everything discussed in this blog series is derived from Intuitive Eating and the Intuitive Eating Workbook. As you read these posts, I strongly encourage you to purchase and read both as this series will not be as thorough and informative as the books. Each month we will focus on one principle at a time. Allow yourself the space to simply look at that one principle. My desire for you, dear reader, is that these posts will 1) allow you to dig deep into understanding your relationship with food, 2) that kindness and compassion for yourself will grow, and 3) that you will experience real flourishing as you develop trust with your body.
I spent a solid 4 years of my life hungry. The slightest feeling of fullness would have unraveled me, causing me to believe I was a failure. After years of starving, I developed a binge eating disorder and I ate with abandon until my body ached.
My history with “feeling my fullness” is complex and loaded. When I initially started my Intuitive Eating journey, I truly did not know how to become aware of the physical sensations of fullness because I had spent so many years disconnected from my body’s internal cues.
In a culture so inundated with diet messaging, it’s easy for anyone to get distanced from their body’s fullness signals. Instead, we can let a suggested serving size, time of day, or any other external rule about food dictate how much or how little we eat. Our bodies are smart and do not require outside authorities to tell us what and how to eat.
First of all, know that eating intuitively is not a set of rules to be strictly adhered to. The goal of Intuitive Eating is total food freedom and true trust with your body. You will inevitably have experiences of eating past fullness as well as experiences of not eating enough. That’s normal! Your body is always changing which means you will spend your lifetime learning to offer it what it needs. Thus, the most important thing you can do as you learn to listen for fullness cues is offer yourself grace and compassion. Every time you sit down to eat, you have an opportunity to learn and be kind to yourself.
Additionally, get curious. Check in with yourself mid-meal. Notice how the food you are eating tastes and what it feels like in your body. Are your hunger cues starting to fade? What are the messages your body is giving you that let you know it is satisfied? Over time, when we tune in with patience, kindness, and intention, we will be able to notice the nuanced ways our body lets us know it is comfortably full.
For anyone who is interested in reconnecting to their body and cultivating body trust, I strongly encourage you to read both Intuitive Eating and the Intuitive Eating Workbook. I also encourage you to let others in to your lonely and isolated places. Healing your relationship with your body will not happen overnight and you don’t have to do this alone.