Intuitive Eating & My Shift In Practice

Hi everyone! Thanks for joining as always! We are switching things up today.  I want to start talking about a few things on the blog that don’t have much to do with recipes.  Don’t get me wrong, I love sharing our recipes and cooking here in the blog-world, but it is only a fraction of what I do.  

I want to start having more conversations that are not only about food, but self-compassion, how we nourish our bodies, and maybe a little about life. I have always wanted this be a place where people saw food as beautiful and interesting, and would be inspired to make food for the ones they love, including themselves.  I hope to start sharing more topics about how we can look at food, and self-care in our lives in a more positive way.  Talk about how we can raise our little ones to feel amazed by their bodies, and touch on how hard it is to live in a world consumed by diet culture. 

I also want to explain why I am always referencing Intuitive Eating, identifying your hunger/fullness, and body acceptance.  I guess I want to finally share a little about my philosophies and what helped me get more perspective, and modify my own practice with myself and my clients.


My philosophy as a dietitian, or how I talk about what I provide, is a weight neutral approach to “health”, a non-diet approach to nutrition and I am currently studying to be a certified Intuitive Eating counselor.  I don’t look at client weights when I am working with them on their goals, I don’t give them calories to count or restrictions to follow.  I really work hard to help clients let go of all the rules they have developed around food, which I have personally had to let go of.  I threw out my scale and I feel like everyone should. 

“Lets approach self-care in a more positive way.” 

What is intuitive eating? Intuitive eating is nothing new, but has been talked about more often lately as our society takes a (little) shift away from conventional “wellness”.  Put simply, it is a way of making food and movement choices from internal cues.  It is getting back to listening to the way your body feels in response to food choices and how it feels when we move it.  There are 10 principles of intuitive eating, and after reading the book, I felt I finally found the language.  I found the language I needed to convey what I had already been feeling. 

Why has my perspective has changed?  I was taught in a conventional nutrition program; about diets, medical nutrition therapy and participated in an internship that was very clinically focused.  So in my schooling, I was taught to calculate calories, protein, fats; focus on weight and numbers, and to put people on the diet that was right for them.  Little did I know, I had so much more to learn. 

As I got into my outpatient practice and started working with clients, I saw tons of frustration with this concept of using diets, meal plans and “allowed, not allowed” lists to provide guidance.  **Note: there is a place for modified meal patterns, those with severe illness, malnutrition, or those on nutrition support (feeding tubes or IV nutrition), may benefit from numbers and rigidity, but it is not the rule, rather the exception.  For those pursuing weight loss, or those wanting to improve their cholesterol, blood pressure, diabetes or other chronic disease, there is another way. And it starts with putting weight concerns on the back-burner.  

Why am I so excited about what is to come?  Using both motivational interviewing and Intuitive Eating in my practice has been a game changer. There is really great research about why diets don’t work and I feel validated in what I already felt was true.  I finally could see the pattern that was caused by restrictive or “careful” eating.  I again, finally have the language and evidence I need to provide this framework for my clients and for myself.  I practice Intuitive Eating, I am reading the book for a third time, I have done the workbook, and I am looking forward to having some supervision training!  It has really helped me heal from my own disordered eating, somewhat orthorexic behaviors, and has provided me the freedom to listen to what my body needs.  My journey continues and will evolve I’m sure, but for now I am so excited to share my experience with everyone and finally feel great around food and accept that no matter my size, my body has done some cool things.  

Oh and I have also been doing a social media clean up.  Submerging myself in this work and all things body acceptance and intuitive eating, here are some of my favorites lately!

 

Some great reads: Body Kindness , Secrets From the Eating Lab, Body Respect, Health at Every Size

Blogs I’m loving: ImmaEatThat , Hummusapien, The Joy of Eating, The Real Life RD, Isabel Foxen Duke, … and more! 

 

Did you like this topic? Want to learn more? Comment below about topics you’d like to hear about and I hope everyone has a great day!!

 

 
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