Intuitive eating has become a bit of a buzzword in the wellness world lately. If you are out on the socials much, you’ve probably seen lots of posts mentioning and hashtagging this. This has led to lots of questions and misunderstandings.
What Intuitive Eating is NOT.
Intuitive eating (IE) is not another diet. It is not intended for the pursuit of weight loss. Nor is it a set of food rules or a framework to manage or control your eating. Trying to do this breaks the all-important mind-body connection. It is also not a license to eat whatever you’d like. Think about it, if you ate nothing but pizza (or cake) all day long, how would you really feel? And how long would you really enjoy it? It does take into account gentle nutrition and considers the impact of various foods on your body and your mood.
So, what IS Intuitive Eating?
IE is a practice developed by two dietitians (Evelyn Triboli and Elyse Reich) that focuses on self-care and integrates emotion, enjoyment, and nourishment as it teaches folx to reconnect with their bodies and natural hunger and fullness cues. It has been validated to help improve mental and physical wellbeing by over 100 published and peer-reviewed articles in scientific journals. There are 10 core principles that make up the IE framework.
- Reject the Diet Mentality
- Honor Your Hunger
- Make Peace with Food
- Challenge the Food Police
- Respect Your Fullness
- Discover the Satisfaction Factor
- Honor Your Feelings without Using Food
- Respect Your Body
- Exercise—Feel the Difference
- Honor Your Health with Gentle Nutrition
Intuitive eating can be especially helpful for folx in the LGBTQI+ community who may have felt like their bodies are somehow wrong or broken or felt even more pressure to fit conventional appearance standards since we don’t fit in other ways. It is a powerful method to flip the script and learn to appreciate your body for all that it is and to treat it with the respect it deserves.