Do you sometimes feel batshit around food? Do you bounce from counting calories, to cutting carbs, to going on week-long juice cleanses because you heard it was the BEST way of losing weight, only to gain it all right back? Do you process your emotions by faceplanting into a bowl of cookie dough? Do you get stressed out going food shopping or eating in restaurants? Are you constantly doing mental acrobatics trying to keep track of what you can and can’t eat based on what you’ve already eaten and how much you’ve worked out that day?
That shit is exhausting. AMIRITE?
I know because I’ve been there too.
But what if all that noise stopped and went away for good?
What if you could learn to eat with peace and not feel guilt, confusion, or anxiety?
What if I told you that you could delete the calorie counting apps and ditch the scales?
What if you could rediscover your innate ability to determine what to eat and when to eat?
What if I told you that ditching diets for good can help you find lifelong balance and wellness?
On the 30th January 2017 I’m launching a new interactive, online community to help guide women towards Intuitive Eating. The course is called Food Fight. To find out more listen to the podcast above or keep reading below.
I hear a lot of noise about intuitive eating – a lot of “don’t worry about what you eat, just eat intuitively” without any further context or guidance. This ignores the fact that the vast majority of people have become disconnected from their intuitive eating signals and don’t actually know what, when, or how much to eat without feeling batshit. The process of intuitive eating isn’t just a case of “eat whatever, it’s fine” – there’s work to be done. Over the course of ten weeks I’ll help you rebuild trust in yourself to make choices about what, when, and how much you eat – no diet plans, no fads – just your own inner food GPS. Through video, discussion, and homeworks (the good kind, promise), I’ll help you rebuild a new, non batshit, unstressed approach to food, eating, and wellbeing.
Week by week we’ll cover all ten principles of intuitive eating. I’ve updated these a little from the original principle to be a bit more relevant while still staying true to the fundamentals of the process;
Reject Diet Culture
Diet culture has done a number on us – together we’ll begin to undo the damage by developing the skills to call out diet BS when you see it and get MAD AS HELL about the lies we’ve been sold. Finally, I’ll help you recognise that the weight loss & the diet mentality is doing more harm than good and help you move away from this type of thinking.
Honour Your Hunger
AKA -eat when you’re hungry – sounds pretty obvious but I’ve worked with a lot of women who skip meals and consider it an accomplishment to go to bed hungry. This is about respecting your normal biological drive to eat; for energy, for nourishment, and for pleasure.
Make Peace with Food
This principle is about letting go of ‘food rules’. Legalising ALL FOOD. Yup, even gluten, dairy, & sugar. This is a scary principle for a lot of people, but so important for learning to trust your body again; learning to trust you aren’t ‘addicted’ to a food, learning that you won’t only eat pizza and cookies for the rest of your life.
Challenge The Food Police
You know that voice in your head that says ‘you shouldn’t eat that’ or bargains with you to work out in order to ‘earn’ a meal. That’s the food police and he’s a little bitch. This step is all about neutralising your attitudes towards food and disarming other people’s’ charged language. Instead we’ll work on cultivating positive self talk.
Feel Your Fullness
Another obvious sounding principle but when was the last time you stopped eating when you were comfortably full? If you’ve been in the dieting mentality for a long time it’s probably likely that you routinely overeat because you know it’s going to be a long time before you’re allowed to eat again. In intuitive eating, no foods are off limit and there are no rules to follow about when and what to eat, so you can stop eating when you’re comfortably full safe in the knowledge that if you begin to feel hungry again later on – food is available and it’s OK to eat.
Discover the Satisfaction Factor
Food (or lack thereof) is not punishment – it’s meant to taste good and be enjoyed. Sad rice crackers, zero calorie noodles, and other diet foods are probably not going to leave you satisfied. You know yourself that if something says it’s low calorie/fat/sugar you probably eat 10x more. If you just had the real deal, you’d feel satisfied with a lot less. This is where we find the satisfaction factor in the food we eat.
Stop Eating your Emotions
By this point in your intuitive eating journey you’ll begin to have more neutral feelings towards food and can start to get your head around the fact that eating your emotions isn’t a great coping mechanism. This is where we’ll start to develop more appropriate ways to soothe, comfort, and care for ourselves, without face planting into a bucket of Ben & Jerry’s. Say goodbye to emotionally charged binges.
Become a BoPo Babe
This is where things start to get exciting and you’ll begin the totally radical act of LOVING YOURSELF. While body positive messages and exercises will be interwoven throughout the programme, this is where things will really start coming together and you’ll stop determining your value based on what you’ve eaten or how much you’ve moved. We’ll also take a deep dive into the Science behind Health at Every Size and really embrace that ALL BODIES ARE BEAUTIFUL.
In the same way that we’ve been disconnected from eating, we rely more and more on workout programmes, fitness trackers, and weight to determine how we feel physically. Intuitive movement is about finding joy in activity – whether it’s taking a low impact yoga class, going for a walk, or training for a marathon – finding activity that doesn’t leave you drained and exhausted is a critical part of the process.
Finally to tie things all together we’ll discuss gentle nutrition – this is all about nourishing your body with foods that taste good and leave you feeling awesome. We also reinforce the idea that you don’t have to eat a perfect diet to be healthy and that nutrition isn’t all or nothing. For example, I recently saw a famous self-styled ‘nutritionist’ post that a croissant was her ‘guilty pleasure’. Aside from the fact that unless she stole the food or ate it while killing someone, she had no reason to feel guilty, she made it seem as though that food had no redeeming nutritional value – white flour in this country is fortified with calcium, niacin, iron and thiamin. The fat in the croissant helps slow down the release of sugar in the blood stream, helping keep blood sugar levels stable, and it’s a source of energy – way better than starving yourself, no? Dichotomising foods as good or bad isn’t helpful; being gentle and kind and understanding that play foods still have nutritional properties – and even when they don’t they still nourish the soul!
The course is designed to be taken over 10 weeks – each week a new concept (or two) will be released via video content, articles, and podcasts. Plus you’ll be added into a vibrant supportive community of people who are going through the process too. You’ll have the opportunity to ask me questions in a monthly Q+A, plus I’ll give you weekly activities and homeworks (the good kind, don’t worry).
Once signed up, you’ll be given unlimited, lifetime access to the group and resources – including new content that is added as time goes on.
This course is not appropriate for people with active eating disorders; if you are suffering from an eating disorder, or have suffered from one in the past you must have express permission from your GP or care provider to embark on this course. Although this course is intended to help heal your relationship with food and eating, for some it may be triggering for any underlying disordered eating – if at any point you feel you are unduly suffering, you must inform me immediately to ensure you seek the appropriate care. Eating disorders are very serious conditions and I do not take them lightly – it is not appropriate for Registered Nutritionists to treat eating disorders unless as part of a care team that is supervised by suitably qualified individuals such as physicians, psychotherapists, or a registered dietitian who specialises in eating disorders. By registering for this course you are agreeing to the above.