Today I am kicking off a new 10 part series all about the principles of intuitive eating. Not only will I be rehashing the principles, but I will also be taking a deep dive into the implementation of these principles so that you can start applying them into your own life. First up are the four things you need to know in order to implement principle one of intuitive eating, also known as ditching the diet mentality.
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Stop Blaming Yourself & Start Implementing These Principles
If you want to do the work and embrace the idea of rejecting the diet mentality and ditching dieting, this is an episode you cannot miss. It takes both internal cues and external health frameworks to help you avoid being in food jail and find a more peaceful way of eating. By getting clear of your past history with dieting and what it has cost you, and providing yourself with compassion, you can stop blaming yourself and start implementing these principles.
As a society, we are not acknowledging the downsides and risks of dieting and restriction. Intuitive eating can help you get clear on what you want your relationship of food to look like based entirely on what is right for your body. You are not a failure, it is the systematic oppression built into diet culture that is to blame.
Are you ready to stand up and stop being controlled by diet culture? Share how you are making peace with your history of diet culture and how you want to move forward with us in the comments below.
On Today’s Episode
- Learn about the ten principles of intuitive eating and how to engage with them (4:22)
- Why principle one can cause cognitive dissonance and how to make it real for you (6:50)
- Tips for rejecting the diet mentality and staying true to that decision (10:04)
- The downsides of dieting and restrictions and how to open your eyes to it (15:30)
- How to avoid being overwhelmed by the first intuitive eating principle (23:06)
Resources Mentioned In This Show
“I am putting my focus and attention on things like facilitating intuitive eating for you, helping you find more peace with food and your body, helping you end the exhaustion around these things, and helping you get to a place that is more ease filled and less of a battle.” (3:08)
“This is an unlearning and learning, this is not something we are going to do in a day. And it’s not something we can do by just reading it in theory, it is a practice. It is a living breathing practice because you are a living breathing human being.” (8:47)
“You don’t know what you don’t know, and you probably didn’t know about what diet culture is until very recently, and that’s okay. We have to have that forgiveness for ourselves and that compassion for ourselves.” (13:35)
“It’s not a lack of willpower that has gotten you to this point. It is not a lack of willpower that means you have struggled with maintaining a diet in the past. There is a lot here to have care and kindness and compassion for yourself about.” (22:51)
“You are not the failure. Diet culture as a system of oppression is the failure.” (24:05)
The Core 4 is now available! Click here to get a free gift when you purchase
How To Ditch Dieting (Intuitive Eating Principle 1) w/ Steph Gaudreau FULL TRANSCRIPT
This is Episode 287 of the Listen To Your Body podcast. On today’s show, I’m going to be walking you through four things you need to know in order to implement principle one of intuitive eating, which is how to ditch the diet mentality.
The next evolution of Harder To Kill Radio is here. Welcome to the Listen To Your Body podcast. on this show, we’ll explore the intersection of body, mind, and soul health, and help you reclaim your abilities to eat and move more intuitively. Hear Your body’s signals, and trust yourself more deeply.
I’m Steph Gaudreau, a certified intuitive eating counselor, nutritional therapy practitioner, and strength coach. On this podcast. You can expect to hear expert guest interviews and solo chats that will help you deepen your trust with food movement and your body
Remember to hit the subscribe button and share this podcast with your friends and loved ones. Now, on to the show.
Hello, hello, welcome to the podcast. Thanks so much for joining me this week. If you’re new to the show welcome. And if you are a faithful returning listener, thank you so much for always joining me for new episodes of the listen to your body podcast. On today’s show, I’m kicking off what will be a 10 part series on the principles of intuitive eating. And not only am I just going to rehash what the principles are because there’s so much great information out there but I’m going to be sharing with you some of the most important points of implementation of the principles. And the sticking points that I find. My clients tend to come up against the most In other words, how to really start applying these trends.
