6 Big Mistakes People Make When They Try to Lose Weight
Why it's wrong: "When you really want something, it's better to eat it sooner rather than later," says Burguera. Otherwise, you'll likely be so fixated on the food you're craving that, when you finally have it, you'll go overboard and undo the week of healthy eating that led up to the cheat. That's especially true if the cheat involves alcohol, says Jennifer McDaniel, RDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "You won't feel good the next day, and you probably won't snap back to your plan when you're hungover."
What to do instead: Incorporate something you'll look forward to eating every single day, says McDaniel. If the thing you really want isn't so nutritious (hello, mozzarella sticks), have just a tiny bit instead of a whole serving. "Once you start eating in this healthier pattern, if you do have that huge cheat day or meal, you won't feel good about it afterwards, and that can be great negative feedback to help you stay on track," McDaniel adds.