If there is one question that I get again and again it’s this: Will intuitive eating help me lose weight? So, since this is such a hot topic, let’s talk about it, shall we?
Firstly, intuitive eating is a non-diet approach to food and nutrition. It’s about learning to connect the needs and wants of the mind and body. It is not about following a specific meal plan or counting calories/macros/carbs/etc. When it comes down to it, only YOU can understand your own body’s hunger, satisfaction and fullness. Intuitive eating is about discovering that understanding.
Secondly, intuitive eating is a weight-neutral approach to food and nutrition. Meaning, the focus is not on weight loss. This can be tough for a lot of people to hear, and that’s totally understandable. We’re constantly being told that weight loss is the solution to our problems. That if we can just lose X number of pounds we’ll be happier. Let me ask you this question: has focusing on weight loss ever given you long term happiness? I didn’t think so.
The diet industry makes billions of dollars each year, and do you know why that is? It’s because their “solutions” don’t work. They simply leave you feeling frustrated, disappointed and searching for the next thing that might work. It’s an endless cycle. And, what’s more, studies continue to show that you main MORE weight from dieting. It’s not a sustainable way of living.
So, back to the original question: Will intuitive eating help me lose weight? To be honest, I can’t give you a flat our answer. There are three possible outcomes when you consume food: weight loss, gain or maintenance. What I CAN tell you is that by becoming an intuitive eater you’ll likely find your body’s “set point weight”. Your set point weight is where your body naturally wants to be and where it will optimally function. The way to find this set point? T become an in-tune with your body. And how do we do that? By becoming an intuitive eater.
If you’ve constantly fallen prey to diet culture and have been caught up in the restrict/binge cycle, you may very well be above your optimally functioning set point and weight loss may be an outcome of becoming an intuitive eater. On the flip side, if you’ve consistently been under eating for years, weight gain may be needed to reach your set point and exit “starvation mode”. Weight gain weight loss, or weight maintenance, none of these outcomes are wrong.
When your body reaches its set point not only does it function optimally, but it is HAPPIER! Your thoughts are no longer consumed with sticking to a diet, how much weight you want to lose, or how many steps it’ll take to burn off what you just ate. By freeing up your mind from these disordered thoughts you are giving it room to experience joy. You begin to truly live life!
Personally, I experienced all 3 (weight gain, loss and maintenance) during my journey to intuitive eating. It takes time to become in-tune with both your mind and body, and that’s okay! It’s a process, but the outcome is SO worth it! After becoming an intuitive eater my body naturally stay right around its set point. I no longer worry about my weight, meticulously count calories, or restrict food groups. It’s the most freeing thing! I am more than the number on the scale, and intuitive eating has taught me that.
I want nothing more than to help YOU avoid the 6-year struggle with disordered eating and weight pre-occupation that I did. If you’re ready to ditch dieting and start living a life free of weight preoccupation, then comment below!