So you’ve heard about intuitive eating, but you still don’t know if it’s right for you. You want to feel fully confident before you take the next steps in your food freedom journey. As an intuitive eating dietitian, part of my job is to help you sift through myth vs. fact and determine if intuitive eating is right for you. Let’s look at the facts.
What Is Intuitive Eating?
To start on the same page, let’s establish our definition of intuitive eating.
Intuitive eating is a self-care framework. This means you’ll learn how to improve your health without dieting. The real value is the freedom you’ll gain from stopping the diet cycle.
My client, Meredith, summarized this perfectly when she shared that after 12 years of yo-yo dieting she is “officially off the diet train” .
You can listen to Meredith’s transformation story here.
Are you tired of riding the diet train? Do you swing back and forth between “eating super clean” or binge eating? Are you tired of trying to keep up with the diet trends?
If any of this sounds like you, then intuitive eating may be for you.
The Outdated Diet Cycle
When you begin intuitive eating, you step away from the vicious diet cycle. The diet cycle is the endless chain of 1) restricting food intake 2) feeling intense cravings 3) breaking the diet or overeating 4) feeling guilty or shame, which leads right back to restricting again.
The diet cycle is set up for failure because your body is hardwired to fight restriction at the cellular level. In fact, hunger hormones increase in response to dieting. Even the mere perception of forbidden foods is enough to trigger “loss of control” around food.
It’s time to stop dieting and start nourishing your body! You in?
Is Intuitive Eating For You?
This framework may be for you if you’re ready to…
- Develop a better understanding of your body’s hunger & fullness cues
- Gain confidence through improved body image
- Save time and mental energy on deciding what to eat
- Create a healthy relationship with food
- Learn how to cope with your emotions, without using food
- Feel calm and in control around food
Feeling calm and in control around food is what you really want, isn’t it?
If these benefits sound too good to be true, note that there are over 125 studies supporting these lasting changes from intuitive eating!
Frequently Asked Questions
Now that you can see what is possible when you learn to eat intuitively, what’s holding you back?
Take a moment to write down your hesitations, fears, or questions. Spoiler alert: it’s normal to have hesitations towards a completely new approach to food and health!
In fact, here are some of the common questions, fears, and hesitations that I’ve helped multiple women address.
“Can I start intuitive eating if I want to lose weight?”
While this intuitive eating isn’t focused on weight loss, I understand that you may feel uncomfortable in your body and desire weight loss. Your concern is 100% valid.
Ultimately, it will support you in making behavior changes supportive of your total health. You’ll learn how to measure your progress beyond the number on the scale.
In fact, one of my past clients shared that her favorite part of discovering intuitive eating was feeling free from the daily burden of stepping on the scale!
I address this question in more detail here in this blog post.
“I’m afraid that if I listen to my body, I’ll only want unhealthy food.”
I understand that you want to prioritize healthy foods. I’m all about health here, too!
Let me explain with an analogy. Imagine that you’re swimming underwater, holding your breath for several seconds. When you finally break the surface, you gasp for air, taking several deep breaths. Then eventually, your breathing neutralizes back to normal.
This is the same with intuitive eating principle #3, when you learn to make peace with food. At first, you might want more of the previously restricted food. Then eventually, your eating neutralizes and you begin to crave a wider variety of foods.
Prioritizing a balanced variety of foods is important to you, isn’t it?
“Can I practice it if I have a chronic health condition?”
If you have a health condition with dietary recommendations, you may be wondering how that fits in with intuitive eating. In most cases, it can complement medically informed nutrition recommendations.
With intuitive eating principle #10, you will learn to honor your health with gentle nutrition, which means you will make food choices supportive of your health and taste buds. The best part is eating to support your health without sacrificing satisfaction!
For example, one of my clients wanted to eat for improved cholesterol, while still maintaining the integrity of intuitive eating. She focused on the goal of increasing fiber intake by adding more whole-grains, fruits, and veggies to her dietary intake. She selected whole-grain bread for her avocado toast knowing that it was a satisfying combination and higher in fiber supportive of her heart healthy goals.
If supporting your health without sacrificing satisfaction matters to you, then intuitive eating may be the right fit!
Want More Support?
Check out my Food Freedom Essentials course to transform your relationship with food and build body confidence.
I also offer virtual one-on-one support. You can learn more about my signature coaching program, Everglow Mentorship, here.
My free 5-Step Guide to Eat Intuitively is also a great resource to move away from food rules and towards food peace.