Cheat meals are literally meant to be a planned break from your diet to eat whatever it is you enjoy so much. Emphasis on the planned break from the diet. People will attempt to make cheat meals healthier by subbing the bun out for lettuce or other things in a burger. This does little in the grand scheme of things as the bread is probably the easiest aspect of the burger to fit into your diet. There is no reason to make a cheat meal healthy.
Planned Cheat Meal vs. Falling Off the Wagon
Now a planned cheat meal may only happen once or twice a week, or should only happen once or twice a week. If you eat perfectly clean 95% of your meals and have a bad one every now and again, you aren’t going to interfere with any of your goals. Again, this is a planned meal where you eat basically whatever food you are craving instead of the normal healthy meals.
Falling off the wagon is going out with friends and then eating a totally crappy meal that wasn’t planned at all. Yes, it happens sometimes and this is when you might want to get the lettuce wrap or substitute something healthy in order to avoid a total crash. Although this isn’t going to make it significantly better, it will cut back on some of the calories for you.
Why You Don’t Need to Make it Healthy
A cheat meal is a break on purpose. Enjoy the craving and give into it in any way you possibly can. This is when I go all out, eating the worst possible things I could put into my body or eating such excessive amounts that I don’t want to move. For me, it’s often donuts, sushi, barbeque, or a big burger and fries. If I try to make it healthier then I will likely end up unfulfilled and want to have another cheat meal sooner than usual. That being said, I often go a month or two without a horrible cheat meal but will throw in a donut or ice cream every couple of weeks.
Making a cheat meal healthy is like sleeping but waking up tired, entirely unfulfilling. Go all out every once in awhile and don’t try to make it all healthy when it is designed to be bad for you. Just my opinion, if you for some reason prefer burgers wrapped in lettuce instead of a bun, more power to you.