Intuitive eating is the latest health trend to take over the dieting world, with many people jumping on the bandwagon in an attempt to get healthier or lose weight. If you look a bit closer though, you’ll quickly see that intuitive eating has very little in common with traditional yo-yo diets that are highly restrictive and commonly unsustainable. For those of you are who are new to intuitive eating, we’ve put together 5 things that all beginners should know.
1. It focuses on natural cues
Human beings are born with natural cues when it comes to eating, yet as we get older and begin to consume media and other people’s opinions these things tend to get lost. Consider babies, for instance. They know when they are hungry from the moment they are born, crying when they need to be fed. Young children are able to refuse food when they aren’t hungry, not because they have been told because they’re relying on messages from their bodies. Intuitive eating revolves around this idea of listening to our bodies and our natural cues. Rather than adhering to prohibitive diets, we should listen to our bodies for signs of hunger and cravings, then make food choices based on these.
2. It revolves around 10 principles
All intuitive eating newbies should get familiar with the 10 principles that underpin this approach to eating. They include ideas about respecting your body, listening to when it is full and the relationships between emotions and food.
3. It is a healthy alternative to dieting
Intuitive eating has many health benefits, both physical and mental. While it results in higher levels of good cholesterol and lower triglycerides, it also can increase wellbeing and general satisfaction.
4. It helps to reduce one’s negative relationship with food
Unlike fad diets, intuitive eating can help to repair our relationship with food. It aims to eliminate the guilt associated with food consumption and reduce emotional eating.
5. It won’t necessarily help you to lose weight
Many people turn to diets to help them lose weight, always to varying degrees of success. Intuitive eating isn’t necessarily designed to help you lose weight. If you are overweight, it’s likely that you will lose a few extra kilograms as you listen to your body more and make healthier choices. However, it is also possible that you will stay the same or even gain weight, depending on the natural requirements of your body.
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