7 Good Rea­sons To Ditch The Cheat Meals

Australian Natural Bodz - - Contents -

In this is­sue we take a look at those ques­tion­able cheat meals that we all like to sneak in ev­ery now and again. Friend or Foe?

When is cheat­ing good for you? In most cases cheat­ing in any field is frowned upon, but what about a lit­tle cheat meal here and there in a well planned diet pro­gram. Do people throw in cheat meals purely for a psy­cho­log­i­cal rea­sons or are there real ben­e­fits to throw­ing in a few cheat meals on a weekly ba­sis? Many diet plans from train­ers in­clude cheat meals or cheat days. They’re sup­posed to pre­vent you from feel­ing de­prived, boost me­tab­o­lism, in­crease chances of suc­cess with a diet, etc. Well, it may not be as good as it sounds or tastes! In most cases these cheat meals or cheat days in­clude all sorts of high su­gar and fat laden foods. One could ask how can eat­ing “junk food” pos­si­bly be even re­motely good for us! It isn’t. But hu­man be­ings are the masters of “self jus­ti­fi­ca­tion” and many on a strict diet pro­gram feel that they de­serve a re­ward for their dis­ci­plined way of life. We all do it. Jus­tify our ac­tions whether they be good or bad. The truth is eat­ing any kind of su­gar and fat loaded junk food not even re­motely good for us at any time of the day, week or year. But we still do it, right? Of course we do, but is there any real ben­e­fit or are we just spin­ning our wheels and putting a nu­tri­tional span­ner in our at­tempts to get into great shape. Noth­ing against oc­ca­sional “refeeds” – as in eat­ing more good carbs or calo­ries than usual one day. You might call these refeeds healthy cheat meals – they’re ab­so­lutely fine and may even be good for you. But claim­ing that it is some­how ben­e­fi­cial to pig out on ex­tremely harm­ful foods with su­gar, re­fined wheat or trans fats just doesn’t make sense to me. Now, you can do what­ever you want with your own body, but I thought I’d give you a few rea­sons why hav­ing a cheat meal or cheat day may not be the best idea.

1. Your Body Won't Fully Adopt to the Healthy Diet

When you dras­ti­cally change the way you eat, a cer­tain adap­ta­tion process needs to take place. For ex­am­ple, if you’re do­ing a low-carb ke­to­genic diet (keto) then your body needs to change cer­tain hor­mones and ramp up pro­duc­tion of en­zymes to make use of fat as the pri­mary source of fuel. If you keep cheat­ing, you will pre­vent this meta­bolic adap­ta­tion from ever fully com­plet­ing. Also, when you aban­don the stan­dard western diet and start eat­ing more real foods, it can take some time for the sense of taste to adapt. If you have ever done the pa­leo diet for an ex­tended pe­riod of time with­out cheat­ing then you may have ex­pe­ri­enced this. With time, real foods start to taste much bet­ter. If you cheat and eat junk foods fre­quently, your taste sen­sa­tions won’t adapt com­pletely and you won’t be able to ex­pe­ri­ence the same sat­is­fac­tion from real foods.

2. You Might Over in­dulge and in­sti­gate pre­vi­ous bad eat­ing habits

Many people can binge like there’s no to­mor­row and ruin a week’s worth of di­et­ing in one sit­ting. It is so easy to keep eat­ing once the su­gar hits your blood­stream and your taste buds spark up. Af­ter one big binge it’s easy to knock back 5,000-10,000 calo­ries in one sit­ting! That’s around 2-3 days worth of calo­ries in one meal! Pretty scary to fig­ure how long you will need to work­out to burn off those additional calo­ries.

3 Cheat Meals Can Feed The Ad­dic­tion

I am sure you will agree junk foods can be down­right ad­dic­tive. In fact su­gar has been proven to be as ad­dic­tive as co­caine in cer­tain cases! If you have a fairly ob­ses­sive per­son­al­ity and have trou­ble con­trol­ling yourself around junk food, cheat meals may be the devil in dis­guise. This prob­lem ap­pears to be com­mon and people who have is­sues with crav­ings and binge eat­ing should prob­a­bly ab­stain from these foods as much as pos­si­ble. If you keep hav­ing some­thing that you’re ad­dicted to, it just keeps the ad­dic­tion go­ing. In this case, hav­ing “ev­ery­thing in mod­er­a­tion” isn’t a good idea as it will be al­most im­pos­si­ble to de­ter­mine whats “Mod­er­ate”. For one per­son a few squares of choco­late is mod­er­ate, where is for an­other they will clean up the en­tire block! Mod­er­a­tion is an in­di­vid­ual thing so it’s very hard to quan­tify the term. If you crave junk foods all the time and keep giv­ing in to these crav­ings that will just make the crav­ings even

stronger. Avoid these foods com­pletely and the crav­ings will di­min­ish over time. Ab­sti­nence is the only thing that works for ad­dic­tion, pe­riod.

