Why a Cheat Meal is Actually a Good Idea
By Genevieve Cunningham
When it comes to eating a healthy diet, restriction is sometimes necessary. We often have to give up a few calories, a ton of sugar, and all of the fried foods. We have to eat more veggies and less carbs. At first, this seems easy. We change our diet, our bodies change, and we know we’re on the right track. But after a while, the monotony and limited menu feels restrictive, and without an outlet of some sort, we often give up. So how do we avoid giving up? Allow yourself some room … especially in the form of a cheat meal. If you’ve been hesitant to indulge in anything good, take a look at these reasons why a cheat meal is a good idea.
It Breaks the Boredom
Keeping your diet mostly the same day in and day out brings some big benefits. It makes it easier, more affordable, and more likely that you’ll stick with it. But there’s a certain point when eating the same foods all of the time brings a certain amount of boredom, and boredom can cause you to break your diet. Making sure that you get a cheat meal every week helps to break this boredom, and thus avoid the quitting trap.
It Avoids the Binge
For many people, anything too restrictive is inevitably followed by a binge. The diet is strict, strict, strict … and then we can’t take it anymore and we eat everything in sight. To avoid this restrict-and-binge cycle, allow yourself one really good meal every single week. You won’t feel as deprived, which can then ward off the binge. Pizza, ice cream, cookies, fried chicken. Choose one delicious, off the menu meal per week, and you’re far less likely to binge for days straight when you’ve had enough of the diet.
It Boosts Mental Health
Everything in moderation. Moderation is key to finding success, and it’s also key to keeping your mind in the game. Being too restrictive can harm your mental well-being and cause your resolve to break down. Allowing yourself a little wiggle room helps keep your mind mentally strong and in the game. If you really want this new healthy diet to last, a cheat meal is imperative.
Eating a healthy and well balanced diet is definitely important. But it’s completely OK to allow yourself a little freedom now and again. Schedule in a cheat meal (not day!), and you’re much more likely to find long-term success and gain a body that makes you feel fit and proud.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Marietta, Ga.