Made popular by the best-selling book The 4 Hour Body by Tim Ferriss, the Slow Carb Diet is a way to burn fat and gain muscle without any dramatic changes in diet or hunger levels. The basics of the diet are to avoid white carbs like potatoes, pasta, bread, and rice. You eat the same meals consistently, and they comprise of protein, legumes, and vegetables. The recommended protocol is to eat four meals per day, and you should never drink your calories—stick to water, coffee, and tea. The key to the diet is eating very clean during the week and allowing yourself one cheat day per week where you can eat whatever you want. That’s it.
As you may have picked up on already, a major key to any diet is to not completely deprive yourself of the foods that you love. Cheat days and/or meals are a huge component to this and make sticking to diets dramatically easier. It’s much easier to swallow “I can’t have it now, but I can in 3 days” than it is to swallow, “I can never have it again”. Cheat days give you the mental edge of sticking to your plan the majority of the time. As an added bonus, they add an additional high calorie day to your week, which keeps your metabolism high and can actually help the fat loss process, not hurt it.