1. The dos and don’ts of cheating on your diet

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    As the weather grows warmer many people will want to shed a few pounds before they slip into a bathing suit. And as all dieters know, “cheating is a part of every diet,” explains Chazz Weaver, M.A., and founder of ChazzLive.com. “But if used strategically, cheat meals can actually be a helpful tool to keep you focused. If done the wrong way, you risk derailing your entire diet for good.”

    As the producer and star of the weight loss documentary, “Downsize Me,” Chazz Weaver is an expert who knows all the “dos and don’ts of cheating on a diet.”

    Chazz has over 30 years’ experience in fitness training and weight-loss coaching. He holds a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree from UCLA and Syracuse Universities and is a PhD Candidate in Psychology.

    Sofia Coppola Marie Antoinette – You may want candy as the soundtrack sings – but don’t binge!

    Chazz’s dos and don’ts of cheating on your diet:

    Do cheat at night: When people cheat in the morning or afternoon, it’s harder for them to stay on their scheduled meal plan. Cheating at the end of the day reduces the risk of cheating again later.

    Do schedule your cheat:  Skipping your cheat meal could backfire, causing you to become ridiculously hungry, stimulating an all-day binge.

    Do know your tolerance: If you find that your cheat meals are becoming entire cheat days or if you’re having regular cravings that are becoming unmanageable, it’s a good time to reassess the calorie intake in your diet. You may need to increase it.

    Don’t cheat with the foods that made you fat:  If you crave certain foods and keep giving into those cravings, you’ll only make them stronger. Avoid the foods that made you overweight and the craving will diminish over time.

    Don’t binge: Cheating and binging are not the same thing. I cannot stress enough that a cheat meal is to satisfy your taste buds while increasing your calories from your scheduled diet meals. It’s not for binging.

    Don’t feel guilty! Let’s say you do gorge during your cheat meal, do not get depressed and think you’re a failure. We all make mistakes, the idea is to get over it and get right back on the wagon.

    Don’t live for your cheat meals. Remember why you’re dieting, to live a healthier lifestyle. The natural process of creating a healthier lifestyle gets pushed aside if you focus too much on your cheat meals.