Why You Don't Need Cheat Days! | Cheat Days are a Myth | Weight Loss Myth Busting
Updated: Nov 3, 2022
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"When you're on a sustainable weight loss journey, you won't need cheat days,"
- Elaine Acheampong.
Elaine explains why she believes cheat chays are counterproductive for weight loss. "If you are on a weight loss plan that gives you results, keeps the weight off long-term and continues to work long-term for your lifestyle, then you wouldn't need to have cheat days!"
It's not to say that you cannot enjoy less-nutritious foods and drinks. However, a cheat day isn't necessary if you can prepare and consume food 365 days a year without pulling your hair out or starving yourself.
Here at Fitness Beyond Aesthetics, we subscribe to achieving weight loss results in a manageable and fulfilling style. The start of your weight loss journey may not always feel effortless or fulfilling, because you're changing your behaviour and mentality towards food and health. Yet, one day, you'll discover that healthy eating isn't a punishment or a chore - it's a form of self-care.
To put it simply: Restriction leads to overcompensating on your cheat days.
Before enrolling in coaching, some of Elaine's clients could double, triple or even quadruple the number of calories usually consumed in one cheat day! A consistent reaction to cheat days like this would cause concern for potentially developing eating disorders.
Orthorexia Nervosa is an eating disorder where a person is obsessed with healthy eating and displays restrictive behaviours. They get to the point where they are unable to enjoy everyday life and social gatherings with poor quality of life and risks of leading to other eating disorders (like bulimia or anorexia).¹
The only reason why you feel the need to cheat is that your weight loss diet is unsustainable - meaning you don't feel able to practice every day without needing "a break".
Demonizing foods or saving them for "special occasions or days" can lead to binging and eating disorders.