Benefits of Adding Cheat Meals to Your Diet

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Pizza, pasta, pancakes, cheeseburger, or your other sweet treats – we all have our own definition of cheat meals.

A cheat meal is basically an excuse for you to eat your favourite foods all you can, and want, even though it’s against your diet plans. I know most of us are guilty because we turn to it when we can’t hold our cravings anymore. Right? Right.

But there’s no reason to be guilty anymore. Surprisingly, a few studies have shown that adding cheat meals to your diet have benefits too. Personal trainer
Courtney Anaya
 explains how these meals can help you achieve your desired weight on Muscle and Fitness:

LOSE WEIGHT AND GET RIPPED WITH CHEAT MEALS

There’s light at the end of tunnel — spring is just a few short weeks away. Not only is it hopefully the beginning of warmer weather, but it also marks the beginning of cutting season. It’s time to shed those pounds and get that lean, ripped physique that you’ve been working so hard to achieve.
Read more…

Hard to believe, right? Well, foods should make us happy, and not feel like we’re eating just so we won’t starve. Don’t get me wrong, you can still create delicious AND healthy foods. No need to cheat.

Moving along, here are a few good reasons why you need that extra slice of pizza once in a while, discussed by Steven Stiefel on Flex Online:

The Case for Cheating

Rigorously following a strict diet undercuts your ability to increase muscle mass. Cheating all the time will undermine your ability to grow and stay lean. But including a cheat meal or two each week will increase your body’s ability to add muscle mass—if you know when to cheat and when to stay on point.
Read more…

Lastly, Eat This has a very informative article on how to balance your cheat meals, to not make much impact to your body:

CHEAT & WIN: 10 CHEAT MEAL STRATEGIES FOR WEIGHT LOSS

No, not cheating in sports, like Lance Armstrong; or in politics, like Vladimir Putin; or in love, like the entire population of Capitol Hill. I mean cheating on your diet, and reaping some unexpected benefits.
Read more…

In conclusion, adding cheat meals to your diet is okay, as long as it’s not on a regular basis. The recommended is
about one to two meals per week
, ideally for breakfast. Avoid having these meals for dinner because your body may not be able to digest them quickly.

You know how restrictive diets go, so might as well enjoy your good ol’ favourite foods. You have our permission to not stress over calculating your nutrient intake once in a while.

Remember, it’s a cheat “meal,” not “day.” They only cause unwanted results because you overindulge, so you have to control yourself. Diet may be the hardest part of your weight loss plan, but everything is worth it, trust me!

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