pulls in your own life. And I’m going to dive into each principle separately so that you have a bit of a focused show that you can come back to listen to as you go on if you’re implementing intuitive eating on your own. But before we do that, I would love to invite you to join my listen to your body insiders. This is my newsletter specifically for topics just like this. And really the place where I’m going to be focusing my professional work my offerings for you, going forward. I recently wrote a big long 2000 word long email to that list, detailing some of the ways that my business is shifting and some of the ways I’m really excited to serve the community going forward in a very focused way. And I am putting my focus and attention on things like yes, facilitating intuitive eating for you helping you find more peace with food and your body, helping you endure
exhaustion around these things, and just helping you get to a place that is more ease filled and less of a battle so that’s my professional work really going forward and making some big shifts this summer. And if you want to be in the know and you want to be in on those things and you’re going to want to join the newsletter, you can do that at StephGaudreau.com/LTYB for listen to your body. And also, if you like this episode, share it out on social media, I would love to see your thoughts on it if it resonated with you in some way, shape or form. Let me know and tag me at Steph_Gaudreau just search my name it’ll come up and tag me I would love to see it. I’d love to be able to repost it. It just means the world when I see that episode resonates with you and it’s such a joy. Okay, let’s dive in. So there are 10 principles of intuitive eating, intuitive eating. If you want to know that
Some of the things you need to know before you get started with intuitive eating, go back and listen to the previous episode 286. I talked about five things you need to know before you get started. So let’s assume that you’re ready to get started with intuitive eating 10 principles, right? This isn’t a diet, this is a framework, this is going to help us find more peace in our bodies with food, it’s going to help us use internal cues combined with external health values and frameworks to find a more peaceful way of eating and it’s so much more than just-food. Right? My A lot of times people think it’s mindful eating, it’s not quite that it is so much more. So there are 10 guiding principles.
They’re not necessarily meant to be done in a specific order. I would say the one caveat is principle 10, which we’re going to eventually get to which is honoring your health through gentle nutrition is one of the things that I oftentimes work with people on close to the
Because that’s the world that we’re coming from diet rules, shoulds incidents, goods and Bad’s healthy and unhealthy as clean and dirty and all that stuff. So just know that I am presenting these in the order in which they appear in the intuitive eating book by Evelyn Tribole & Elyse Resch I am certified under them. So that’s where I’m coming from with presenting all this stuff, but I really want to give you my take because I tend to work with people. And this could be you quite likely who are a bit on the perfectionistic side a bit stuck in the all or nothing thinking. It’s either. I know this isn’t in the book. I call it like one extreme is “fuck it” all eating where you’re just either you are ready. You’re like, Okay, I’m gonna dye it and I’m gonna get ready and Oh, fuck it all. I’m just gonna eat whatever I want before the diet starts or the plan starts or the lifestyle kicks off. Or you come off the lifestyle, the plan the diet, and it’s like, fuck it all. I was so restricted. I’m just gonna eat whatever I want. And then the other
aspect of that the other opposite under the spectrum, the other pendulum swing in food jail. That’s what I call it where you, you know, you buckle down, you crackdown, you’re, you know going to be perfect, you’re going to make that choice again to go all in, you’re back on the wagon, you’re back on track all of those, those terms. So just know that I’m adding my own flavor to this. Beyond, you may see from Evelyn and Elyse, Evelyn was on my podcast a few months ago. So you can go back and check that one out. But this is you know, as I’ve worked with people online in small group coaching, these are the things I tend to see. So principle one is the one that people oftentimes have the heart they have so much resistance to right off the bat because it is called reject the diet mentality. That’s what it’s called. The way I think of this as ditching dieting breaking up with dieting, and this one can cause a lot of cognitive dissonance with people. So I want to
Not necessarily rehash the entire principle itself but really provide you with some points of use. How can you use this principle to really make it real for you because here’s the thing you can read about intuitive eating all the livelong day. You read the book, you get the workbook, you start reading the workbook, not actually doing the workbook activities, maybe you’re just reading through it and you think, Okay, I get it. And then you go out into the real world, you go out and live your life and it’s not always that easy. Because here’s the thing you are you arrived here at the point you’re at, with years, decades, perhaps even a lifetime of diet culture seeping into your brain, affecting you your thoughts, your feelings, and your beliefs and actions. And not only that the intergenerational and lineage, of body image and food issues.
