What is Intuitive Eating? How does it work?

Intuitive Eating isn’t a new diet or set of food and exercise rules to follow. It also isn’t simply a “feel good” or “warm and fuzzy” approach to those things either. Intuitive Eating is a mind-body self-care framework created by Evelyn Tribole MS, RDN, CEDRD-S and Elyse Resch MS, RDN, CEDRD-S, Fiaedp, FADA, FAND and in my opinion is equal parts body wisdom and science. The ability to eat intuitively and move intuitively is something you were born with and which the principles of Intuitive Eating help to guide you back to over time. In many ways this will feel really different because it’s different than perhaps how you have been in relationship with food, body, movement and self for what may have been quite a few years. In other ways it may feel familiar (the intuitive part) as you re-connect with yourself and your body.

Consider the following:

  • How much time in a day would you say do you spend thinking about food, eating and exercise? What %?
  • Do you ever feel anxious around food?
  • Do you ever dread or skip social events because of food or exercise?
  • Have you lost and regained weight multiple times?
  • Do you feel like you “just need more willpower”, “need to get back on the wagon” or “just need to commit or try harder” or that “this time it will be different” (despite having tried many times to change the size and shape of your body) ?
  • Are you sick and tired of dieting?
  • Do you move your body in ways you genuinely enjoy and look forward to getting to do when able (and don’t feel guilty or anxious if you can’t) ?
  • Do you wish you could feel better in and about your body?

The tug of war with the body that is created when external input and influences take over and tell you how you should look, what you should eat, what you shouldn’t eat, when, and on and on and on is EXHAUSTING.

Not to mention often expensive…….taking time, money, emotional energy (hello guilt and stress) which ultimately means you don’t have that space and time for things that really fill you up and light you up.

10 Principles of Intuitive Eating

Created by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch

  1. Reject the Diet Mentality
  2. Honor Your Hunger
  3. Make Peace with Food
  4. Challenge the Food Police
  5. Discover the Satisfaction Factor
  6. Feel You Fullness
  7. Cope with Your Emotions with Kindness
  8. Respect Your Body
  9. Movement-Feel the Difference
  10. Honor Your Health-Gentle Nutrition

It takes time un-learn things that have wedged themselves between you and your intuition and re-learn and re-orient yourself to your body signals, preferences, satisfaction, your values, needs etc. But it IS possible and it can bring more peace and freedom into how it feels to be around food, feeding yourself, caring for yourself and moving your body. The 10 principles created by act as a guide to support this un-learning and learning.

Intuitive Eating doesn’t ignore health conditions you may be managing or hope to prevent and it doesn’t mean throwing nutrition out the window either. It does support you in shifting away from a pursuit of trying to change the bodies shape and size (tug of war) to a consideration and focus on health supporting behaviors, pleasure, preference, flexibility and peace. There are many things that impact your health to consider. Food and movement are only one small piece.

Want to learn more?

Book a free 15 minute Exploration Call with me so we can connect and you can ask me some of those questions that might be lingering on the tip of your tongue (maybe it’s something like- “Is this for me though?”, “But I am also managing X, Y and Z-can I still do this?”, ” I’m scared I’ll let myself go”, “How long does this take?”, “Will Intuitive Eating help me with X?”).

You are deserving of a peaceful relationship with food, movement and your body.

If you are feeling anxious about food and/or your body you are not alone.