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Intuitive Eating #17

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Old 02-19-2013, 01:35 PM   #1
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Default Intuitive Eating #17

Time for a new thread. Eat when you are hungry, stop when satisfied.
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Old 02-19-2013, 01:39 PM   #2
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A repeat that helps me.

This is a guest post written by Skwigg. This girl is a walking dictionary of food and nutrition facts, has read and tried MULTIPLE fitness plans, and every time I check, she’s read another “hot of the press” diet book. And, she tells it like it is.

skwigg

Well, it took like 25 years of trial and error, but I am a happy eater. I follow no rules. I count no calories. I’m completely over nutrient ratios, meal timing and measuring cups. Plus, as an added bonus, I’m not fat. Any time I’ve flirted with this “intuitive eating” stuff before, I’ve quickly become too fat for my little pants. This time I’m gradually losing. I’m 5’8″ and weigh 135-137 most days. I don’t know my percentage of body fat. It’s possible that I’m losing muscle and brains. I’m not concerned enough to get out the calipers. My Tanita scale tells me that I’m between 14% and 24% body fat. Helpful, eh? It’s like asking a Magic 8 Ball. The readout may as well say “Concentrate and ask again.” Or “Signs point to yes.” All I know is that my yoga pants are loose! Woohoo!

So, why did intuitive eating work this time when it’s destroyed my abs so many times before? I’ve been trying to figure that out. I know that in the past I’ve used intuitive eating as an excuse to binge. I’d turn to it after a bout of really restrictive dieting, or when I couldn’t face my nutrition software, or when I wasn’t accountable to a trainer. My “intuition” would tell me to eat boxes of glazed donuts and sheets of cookies. I’d gain weight, scoff at the total lameness of this “embrace your inner cow” intuitive hoody-hoo, and go right back to obsessive dieting, tracking and measuring. I wrote down every single thing I ate or drank for TWO YEARS. That was not fun, and actually not helpful.

I’m more relaxed now. I don’t make food decisions from a place of frustration and panic. My intuition really likes strawberries. I eat chocolate every day. I like bagels. I like to eat out. I’m not limiting myself to dieter food but I’m very aware of portions. I eat one Cadbury Egg, not six. I eat mini-bagels, not those bakery bagels the size of my head. I understand that a typical restaurant serving is enough to feed four people.

Last time I tried intuitive eating, portion control was my downfall. I believed those books that said to eat as many cookies as I wanted and that eventually I wouldn’t want as many. Right!! Weeks later, I still wanted every cookie that had ever been baked. I was reeling out of control on a blood sugar rollercoaster. The more junk I ate, the more junk I wanted. I was never able to pull it together enough to even maintain my weight, much less lose.

Some things that really helped me this time:

- I weigh myself every day. If you’re not going to count calories or measure your food, you’d better be keeping an eye on something. It could be weight, waist measurement, a caliper pinch, a pair of jeans, but you need some kind of objective feedback. If you choose not to track your food and not to look at any of your measurements, then you’d better go buy some fat pants.

- I eat what I want but I always control portions. Generally, the more I want something, the more I need to watch out. I can play fast and loose with spinach but I’d better take my ice cream in a single-serving container.

- I share. I never used to share before. Sharing is the greatest thing ever! You get to eat whatever you want and make everyone around you fat. Try it! Order the double-fudge super cookie dough caramel delight. Eat three bites and watch your dining companions devour the rest of it like hungry hyenas. Share your French fries. Split the sandwich. Order three tacos and only eat one of them. It’s exhilarating! Plus, I always have great leftovers.

- I strike a nice balance of healthy food and treats. You can’t eat an all-treat diet and look or feel very good. I eat loads of fresh fruits and vegetables every day. I love whole grains. I eat nuts and seeds like I’m a squirrel. I’m a sucker for a big salad. I enjoy lean protein as long as it’s not forced upon me every 2-3 hours. I eat a lot of healthy whole foods but I like to add a Pop Tart or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup for good measure.

