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Cheat Days

Discussion in 'Nutrition' started by allcdnboy, Aug 19, 2006.

  1. allcdnboy

    allcdnboy Administrator Staff Member

    Dec 18, 2003
    Hi All.
    I've been asked a few times about cheat days, so I will try to explain it.

    how to cheat
    Once a week, you can go a little crazy with your "diet". For example, each Saturday, you can have a huge pasta dinner with your favorite desert.

    how does this work
    Our bodies love balance. The longer you are at a certain weight, the harder it is to move from it (up or down). This is why a lot of people go on crash diets ... they want fast results. As soon as they go back to their old diet, the weight comes firing back on because that's where the body is confortable (or even higher because it's preparing for another crash diet).
    Your body needs time to adjust and become happy again. "Diet" is a lifestyle, not a 5 week plan to lose weight. The only one that is going to be successful is one that you can stay committed to.

    The only real exception is if you aren't getting enough calories. What happens here, is your body will store any extra food over your recommended intake as fat because it is in starvation mode.
    It shouldn't be how much you eat, but what you eat. I've heard this many times "eat more to lose weight". It's obviously not that cut-and-dry, but it does make sense for those people that are not eating with their goal to lose weight.
    When I switched to my 6-7 meals / day, I started losing weight after about 6 weeks and it's been easy to keep off because that's where my body is happy now. My metabolism is going hard all day and melts any food I eat with ease.

    Eat healthy for 3-4 weeks and then start your "cheat days". The cheat days are quite important for your body too. It needs time to adjust and you will find that you will have some pretty huge cravings if you've made some drastic (but needed) changes to your diet. You need to satisfy them to a certain degree to keep yourself steady on that path. Over time, your body will lose those cravings and the food you eat on a regular basis will make you quite happy.

    AqUaToNe and (deleted member) like this.
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  3. Korrie

    Korrie Moderator

    Nov 19, 2004
    NW Ohio
    thanks alot Sean :D
  4. MDM_

    MDM_ New Member

    Jul 30, 2006
    Toronto, Ontario
    Oh man, last afternoon I had a banquet burger with Mayo and everything on it. And a greek salad with chunks of feta so big they rivaled the tomatoes.

    And that's my cheat for the month.
  5. blessing22

    blessing22 New Member

    Jul 22, 2006

    i have always viewed cheating and seeking somthing you should not have. and feel guilty about it. but when you put it that way then having somthing that you like once in awhile is not so bad so thanks.
  6. Exclamatio

    Exclamatio New Member

    Oct 8, 2006
    aye i do totally agree with the concept but it shouldnt be called cheating!

    after all what are you cheating? nothing really
    you are just looking after and enjoying your own body
  7. Kaitie

    Kaitie Senior

    Jul 27, 2006
    I think that we all still need to be aware of exactly what we are cheating with and how it really can sabotage all of our hard work.

    How can one freakin' hamburger have 1400 calories!! That one mistake was more than I usually eat in 1 day.

    Just be mindful of what your cheating with--this way when you find out that that burger you just shoved down your throat is 1400 calories you don't freak like I did.
  8. dariqueen

    dariqueen Senior

    Jul 31, 2006
    Northern Manitoba
    That's true Kaitie. My cheat days usually consist of having a little more pepsi than usual, and something for dinner I don't normally have anymore, like a regular pizza, or ice cream for dessert.:)
  9. John_KY

    John_KY New Member

    Sep 8, 2006
    I don't know. This approach may work well for lots of people, but I'm pretty sure it would be a bad idea for me. When I made the decision to be healthier I swore off many old favorites cold turkey. While I think it would be very appealing for me to allow myself to indulge in these foods every once in a while I think I might "open the floodgates" to the possibility of eating in an unhealthy fashion again.

    Guess I'm destined to be a continuously recovering food addict from now on. I better "just say no".

  10. Tomble

    Tomble Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2006
    Melbourne, Australia
    I really do like having my junk food day. Friday night is fried chicken & chips, washed down with a beer or two. Mind you, I wouldn't allow myself this if I did not follow my eating plan during the week, Friday night junk food is a privilege I earn!

    I don't eat like I used to, because I used to have some snacks, then chicken & chips, beer, then maybe some chocolate, and some ice cream, and maybe some more snacks later. Even though I was full.


