I have tried to diet many times, and never succeed unless I'm also working out daily. Some people might have the will power to simply eat well without exercise, but that's never been one of my strengths.
A new study, however, may show why this is so. According to this USA Today post, "clenching your muscles may help boost your will power." It may help you reduce the "temptation" to eat foods you don't think you should be eating.
The study shows that it doesn't matter what muscle you clench, be it your biceps, triceps, hand, fingers, calves, or hamstrings, the study showed muscle clenching resulted in better will power.
The catch is that muscle clenching only worked when the participant had a goal of not eating the said food, be it chocolate cake or a bag of chips.
I don't know if this has anything to do with it, but when I'm lifting weights I find that I have more muscle strength, and my muscles feel more powerful, and therefore I'm more likely to clench them during the coarse of the day.
When my muscles atrophy, I'm more of a wimpy man like Hans and Franz from the old Saturday NightLive Skit played by Dana Carvey and Kevin Nealon. A wimpy man has less of a desire to flex his muscles, because he has "little teeny weeny muscles."
Perhaps I'm being frivolous here, yet I have found that when I'm lifting weights regularly I tend to eat better; I have better will power. Perhaps some researchers can use my observation here and spend a million bucks or so furthering this research.
So this could be kind of hilarious as you see me and my wife sitting around clenching our muscles all day long. Or hilarious as you see me at work clenching my muscles on Monday morning when a doctor brings in a box of donuts or candy bars.