I think a very strict and restrictive diet regimen is a set-up for failure. If you deprive yourself too much you may end up overindulging and with an unsuccessful yo-yo dieting method with up and down weight fluctuations. I would say I eat healthy foods about 80% of the time and leave room in my diet for less healthy foods. This way, I don’t deprive myself too much and I don’t overindulge when in the presence of those less healthy foods or during holiday season. Eating pizza, dessert or French fries, for example, once in a while as part of an overall healthy diet is not going to make or break you. However, I wouldn’t recommend a whole “cheat day,” but allow “cheat foods” once in awhile and then get right back on track. A whole day of cheat eating may throw you off too much and make you not feel great. Also, don’t forget to include exercise in your healthy diet/lifestyle.
Enjoy once in a while! You only live once.
I agree with Andrea that a whole "cheat day" can take you way off track. Limiting quantities and frequency of these "cheat food" throughout the week is a better way to go. Even though you are cutting calories you still need to enjoy what you are eating.
Well... "diet" is a bad word in my vocabulary. Achieving lifelong health is all about making permanent lifestyle and eating.
So you might not be surprised to learn that I am not a fan of “cheat” days. The notion that you have to “cheat” to eat something you like sends a message that you’re doing something wrong and that you might eventually be punished for it. Eating should be a pleasant experience with no guilt or pressure. Further, I find that people tend to overeat on pizza, burgers and desserts on cheat days. Try a slice of your favorite pizza and a salad instead.
Instead of the cheat day model, I encourage you to develop a healthy eating plan that allows you to enjoy a small slice of birthday cake on a Tuesday if you want it.