Honor Your Hunger & Respect Your Fullness

Hi Everyone! I'm back on my blog this week discussing Intuitive Eating Principle 2 Honor Your Hunger & 5: Respect Your Fullness. These principles go hand-in-hand and are the foundation of rebuilding your trust with food.

When we are on a diet, we listen to external cues of when to eat or how much to eat. When we are intuitive eaters, we listen to our internal cues that tell us we are hungry or when we are full. We were actually all born as intuitive eaters. Think about it: babies cry to signal they are hungry, they eat, and they stop eating when they are full. It's so simple. But for most of us, we were then put on feeding schedules, we ate lunch at our assigned time at school, our afternoon snacks may have been restricted, we were told "finish your plate" at dinnertime, etc. Unfortunately, many of us in adulthood still choose to listen to external hunger/fullness cues by following diets that tell us "no eating after 7 pm"or "only eat 1/2 cup of rice per meal". All of these things make something as simple as Honoring Your Hunger and Respecting Your Fullness difficult to do.

It can take many counseling sessions and the use of Hunger and Fullness Scales to re-learn these skills. However, many clients are happily surprised to find that when they keep their bodies biologically fed with adequate calories, they are much less inclined overeat or binge on food. Avoiding excessive hunger also makes respecting your fullness much easier. When you are not starving, you can take the time when you are eating to check-in with your body and ask, "what's my current fullness level?". This isn't to say that each time you eat you will stop when you are comfortably full. We are all human and sometimes food just tastes really yummy! Part of Intuitive Eating is knowing and accepting that overeating will sometimes happen.

Honor Your Hunger and Respect Your Fullness set the stage for next week- Principle 3: Make Peace with Food and Principle 4: Challenge the Food Police.