How To Enjoy Cheat Meals & Why They Can Work In Your Favour

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Throughout the week and on weekends, I usually enjoy a macro-packed breakfast like  pancakes and  muesli and berry parfait  to keep me full and satisfied, until I become peckish around midday and make myself a green smoothie before lunch.

But while I try to eat a balanced diet of whole foods most of the time, once a week I give into temptation to ‘treat’ myself and my tastebuds to some of my favourite foods I don’t usually eat or enjoy on a daily basis, like chocolate brownies or raw chocolate– Oh, c’mon, WHO wouldnt decline an offering of anything with chocolate in it?

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Everybody’s reasons are different but I choose to indulge once a week:

  1.  to help re-ignite my thyroid and leptin hormones to increase my metabolism to burn more fat.
  2.  to satisfy sweet cravings
  3.  to splurge (reasonably + with portion control) without feeling guilty
  4.  to have a little fun
  5. and…..because chocolate is life (along side peanut butter hehe)

I have a “metabolism boost meal” rather than a “cheat meal”  ONCE A WEEK (usually a sunday, unless I’m going out) because without it I find myself binging ALOT throughout the week on sugary perishables and processed foods :/ I choose to call it “metabolism boost” because It removes the negative association of “cheat” for a healthier relationship with food 🙂

Note: The amount of MEALS you have should depend on your fitness regime, personal choice, will power AND long-term/short-term and overall fitness goals (eg- lean up, loose weight, gain muscle, bodybuilding etc) but generally, 1 per week is enough.  

Yeah, at first, I found “metabolism boost meals” really challenging because I wanted to eat the treats everyday, but along the way I used the tips below to strengthen my will power, to make my cheat meal work in my favour.

  1. Include protein: this will help you maintain fullness and should be eaten first. If its a dessert your having, try to choose something with nuts such as pepitas and almonds or use a plant-based protein powder (I use Sunwarrior) if you’re going to create something yourself.
  2. Sit down and eat: Don’t eat in front of the TV because you’re going to be distracted. Sit down at a table and eat slowly, taking every bite in and enjoying every single flavour. You want to consciously enjoy the meal.
  3. Portion size: Stick to a STANDARD SERVE of your favourite food and don’t over indulge. If your going out, choose an entree instead of a main meal and drink water after you’ve had a beer or glass of soft drink. Remember, moderation is the key and its a cheat MEAL, not day!
  4. Don’t feel guilty: Don’t feel guilty that what you are eating is going to go ‘straight to your thighs’, or ‘make you fat’. NO IT WONT. Savour it. Enjoy it. If you let yourself feel guilty, you’re missing the whole point. One cheat meal isn’t going to make you fat like one good meal isn’t going to make you skinny. ENJOY IT because Its delicious, yummy, mouth-watering and pure heaven.
  5. Start fresh and move on: Don’t allow your indulgence meal to influence bad eating. Plan and prep your next meals ahead of time so your organised and ready to get back to healthy eating. Commit yourself to 6 days of healthy eating so you can enjoy 1 meal of pure indulgence. Set weekly or daily goals if need be. Build that willpower!

REMEMBER: Next time your having your metabolism boost or cheat meal, Savour it. Enjoy it. Move on. 

I hope you find my tips helpful and if you have any of your tips you would like to share, please leave them below in the comments because I’d love to see what’s worked for you!

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Kayleigh, x

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