Intuitive Eating.

20Jun07

I found this list on a website dedicated to intuitive eating, which is “an approach that teaches you how to create a healthy relationship with your food, mind, and body–where you ultimately become the expert of your own body. You learn how to distinguish between physical and emotional feelings, and gain a sense of body wisdom. It’s also a process of making peace with food … ”

Hmm… sounds sensible to me!

With all the hype in the media about Alli, an OTC half-dose version of Xenical/orlistat, launching this week, sensible attitudes to eating, weight loss/management and general health seem to be slipping farther and farther out of the media. For it to be effective, users still need to eat a healthful diet and get enough exercise; if they do that, Alli can give users an extra 50% loss – e.g. lose 10lbs on your own through diet and exercise, and you’ll lose 15lbs with diet, exercise and this pill at every meal. Okay, so maybe if you are impatient and want to see results faster, the drug might be useful.

Except it gives you the runs if you eat more than 15g of fat in a meal. Like “poop your pants in public”-style. Like “wet fart”-style. Like the instructions suggest you carry a change of clothes with you when you start taking Alli.

Ew.

When I first heard about Alli, I thought I might try it. I started researching it to see if it would have any interactions with my other medications, when I came across the “treatment effects”, including the poop issues. I’m impatient, yes. I am not so impatient – nay, so STUPID – as to risk shitting myself in public just to lose a few extra pounds. Yeesh.

So – the 10 Principles of Intuitive Eating paraphrased from the website linked above:

1. Reject the Diet Mentality – Get rid of diet books and magazine that claim quick, easy, permanent weight loss. Get angry at the lies of the diet industry. Overall – reject the diet industry.

2. Honor Your Hunger – Fuel your physical body with enough energy and nutrients. Conscious eating is near impossible when you are excessively hungry. Honor your biological signals of hunger so you can learn to trust your body and its cues.

3. Make Peace with Food – Stop fighting food. Eat without saying that you can’t/shouldn’t have a food, without depriving yourself. Deprivation leads to craving.

4. Challenge the Food Police – Stop labeling foods as good/bad and yourself as good/bad for eating a particular food.

5. Respect Your Fullness – Listen for and accept bodily signs of comfortable fullness. Eat deliberately, thinking about the taste of your food and your level of fullness.

6. Discover the Satisfaction Factor – Discover the pleasure and satisfaction in the “eating experience” – the food, the environment, etc. Allowing yourself to take in the experience and feel that you’ve had “enough.”

7. Honor Your Feelings Without Using Food -Without using food, find ways to recognize, feel, and resolve emotions. Identify triggers and search for resolutions without food. Food doesn’t satiate emotional hunger.

8. Respect Your Body – Accept your body and genetics and be realistic about them. Respect your body.

9. Exercise–Feel the Difference – Get active, focusing on how it feels to move. Don’t focus on calories burnt; instead, focus on how you feel, emotionally and physically after moving your body.

10 Honor Your Health – Make food choices that honor your health and tastebuds. One meal or one day of meals will not make or break a nutritional deficiency. Consistency and progression count; perfection does not.

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