Things like food scarcity, all of that stuff. So it is like you have these monster suitcases. Have you ever been to the airport? I usually travel pretty light. Because I hate checking your bag. And inevitably, it’s like I’m on the same flight. And this is not a judgment. It’s just something I observe and I kind of chuckle because I think I would never bring that much stuff with me. But it’s like, you know, the couple walks in and they’ve got the literal biggest suitcases that could fit a human being inside. And it’s like, we have these monster suitcases of shit to unpack. This is an unpacking, this is an unlearning and learning. This is not something we’re going to do in a day. And it’s not something we can just do by reading it in theory, it is a practice so it’s a living breathing practice because you are a living breathing human being and you will start to peel back some layers and think okay, I’m getting this I’m getting a foothold and then something else kind of, you know, like a fish comes out and like smacks you upside the head and you think oh my gosh, where is the
Coming from Why is this continuing to affect me? It’s because you are you’re unraveling you are learning and learning and learning and learning at the same time. So this is one of the reasons why I oftentimes encourage people to work with some, someone in some way shape or form, whether it’s a community, it is a coach, it is a certified counselor or coach, it is a mental health professional. Someone does not do this on your own. If you find that you try and you get freaked out and get quit. That’s really a normal thing that happens because people tend to realize that this is, this is kind of a big thing. It’s an important thing that you’re doing for yourself. And it’s not easy, as easy as just rocking up and doing a diet again. So have some grace and space for yourself there. And then you know, if you need to seek out some support, please, by all means, and I’m going to be having some things coming down the pike soon to help you do that. So stay rejecting the diet mentality can be very confronting because if you’ve if you are used to dieting you are used to thinking in the way of a diet or or even if you’re not like I’m not doing diet as a lifestyle, but it still involves a heavy amount of restriction and rules and shoulds insurance, if the shoulds insurance are playing into your decisions, you notice that’s in the background. If you break, quote, unquote, your rules, what happens?
A lot of people have internal frameworks. And if it doesn’t, you know, if they do something that’s against that internal framework, they just kind of roll with it. And then some other folks, that’s not the case it ends up blowing up in their face. So here are some of the things that are really important if you want to do work on this idea of rejecting the diet mentality or ditching dieting.
So the first thing is I’m gonna present four things. The first thing is, and this can be really hard, but so is so impactful, getting clear about your past history of dieting, like sitting down and writing down all of the ways you’ve participated in diets when was the first die you ever went on? What was it? Like? What are the diets you’ve done over the years? What are the lifestyles you’ve participated in over the years?
And I’m not talking about doing things that are nourishing or nurturing for your body. But I’m saying, you know, if you’re like, I’m doing this lifestyle, because Karen, down the street, or Bob and accounting keeps talking about it. I’m doing this diet because everybody else is talking about it. But it’s not, you know, the organizers are thinking it’s not a diet. It’s a lifestyle, just to check in and see how much restriction is there. But get getting really clear about your past history. Because when I do this with my clients, they oftentimes you know, the allure of dieting is so strong, or the allure of the weight loss the getting back on track. The starting again, dieting is novel, it’s fun and exciting and easy. At the beginning there is a promise of something, you’re like this time it’s gonna work, the promise is there.
But when you write it down on paper, oftentimes, you know and so I could talk about those things until I’m blue in the face. But until you get clear about your past history and the things that you have done, or participated in, when you see it written out on paper, it can be quite a moment where it really does sink in.
In terms of the the the amount of time that you’ve spent in your life, dieting or restricting the amount of energy and the different things you’ve done. Maybe the finances you’ve spent, I mean, there’s just so much, so many things we can go into. And we’ll kind of talk about a second point in the in a minute. But just getting clear about the breadth of dieting, the prominence of dieting in your life, because when you think about, oh, well, you know, I’ve done a diet here, there is one thing when you see it written down on paper, it’s a whole other thing, and it is not a point of shaming yourself. It is not a point to feel bad about, you don’t know what you don’t know. And you probably didn’t know about what diet culture is until very recently.
And that’s okay. We have to have that forgiveness for ourselves, that compassion for ourselves. So number one, get clear about your past history. Number two, get clear about what it has cost you. What has it cost you to do those things? And this is where it turns from. those points on paper to the toll the emotional toll the mental toll the physical toll, the spiritual toll the energetic toll. Everything has a cost. What has dining restriction cost you in the past and perhaps now in the present? Because it’s oftentimes a point at which you know, dieting is very exciting, alluring, sexy.
