What were you doing the last time you ate a meal? Where you sitting calmly and savoring every bite? Or inhaling it before your morning commute or while typing furiously with one hand?
In the day and age of being 'always on,' the way we consume information has undoubtedly trickled over into the way we consume fuel for your body. If diet's haven't worked for you, try "Gentle Nutrition!"
Here's what you need to understand about the practice of intuitive eating!
First? The Rules... there are none. The point of intuitive eating is to eat whatever you want, whenever you want it, with an emphasis on not over, or under eating. Sounds like a dream? Slow down. The idea is that your body naturally knows when it's full, and when it's hungry. This is are feelings that people, for the most part, have lost touch with that. We label certain foods "good," and others "bad," restricting our intake with consideration for that prescribed label. However, according to the Appetite journal, most people who intentionally stay away from "bad" foods often overindulge in them later.
If we remove the labels of "good," and "bad" foods, and instead focus on what amount and quality of food makes us feel good? We practice intuitive eating.
Let's say you covet brownies. Rich, chocolate, decadent brownies. You probably view it as a sinful treat, and as off-limits most of the time, except for holidays, or celebratory occasions. Resch says that if we remove the stigma from our favorite foods, we won't necessarily eat them more, but we'll experience less guilt and anxiety in general. You may run into your favorite food more times than you realize, and experience guilt and a sense of unavailability that simply isn't accurate. It's empowering to say, I could have the brownie, and either have it, or choose to make another dietary choice in that moment.
Resch says that "moderation" is only code for "restriction," and its causing us an uncanny amount of stress, that can, ironically, result in emotional eating. The key to inviting an intuitive eating mindset, is unlocking the judgement we've placed upon foods, to welcome the innocence of food cravings we had as toddlers.
So why not try it? Next time you have a craving, mindfully chow down on just that, nothing more, nothing less. Start providing your body with intuitive nutrition, paired with intentional exercise, and you could be on your way to a way of life that is increasingly healthy and stress free.