You might be wondering why you need to use your INTUITION to do something as “simple” as eat. We need to eat for survival right? And when you’re a busy mom, sometimes eating means shoving food in your mouth while driving, nursing, packing lunches or… showering??
I love the concept of intuitive eating because it allows you to eat what you NEED no matter what stage of motherhood/postpartum you are in.
We go through so many different phases of nutrient needs between pregnancy and postpartum and breastfeeding, etc. that there is NO way we could possibly count calories effectively through all that.
Pregnancy is actually what got me into this whole intuitive eating thing in the first place. Before that I was OBSESSED with tracking macros, but letting my body tell me what I needed gave me so much FREEDOM.
click below to get your FREE printable guide to intuitive eating…. perfect for sticking on your fridge!
Besides… our bodies are SMART. They know EXACTLY what we NEED… but sometimes we complicate things and eat when we are not truly hungry, which throws off the whole hunger/fullness gauge in our brain.
For example, maybe you’ve found yourself eating in the following circumstances:
mistaking hunger for thirst
the food is there (friend’s counter, the break room at work, samples at costco…ahem…)
watching TV/ a movie …super easy to eat a lot when you’re distracted
And many many other reasons….
So why is intuitive eating important?
Intuitive eating allows you to manage your body, mind, and weight while still feeling satisfied and in control. And most importantly, without sticking to a strict DIET.
If you follow the guidelines I teach my clients and listen to your body (not your emotions), you will be able to live a healthy life while staying at a healthy weight.
It’s important to focus on trying to eat when you are HUNGRY so you can pay attention to your hunger and fullness cues. When You eat when you aren’t hungry, your brain doesn’t tell you to STOP (thus overeating).
It’s important to listen to your body whether you are eating something super healthy, OR if you're having a tasty and indulgent treat.
Regardless of what you are eating, intuitive eating allows you to STOP when you are FULL….so you avoid feeling sick or “stuffed” which is your body’s way of telling you STOPPPPP!!!
So how can you focus on your hunger cues?
There are several things you can do before and while eating to ensure you are listening to your body and not overeating.
Before you head to the kitchen for a snack… ask yourself a few questions. Am I hungry?? Am I thirsty? When was my last meal? Do I need a small snack or am I ready for a meal?
Are you feeling emotional in any way? Bored? Stressed? Did your toddler just have a meltdown? Assess what’s REALLY going on.
Ask yourself how you’ll feel AFTER you finish whatever it is that you want. Will you feel satisfied? Will your tummy hurt?
Drink a full glass of water
If you decide you are NOT actually hungry, come up with a heathy distraction. Take a walk, put on some music, look at your to-do list, etc.
When snacking serve yourself a portion instead of eating from a box or bag
eat until 80% full and give yourself a chance to really feel satisfied (vs overly stuffed)
wait 20 minutes before going back for seconds
put your fork down, sip water between bites
chew more!! If you usually eat quickly you probably chew a couple times before scooping up your next bite. Notice how many chews you are doing, and then add a few more! Really allow yourself to TASTE your food