were more likely to exhibit self-control when offered the same candy a second time. However, women who were only shown ads or pictures of candy were less likely to show restraint with the real thing.