I get asked this ALL THE TIME!! For as popular as it is, very few people really understand what it is. There’s a lot of misinformation out there, so I’m happy to set the record straight. And I will be going into more detail in future posts. But for now, this post is a good introduction to what IE really is.
Intuitive eating is a philosophy of eating that makes you the expert of your body and its hunger signals.
Essentially, it’s the opposite of a traditional diet. It doesn’t impose guidelines about what to avoid and what or when to eat.
Instead, it teaches that you are the best person — the only person — to make those choices.
Intuitive eating is an eating style that promotes a healthy attitude toward food and body image.
The idea is that you should eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full.
Though this should be an intuitive process, for many people it’s not. So, that makes IE a journey BACK to your authentic self.
But it’s so much more than that – For example – It’s about understanding how satisfaction plays into your eating…. I had several coaching sessions yesterday where we talked about this… Did you know that if you’re not satisfied with the taste of the food you ate – you tend to keep looking for something else to eat? Satisfaction plays a role in feeling full.
To eat intuitively, you may need to relearn how to trust your body. To trust that it will tell you when to eat, how much to eat and what to eat. If you’re used to diets or have a lot of “good food” “bad food” chatter in your mind… this will take some time. Part of the process is also distinguishing between physical and emotional hunger.
Thus far, studies have linked intuitive eating to healthier psychological attitudes, lower body mass index (BMI), and weight maintenance — though not weight loss. (1)
One of the major benefits of intuitive eating is better psychological health.(2)
Participants in intuitive eating studies improved their self-esteem, body image, and overall quality of life while experiencing less depression and anxiety (2).
Intuitive eating interventions also have good retention rates, meaning people are more likely to stick with the program and keep practicing the behavioral changes than they would be on a diet.
Other studies have looked at women’s eating behaviors and attitudes and found that those who show more signs of intuitive eating are less likely to display disordered eating behaviors
Really IE can seem a little scary at first – But the other side is freedom from food worry and body preoccupation, a full life, joy, peace and more.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
I’m a certified Intuitive Eating Counselor and NASM Certified Personal Trainer, and the owner and creator of Spendlove Coaching.
My own wellness journey led me to getting my Master’s Degree in Health and Wellness Coaching from Creighton University – Go Blujays!
I help my clients discover that they are the experts of themselves. Using the tools learned inside my program and during coaching sessions, clients learn how to shift their mindset, taking back the power they have lost to dieting and diet culture