It's often said that a diet of moderation is the key to a healthy, happy lifestyle. For some people, however, the only real way to lose weight is to abstain completely from the unhelpful foods they're addicted to, a lesson Mara Schiavocampo understood early on in her efforts to transform her body. 

The "Good Morning America" correspondent and author of the new book, “THINspired: How I Lost 90 Pounds," says that her weight loss journey began by completely cutting out all processed food from her diet, no matter how "moderately" they were consumed.

"I went from exclusively eating packaged, processed foods or takeout, to fresh, clean, healthy food," she writes in a new HuffPo article. "I don't eat anything processed. I also never eat my trigger foods. I avoid them like the plague. I simply cannot eat those things in moderation."

In addition, Schiavocampo reveals that she cut out anything containing flour or dairy and she abstains completely from candy and wine. Her new meal plan includes "fruits, vegetables, chicken, fish, beans, nuts and whole grains," a switch she says was difficult, but it immediately caused the weight to start falling off. 

"The more refined my diet gets, the better I want it to be. It's a positive cycle of feedback," she writes. "Eating nutritious foods makes me feel so good that I just want to give my body better and better choices."

As for other lifestyle changes, Schiavocampo says that while increasing her exercise was helpful, getting more sleep was even more so. 

"Sleep is a necessity, not an indulgence," she wrote in December. "Studies suggest that when you give your body the sleep it needs, you’ll eat less. You’ll have stronger willpower. You’ll make better food choices. You’ll have more energy for exercise."

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Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

How avoiding processed foods helped this TV personality lose 90 pounds
'Good Morning America' correspondent Mara Schiavocampo reveals how a clean diet, lots of sleep and consistent exercise helped her achieve her new look.