Following our intuition is an art, it’s a dance with the universe. It’s a method in which you get in synch with life and your body…you feel in flow, you feel ease and you feel peace.
Who wouldn’t want that?
You see, the relationship we have with food is often full of drama, control, fear and anxiety. There is definitely not much flow.
Intuitive eating is a way of eating that has nothing to do with diets, meal plans, discipline or willpower. It’s about getting back to your roots and learning to trust and honour your body again. It’s essentially a way of life in which YOU become best friends with your body.
I believe intuitive eating is the future (it was the past before rules and regulations around food were invented) and I believe that the more in tune you are with your body, the healthier you will feel and the more joy you will have in life. Our body or our intuition always speaks to us, we just haven’t learned to honour it.
Our intuition knows what we need and want we ‘should do’. We all have a choice, the choice to say ‘Yes’ or the choice to say ‘No’ to this ‘voice’.
Here’s an overview of Intuitive Eating including how I practice it and my TOP TIPS for Eating Intuitively. I hope this blog post will inspire you to say yes to your intuition because when you do, you are finally saying yes to yourself….Now this is self love at it’s core.
What Is Intuitive Eating?
Where often times in society we’re told to let calorie count or specific times dictate what and when to eat, intuitive eating means eating when you’re hungry or wanting food and letting your fullness and satiety guide you to stop eating. Let’s consider children for a second. They are after all intuitive eaters, because they were born that way.
Children grow up as intuitive eaters and are innately able to balance out their food intake throughout the week. Some weeks they have large appetites while others they barely eat. I see children who intuitively don’t eat foods that they know don’t agree with them. They are so clever! They listen to their body! Then we adults come in and mess it all up for both our children and ourselves because we start following OUTside rules rather than INside rules.
It isn’t until rules and restrictions are set around food that we lose our inner intuitive eater. We learn that we must finish the entire plate. We learn that dessert has to be earned, or can be taken away if we misbehave. We learn that we have to eat our vegetables before eating ice cream and we learn that dinner after 8pm makes you fat.
Instead of looking INside for our truth, we look OUTside for the perceived truth.
And that’s not only in relation to food that we do that, we look outside for everything. Love, fame, success, you name it.
How I Practice Intuitive Eating
6am – I’m usually up very early and I always try and start my self care routine as a first thing (meditation, yoga, journaling, visualisation, etc.). And no, I don’t always get to do it but I know that if I don’t, I have a very unaligned day!
Coffee is a must for me. Good coffee with some soya milk. I find drinking coffee so soothing and very ‘hygge’. However, I am rarely hungry until around 11am or even 2pm (unless I missed dinner the night before because I wasn’t hungry), so I don’t have breakfast.
Often parents say to me, when their children don’t eat breakfast, that they worry about concentration levels at school. I agree that hunger can cause low concentration levels, but not everyone is hungry at breakfast time so why can’t they eat when they want to eat? Why do we allow fear of low concentration levels to dictate when and how we eat? Most children or even adults have a break around 10am. We should not force ourselves or even our children to eat if they aren’t hungry. Let’s practice honouring our body and the signals it sends.
Personally, I believe the breakfast rule is all to do with money. Just look at the cereal isle in your local supermarket. It’s larger than the vegetable isle! I wonder who is sponsoring that? 🙂
11am or 2pm – I love my lunch. It’s always the biggest meal of the day. It’s needs to be something cold, I rarely fancy anything warm. Today I had a salad with chicken and avocado and some bread. My lunch is always a 1-2-3 meal. A simple approach to healthy eating. Not a diet! Not a rule! Mix your foods groups according to your body needs/goals, but listen to YOUR intuition first (we need to be careful it’s not our emotions we ‘listen too but rather our intuition which we follow). If you struggle with emotional eating then please reach out. I run conscious programmes which help people overcome emotional eating.
Want to know more about The 1-2-3 Healthy Eating Approach? Click here for more.
3-4pm – Depending on when I had my lunch, I tend to snack on something an hour or two after lunch. It’s usually nuts or some fruit. I do love cheese but it gives me bad skin so I have reduced it down significantly.
In the Summer, I tend to drink more water, however, in the cold months, my body craves warm herbal drinks (often red in colour such as raspberry tea). After 4pm, I am not hungry until very very late.
8-9pm – This is the time I have my warm dinner. Tonight I had homemade lamb burgers with chorizo potatoes and lots of vegetables. I didn’t eat the burger bun, but I did eat the potatoes. Last night I had a Sunday dinner and ate all my vegetables first, however, I didn’t fancy the meat so left that and ate a few potatoes. My body didn’t want the meat so I left it. It’s that simple.
Intuitive eating has become second nature to me and it’s only done through practice. I therefore advice you to be patient with yourself. It will all get better as you learn to listen and honour yourself.
TOP TIPS TO HELP CULTIVATE THE INTUITIVE EATER YOU ALREADY ARE:
- Question the way you eat. Is this in alignment with your truth or what was handed down to you unconsciously? Our parents and also society have provided us with lots of rules and regulations to follow, including how to eat for our own individual body. Why not question the way you eat and how you eat? Are you being authentic with yourself? I was vegetarian for many years as I thought it was healthier, however, my body kept screaming at me that it wanted meat! It took me 5 years to finally listen!
- Question when you eat. Are you actually hungry when you eat? If not, why do you eat?
- Question how you feel. Are you full of vitality or not? How does food agree with you, do you have any underlying food sensitivities that you aren’t’ aware of….yet. Most of us walk around with food sensitivities we aren’t aware of since no one told us to monitor our poo habits. In stead of running to the doctor for some pills to help the bloating, why not keep check on the foods you eat?
- Ask your body what it wants…listen to your body. If it isn’t happy, it will tell you! (IBS, aches and pains, inflammation etc.).
- What is your relationship with food? Are you good friends are enemies? If you are enemies then consider why and where this comes from? Our relationship with food is a direct reflection of the relationship we have with ourselves. Heal the relationship you have with yourself and watch your relationship with food improve.
Please comment below if you have any questions. I would love to hear form you.
Please note that this information neither is medical advice, nor is it meant to replace the advice of your doctor or dietitian and I assume no liability for the use or misuse of this information.