And you can be very tempting. It is so tempting. It is like sirens and luring you in and it feels even in times now where things feel really uncertain, you may feel the pull of coming back to the point. So control like logging, tracking, macro counting, calorie counting, and all of those practices. And that’s kind of a normal knee jerk reaction to feeling less control. But getting really clear about the cost of those things, because it tends to have more of an emotional connection. What is the cost to you? I mean, it maybe has cost you lots of money. Maybe it has cost you relationships. Maybe it’s cost you actually participating and being present in your life especially with the people you love.
Maybe it just costs you work opportunities maybe as cost you time actually getting out of the house. I mean there are so many things and I would just encourage you to start getting clear about those costs because until you see it and you feel it, you see it written down on paper you think okay, this is a lot more than I actually thought you then feel and this is such a not the best start make you feel the weight of the emotional toll, the relationship toll of those things and it can just make the point kind of sink home or sink in, hit home. So those are two things that I suggest that folks, think about your past history with dieting and the cost, what has it, how has it impacted your life? The third thing I would mention here is as a society, in perhaps on a personal level, we this is the Royal we Okay, we as a society, we aren’t acknowledging the downsides and risks of dieting and restriction.
We just aren’t even in the medical field, even in the nutrition field, even in the fitness space. We are not acknowledging the downsides of dieting, and it’s really interesting to me because we can go out in the world and we see a medication on the TV and it has a whole list of side effects. We see certain things in life and we understand the pros and the cons, the risks and the upsides to it. But in the popular Zeitgeist or in the vernacular in the world at large when dieting is presented or restrictive eating is presented as a solution. There is almost never a frank discussion of the acknowledgment, not even a discussion and acknowledgment of the downsides to this, and I understand this is not blaming the director. You can go back and listen to the podcast I did with Naomi Katz, for a distinction between blaming dieting, and diet culture versus blaming the diet or this is not blaming the director.
And yes, it’s oftentimes we’re just being told hold that this is what we should do. And of course, in diet culture, only one kind of body is valued. So we can understand where this comes from. But, like on a logical level, we’re not talking about the downsides.
You know, you don’t see the latest weight-loss shake, and then see anything about the potential downsides of Quick Weight Loss with this shake, or this surgery, or this procedure or this diet plan, or this tactic, whatever it is, like, we, you know, we don’t have that as a catch-all. So there, we’re not talking about risks, like the risks to health that come from weight cycling, weight cycling, is I lose weight, I gain it back, or I lose weight and then gain even more back than I lost and the cycles of that that people go through.
That the for a majority of people and statistics range before a majority of people that undergo purposeful restriction and weight loss, the likelihood is that that weight will be gained back and potentially then some and that that has a negative impact on health. We aren’t having frank discussions about the increase in disordered eating and Orthorexic behavior is really that obsession with healthy eating. And we certainly are not talking about the incredible rise in eating disorders and how some eating disorders will result in death. In fact, it is the number one most deadly, mental illness.
Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. So not to mention things like an increase in feelings of deprivation.
In bingeing behavior, we’re just not having discussions about the downsides. We’re not even willing to acknowledge it really, right because dieting is fun and shiny and exciting at the beginning. It ticks all those boxes for us to be getting that dopamine that hit that, you know, the promise that it’s finally going to work this time. Please note that I am not saying that improving your health or taking care of yourself through basic self-care, nourishing yourself with food, whatever that means to you is wrong. Because that’s not what I’m saying. I’m talking about intentional restrictive weight loss practices, right. And even practices that are not undertaken with the sole purpose of weight loss can be really damaging with our relationship with food. So for example, there’s a growing discussion happening and some circles regarding, you know, these are legitimate supervised nutritional plans, therapeutic plans. Remember, I’m nutritional therapists like we’re, we have several different kinds of, you know, more popular therapeutic ways of eating, sometimes overseen by a professional and their consent. The intention is very clear, the motivation is very clear, it’s very important. And yet some people still end up struggling, being afraid of certain foods.
Not knowing how to handle eating of food that’s on their sort of no list. And so, yes, it gets very nuanced, but as a whole, we’re not talking about these downsides. And I would say the last piece so the fourth piece of ditching dieting that needs to be brought up and really is so important, is having compassion for yourself because there’s a huge aspect of having a diet mentality where you blame yourself.
