Ask a Professional - Richmond News

Q: I hear a lot about “cheat days,” when I can eat whatever I like. Does that really help with weight loss?

A: Deprivation is a powerful thing. When you’re deprived of something, which is often true on diets,you want it even more.  That’s where the cheat day comes in. It’sapsychological trick to satisfy your cravings for chips, pizza, donuts, and other non-diet foods so that you won’t feel deprived. If that satisfaction keeps you on your diet, then yes, it can help with weight loss. But keep in mind that on your cheat days, you’re eating more calories, maybe even 1,000-2,000 calories more. That can really slow down weight loss. And the cheat day could backfire -- giving into your cravings may have you saying goodbye to the diet and hello to your old ways of eating. I recommend a cheat meal once per week, rather than a cheat day. Stay on course for the first 1/2 or 3/4’s of your day and you can then enjoy your evening meal with whatever it is that you like and not feel overly guilty about it.

Taken from page 20 of the Wednesday, May 3rd 2017 Edition of the Richmond News.