There is a lot of confusion around ‘cheat’ meals and whether they are a weight-loss no-go or not. We’re here to tell you that cheat meals can actually help you lose weight!

One cheat meal per week regulates your metabolism and can help you overcome weight-loss plateaus.

In order for cheat meals to work though, you need to ensure that you are eating healthy for the rest of the week and keeping active, that way you can reward yourself by indulging in your favourite meal.

Here’s how you can successfully incorporate a cheat meal into your diet.

Have Smart Cheat Meals

Just because you are breaking away from the shackles that is your weekly diet, don’t use this as an excuse to overindulge. If your ideal cheat meal is a tub of ice-cream, it’s time to re-think your reward.

Choose a meal that is still nutritionally well-balanced. For example cheeseburgers, a few slices of pizza or pasta with a protein source are all fine cheat meal options.

While these meals are higher in calories, they are are still high in carbs and protein so they will leave you full and will give you the energy to get back into the diet the following day.

Schedule Your Cheat Meals

Preparing meals is always easier when we plan ahead. That’s why meal prepping your lunches for your working week is a great idea as it ensures you don’t sway from your diet.

The same can apply for cheat meals! Schedule one meal time each week for your cheat meal, and don’t let it turn into a full cheat day. Ensure your diet is still intact leading up to and following your cheat meal to ensure it’s as effective as possible.

Cook Your Own Cheat Meal

Unfortunately for some people, a weekly cheat meal of a pizza or double cheeseburger will end up doing more harm than good. Some find it hard to stick to your diet plan after a cheat meal, but the only way to find out is through trial and error.

If you are someone that struggles following a cheat meal, try cooking your own! You can make your own delicious meals without all the extra salt, sugar, and butter the restaurants tend to add.

Exercise Before You Eat

Exercising at any point during the day before eating a cheat meal is a great way to minimise fat gains.

HIIT workouts with high reps are best for the pre-cheat meal sweat!

Take Your Time

If this is the one meal you have been looking forward to all week, take your time with it! Slow down and enjoy your meal.

Eating slower also helps you recognise when you are full, which will prevent over-eating.