Cheating is one of the best-kept secrets for clients who are dieting. It’s the most effect strategy to avoid hitting plateaus and it also provides more consistent body-fat loss. Cheat days can be defined as shocking your body by doing exactly the opposite of your normal regime. For example, if you’re normally on a low-carb meal plan, make sure you increase your carbs on your cheat day. Another tip guaranteed to boost your metabolism is to start your cheat day in the morning rather than later in the day. The more you can stimulate your metabolism throughout the day, the more successful your cheat day will be. The science behind the cheat day and why it’s such an effective tool is that it actually prevents your metabolism from dropping. When calories decline, levels of a thyroid hormone, a major calorie burner, also dip, as does leptin and hormone sensitive lipase, an enzyme that helps banish body fat. Aside from metabolism, there’s muscle to consider; IGF-1; a hormone that supports muscle retention and repair. It also declines with prolonged dieting. Every 7-10 days you should have a cheat day to reverse the decline in metabolism while dieting. This not only prevents “sticking points” in dieting but ensures the retention of muscle mass. You may find after your cheat day that your body weight increases and you may retain water. These side effects normally last for 2-4 days, depending on your metabolic rate. Don’t let this discourage you, as it’s only a temporary side effect. It would seem at face value that a cheat day would be counter-productive, but hopefully now you see the revealed treasure of the cheat day. Buon Appetito!
Inspire to Aspire,