- I don’t eat six times per day, or three times per day, or three meals and two snacks. I don’t follow anybody else’s rules because how does the book or the calculator know what I’m doing or when I’m going to be hungry? It doesn’t. So, I eat when I feel like it. On an active, hungry day I might eat 5-6 times. On a lazy day with restaurant food, I might eat 2-3 times. I’m no longer dumb enough try to force three more meals after lunch at The Cheesecake Factory.

- I grasp the importance of good nutrition. I’m not knocking diet plans or nutrition programs, especially if you’re trying to achieve a sports performance or body comp goal. A little bit of structure can be good. I base my eating on the healthy principles I’ve learned but I don’t allow myself to become a slave to the details. And don’t believe that I can eat as many cookies as I want and still lose weight. Big derrrr there!

- I flow. That’s significant because I used to battle. I battled my weight. I struggled with willpower. I waged a war against fat. I fought with the numbers. I kicked myself when I slipped. My mindset was one big bloody massacre. My fitness goals were always at odds with what I really wanted, which was to relax and eat Cheetos. Now, if I want to relax and eat Cheetos, I do so immediately. No struggle. No stress. No guilt. I know that for my next meal I’ll choose something a little more ab-friendly.
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Old 02-20-2013, 10:14 AM   #3
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Yuck. Yuck. Yuck. I only played rugby for about 5 minutes (two scrums and a lineout, so lots of work for me). But I drank like I won the world cup. (We lost, btw)

I lost over a kilo overnight. Mostly from the diuretic effect of alcohol and puking my guts up all night. But it all came back - and as of this morning I'm only down .1kg for the week. Believe it or not that's not so bad. I'm still only 5 lbs from goal - and that had a deadline of 15 April.

On the upside I went for a hangover inspired fry-up and although I ate poorly, I didn't overeat.

I went for a run this morning and I'm still hungover, but I did it!! My son is off school this week for half-term and we've got an action packed day. Swimming with the boy and a tag rugby course tonight! I don't count this as exercise, but as physical activity. I believe that fun physical activity is the key to keeping the weight off.
Hope you're feeling better now! Hangovers really mess with me, so I don't know how you managed your eating! Well done

Hope you have a great time with your son being off
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Old 02-20-2013, 07:35 PM   #4
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carolr - Great article.

DH surgery went well and he is home recovering. I learned a lot about my body and what it does ad doesn't like. The day of the surgery eating was carb overload and I was craving something really healthy to eat and very run down by the time we got to the room after surgery. Did get to eat something that looked like over cooked goulash and it was soooooo salty but I ate it just because I had not eaten all day. I had taken me some info I got off of Mark Sisson's website on eating the Primal Lifestyle and I've decided to go with it. I've given up all sweetners except my Stevia in the Raw. Not eating any sugar right now although Mark said in an interveiw on Youtube said he eats a little chocolate everyday and I might do that later, but not now.

My FBS is starting to come back down which is the main thing for me right now. I do care about the weight coming off but right now I'm more interested in getting rid of the diabetes and start feeling better. I just don't like the way I feel lately and I was very upset with the fact that I had a really difficult time getting around at the hospital. I thought I was getting so much better, but not according to what I experienced. I got home and received a copy of an article from a friend about how aspertame effects people and how people are misdiagnosed with MS and get better after getting off diet drinks. I'm in this IE thing for becoming healthy so I'm doing IE with the Primary Lifestyle.

I am still thoroughly convinced diets are bad news. I read that people who do Paleo/Primal woe hate it when people call it a diet because diets are fads. Eating Paleo/Primal is a Lifestye of eating the way our ancestors ate. Like my BIL told me today, his grandparents and their siblings lived to be 100 yrs old eating the stuff we are told will kill us. I've heard my Daddy say the same thing. Interesting isn't it?
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:16 AM   #5
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For me, I don't want to go 'paleo' because any type of restrictive diet triggers cravings in me - and guilt and self loathing when I eventually can't maintain the plan. No offense, but I do feel like paleo is a bit of a fad. BUT there are many great things to take from it. Good quality meat, basic ingredients, etc. that we cook ourselves. And most importantly avoiding a diet of processed foods. I believe diets plus the science behind processed foods which make us eat and crave it more (and sedentary lifestyle) are what makes us fat.

