How many diets are abandoned because of one lapse? It's hard to stick to a diet that doesn't allow any treats, and many dieters feel so guilty when they lapse and indulge themselves that they give up altogether. But it's a question of balance; by allowing yourself a few treats, you're more likely to maintain your weight-loss regime. So here are some reasons why you shouldn't feel guilty about cheating on a diet …
1. Giving up
If you allow guilt to get the better of you, you're more likely to give up and abandon your diet. You'll reason that you've made a mess of your diet so you may as well give up. Not so. An occasional cheat isn't going to make your diet fail, whereas giving up on it definitely will.
The occasional 'cheat' is realistic if you're going to achieve your weight loss goals. It will also mean that you don't get so fed up. If you know that you've got some treats to look forward to, you'll be less bored with the days when you stick to your diet. Build some treats into your diet, to ensure that you don't get fed up. It's really not a problem to have occasional cheats.
Sticking to a spartan regime can be counter-productive. It may make you so bored that you'll crave sweet and fatty foods all the more, and find it hard to resist something high in calories. Healthy foods can be tasty, but there's no denying that it's unhealthy foods that we find most enjoyable!
4. Not That Serious
A diet cheat really isn't that big a deal, as long as you're sticking to a sensible plan most of the time. You're not going to gain ten pounds just because you ate an ice cream or had a cookie. Just see it as an occasional treat, and don't indulge yourself too often.
The important thing about a weight loss program is that it should be balanced. You should eat healthily 90% of the time; as long as you do that, a few indulgences won't matter. Of course it's best that you don't overdo your 'cheating'; have a couple of chocolates instead of the whole box, or a small ice cream instead of a massive bowl with lots of extras.
6. Gradual Weight Loss
Weight loss should be gradual. Aim to lose the weight over a fairly long period of time, rather than a crash diet (which is very unhealthy). Then a few cheats along the way will not be that big a deal. Give yourself time, and you'll be able to lose the weight slowly and steadily, without getting bored or setting yourself unrealistic goals.
7. It's Not a Crime
Finally, don't be so hard on yourself. Cheating on your diet is not a crime! It's difficult and disheartening to adhere to a diet that doesn't allow for any 'cheats'. We all love tasty foods that aren't that good for us, so cheating on your diet is only human.
So you really shouldn't worry if you're tempted by something that isn't on your diet sheet. Just don't be tempted too often! It's better to allow yourself a few treats, so that you don't fall off the diet wagon. Those occasional treats won't ruin your diet, but will ensure that you don't feel deprived. How do you stop a diet getting boring?