Cheating Day on a Diet

Adapting to a whole new eating habit to lose weight does not mean you should deny yourself of the foods you love.  Sure, you cannot continue enjoying eating fried chicken or pizza everyday, but you can still enjoy a slice of pizza every now and then.  It does not mean you should lock yourself away from grabbing that bowl of ice cream or a fried chicken leg.

However, some dieters like to have these "cheat" days, wherein they stick to their weight loss plan during the week, then eat whatever they crave on weekends.  People may think that they would be achieving their weight loss by leaving a whole day of indulging, thus removing the "boring routine" caused by dieting.

But a recent study in the International Journal of Obesity showed that people who ate a consistent amount of calories the whole week were 50% more likely to maintain their weight than those who stuck to it during weekdays then eat everything they like to eat on weekends. 

"Cheat days" are not recommended by diet experts because many dieters many just end up looking forward to those few days when they can enjoy the foods they love instead of learning to incorporate those foods into their new eating plan.  It is okay to plan for those special occasions, such as your parent’s birthday or a night out with friends, when you are bound to eat a little more than usual; however, skipping a day or two on your diet may not be a good strategy in the long run.

Aside from incorporating your favorite foods into your new eating plan, you can also try calorie cycling by eating varying amounts of calories during the week, thus keeping your body from getting used to a specific routine.  This eating plan can help with weight loss and at the same time helps you plan for those days when you know you are about to eat a little more.

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