Intuitive Eating Chapter 9 - Feel Your Fullness
I tend to be one who cleans her plate. After becoming aware of this fact and trying to break myself of the habit without much success, I now start out with less food on my plate to begin with. I've gotten pretty good at judging how hungry I am and deciding how much food it will take to feel satisfied. I also tend to be a fast eater so learning to slow down and savor has been something that I've had to work on and am still working on. I find I'm much better at this if I don't wait until I'm famished to eat. There are so many factors that condition us to eat more than our bodies need. I know some of you have mentioned that you don't like to waste food. What are some other factors that cause you to eat more than you need?
The most important part of learning to stop eating when your full is to know for certain that you can have any food you want again, when ever you want it. If you don't truly believe this then it's really hard to listen to your body. When I eat at a restaurant that I know I can't eat at everyday, I tend to over eat. So, for my day to day living, I find it critical that I truly believe that I can have access to any food. Do you believe the principle that nothing can be off limits or Intuitive Eating can't work? Explain why or why not.
Feeling your fullness is where the rules come in for Intuitive Eating. This way of eating does not promote eating until you're sick (although they allow that sometimes this will happen). The key is to listen to your body and act accordingly. To do this you must learn what it feels like to be comfortably full and then STOP! This will be different for everyone. The amount of food that fills up one person may not fill up another so don't compare yourselves. Just listen to your stomach.
We all know there are foods that won't keep you full for long. I don't cut those foods out of my diet, but I do keep in mind, when choosing what to eat, that certain foods will keep me fuller, longer. Have you ever told yourself "I shouldn't be hungry" and then not allowed yourself to eat? It's silly, because when you're hungry, you're hungry. Eat something and move on. I find that some days I'm very hungry and other days I don't eat much at all. It all seems to even itself out over time.
Learning to eat intuitively during social events has was the hardest for me. I'm was so busy jabbering, listening to others jabber or sitting around the table too long picking at the food that I'm wasn't as tuned in as I should have been. Being with people seemed to be a cue for me to eat. Over time, I've gotten much better with this. I just remind myself to be aware. Also, eating intuitively is becoming more and more automatic for me. Do social situations cause you to eat more? I know for some people they eat less in social situations because they don't want others to think they're pigs. Which of these problems do you experience?
Intuitive Eating Chapter 10 - Discover the Satisfaction Factor
I love this chapter because I think the satisfaction factor is critical to a person's mental health when it comes to a relationship with food. Diets very rarely take into account the satisfaction factor. I believe this a huge reason they fail. There is something very powerful in feeling happy and satisfied when you leave the table. So many other cultures around the world seem to remember this. The Japanese promote this as one of their goals for healthy living and many people believe that this is why the French are much healthier than Americans even though their diets contain much richer foods. They're just satisfied with much less because they are taught to enjoy and savor their food. Meal times in France are slow and leisurely. Americans are so concerned with health and eating quickly, that they sometime forget that food is supposed to taste good. We don't take time to enjoy and savor!
I know that some of you are saying, "I always eat foods I love and enjoy and I'm fat." But ask yourself if you are really thinking carefully about what you really, truly want, and then savoring each bite, stopping when you're full? Sometimes we just plow through our food without really even tasting it.
I had so deeply bought into the idea that I must deny myself tasty food because it made me fat that I had a hard time believing what the authors say, that if you allow yourself pleasure and satisfaction from every possible eating experience, your total quantity of food will decrease. When I tried this principle out for myself, I found it to be amazingly true. Now I try to get the most out of every eating experience. Sometimes this isn't possible, we all have to eat on the run sometimes, but I do this whenever I can. And yep, I eat much less than I used to! Not only that, but I think I'm a happier person in general and I don't obsess about food. My favorite result from intuitive eating! How do you guys feel about the principle of pleasure and eating?
And remember, when you're digging into that favorite package of cookies make sure you're checking in with yourself to make sure the third cookie is still tasting as good as the first one did!In my experience, they usually don't.
One slice of apple pie has got to have less calories than that package of Graham crackers and can of applesauce you ate instead of pie, not to mention the satisfaction factor that is almost absent in the Graham cracker scenario! Just savor the pie and move on. I think you'll find that you eat much less pie than you ever thought you would.