Intuitive Eating- Fan or Foe?

Whether you’re a health coach, looking to lose weight or maintain your weight, I know you’ve experienced this before. 

You attempt a diet, get frustrated or find it too restrictive so you end up “intuitively eating” instead, OR, you diet, get great results, find it hard to sustain, get frustrated, adopt an intuitive eating lifestyle. Now here’s the problem with going straight into “eating intuitively”. 

1. It requires being in tune with our bodies hunger signals. Now, if you’re constantly being exposed to any chemical, physical or emotional stress, there’s a great chance that your hunger signals are out of wack. 

What was the first thing you wanted to eat after a long, stressful and tiring day? Not only might we crave an abundance of sugary or refined foods but there is a disconnect between your tummy being satiated and your mind being content. This touches on the emotional-stress-boredom eating prophecy and needs to be addressed separately and not covered by an “intuitive eating” band-aid.

2. If you don’t have healthy eating habits to begin with- you’re doomed. Most people are conditioned to eat things that are quick and easy and mostly struggle to get sufficient amounts of protein within their day. This can largely affect our appetite including total hunger and satiety. Our hunger cues aren’t going to ensure that you reach for the juicy chicken breast over a slice of pizza if you’ve been undernourished all day.

3. Hyper palatable foods are hard to moderate. Did you know that food manufacturers use specific chemicals and combinations of macronutrients within food products to perfect the taste and mouth feel of our foods there-by making them addictive. We’re quite literally set up for failure, especially if we’re undernourished and grab what is quick and easy.

4. Our hormones, gut microbiome and psychological health can all dictate the food choices that we make. Unless we eat nutrient dense foods all of the above could potentially suffer and lead to poor food choices and ultimately lack of weight loss.

It CAN be done properly, but will require proper nutritional guidance and education to ensure success. 

What’s a good place to start? By planning! Plan your breakfasts, your lunches and your dinners. Have a good idea what you want to consume and make the base of your meals rich in protein and vegetables. Add some carbohydrates depending on your tolerance & some healthy fats- all encompassed by complete presence. Start there. 

Until next time ?