It’s that time of week again: the time when I write about something I’ve been thinking about that you may or may not care about.
Today’s topic is cheat meals.
I’m curious to know how you define “cheat meals” and what you think about them in general.
Let me start by telling you what they mean to me.
They mean little to nothing.
I do have meals where I eat strange things or things I wouldn’t usually eat, but I like to think of them as the “downs” in the “ups and downs” of life.
These meals are usually unplanned, yet I make the conscious decision to eat them.
I don’t diet, therefore, I can’t cheat.
But I do sometimes eat things, or rather, amounts of things I wouldn’t normally eat.
There are occasions when I feel the need to eat half a container of plantain chips, or an entire block of cheese. When these needs arise, I’m well-practiced in asking myself “what’s going on here? Do I need food or something else?” and “will I be able to stop thinking about plantain chips? Or will they plague me until I indulge this craving?”
Usually, there is something else going on. Hormones, a tough day…other girlie thoughts. I always acknowledge that what I need is something non-food, but I usually consciously indulge.
This may seem strange, but that’s how my food brain works.
I don’t consider these instances cheat meals,– I don’t go totally off my Paleo rocker and eat Girl Scout Cookies or fettuccine Alfredo– but the “downs” in my otherwise pretty balanced diet. I don’t feel guilty about the “downs” because I’ve taken the time to figure out the method behind my madness. And I know that the next second is my opportunity to return to my usual, balanced eating.
Now, I know some other people who plan their “off plan” meals every week. Wednesday dinner with Mom and Dad, or a Saturday ice cream outing to J.P. Licks.
I find that if I try to plan something like that, by the time it comes around, I don’t want it…so I try to just roll with the punches, listen to my body and do what it tells me to do.
So, I’m curious: How do you feel about “cheat meals” or “off plan meals”? Are they something you incorporate into every week? Something you eat when the moment strikes you? Do they fall within the Paleo Framework? Or are they gluten-full treats?
Please write your thoughts in the comments below! I’d love to hear what you have to say.