This could be the only thing you’ll ever need to improve your diet. But first, let’s make few assumptions about the way you currently eat.
Let’s assume you’re already eating a relatively healthy, wholefoods diet. You don’t need to be a clean (terrible term to describe eating, but bear with me here) eating tupperware robot. Not even close. But most of the foods you currently eat are considered healthy by most people. The kinds of foods that make you feel like each forkful is giving your organs a warm hug. Got it? Ok. Let’s also assume you’re already evenly spacing your meals throughout the day to avoid raging hunger at meal times.
What if instead of focusing on calories, portion sizes, or chewing slowly (all of which I sometimes recommend), you’d do something completely different? What if you’d simply focus on eating as much as you want? Not until you feel 80% full (as I often also recommend), but as much as you want.
Most of us are used to eating with some sort of guidelines and rulebook in our head. They are part of the baggage we collect as we grow. Advice and comments from well (or not-so-well) meaning parents, friends and experts that we have stored deep in our brain.We are afraid to let go of them as we think we would lose all self-control and wake up one day weighing 25kg more than we did yesterday.
It’s scary because ‘eat as much as you want’ doesn’t come with a thick rulebook. Yet, at it’s core, eating is suppose to be intuitive. We are not born with these weird, self-depriving eating rules that can make each meal time an epic battle of willpower between our stomach, brain and heart.
But slowly building up the courage to throw out the rulebook is the true freedom. The holy grail of intuitive eating. Returning your focus on how you feel while eating allows you to pay more attention to the actual enjoyment of food. The way it’s meant to be.
And yes, you’ll be wise to focus on healthier diet and meal times first. But once those two aspects are covered, try giving yourself the freedom to eat as much as you like. See where it takes you.