When you are looking to lose weight and enjoy a healthier diet, do you have cheat meals or cheat days?
I have been thinking about this a lot lately as sometimes having a ‘treat’, as in your favourite chocolate bar, Krispy Kreme or carb-heavy, cheese-heavy pasta dish can take the edge off feeling like all you eat is super grains, salad and fruit. But what happens when a small treat turns into a weekend of heavy indulgence, it becomes so much harder to get back into healthy eating.
Take a couple of weeks ago compared to this weekend as an example. Two weekends ago I had enjoyed a week of good healthy food and consistent exercise, and when it came to the weekend, I knew I didn’t want to see all that good work go to waste. So I had a nice meal out with the hubby on Friday, but when Saturday and Sunday rolled round, I was back to healthy eating and going for walks with the little one. I noticed it on the scale and I felt good as Monday came back around.
This weekend however, Friday started with a cheesy pasta dish (I will share the recipe as it is divine!) and then wine, toasted sandwiches, chips and chicken kievs and lots of chocolate all happened. Oh yeah. Once I had had that first ‘treat’ I felt like I could keep going and this morning, all that’s left is feelings of mild guilt and disappointment.
I think what it comes down to is moderation. And it helps to stock your cupboard with moderation in mind. For example, instead of full-size bottles of wine, you can get some nifty 150cl bottles and just have one on an evening. Buy funsize chocolate bars and only take one from the kitchen into the living room. Shopping smart and not putting treats in front of you will help to combat cravings and gluttony.
Coming up with meals and recipes that make you feel like you have indulged whilst being made with healthy whole foods can also help. For example swapping spaghetti with courgette spirals or make dark chocolate discs with dried fruit and nuts instead of eating a whole chocolate bar.
Do you have any healthy recipes that don’t really feel all that healthy?
Maybe you eat really well during the week and then at the weekend you relax a little bit? Or maybe you prefer to stick rigidly to healthy eating because cheat meals can set you back?