What is your vision of healthy? Is it chasing your ideal body? Is it eating whole organic foods? Is it performing well in the gym? We all have our own ideas about what being "healthy" is. Each of us is working towards being the best self that we can be. Whether that is from a physical aspect, gaining mental clarity or a combination of both.
So many people come to me with this thought that if they lost that last 10 pounds magically their life would be different. So then I start to talk about nutrition and what it takes to get to that magical spot of abs and the look I get is unbelievable. Yes you will be hungry. Yes you will need to do cardio. Yes your performance in the gym will suck a bit. Say bye bye to nights out because you will be eating pretty strict for those ab gains !
The truth is that people want the abs but don't want the hard ass work you need to put in. But what if you want to just perform better? You NEED to eat to fuel your body. IIFYM to the rescue where you can eat anything your heart desires if it fits. Well hold up a second. If you eat all your macros in junk do you really think your body is going to respond and give you a great physique or even perform well in the gym? NO. Why do "diets" fail? Because people get so burnt out from trying to be on a diet that it fails them.
Yes the diet failed you not the other way around. You need to see your nutrition like a puzzle. Are you eating healthy foods to fuel your performance? Is your goal body composition changes ? Are you willing to sacrifice for a little for abs? Questions like these need to be figured out before you start trying to change up your food intake.
If you want results the answer is quite simple. Eat real food. Eat whole foods. Eat foods that provide nutrients to your body. Health and fitness are long roads that never really end. The measure of progress through goal setting should be a guide, but goals shouldn't end in the gym and shouldn't end at your ab gains either. Just remember that as you evolve though fitness you also need to adapt to the challenges of life as well. It's not a one size fits all approach. Be unique and follow your own path!