It may be that your recent ancestors lived well by eating stuff that was higher in fat, but I bet you anything they ate plenty of grains as well.
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Old 02-21-2013, 05:30 PM   #6
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so yeah, ie oopsie. i sat down with some cookies, had my fill (about 2 cookies) said to myself that i was satisfied and proudly listened to my body and set the cookies down. a little while later i looked down and the plate was empty. gah! distracted eating much?

so i went for a long walk with the pup and listened to some podcasts on ie. i know i do a lot better with change when i take it one little baby step at a time, i'd just been bullheaded and didn't want to take the same approach to my health. so i'm breaking ie down into baby steps, my first one is focusing on eating and eating only when eating. i don't care if i'm eating because of emotional reasons or even binging - i'm going to do it at the table, with real dishes, without distractions. i'm not putting a time frame on this - i'm just going to make it my priority as far as ie, health, etc goes. once this becomes habit, then i'll look for a next step.

have you guys had any luck with this? the baby steps or the mindfulness of only eating at the table?
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:55 PM   #7
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so yeah, ie oopsie. i sat down with some cookies, had my fill (about 2 cookies) said to myself that i was satisfied and proudly listened to my body and set the cookies down. a little while later i looked down and the plate was empty. gah! distracted eating much?

so i went for a long walk with the pup and listened to some podcasts on ie. i know i do a lot better with change when i take it one little baby step at a time, i'd just been bullheaded and didn't want to take the same approach to my health. so i'm breaking ie down into baby steps, my first one is focusing on eating and eating only when eating. i don't care if i'm eating because of emotional reasons or even binging - i'm going to do it at the table, with real dishes, without distractions. i'm not putting a time frame on this - i'm just going to make it my priority as far as ie, health, etc goes. once this becomes habit, then i'll look for a next step.

have you guys had any luck with this? the baby steps or the mindfulness of only eating at the table?
Well, I don't have a table (I don't even have a house!) but all kidding aside: YES. Without a doubt. I just finished blogging about it actually, take a look if you're interested What I've discovered is that right now, I can only implement 1 or 2 changes at a time. With long periods of experimenting to find out what does & doesn't work for me. First step, cutting down on sugar & processed **** that made me feel awful? That took me over a month to start getting a handle on. Then truly doing IE, I have that sorted I think. But the exercise? I go all over the place trying to introduce changes, and it's because I've been getting ahead of myself.

I would say that the sad, slow answer is: if your change doesn't feel like something you'd be happy doing for life, you either need to persevere or admit it's not for you and try something else. I could try to run on a treadmill for 15 minutes as many times over as I'd like, but I know I won't stick with it like I'd stick with 3 solid hours of speed skating (this is why I used to be 112lbs and strong! I miss that ). Now, I've given up on trying things I know aren't working mentally, but I'll never give up trying to do it all NOW

And if you're worried about the cookies... Don't be. Read my second last blog post and feel free to laugh, or whatever!

About the paleo thing. It appeals to me. In as much as most of the time I feel good eating "clean" food that came out of a real plant, not out of a chemical plant. I'm not one for rules at all, and I gravitate towards low-carb naturally, and higher carb when I'm exercising. I do like to read up on different plans to see what knowledge can be gained from them, but not to FOLLOW them. I have found that personally, "following" tends to be a bad thing, as rules can't tell me how to live, but instinct and critical thinking and evidence can. But different weight loss communities can teach me a lot, much like there's a lot that can be learned from IE by people who find something different works for them overall.
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:28 PM   #8
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Well, I would say that the sad, slow answer is: if your change doesn't feel like something you'd be happy doing for life, you either need to persevere or admit it's not for you and try something else. I could try to run on a treadmill for 15 minutes as many times over as I'd like, but I know I won't stick with it like I'd stick with 3 solid hours of speed skating (this is why I used to be 112lbs and strong! I miss that ). Now, I've given up on trying things I know aren't working mentally, but I'll never give up trying to do it all NOW

And if you're worried about the cookies... Don't be. Read my second last blog post and feel free to laugh, or whatever!

