Intuitive eating, how does that work?
Wouldn’t it be nice to reach your feel-good weight without counting calories or following strict diets? The good news is: Intuitive eating makes it possible. This is not about rules and proscriptions, but eating according to your gut feeling. A little training and mindfulness are required, for the simple reason of our natural feelings of satiety and hunger being the sources of intuition.
Intuitive eating: trust your gut feeling
Intuitive eating means listening to your body. For this, it is important to recognize the signals it sends and to interpret them correctly. This diet was developed by two Californian dieticians. Their approach is based on the fact that we are all born intuitive eaters. As we grow older, we lose this natural gift – for a variety of reasons. We may eat in order not to throw anything away or out of frustration. We use to strictly divide food into the categories “good” and “bad”. If we eat from the bad ones, we are dissatisfied. If we consume the goods, we are satisfied. These thoughts and compulsions are taboo in intuitive eating. This takes some time because old habits are difficult to break.
Principles of intuitive eating
- It is not a diet.
- There is no calorie counting.
- There is no fixed diet plan.
- All foods are allowed.
- You eat according to your gut feeling.
- You eat when you are hungry.
- You listen to your feeling of satiety.
These principles result in certain advantages that have been proven through studies by scientists. Intuitive eating strengthens the sense of well-being. It has a positive effect on self-confidence and body image. Physical health is also strengthened, as HDL cholesterol levels increase and triglyceride levels decrease. This, in turn, protects the blood vessels and reduces the risk of relevant diseases such as diabetes, Cushing’s disease, or gout.
12 tips for intuitive eating: the way to make it work
Listening to your own body’s signals sounds easier than it is. It takes some practice and mindfulness. Once this step has been taken, intuitive eating becomes a matter of course. Here are 12 valuable tips on how to succeed.
1. Self-love beats dieting mania
Diets usually only have short-term success. Often the feared yo-yo effect occurs. Cravings and feelings of guilt are not uncommon and additionally diminish well-being. Therefore, according to intuitive eating, the time has come to say goodbye to the diet craze. Instead, self-love is what you need.
2. Listen to your gut
Hunger is nothing bad. It is important because it is the body’s way of telling us what it needs. That’s what we should listen to instead of suppressing hunger or eating all the time. Typical hunger signals are tiredness, stomach rumbling and shaking. Other symptoms are restlessness, loss of concentration and mood swings.
3. Food as a friend
According to intuitive eating, there are no good and bad foods. What goes into the mouth is what the body is asking for. The important thing here is to listen carefully to your organism. Was the food tasty? Is there a feeling of satiety?
4. Well-being after eating
Our body tells us when we consume too much or the wrong kind of food. If the organism can only poorly tolerate a sumptuous meal, fatigue, and feelings of fullness spread. We can learn from this – without pressure and according to the situation.
5. Control your thoughts
Everything starts in your head – including food. By putting an end to terms like food sins and superfoods, we start listening to our intuition.
6. Happiness first
Food provides the body with nutrients and can make you happy. Those who enjoy it with all their senses increase their satisfaction and self-awareness.
7. Pay attention to satiety signals
We tend to eat beyond our hunger. This is not necessary. By eating slowly and calmly, you can reliably feel the sensation of satiety.
8. Food is not a soul comforter
Food is often used to comfort the soul. It is used as a supposed problem solver to reduce feelings of sadness, loneliness or anger. However, this only helps in the short term. The problems do not disappear. It is better to raise awareness of the negative feelings and actively do something about them.
Accepting your own body as it is, requires mental work. But it is worth it to enjoy eating again and to choose the food you eat intuitively.
Calorie consumption during exercise should take a back seat. The important thing is to exercise in a way that gives you pleasure. Whether it’s a bike ride, aerobics, weight training or basketball: whatever you like is allowed.
11. Pure pleasure
To get to know different tastes and flavours better and to feel hunger and satiety more acutely, it helps to reach for unprocessed foods. Ready-made products, on the other hand, alter the sense of taste and can send the wrong signals to your body.
12. Don’t force yourself to eat healthy
Health-promoting foods optimise well-being. But less healthy foods are also allowed on the menu. Diseases do not arise from the occasional consumption of less healthy treats.
Intuitive eating is a journey towards greater self-acceptance. A close relationship with one’s own body is established, which makes it possible to live healthier and maintain a feel-good weight.
Your Humanoo Team