Welcome to Friday  this Friday I wanted to write about cheat days. You might wonder what is a cheat day? No it is not a day where you cheat on your loved one but it is a day that you can cheat on your healthy habits. Denying yourself everything is not healthy and will hurt you on the long run, but more about that later. So today I am going to tell about the idea of a cheat day, how to do it and what my opinion about it is, seeing I have an opinion about everything. I do have to note that I have a lot of food pictures ahead, so eat before reading more.

What is a cheat day

When trying to loose weight it is important to eat healthy and not to get tempted by soda, snacks and fried food. Those the evils most people try to avoid and yet avoiding those at all cost makes you want them more. So that is why some people plan a cheat day so they can eat their favorite snack or food without feeling guilty, on that one day once a month, once a week or every other week they can eat whatever they want. And that is the biggest flaw of cheat days, people try to cram as much unhealthy food in that one day because they 'can' and then they start to gain back pounds

When you plan a cheat day on your diet once a week, you can look forward to rewarding yourself for your hard work. Every time you feel the temptation throughout the week to stray off of your diet, you'll be able to remind yourself that you will have that treat on your cheat day and you'll find the temptation less strong than if you'd told yourself you can never touch that unhealthy food again. [1]

Also if you limit your favorite foods to once in a long time you taste it better. I bet most people know what their favorite food tastes like because they eat it regular  Limiting yourself to once a week or every other week will make you appreciate the taste more. And if you keep in mind to eat slow it will taste even better!

My opinion

I personally think a cheat day sounds like 'you cheated' like you did something wrong, while giving yourself a 'reward' or something you really 'want' is not wrong. I do not plan my cheat days in advance, I wait for moments where I really want something. I ask myself "Is it worth it" and "Do I really want it" and when I worked really for a long time I think I deserve it. If it is my birthday I do think I deserve that one piece of of birthday cake  Why should I not? Life is not a prison and loosing weight is not hell where you may not do a thing that is not considered the healthiest option. 

So does that one cupcake make you fat? No, it takes round 3500 extra calories to gain half a kilo or a pound. So those extra 100 calories is something you can easy burn off and does not make you gain 50 pounds. 

So when you are strolling round the town and your belly grumbles and your mouth waters at that one waffle why not give that to yourself? When the sun is blazing down why not treat yourself to an ice cream cone. But remember there are options, there is one waffle but there is also one waffle with whipped cream, chocolate drizzled over it and deep fried. There is always a good option for a tasty snack. And when you are standing in front of the ice cream truck, do you really need 5 scoops or can you be happy with one or two? 

Other options

Yes, you can cheat with all the things I mentioned above, cake, ice cream and waffles. But there is also an other option to treat yourself to something that sounds like a cheat but is very healthy. Lets start with the favorite of many, chocolate. A while ago I wrote about the benefits of chocolate and how it is more healthy if you pick a 75% or darker. It still feels like candy but tastes and is chocolate. A block of chocolate once in a while does not work.

It is a way of reprogramming your mind, it feels like candy or a treat but it isn't. Fruit salads or just a bowl of strawberries can taste even better then a deep fried snack, if you just let yourself appreciate things that are not label as 'snack' I added a lot of pictures of food in this article. Some healthy and some are not. I think you need to find balance between those two to really have a life.

So many things can taste amazing but it takes some time to discover your options. If you freeze pieces of banana and blend them to a pulp you have something that tastes very similar to banana flavored ice.
If you do the same to yogurt you have also something that reminds you of ice cream but with more good inside. 

But remember, food is not an enemy. If you really want something, debate if it is worth it and if it fits into your day. And you can always eat what you like and pick healthy things. 

So my advice on the subject of 'cheat days' and giving yourself something extra. It is okay if you think it over and do it in moderation.

Note: All images are from tumblr, sadly enough I could not find original sources. 

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