    I can not believe I used to eat like that.
  11. hillbillylee

    hillbillylee Senior

    Jun 4, 2006
    United States Of Texas
    cheat days aren't so bad they remind you that your still human lol. All you have to remember is it's a cheat day and not a binge day.....
  12. BigAdrian

    BigAdrian New Member

    Dec 4, 2006
    Las Vegas
    A good method I use is to go out for your cheat meal, it gives you a sense of accomplishment for the week (If you stuck to you new lifestyle), and well... It tastes good. Going out helps because the food is not in your place, its a lot more tempting if there is ice cream in the freezer, not if you have to go out to get it.
  13. CrocusBlooming

    CrocusBlooming New Member

    Jan 1, 2007
    Native Californian living in Germany
    think it's still what you want?

    You might be surprised that when you have your treat that you don't enjoy it like you used to.

    When I first started making better choices I cut out two things that have since totally lost their appeal when revisited. I seriously can't believe what I got out of eating them anymore.

    It's emotional eating revealing itself, I didn't eat it 'cause I wanted it, I ate it 'cause I thought I wanted it.
  14. gn6196

    gn6196 New Member

    Dec 28, 2006
    The cheat days are never a problem with me . It's getting back on the wagon that is the potential problem. A cheat day can turn into a cheat week.
  15. CaseyAtMartin

    CaseyAtMartin Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2007
    Soybean Field, TN
    I don't really like the thought of "cheat days"...but sometimes I eat Ramen Noodles! They're completely overprocessed and full of salt and offer no nutrition, but they're just so GOOD. it's also less than 400 cals for a pack so I don't feel completely full or guilty afterwards. I am vegan so I don't eat pizza or cookies/cakes/pies so this is my "junk food."
  16. h2o_fanatic

    h2o_fanatic New Member

    Nov 27, 2006
    I have "cheat days" but I don't consider them that, for example I wanted a burger so I went and got one but ... at a place where i know they are grilled ( not fried) and I skipped the cheese. No condiments ether, just red onion and tomato. With it I had literally 5 fries and a small garden salad.... woot for cheat days :)
  17. Steve

    Steve Member Staff Member

    Jul 11, 2006
    Deos Fortioribus Adesse
    Cheat days are definitely not necessary for everyone. And I am definitely not a fan of cheat DAYS, rather cheat meals are ok, as in 2-3 per week. Unless you are already very lean, the main reason they are important is for sanity's sake.

    Once you are lean, cheats can become increasingly important for hormonal changes, such as leptin.

    However, for those trying to lose weight, some get thrown off too much by cheats. So, my 2 cents, if you feel the need to cheat, do so in moderation a few times per week. Those few meals will not kill your progress unless you completely gorge yourself. If you don't feel the need to satisfy cravings, don't feel that cheating is necessary for your success.
  18. tonymcclellan

    tonymcclellan Well-Known Member

    Jan 17, 2007
    Ramsey NJ
    In the words of Dr. John Berardi, PhD. you can cheat 10% of the time. If you eat 5 meals per day, over 7 days that is 35 meals. You can have 3-4 cheat meals in that week.

    The difference between 90% and 100% adherence to your diet is negligible~Berardi
  19. rach3y

    rach3y New Member

    Jan 12, 2007
    I'm vegan and i do eat all those things :rolleyes: i will make a vegan cake or pizza or cupcakes or whatever for my family so they don't buy the crappy dairy ones from the store... then i end up eating most of it!
    Maybe i should just let them eat unhealthy ;)
  20. WeightLossGuy

    WeightLossGuy New Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    I don't like to call them CHEAT DAYS either but I love PIZZA

    The weight loss program I am on allows for a cheat meal once a week. I think it's a great thing becuase you might go way over your daily limit of calories/carbs/sugar/sodium/whatever but if the thought of that one meal (it's pizza for me! :p ) keeps you on the straight and narrow the rest of the week then it's OK!

    The only temptation is if your cheat meal turns into a cheat afternoon and then next time a whole cheat day(s). I am the type who can't eat just one cookie. If I eat one then I might as well have a dozen. So I have to be ultra firm with my cheat meal boundaries. When I am done with my pizza pig out I get up from the table and brush my teeth and that marks the end of the cheat meal for me.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2007
  21. Steve

    Steve Member Staff Member

    Jul 11, 2006
    Deos Fortioribus Adesse
    Right. Like I said, it is very individual. Some people will get something from it, others will not. My point was, they are not necessary.

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