Are “Cheat Days” a Good Idea?

Is it okay to treat yourself on a diet? The answer is yes, you definitely what to make sure you’re treating yourself when dieting, because at the end of the day, you not only want a diet that is healthy; you also want a diet that is enjoyable and keeps you satisfied as well because this will be the type of diet you can maintain long-term.

Now how to treat yourself is not as simple as a question to answer.
One of the major sticking points that people run into when it comes to treating themselves is the subject of “cheat days”.

This is because many people have different experiences or results when it comes to having cheat days.

It is important to understand why some people struggle with cheat days and cheat meals and what might be a better alternative.

Then why do some people do well with cheat days, and how should they go about having a cheat day.
Why Do Some People Struggle With “Cheat Meal” or “Cheat Days”.

No Break Days

This is for people who have had trouble with having break days in the past.

In this method you have no break days and just add comparable foods to your diet.  Having a cheat day can complicate dieting for a variety of different reason.

 

Having A Break Day

This is for people who…

(If you do a have a break day here are some tips on how to treat yourself so you mitigate the risk of weight gain)

Tips For Treating Yourself

 

1. Eat Something Filling in Advance:

Don’t treat yourself to your guilty pleasure food on an empty stomach.  Eat something that is healthy and filling before you treat yourself to your guilty pleasure food.  If you treat yourself to your guilty pleasure food after you’ve already eaten something filling, you will eat less of that guilty pleasure food, because you’ve already eaten and have less of an appetite.  If you treat yourself to your guilty pleasure food on an empty stomach, you will eat more of that guilty pleasure food, because you have more of an appetite.

Minimizing how much of your guilty pleasure food you treat yourself to, will ensure that you don’t put back on pounds that you have worked so hard to lose through dieting.

 

2. Don’t Eat Excess Parts of Food

Many times when we treat ourselves to our guilty pleasure foods, we consume extra calories unnecessarily by eating the excess parts of the food that we don’t particularly like.  A perfect example of this is pizza.  Everybody loves pizza.  However, not everyone loves pizza crust, but we eat it anyway.  Do you know why we eat pizza crust?  We eat it simply because it’s there.  Stop doing this to yourself.  If you’re going to allow yourself to cheat on your diet and intake a few extra calories, let it be on foods that you enjoy not excess parts of the food that are simply there.

Often, when treating ourselves, we will consume extra calories unnecessarily, by ordering the meal when we all we want is the entree.  We may order the cheeseburger meal when all we really want is the cheeseburger.  However, since we ordered the cheeseburger meal, not only do we get the cheeseburger, we get fries and drink too.  The fries and drink are two items that we may not particularly want, and by consuming these two items, we intake a lot of extra calories.

 

3. The Earlier You Treat Yourself The Better

When you’re treating yourself to your guilty pleasure food, just keep in mind that the earlier in the day you treat yourself, the better.  You want to eat as far away from bedtime as possible, so you have all those waking hours to burn off those extra calories.

 

4. Don’t Have “Cheat Days”

As previously mentioned, if you’re on a diet it’s okay every once in a while to cheat on your diet and to treat yourself.  However, when you occasionally allow yourself to cheat on your diet let it be for just one meal and then hop right back on your diet.  Don’t do what many people do and have a “cheat day”.  A “cheat day:” is when you allow yourself to cheat on your diet for an entire day.  When you allow yourself to cheat on your diet for an entire day you’re likely to put back on pounds that you’ve worked so hard to lose.  Also, the more time you spend off your diet, the harder it is to get back on your diet.  If allow yourself to cheat on your diet for just one meal, it’s very easy to snap back to dieting again.  However, if you spend an entire day cheating on your diet and eating whatever you want, you may have a tough time getting back to your diet the next day.

 

Practice portion control so you will eat less when treating yourself.

If you’re practicing good portion control and can become fuller eating less food, this should be very helpful come your treat day because you should be able to become fuller eating your treat food sooner.