Think about the healthy lifestyle you want to live before thinking about cheat meals. Birthdays, weddings and vacations will always be there! Your clean eating lifestyle is the ultimate goal for you to keep working towards, as long as you live.
How to handle cheat meals depend on your ultimate goal. It may be to lose 100 lbs, to clean up the inside of your body, to fuel your body with proper nutrition, to train for a competition or to maintain your general health.
There are so many articles on cheat meals on the internet for different goals so stay educated.
Through my weight loss & health as in autoimmune protocol journey in the last 5 years, I have faced less and less cravings hence cheat meals have became an nonissue. It will become like that for you the longer you stick to the focusing on nutrition for the majority of your time.
80/20 Rule is when you enjoy treats 20% of the time but make sure the treats are at least clean and organic so you get less toxins. There are so many wise choices you can make during your cheat meals also known as the 20%.
When you do cheat, do not go CRAZY. Go one bucket off but not a whole mile off track and make yourself sick. If you are eating off the 2nd column aka calorie bucket from 21 Day Fix, a portion control container fitness program that you can get from me, eat according to the next bucket instead of going all way to the 10th bucket and make yourself sick.
Do not pick and day to cheat and eat horrible the whole day because that would be harder to recover from.
Cheating on foods that are really BAD for you will have some mental effects on you. Bring back strong cravings causing you to eat bad longer and make it harder for you to go back on track.
There is a little benefit of eating more aka cheating a bit, which is shocking & revving up your metabolism a bit. But don't do that too often or it would turn into a habit and get you back to square one.
Focus on what your body and mind needs over the long term and eat to fuel your body.