You’ve tried to lose weight before, it hasn’t worked. You’ve gained it back, perhaps more so you’re heavier now than you used to be. You don’t weigh the same amount you did in high school or college, etc, etc. Therefore, you are a failure. It is a defect in you if you just had more willpower. It’s not a lack of willpower that has gotten you to this point. It’s not a lack of willpower. That means you’ve struggled with maintaining a diet in the past. There’s a lot here to have care and kindness and compassion for yourself about and when a lot of people come to this first principle, they end up overwhelmed in shame they end up overwhelmed with feelings of guilt.
Even when they do these exercises, they get clear about their past history of dieting, they get clear about what it’s cost them. And sometimes they even get mad that we are not talking about the ways that dieting hurts people. And yet they still feel guilty and shameful about how it has impacted their lives, perhaps even you can relate to that. This is the time we’re hiding in the shame cave is not going to help. And I don’t necessarily mean you’re actively seeking it out. I mean, just being aware that you’re, you’re going back to the shame cave right now is like, Can we stay clear and grounded in some of these other things? Because we know and we know that you are not the failure. Diet culture as a system of oppression is the failure.
It’s not your lack of willpower, the way dieting is set up, is impossible to maintain your body for example, and you start to really restrict energy increases your energy seeking and decrease your desire to move. It’s not your fault. You are not a failure, you’re not to blame. It does take courage to stand up and say, I’m done with this bullshit. And you might not be ready, and that’s okay. Everybody has to make peace with this. thought this idea that dieting has taken a lot from them. It’s cost them a lot.
They’re really pissed about it now. But yet, why is it still so low? Everybody’s going to be at their own pace with that. So you might be listening to this and thinking, Well, fuck diet culture. First of all, I’m done. I don’t want to do this anymore. And oftentimes, when my clients come to work with me, they’re at that stage.
I might actually call that stage something like getting ready to embark on the journey. And that’s how I would call it maybe publicly. Sounds a lot nicer, then fuck this, I’m done. But that’s really the sentiment of a lot of people that come to work with me. They’re like, fuck this, I’m done. But also, I really don’t know what to do instead. And that place can be really confusing because you’re done with dieting, but it can still be really tempting.
You’re done with doing this to yourself. But yet you still feel the residual of guilt and shame from the things that have happened before. But I want to let you know that this stage setting out, you’re about to set out on the journey is so powerful because you have the potential and the ability at this point to take stock and create something new for yourself, with awareness, with practice, with compassion, with support. And with making that commitment to yourself that you are worth having a peaceful relationship with food in your body, that you go into it knowing it’s not going to be perfect, but you’re not going to let those hiccups completely send you back to ways of doing things that you know aren’t going to work for you. And change is scary. It can be really scary to think well familiar is dieting. So I’m going to go back to familiar and intuitive eating is on known. And it’s not just a set of diet rules. And that’s, that’s what I know. That’s how I know how to operate.
So have some compassion for that place, standing at that stage one and know that blazing your own trail and finding a way of eating in an intuitive, kind, peaceful way is possible.
So I’m going to be covering these other principles for you each at one time, so each of these principles will become an episode. And my intention is to really provide you with some extra thinking points, as I mentioned, that I see the people I work with, really struggling with or really, really finding value in these particular points and exercises. So when it comes to the first principle, ditching dieting or rejecting the diet mentality, the four things we talked about, were getting clear about your past history. Dieting, getting clear about what dieting has cost you in the past, and now in the present, really understanding that as a society, we are not acknowledging the downsides and risks of dieting going into it fully awake. And lastly, having compassion for yourself knowing you are not a failure and it is not a lack of willpower that has brought you to this point.
I would love to know if this episode resonated with you. So two things, first of all, share this out on social media tag me at Steph_Gaudreau I would love to see you share this episode share some thoughts and I would love to repost it and use the power of your voice to share this with other people and say that this is a vote. Thumbs up for this episode. And number two, if you want to get the Show Notes for this episode, just head over to my website StephGaudreau.com there you’ll find show notes. I will have linked to other episodes in the resources that I mentioned in this episode. There and there will also be a full transcript. Lastly, get on the listen to your body insiders newsletter list. That’s where I’m going to be sending all the information, all the opportunities to work with me that are related to finding more peace with food in your body, and to really eating the foods that you enjoy and you like without guilt. Okay, stay tuned for that episode. Next week, I’ll be diving into Principle number two, honoring your hunger and some of the most important ways that you can start to implement this and understand this in your own life so that hunger is no longer a scary thing. Until then, be well!