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What do I do when……I fall off the wagon and eat a whole pizza?

Photo: Jamie Grill Photography/Getty Images

Find out how you can get back on track after a night of overindulgence. By: Carolyn Williams, PhD, RD

What do successful dieters do when they fall off the wagon? They forget about it, and move on! Though this may sound simplistic, the key to succeeding in long-term weight loss is acknowledging that you messed up by not making the best food choice (and everyone does this at times). Then, get right back on track with your healthy eating. Holding on to guilt and shame from your slipup only makes you feel bad and potentially sets you up for more poor food choices.

Successful dieters also recognize and combat their triggers. Once you’ve acknowledged that you messed up, try to figure out what triggered you to stray from your diet. Was it because you went too long without eating? Was it because the only food you had on hand was potato chips and cookies? Or, was it the result of getting into a fight with your best friend or stress from a big deadline? Figure out what the situation or emotion was that caused you to stumble, and then make a plan for how you’ll handle the trigger next time. For example, stock your fridge and office with quick, healthy options if you’re susceptible to slipups when you get hungry. Buy a pretty new journal to jot your feelings down, or pick up the phone and call someone when you’re upset. If you tend to eat when you’re bored, buy a crossword book, or try a sewing craft to keep your hands and mind occupied.