Eating is a balance of moderation and variation, not deprivation. A good diet is one of 3 keys to living a healthy lifestyle; the others are sleep and exercise. Creating healthy habits are the keys to making them work for you. When you establish an overall pattern of healthful nutrition and a salubrious lifestyle, your body and brain will thank you. I typically approach eating with an 80/20 ratio and have flexibility built in. For instance, 80% of the time I embrace healthy eating while 20% of the time I treat myself, without regret. Depending upon several factors (life, celebrations, health or illness), that ratio fluctuates based upon your needs. The key is determining what works best for you and allowing for flexibility and change. A big part of creating these healthy habits is learning to not punish yourself when you enjoy cake, cookies, pizza or fries. Eat it, savor it and move on. Life is way too short to beat yourself up over it. Jump back into your healthy ratio and forgeddaboutit! The biggest joy is finding the balance that works and fits your lifestyle.
When you have a healthy relationship with food, it is a balance of moderation and variation, not deprivation. It's about getting in touch with your body and hunger signals in order to feed your appetite not your emotions.