Author: Ridge Personal Trainer Annie Barber

When I was a child, I ate what I wanted, when I wanted, and stopped when I was full. Somewhere along the way, that style of eating was lost to me. As I grew up, I learned about new diets and weight loss techniques through the media, took nutrition classes, started counting calories, and suddenly I was critiquing every single thing I put in my mouth. What happened to that inner voice that just told me what I wanted and told me when I’ve had enough?

Here are a few ways to get back in touch with yourself and start eating intuitively..

1. Reject the diet mentality Try to stay away from diets that promise quick and easy weight loss-listen to your body!
2. Honor your hunger Think of your body as a fire- it needs fuel (food) to keep burning
3. Make peace with food Give yourself unconditional permission to eat! The more you tell yourself you cant have something the more you will want it, and may eventually binge on it.
4. Challenge the food police Try to not label foods as good or bad- you are not a good or bad person depending on the type of food you eat
5. Respect your fullness Listen to those body cues that tell you that you are no longer hungry-wait 20 minutes after you’re done with a meal to truly let the fullness set in
6. Discover the satisfaction factor There can be pleasure and satisfaction from eating- focus on the food you are eating, enjoy each bite, be thankful and savor your food!
7. Honor your feelings without using food Many of us turn to food to help comfort, nurture, distract or check out: try to find other ways to fill those voids.
9. Exercise-Feel the difference Shift your focus to feeling on how good you feel during and after exercise-instead of how many calories you’re burning
10. Honor your health Make smart and nutritious choices that make you feel good! Moderation and consistently maintaining a healthy diet with variety will do you well in the long run!