I am inspired to write this post by the number of people I hear on a daily basis say some of the following things:
How many meals per day should I eat?
How many carbs/fats/proteins?
How many days can I cheat?
"I didn't know why I was staring at the chocolate bars, but knew I didn't need one"
" I think I ate that treat that night because I was bored"
" I wasn't even hungry, but I kept eating anyways"
" I couldn't resist the temptation"
All common questions/comments right?
And here is the thing: There is no ONE answer/one way to eat for all people.
I practice, and I encourage my clients to practice Intuitive Eating. There is actually a really good book that was recommended by my nutritionist Laura Hillier called INTUITIVE EATING!
YOUR body knows what it wants to eat, when it wants to eat it, and why it wants to eat it. I believe there is a psychological and physiological reason why each temptation/desire you have shows up in your life. If you are constantly craving chocolate, there is something going on there for you! Not every person craves chocolate like you do… I don't have the answer as to why, but by having the awareness you can begin the journey of figuring it out! Use this blog post as the beginning of a journey of outsourcing professionals, or people who know more about this road than you do. Obviously this is only if you want to alter your relationship with food, if you are happy with craving and eating chocolate everyday, then please continue to do so!
You may have read in my blogs or website about my journey with nutrition and health. A major part of my journey was a cycling between restricting of food or food groups, followed by binging. I thought it was normal, and funny, and that everyone did it. What I didn't realize was that everything behind the scenes was causing my actions! To the outside world I seemed positive, driven, healthy, active, happy, but inside, just like every single person out there I was having day to day struggles. One of the food I could eat by the bucket load was peanut butter or almond butter, which I believe was because I wasn't eating enough fat in my diet, so I was binging on it elsewhere. I also had an issue with quantity. When I would eat I would EAT! The fuller I could get, the better. For me this had to do with stuffing away feelings and emotions, as well as filling voids in my life for areas that I was not feeling fulfilled in. More on this another time…back to the point here!
It is important to make sure we are getting enough vitamins, minerals, fats and proteins and carbs to survive. You could try doing a food log and using a food tracker to ensure you are getting 100 % of what you need in your diet for your activity level, and for you to feel good. (Send me an e-mail if you want help with this). On top of that it's important to honour your cravings, desires, and wants! For example for the past month I actually haven't cooked a meal! I have been dealing with many challenges in my life, and haven't had the capacity to cook. Instead I have been aware, when I notice a sign of hunger (grumbling belly, tiredness, grumpiness, being cold) then I ask myself "What do you want to eat right now", and I go and get that! Only once has it ended up being an unhealthy choice, the rest of the times I have ALWAYS chose appropriately. And you know why? For the past year I have been eating intuitively. When I first started eating intuitively I had banana bread every day for lunch and chips and salsa for dinner many days. And it lasted like two weeks… Sometimes it comes back and I have power cookies for dinner, or something crazy, but the more I honour those cravings the less they show up. ** I should put a bit of a disclaimer here and say that I DID gain weight during this time. As I allowed my body to eat whatever I wanted it did gain weight, and it was an extremely challenging time for me, but the end result was what I desired, to be able to eat what I wanted when I wanted while maintaining my ideal body image!
It's hard to trust your body. If you have been restricting or controlling your food for so long you most likely believe that you will go overboard day after day and gain a ton of weight. Try and trust that in the end you can have the healthiest, most harmonious relationship with food you could imagine! If you continued to 'eat intuitively' and gained a dangerous amount of weight, this may be a health risk to yourself. You may want to start this journey under the supervision of a nutritionist or counsellor who can ensure everything goes well!
So what do I want you to take away from this?
"What you resist persists"- the more you try to keep those chips out of the house, or steer clear of that burger king, the more it will have a hold on you. Perhaps if it's that much of a challenge for you- it's time to dive deeper into what is going on in your body? Nutritionists, homeopaths, coaching/counselling, accupuncture, have all allowed me to figure this out for myself- have you tried any of them yet? Or maybe you just aren't eating enough overall and it's causing you to crave things ?!!?
Start to pay attention to your eating habits, that's the first step to intuitive eating. No judgement. Just observe.
Intuitive exercising is important too- let's save that for another day.
I hope my rambling helps some of you, feel free to pass it on if it does 🙂