This book– wow!! Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch (authors of Intuitive Eating) are the individuals responsible for the intuitive eating movement. If you are following along with our Thursday Book Club, we just read chapters 1-6 in the third edition of Intuitive Eating, covering a bit of background as well as principles one and two (of ten). In the next couple months I will go over the ten principles as an introduction, but I encourage everyone to read Tribole and Resch’s book, as I can only pass along tidbits. To truly adopt the intuitive eating mindset takes time and dedication. I would also encourage you to purchase their newly released Intuitive Eating Workbook to help you on your journey. “Intuitive Eating is a dynamic mind-body integration of instinct, emotion, and rational thought. It is a personal process of honoring your health by paying attention to the messages of your body and meeting your physical and emotional needs. It is an inner journey of discovery that puts you front and center; you are the expert of your own body.”
PRINCIPLE ONE: REJECT THE DIET MENTALITY
Dieting is one of the cruelest and most ineffective things we can do to our bodies. Despite no evidence that it works in the long term, we continue to deprive our bodies and ignore signs of hunger for the sake of an unrealistic ideal. Even more ironic is that dieting INCREASES our risk for gaining more weight and developing a sense of failure. Dieting interferes with our ability to find our healthiest body and cultivate self-compassion, but dieting messages are so ingrained in our culture that they are often hard to ignore (or even recognize)! Eating “clean”; counting calories; restricting certain foods; participating in juice “cleanses”; and even viewing food as the enemy are all hidden diet messages.
(Q1) What are some other examples of hidden diet messages you have encountered?
PRINCIPLE TWO: HONOR YOUR HUNGER
Denying biological hunger can undermine all intentions to be moderate and conscious in our eating practices. Often times we follow an external construct for determining when to eat– “I eat breakfast at 8:30 am, lunch at 12:45 pm and dinner at 7:00 pm.” What happens if I get hungry again outside of my fixed schedule? The diet mentality would say, “I just ate breakfast– I need to wait until lunch”; but a mentality that honors biological hunger would say “I must need extra nourishment this morning” and find a snack. Being able to distinguish between thoughts (“I deserve to eat this food because I worked out” OR “I am afraid that if I eat this snack to honor my hunger it will add unnecessary calories”) and hunger (“my stomach feels empty and I can’t concentrate– I must need to eat”) cues is extremely important.
(Q2) Can you think of other examples of thought cues versus hunger cues?
Keep following along– next month we will cover chapters 7-8!