At first, it was great. Logging calories to see where I was and what I needed to do to get where I wanted to be. But, if you aren’t careful, this quickly turns into an obsession that will stress you out and create unhealthy eating habits.
This is why, I have finally quit. Today, November 9th, 2017, I have deleted my My Fitness Pal app and am experimenting with intuitive eating, where I eat when I am hungry. Sure, I still meal prep, I still eat “clean”, I have healthy options at the ready and carry them with me. BUT, I am not stressing to eat everything to get my calories in or to hit my caloric “goal”.
You may not understand it, but deleting the app alone was a huge step for me. The anxiety and reliability I am feeling is enough to tell me there’s an unhealthy connection with that somewhere. But now, for at least 30 days (the length of this experiment) I will be free. Free from logging, free from worrying, from wondering. I just eat healthy when I’m hungry and that’s that.
What Is It?
What is intuitive eating exactly? It’s pretty simple. Instead of eating when studies say you should, or eating the amount of calories studies say you should, you throw all of that out of the window. Do not listen to any of these anymore. What you will do, is learn how it feels to be hungry, learn how it feels to be full, and learn how it feels to be satisfied. You will have to listen to your body as I cannot say exactly what you will feel. I have learned from my body that when I am hungry, sometimes my stomach aches, but not always. I will get headaches or a slight pressure at my temples. My mood changes and my energy levels feel completely depleted. It’s an unmistakable feeling of low blood sugar. Then, before I eat, I breathe and tune in to my body. Feeling all of these and understanding them as hunger.
During eating, I will reevaluate. I eat slowly, and constantly check in with my body. I know when I am satisfied because I feel better overall, happier, and my headache leaves. I know when I am full too, or have over-eaten because my breathing is harder and my belly aches in a different way.
You may not understand these evaluations and feelings. But you will if you really listen.
Questions and Answers
There are all sorts of questions. How will I feel? Will I eat too many calories? Will I eat too few calories? Can I eat anything? I already know some of the answers. 1) I doubt I will eat too many calories for several reasons. For one thing, I keep a solid workout plan. I also eat mostly real foods that are already low-calorie anyways. Too, I logged today before deleting the app and saw my calories if days were like today and there’s no way I could ever eat too much.
Which brings me to my thoughts on eating too few calories. First let me say, everyone is different. Our bodies are different, metabolism is different, the way we eat, which plans we do better on. This is not a one-size-fits-all or even one-size-fits-most. I know many of you are about to scoff at me – but, I don’t think that the whole starvation thing is a fact. Not fully, at least. People claim that a woman has to eat at least 1200 calories a day. It’s crucial! If not, her body goes into starvation mode. But…what if I am legitimately not hungry? What if I am searching every part of my body and I am just not hungry? One thing I could always say for myself is that, no matter what, if my body said it was hungry, this girl was going to eat! I’m still that way. So if I am under, whatever. I’m hardly afraid that my body is starving. As long as I feel good and I feel satisfied, screw you 1200 calories a day! Screw you logging crap! The whole point of this is to get in tune with my body.
I feel as though logging adds a sense of restriction and this may be what has caused my bingeing. I don’t want to bash it, because it really helped jump-start my weight loss. Too, it works great for some of us who like structure.
My point is, I eat a lot of VERY clean foods that have tons of nutrition, but low calories. I also eat a lot of boiled eggs because I am not a huge meat-eater. Do you know how many calories a boiled egg has? Only about 70. Do you know how many of those I would have to eat to meet the communities suggested amount of calories? Roughly 12-13 in addition to my vegetables and grains. Um, have you ever eaten a single carton of eggs in a single day? I think I might be sick….
So why don’t you add in healthy fats? Oh but I do. Peanut butter is my weakness and avocado sandwiches are my jam. I am telling you, what they tell me to do and what my body is telling me are very different.
Again, what works for me may not work for you. Some people will not succeed this way. They need structure to be successful. But you could do it if you wanted. Too, let me just reinstate, this isn’t at all like me not eating. I’m just eating my way. Some days I am hungrier than others. Some days I feel like a freaking garbage disposal, absolutely famished. The other night I woke up starving and made a peanut butter sandwich and almond milk! It was only mmm…1 in the morning! There are days though, where I can go until 10a.m. and not feel hungry, eat brunch, and from there not feel hungry again until 2 or 3. It all depends on my day and my body. You have to decide what works best for you.
If you have questions, thoughts, or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you so please contact me or leave your comments below.
Love Ya’ll A Latte ❤