General Diet Plans and Questions General diet questions, support for various diet plans other than those listed below.

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Old 10-15-2011, 12:25 AM   #1  
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Default Intuitive Eating and Calorie Counting...Can I Do Both?

Is it possible or do I really have to let go of the calorie counting to actually be eating intuitively? I love the sense of freedom I get with IE. And I've realized through it all that I don't get hungry or need to eat nearly as I used to with cal counting (and eating every 3-4 hours), so I above all am focusing on my hunger. Nothing off limits. I also have previous (and sometimes, still) issues with bingeing-something I think is more connected to previous deprivation (that fun cycle).

But I'm still finding myself doing counts-whether at the end of the day or after I've eaten a small meal, I still find myself falling into that habit. It's like I still don't fully trust myself yet? And after chasing calories for so long, it just feels more ingrained. But I love the freedom of IE, the feeling that I'm not a slave to food anymore. And I know that the more I practice the better I will get at IE...

I guess I'm just wondering if anyone has done both before or if it just sounds like a direct contradiction? Can I practice IE and still keep a small eye on my daily calories or will counting just keep me
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Old 10-15-2011, 07:07 AM   #2  
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I say YES! You have to do what feels good to you and as you transition into the IE lifestyle why not also use CC? The most important thing about finding your way with the whole dieting game is that it is in alignment with YOU. What works for you? That is the question.

I personally do something like IE with calorie counting and love it. If i really feel like something I have it but i also count it in my total and my body will automatically tell me at me next meal what I need. When I tried IE by itself, it didn't work for me, I still overate and lacked progress on the scale bc I tend to have a big appetite and be an emotional eater. IE with CC puts a cap on that for me. In my experience it helps with preventing binging and compulsive eating.
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Old 10-15-2011, 08:19 AM   #3  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evelove View Post
I say YES! You have to do what feels good to you and as you transition into the IE lifestyle why not also use CC? The most important thing about finding your way with the whole dieting game is that it is in alignment with YOU. What works for you? That is the question.

I personally do something like IE with calorie counting and love it. If i really feel like something I have it but i also count it in my total and my body will automatically tell me at me next meal what I need. When I tried IE by itself, it didn't work for me, I still overate and lacked progress on the scale bc I tend to have a big appetite and be an emotional eater. IE with CC puts a cap on that for me. In my experience it helps with preventing binging and compulsive eating.
Even though calorie counting and intuitive eating seems like an oxymoron, I agree with evelove. I have come to a point where I almost do both (I say almost because the fact that I calorie count means that I cannot eat completely intuitively). From the start (June 2011), I decided that I would not restrict the types of food I could have. If I want chocolate, I'll have chocolate.
At the same time, the reality is that I want to lose weight, and I've realized that I am not a good estimator, and that at times, I overeat simply because something tastes good, I'm bored, etc. That's where calorie counting comes in handy.

Even though I calorie count, I "try" to wait until I feel real hunger to eat. Doing that makes it easier for me to identify what I really want to eat, and it makes the food taste better when I eat it.
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Old 10-16-2011, 11:14 AM   #4  
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I have done both, but never at the same time. I started out with CC and now am 100% IE. For me, calorie counting in ANY manner ruins IE. When I CC, I stop thinking about my body and how it feels and more about what I "should" be eating and "how much" according to arbitrary numbers.

It sounds like you use CC for accountability (making sure that you don't go overboard). I use a diet log where I record everything I eat (but NOT the calories) and it gives me a picture of where I'm at in the day AND deters me from overeating. I would DEFINITELY recommend doing something similar! Mine is quite basic and includes: time, location, food/drink item, amount, and notes. In the "notes" I put how I felt after I ate (like whether or not I was feeling full or satisfied). Doing this eliminates the need to feel consoled by numbers AND keeps you on target. I can say with certainty that keeping a diet log while IE made me lose weight and keep it off

Good luck!
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Old 10-16-2011, 03:13 PM   #5  
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Hey wolf, that sounds like a really good idea! I sort of automatically point to CC as a mode of accountability. Mainly because I've done past "eat whatever I want" diets, and they've been disastrous. But the IE really puts me on a new wavelength, and I feel really good about it. Logging sounds like a great idea, and that way I won't be bogged down in the numbers (my main problem with CC). I'm going to give it a try and see how I do. Thanks for the tip :-)
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Old 10-16-2011, 03:56 PM   #6  
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The thing that i've always hated about counting calories is that it doesn't allow for very much flexibility when planning meals. Recalculating your macro needs on the fly was always super painful for me, especially when eating out.

Last edited by CyndiM; 10-16-2011 at 05:16 PM. Reason: self promotion
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