When is the last time you ate like an animal? It’s not what you think. I’m not talking about wolfing down your food or pigging out. I’m talking about listening to your body and not your head. It’s called Intuitive Eating. And animals are the masters of it.
Have you ever noticed that animals don’t end up with chronic degenerative diseases or obesity?
Animals don’t have nutritionists or a food pyramid to study in order to figure out what to eat. They just know. This is instinct or intuition.
But guess what?!? You’ve got it too! Isn’t that exciting?
First, I want to paint a picture of what it means to NOT intuitively eat.
When you aren’t using your intuition to eat, you’re usually eating with your mind. This is one of the most dangerous ways to interact with food. Your mind was never meant to be in charge of this task.
Why? Because your brain is full of thoughts, justifications, facts, ideas, and explanations. And when you apply all of these to food it can lead to confusion, rigid rules, indecision, frustration, guilt, hiding, and games.
I know you’ve been there. We all have.
Picture yourself hungry for lunch and opening the fridge to find some food to eat. You see salad greens, dressing, leftover curry and rice from last night, carrots, blueberries, and there’s a pint of chocolate ice cream in the freezer.
And here begins the internal dialogue, “I really should eat a salad. It’s healthy. I don’t really need the carbs from the rice, not trying to pack on the pounds. Ooooh, blueberries, a superfood…they’re high in antioxidants…that might make me burn some fat and eat a little less. The curry was so yummy, though, but it kind of made my belly upset. Ice cream. That sounds good, but I’d have to save it for dessert. Maybe I could eat the salad and then I wouldn’t feel as guilty for eating the ice cream.”
See what’s happening here? You are justifying your desire to eat ice cream by eating the healthy food first. You’re making rules about eating dessert ONLY after you’ve eaten something else first. You’ve deemed salad as healthy and ice cream as unhealthy. The blueberries are a ‘superfood’ and it may help you burn fat. The curry was the only one where you actually listened to your body.
This can be crazy making to say the least. Now consider the fact that people do this every meal, every snack, 365 days a year.
The sad thing is that is the worst way to eat. It can actually lead to nutritional imbalances and anxiety around food. Over time it can become more severe as you completely shut off your body’s needs while you maintain a rigid diet.
But there is another way.
First let’s talk about the benefits of intuitive eating.
- You eat foods that will fulfill your nutritional needs.
- You have a better handle on not eating too much.
- You develop trust in yourself, your body, and honoring what it is asking for.
- You learn to decipher the messages that your body is sending you.
- You get to eat whatever you want whenever you want.
- You can actually tap into your healing potential.
Now let’s discuss the science behind intuitive eating.
Intuition is also known as your gut instinct. You have more neurons in your gut than in your brain. And the difference is that your gut doesn’t have thoughts.
So when you learn how to tap into your intuition and listen to your gut you will be giving your body exactly what it needs.
This is because of something called the gut-brain axis. This is the body’s fantastic communication system that allows your body to take in information from your digestive tract. When you eat food high in magnesium, your body remembers it. In the future when you need magnesium, your body will ‘crave‘ that food again.
You know when you get a hankering for something you haven’t had in years? This craving is often connected to a specific nutrient that the body needs to stay balanced.
Warning: There are things that can throw off your intuition. Years of eating processed food confuses intuitive eating. Getting your nutrient stores up is important in recovering this innate form of eating.
Having the wrong bacteria and yeasts in your system can also throw intuitive eating off. This is because the bacteria and yeasts can communicate through the gut-brain axis, too. If you have Candida it will tell your brain to get you to eat more sugar. If you have healthy probiotics living in your system, then you’ll crave less sugar and be able to tap into intuitive eating, stay nutritionally balanced, and maximize your health.
You can always learn more at gutrebuilding.com where you get 8-weeks of guided education to help you rebuild your gut, boost your immune function, and skyrocket your energy levels. For an entire week you will focus on Intuitive Eating. You’ll be guided in an audio recording on exactly how to tap into your gut-brain axis and begin to master the skill of Intuitive Eating.
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