At some point in everyone’s lives we will all go on a diet or restrain from eating certain foods so that we feel healthier or to help us loose weight. As you know i am currently in prep for a bikini competition however, i am not on a very strict diet i just have to follow certain macros/calories and make sure i am not eating too much of a certain food (i.e. carbs). This works well for me as if i am only allowed to eat a certain meal at a certain time a day i think i would go positively crazy!! Although i say this, recently i have craving all the bad things…peanut butter (to the mass), chocolate, biscuits and all the sweet things you could imagine. Being on a calorie controlled diet isn’t easy. I’m a HUGE foodie and i love anything sweet. Most of the time i end up smelling the muffins people are eating around me as i believe that half the taste is in the smell…i know i may sound like ridiculous but it honestly cuts the craving slightly. I’m also one of those weird people that gets pleasure from seeing someone else enjoy the bad stuff!
But back to topic! So i’ve been doing some reading on cheat meals recently and wondered if having a cheat meal would benefit me or just make me feel 100 times worse and guilty? Or would it satisfy my cravings and keep me sane…? What are your thoughts and experiences?
I won’t bore you with the fancy scientific side of it but basically, the more you resist something you crave the more your brain will send alarm bells around your body hence why some people binge horrifically! So surely having the thing you crave every now and then would be more beneficial but maybe not as enjoyable??
Or what about a scheduled cheat meal once a week where you know you will eventually get what you want but in a controlled environment and keeping your sanity? That sounds like a much more realistic idea don’t you think? Not only does a cheat meal keep you feeling sane with life but it also can do you a favour loosing weight! It will give your metabolism a boost as it’s not used to the lovely food you are providing it with but also prevents your body from going into starvation mode making sure that you are still loosing weight and not plateauing. Awesome right?!
So this all sounds well and good, have a cheat meal once a week to actually help with weight loss as long as you are keeping your meals strict the rest of the week. BUT, yes there is a but! Unfortunately you can’t go completely crazy. It needs to be a smart cheat meal, something that isn’t going to ruin all your hard earned progress during the week. A cheeseburger with the bun, a few slices of pizza or a cheesy pasta dish with some sort of protein. These might not sound like anything major but it will cure the craving as it will probably be carbs that your body wants. Ideally you still don’t want to go over by too much on your calories, so if you know what you are going to have as your cheat meal, try and be cautious of what you eat during the rest of the day. Definitely don’t skip meals just have smaller portions etc.
So all in all a cheat meal really isn’t the worst thing in the world, yes it still has to be controlled and accounted for but you can have your cake and eat it…kind of! It won’t do you any harm in fact it will actually benefit your diet plan, weight loss and sanity. Don’t be disheartened as you can’t stuff your face for hours on end but look at this in a positive way =]
What are your experiences/opinions on cheat meals? Do you think they work? Have you tried them? What would be your ultimate cheat meal? Mine would be a cheeseburger for sure!!