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New research shows that there is evidence that indulging in cheat meals on occasion may lead to a higher likelihood of developing an eating disorder.

New research shows that there is evidence that indulging in cheat meals on occasion may lead to a higher likelihood of developing an eating disorder. Cheat meals are indulgent foods that people will indulge in that deviate from their normal diet and nutritional habits. They generally contain more calories than the average meal and may not be the best foods for you. It’s a guilty pleasure meal that you reward yourself with after eating well for a while.


To ensure cheat meals don’t affect their overall physique too much, young adults are more likely to develop eating disorders. A peer-reviewed study recently published in the Eating Disorders Diary examined the eating habits of 2,717 young Canadian adults aged 16 to 30. The group included a mix of men, women, transgender and non-conforming people. Cheat meals apparently range in the calorie range of 1,000 to 1,400 calories, which is almost double what a meal should be.

According to the study results, more than half of the participants admitted to having eaten at least once in the past year. Women tend to feast on salty and sweet meals. Men, on the other hand, enjoy high-protein cheat meals. Quite surprisingly, it has been discovered that men are more likely to eat a cheat meal and follow this with unsafe eating habits in order to control their weight.


RELATED: Boys Have Eating Disorders Too, Not Just Girls

This research suggests that cheat meals can lead to episodes of binge eating, severe calorie reduction, or episodes of overexercise. The theory is that men are more prone to developing these dangerous habits because men’s health is full of eating high calorie meals in order to build muscle and be strong and lean. There is a huge stigma around men and eating disorders despite the fact that we know they suffer from it.

Cheat meals have become popular these days and are promoted by celebrities and fitness influencers. It is recommended that people eat a healthy and nutritious balanced diet at all times and satisfy their cravings when they come instead of ignoring them. You may think you have good will, but depriving yourself of something you love increases the likelihood of eating too much of it and then doing something unhealthy to compensate.


Source: CTV News, Eating Disorders Diary