Since my dietician and my cardiologist told me that I had to avoid cheese, fried foods, egg yolks, and limit my dairy, I’ve had to find a way to cope. I honestly think I was eating cheese a few times a week before my heart attack. I got into the habit of eating cheese (a lot of it) a little over a year ago. Fried foods, I’ve always pretty much avoided. I would rarely order french fries pre-heart attack and almost always substituted with another side item when I went out to eat.
I don’t think I could go on with NEVER eating some of these foods again. I mean, let’s be real. But then again, I am the girl who completely stopped drinking all soda 19 years ago (until my GI issues this past Spring – when all my stomach could handle was bottled Sprite – but as soon as my GI issues were resolved, the Sprite went away, too). So we know I have good will power.
Nevertheless, I felt the best way to never worry about missing these foods on a daily basis would be to have a “cheat day” once a month. So far, they’ve been lots of fun and very fulfilling (and filling). Most of my cheat days have been pizza because I think I miss that THE MOST!!!!! In October, my cheat day was Kraft Mac & Cheese (but I did toss in some English Peas and Tuna).
As I learned on one of my cheat days, when I over-indulged in Pizza Hut pizza, I have to be really careful about sodium intake on these cheat days. I gained 4 pounds after that Pizza Hut visit (literally overnight) and when I went to their website to look up the nutrition facts (afterwards), I learned why. I had consumed at least 3 times my daily limit of sodium from that one meal alone! Even though pizza might seem cheap, easy, convenient, and healthy, do yourself a favor and look up the nutritional facts before ordering your next pizza pie. The sodium content is outrageous!!! And to give you an idea of the type of pizza I order, it’s always thin crust with pineapple and onion or pineapple and jalapeños…you’d think that would be healthy! But it’s the tomato sauce that really gets you, so be careful!!
At least I know I won’t be having pizza until at least January because my cheat day for November was Thanksgiving Day and for December will be Christmas Day.
Cheat Days gives you something to consider if you’re having a hard time eliminating a favorite food from your diet. So far, it’s working great for me!