4. Junk Food is Not Good For You

Junk food is bad for you (no kid­ding) and that is prob­a­bly the rea­sons you gave it up in the first place. It is the one of the main rea­sons why a good per­cent­age of the Western World is obese! This is prob­a­bly a good enough rea­son to avoid it like the plague. Hav­ing McDon­alds or a pizza with some ice cream once a week may not seem like a big deal com­pared to people who eat this sort of junk on a daily ba­sis. Noth­ing but sim­ple math­e­mat­ics tells us that even eat­ing these junk foods once a week is still clearly worse than not hav­ing it at all.

5. Bring on The Guilt Fac­tor

Have you ever felt bloated, guilty and mis­er­able af­ter eat­ing junk food, and won­der why you ate it in the first place? That’s pretty com­mon, ac­tu­ally. But it can be quite dan­ger­ous, es­pe­cially for our self con­fi­dence. The cheat meal may give you some plea­sure while you are eat­ing it, but it sure as hell won’t make you feel good af­ter­wards. You feel like you have un-done hours of hard gym ses­sions in a sin­gle meal. You can al­most feel your chis­eled abs blur­ring over with ev­ery mouth­ful ice-cream. Yes in­deed most of this may purely be in your mind, how­ever it’s the mind that con­trols the body not the other way around. Hence why it’s so im­por­tant to main­tain a pos­i­tive mind set when try­ing to achieve health and fit­ness goals. Any­thing that puts a dent in your self be­lief is bad news. When we eat junk we are go­ing against our in­ner core be­lief sys­tem, not a good sce­nario.

6. Cheat­ing Does Not Raise Me­tab­o­lism or Pre­vent "Star­va­tion Mode"

The con­cept of “star­va­tion mode” is largely a myth with no real sci­ence be­hind it and doesn’t re­ally hap­pen un­til you get to an ex­tremely low body fat per­cent­age. If you’re a body­builder on a long cut for a show, then refeeds are likely to help pre­vent ad­verse ef­fects of di­et­ing for too long. But even in this case, choos­ing healthy foods is still a bet­ter idea. How­ever, most people aren’t pre­par­ing for a body­build­ing or fit­ness com­pe­ti­tion and do not need to take dras­tic ac­tion to boost me­tab­o­lism or pre­vent star­va­tion mode, what­ever that means. For many body­builders cheat meals are just a way of jus­ti­fy­ing bad eat­ing habits that they have not yet kicked. If you are the type that wants to kid yourself into think­ing eat­ing junk ev­ery now and again is ok well look for­ward to poor con­di­tion­ing when you hit the stage for your next com­pe­ti­tion. We have to re­mind our­selves why we do this! We want to not only have a great look­ing body but we want to live a long and healthy life. Eat­ing “Junk” has noth­ing to do with the lat­ter. For healthy people try­ing to stay healthy or lose a bit of weight, cheat meals are un­nec­es­sary at best and

may be detri­men­tal. If you’re wor­ried about your meta­bolic rate go­ing down dur­ing a weight loss pe­riod, lift weights. This is ac­tu­ally proven to main­tain both your meta­bolic rate and your mus­cle mass.

7. Nasty In­gre­di­ents That Will Never Leave Your Body

Trans fats, seed oils and gluten… these nasty in­gre­di­ents linger in the body for a while and it takes a long time to fully re­cover from their ef­fects. If you keep eat­ing them, they will never com­pletely leave your body.

There are a ton of people that have gluten in­tol­er­ance and never ac­tu­ally re­al­ize it. They just get use to feel­ing like crap and tired all the time. Trans fats pol­lute your body with harm­ful com­pounds that cause havoc at a cel­lu­lar level. They have been as­so­ci­ated with a myr­iad of dif­fer­ence dis­eases in­clud­ing heart dis­ease, di­a­betes and cancer. Do you want this stuff in your healthy body?


If you have the urge to throw in a cheat meal once or twice a week make sure you se­lect healthy choices and don’t go over­board. It is easy to undo an en­tire weeks worth of good eat­ing and hard gym work­outs with a 10,000 binge meal. You have to ask yourself is that brief taste in your mouth worth sac­ri­fic­ing all the hard work you have in­vested into your ex­er­cise and nu­tri­tion plan. On top of this the big dent it can put in your abil­ity to stay in con­trol and your pos­i­tive mind set. We need to con­stantly re­mind our­selves of why we are eat­ing healthy and ex­er­cis­ing in the first place. It’s all about health and fit­ness, with the added bonus of a great look­ing body from our ef­forts.

Junk food has no place in our world.

Fit­ness Model Amy Hazel Price

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