While generally considered a common practice on other restrictive diet plans, the Keto diet will typically discourage cheat meals in all forms because they can easily kick you out of ketosis. Unfortunately, this can set your weight loss back as much as 2 days as your body struggles to readjust and shed the water weight that was acquired from the cheat meal. If you decide that you do want to have a cheat meal while on Keto, here are some of the consequences you should expect.
Loss of Ketosis
As mentioned previously, the loss of a ketosis status is generally one of the worst by-products of a cheat meal. For most people, regaining ketosis can take as little as 2 days or as a long as a week depending on if they fast or deplete their glycogen levels quickly through exercise. Every time you eat something outside of your macros, you run the risk of ruining the progress you have made so far. Keep this in mind if you plan on having a cheat meal.
Over time, the cravings for sugar or carb-heavy foods fade when you continue to follow a low-carb diet. When you have a cheat meal, this will reset your taste buds and mind to begin craving these processed and unhealthy foods as you struggle to adapt to eating keto-approved foods again. Because this happens, a single cheat meal can quickly turn into a long-term binge and hinder further weight loss or promote unhealthy weight gain.
Keto Flu Risk
If you’ve gone through the Keto flu once, there’s a good chance that you won’t want to go through it again just to have a slice of pizza. Unfortunately, one or more cheat meals on Keto could bring back these feelings of fatigue, bloating, or headaches. Even worse, you could be switching your body’s energy source from ketones to sugar and back too quickly; leading to even more fatigue. Instead of enjoying a single meal because it is carb-heavy try to find Keto approved alternatives to stick to your diet.