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Today I Cheated

Today I cheated.

It was cheat day. 

I don’t have much to say about diet culture that hasn’t already been said. Throughout my life I have followed a few different meal plans to try to manage my symptoms and heal my body. Fortunately or unfortunately, each of these meal plans has helped me in some ways and bothered me in others. 

Regardless of which plan I’ve followed, the biggest issue I have had is sustainability. My stubbornness harnessed for good allows me to stick to these plans for up to a year before I ultimately succumb to choosing my tastebuds’ happiness over my health. Such an entitled problem, I know. 

But food is so much more than fuel to me that limiting or eliminating the quantity and quality of food has at times been more detrimental to my overall well being than following a diet for my physical health. 

Unless the benefits of the meal plan outweigh the restriction, it’s not worth it in the long term. So far, none have been worth it. The KETO diet helped me feel full and allowed me to lose weight. The vegan diet balanced my hormones and brought regularity to my menstrual cycle. The sugar-free diet provided me with more energy. The gluten-free diet eliminated my headaches. But with each of these comes other issues, and I have had to decide if I’d rather live with the symptoms they are treating or the symptoms they are causing, which tend to be more mental and emotional than physical. When ought we choose mental health over physical health? Can we have both?

In my quest for normalcy, I’ve allowed myself one cheat day per week while eating this current meal plan. This doesn’t mean I go crazy and eat anything I want and however much of it I want. I typically plan these meals just as much as I plan the rest of my week, and listen to my intuition for cravings and to my stomach for fullness. Instead of limiting my menu, I open it up to whatever sounds appealing to me, feasting on whatever I’ve been craving. 

Today’s cheat meal was chicken strips and french fries, a cream cheese stuffed liege waffle, and peanut curry noodles. Nothing too crazy, but certainly none of which is allowed on my diet. Nevertheless I feasted!

Today I cheated.

I ate a delicious, satisfying cheat meal and enjoyed every last morsel.

Thanks for making this a part of your day!
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2 Responses

  1. I loved reading this. This was so me, but when I had a day like you did, my brain would spiral to the defeated, failure, beat myself up mode.

    The shift for me was nothing is a restriction. It’s a choice. I can eat whatever I want (on plan or not), but how does that choice align with my goals? It’s not perfect. It’s often messy, but that shift was liberating.

    Loving the journal. I am definitely not an every day reader/writer, but I love the practice of thanking God even for the slightest thing. That too is liberating and joyful.

    1. Yes, embracing the power of choice can be liberating! The messiness of it all is just part of the journey, and much more attainable than perfection. I’m so glad to hear your thoughts here and about “The Way of Gratitude.” Thank you for sharing.

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