About the paleo thing. It appeals to me. In as much as most of the time I feel good eating "clean" food that came out of a real plant, not out of a chemical plant. I'm not one for rules at all, and I gravitate towards low-carb naturally, and higher carb when I'm exercising. I do like to read up on different plans to see what knowledge can be gained from them, but not to FOLLOW them. I have found that personally, "following" tends to be a bad thing, as rules can't tell me how to live, but instinct and critical thinking and evidence can. But different weight loss communities can teach me a lot, much like there's a lot that can be learned from IE by people who find something different works for them overall.
I agree 100%... this is the way I feel about rules Paleo/Primal as well. I don't have a hard fast rule on eating anything because when it becomes a rule for me it becomes a hindrance to my success. While there are things I want to become a habit, I do stay flexible because "life happens". Example for me eating the cookies would not be off limits to me. I don't want to binge on them but if I did I would look at why I did it and move on. Life is too short to spend time beating myself up and I hope you changeforme learned what you needed and moved on. I won't let moments like that mess me up any more. I also learn a lot of things that help me from different communities too. Being diabetic, I've learned that my body does better on low carb. It actually does great on Atkins way of eating, but I personally don't like cutting out fruit so I know mentally I will not stick with it. I also kno there are some grains that I am not willing to give up so I am working at learning how to do a lower carb and keep them in my program without going as strict as Atkins. Plus I don't want to count carbs or calories this is why I'm i the process of learning how to make IE work for me. It all comes down to the quality of life I want to live. I want to be able to walk without my legs hurting and without getting out of breath. My life depends on it.
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Old 02-22-2013, 01:18 AM   #9
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pattygirl - thanks for that additional clarification... paleo-ish styles of eating! Nothing wrong with good meat and plenty of veggies, that's the way I like to eat, too.

Changeforme - one thing at a time.... for me exercise is what's easiest for me to start first, but it seems like for most others this isn't the case. So whatever works!
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:33 AM   #10
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That's IT. I'm temporarily stuck at 200. I don't want a regain, so taking a maintenance break in the 196-200 range. My body seems to want to rest here. I don't like it, but what can you do? It'll pick up. Back to basics again.
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Old 02-22-2013, 01:30 PM   #11
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What are you doing for maintenance that's different from IE in general. I figure I keep eating like this until I die. The weight will come off or it won't. But that's easy for me to say as I'm losing.
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Old 02-23-2013, 12:46 AM   #12
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What are you doing for maintenance that's different from IE in general. I figure I keep eating like this until I die. The weight will come off or it won't. But that's easy for me to say as I'm losing.
I'm letting go of my obsession with it for a bit. For me, being obsessed with something means I get it done. But, I have other things to concentrate on right now. I'm going to act and think like I'm in maintenance. If the weight starts coming off again, great. Because fundamentally, IE is great, yes. But my aim is to LOSE WEIGHT. I'm just changing my aim, but not changing my methods. For me, the aim makes a difference.
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Old 02-23-2013, 02:51 AM   #13
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That's very constructive way of thinking about it Shiv. For me, I just don't believe that I'm meant to be at this weight. It's almost entirely down to a very bad relationship with food - using it as a comfort instead of nourishment and the pleasure of eating tasty, healthful food. So as long as the relationship with food is ok then I'll lose weight and eventually maintain weight at something that's good for me.

But I do understand about goals...it really motivates my behaviour.
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:04 AM   #14
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Well, finally back from vacation. I don't do well on vacation. Not food wise, just don't feel good. Two days running around airports is one of the problems. Today I am just exhausted. Think I'll take it easy.
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Old 02-23-2013, 07:34 PM   #15
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Hey Guys, Got results of my blood work and not too happy with it. While I'm still going IE eat what I want and eat till satisfied. I'm also counting calories and carbs. Not sure that makes me a real IEr, but I've got to make health the #1 goal for me. I've gained until I now have almost 100 lbs to lose. I just can't do that. Doctor has given me the next 3 months to get things back to normal so or I'll need more treatment to correct it. I honestly believe it can be done without meds so I'll be working toward that goal.
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