Maybe so! In the French Paleo Burn, you get to cheat once a week. Mmmhmm. She had me at “cheat day.” But I wasn’t sure if it would be okay, and then, I realized that it’s my body, and if this is going to become a lifestyle, I get to make all the choices and can transition as slowly or as quickly as I like.
And I’ve heard others suggest a sort of 80/20 principle, which would be helpful for people who feel like Paleo is too restrictive to do for a lifetime, without an occasional “cheat.”
I want to tell you more about The French Paleo Burn in future posts because it *feels* more gentle to me and I don’t feel as worried about getting it all exactly right, or else. You know?
So Carissa Alinat’s reason for the cheat day each week is to help you continue to lose weight…
“Research shows that after just 7 days of dieting, hormones responsible for fat burning (leptin and ghrelin) change and weight loss slows down. The longer you diet, the more leptin levels decrease and ghrelin levels increase. That is why cheat day is so important, because although you aren’t counting calories, I can guarantee that you’ll be consuming less calories during Phase 1 and your leptin levels will fall and ghrelin levels will rise. When cheat day comes along, you’ll push your leptin and ghrelin levels back into the normal range, which will help you burn more fat.” -Carissa Alinat, French Paleo Burn
That last sentence refers to two hormones that helps with satiety, so can reduce your appetite (leptin) and the other (ghrelin) can make your appetite increase. I am no expert, but I think she said they both go back to normal when you cheat, so you start the next week empowered to continue losing weight.
Although I am way past the first month, I could still try it, because she suggests continuing to have a cheat day until you’ve lost all the weight you want to lose.
On the other hand, cheating may not be for everyone, and even when it is, it might be better to have a cheat-free month before you start. Rob Wolf points out that if you have a health condition you're concerned about, and you're hoping Paleo will help you heal it, then you may find that just one cheat sets you back a lot farther than you would have thought.
"If you don’t have an iron gut and know that you have adverse reactions to gluten, dairy, soy, etc., or if your gut or health in general aren’t where they should be then you need to be careful."
As for me, I have given this some thought, and am torn between trying to make sure I don't gain back all the weight I have lost and trying to give my gut time to heal. I have cheated a couple of times already, but am not sure I will keep doing so. Still trying to decide. And I'll keep you posted!
So what do you think about cheating on Paleo?
Next week, I will tell you all about my Paleo experience, so far. Have a wonderful weekend!
I'm a certified holistic health practitioner, healer and health coach & I have lost almost 90 pounds!!