I am writing this Intuitive Eating post mainly in response to certain reader comments and based solely on my personal experience. There is so much writing online about this and I’m sure that readers can find all the information themselves
Each one of us I believe has a different spiritual path and a different recovery path. Like the Buddhists say, there are 84000 paths to enlightenment.
To be honest, I never even knew what the term intuitive eating meant until about a year ago, and it appeared to be what I was doing.
My goal, my deepest desire and my constant prayer for over a decade was to be a normal eater. I knew normal eaters – they ate what they wanted, food and weight loss did not occupy their minds and it just came naturally to them, like having a shower in the morning and then forgetting about it. No questioning of the water temperature, the type of soap, how long you should stay in there for, how many times you should shower, etc.
So that was what I wanted. To have the obsession removed from my mind and just eat what I wanted when I wanted, with no guilt or obsession.
That was MY goal. That was how I visualized my recovery and that is what I have today. Also it is a path that worked for me – intuitively – without having any knowledge of any intuitive eating books, principles and hunger scales. I would still not have a clue how to “scale” my hunger, and I get confused when people talk about this. I’m hungry or I’m not, that’s it. It is really quite simple.
So maybe I was lucky that I wasn’t exposed to any literature “telling” me how to eat intuitively, because it would have created the same obsession that all my food plans, diets and weight loss programs did. I just knew I was DONE. I could not follow an eating plan for more than a week. It totally confused my body and made me more obsessed.
So I completely understand your frustration. I feel the same way about restrictive eating groups and plans when one extra ounce of fish is a relapse and you end up feeling disgusted, ashamed and a failure.
Everyone has their own path and my hope is that they find the freedom that we all ultimately want. Recovery is about freedom. My experience and my journey are my own. I made it to the other side my own way and I swore that if it worked I would try to help as many as I could. I know a lot of people that have great lives in very strict programs.
You need to do what is right for you. If it’s not broken don’t fix it.
I am also not in the convincing business nor am I here to be an expert on anything. I share my experience; if it resonates with people and they are drawn to it, then it will work for them too.
The whole point of intuitive eating I believe is to get in touch with your own body, mind and soul. It is not just about food, eating and weight loss. It is integrating yourself as a whole person and learning to live, think and make decisions based on your own, intuitive judgment.
I am certainly not here to create dependency or to say that my path to recovery is the only one. I try to act as a guide and to show you how I personally have achieved full and complete recovery – including weight loss – through intuitive or normal eating.
I often feel ashamed discussing weight loss and giving people the wrong impression about what intuitive eating is about. But I will mention it because it WAS my experience, and that is all that I have.
I am not a nutritionist, dietitian or doctor, so I cannot tell you how this works biologically; I can only share my personal experience. I NEVER guarantee that this will be yours too, but I also do not believe that this should be a goal of intuitive eating. If it is, then it becomes a diet, and we know what happens with diets…
Why I am a fan of Intuitive Eating vs. Meal Plans
The main issue that I had with meal plans, restrictive eating programs and recovery groups was that there was always a “right” and “wrong” way of going about recovery – something that triggered my black and white thinking that I had anyway and left me doomed to fail. There was no gray area, so it was the “all or nothing” approach. This was a constant battle for me that went on for years. One week I was “good”, the next week I was “bad” and it was all dependent on an external plan or program. I had no sense of what was right or wrong for me.
When I failed, over and over again, it further perpetuated the idea that I was a failure, it crushed my self esteem and left me with feelings and thoughts that “I would never recover”.
I found this very discouraging and damaging and I had to do a lot of work about challenging limiting beliefs and reprogramming my mind for success and achievement.
Through intuitive eating and really learning to listen to my body there is no longer any “right” or “wrong” way to eat. That is the whole principle that I live by – both with regard to food and my life.
That is what has given me complete freedom and it can be yours too.
If you haven’t done so already – download the FREE Intuitive Eating E Book to find out more information on Intuitive Eating. You can also post any questions or comments below that may also help others who are struggling on the path of intuitive eating but genuinely want this type of freedom and recovery.
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