Have you heard of intuitive eating?
No, it’s not a fad diet, in fact, it’s the opposite! Intuitive eating has been growing in popularity, helping people build more positive and healthy relationships with food, leaving restrictive eating and judgement in its tracks. Intuitive eating shifts the focus from a deprivation mindset to listening to your body and internal hunger cues.
Why is intuitive eating so important right now? A problematic diet industry has indoctrinated us with negative feelings around food and body image leading to ideals around thinness, body dissatisfaction, and disordered eating. The toxic industry is helping the patriarchal beauty standard, under which mostly women punish themselves to become smaller.
Many people experience difficult relationships with food. Does “I ate so bad yesterday… I need to go to the gym today to burn it off”, sound familiar? Our diet-crazed culture, sometimes disguised as “wellness”, has made this type of self-criticism and vilification of certain foods far too common.
Intuitive eating prioritises inner health and feeling good over the societal pressure to look good. It promotes body positivity and helps us to respect and accept our bodies for the amazing things they can do, so we can stop wasting time with the negative body talk.
Intuitive eating reminds us that food should not be defined as inherently good or bad. We should aim to eat a balanced foundation diet of whole foods and allow ourselves to truly enjoy delicious foods, (hello birthday cake!) instead of experiencing feelings of guilt and shame. It’s important to remember that intuitive eating is not letting go of your healthy eating habits but to focus more on what nutritious foods we can include in your diet, instead of eliminating. So, let’s embrace loving food!
Do you want to learn how to eat in a way that nourishes both your body and soul, but don’t know where to start?!
Here are our nutritionist’s top 5 intuitive eating steps, for the joy of eating.
1. Reject diet culture and remember that your weight isn’t the primary indicator of your health.
2. Take a moment to think about how food makes your body feel and trust your body to know when you’re hungry and full.
3. Instead of unnecessary restricting and eliminating of foods, try to include a wide array of nutritious foods on your shopping list. When you give yourself permission to eat the foods you’ve always tried to resist, they may become less interesting, and cravings are likely to subside.
4.The “perfect diet” doesn’t exist, and each person has different nutritional requirements.
5.Respect and appreciate your body! By recognising that all bodies are different and beautiful in their own way, we can learn to make nourishing food choices that make us feel good.
We hope this helps kick-start your intuitive eating journey so you can improve your overall health and keep enjoying the foods you love.