To Cheat or Not to Cheat?

Imagine telling your significant other that one day a week you need a little roll in the hay with someone else. Well, that’s exactly what millions of otherwise faithful dieters do: one day a week they cheat on their eating plan and eat anything they want- and lots of it.

You know the story.

Your kale salads and GG crackers are on point all week, so when the weekend rolls around; you deserve a little reward, right? Not so fast. For most dieters, cheat days involve a naughty encounter with a bad boyfriend. For some ladies, this is perfectly fine. After a quick hook up, they happily move on their way. For the majority of dieters, however, starting up with their bad boyfriend food reignites cravings and triggers compulsive overeating and binge eating. So if you decide to stray, be careful that your cheat day doesn’t turn into a week or month of infidelity.

One cheat day can undo all the weight-loss work you’ve put in during the week. If you devote an entire day to eating foods that reactivate your cravings and don’t push you toward your goal, the only person you’re cheating is yourself . . . and that’s not good in the short term or long term. Plus, a cheat day can easily turn into a few cheat days, making it harder to get back on track.

Instead, stick to one small treat each day to satisfy your daily cravings, so that you shouldn’t need a whole day to let loose. In my office, I work with my dieters on how to incorporate “CHEATS” into their food plans. It also helps to make sure the foods you’re eating on your regular diet plan are enjoyable. Join a weight loss support community (our private Facebook community: Skinny Jeans Get Smart & Skinny is a great one!) for new food finds. Or try a new recipe — get excited about the meals you’re eating, and you’ll be loving your food so much, you won’t need a “cheat day”.


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