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Overweight, Curious, and Relieved

Monday, February 06, 2012

Inline ImageAs a big-eyed, crazy-dreaming, young woman, I used to wish that I could write a diet book in such a way that everyone could overcome their struggle with food and get on with enjoying their lives.  It seemed to me that so many people were doing it, Suzanne Somers, Susan Powter, Richard Simmons, the list goes on and on.  Then a question popped up that wouldn’t leave me alone.  If there are so many new diet books, meal plans, and “lifestyle changes” coming out every year, how come people are still gaining weight?

My desire to be an author of a “change your life forever just like I did” book waned and my curiosity grew.  In college I tried Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig and not eating red meat.  My extra weight and the curiosity stuck with me, the solution remained elusive.  After college I tried the Atkins for two days, that one just made me dizzy, and I don’t even like bacon that much!

I would never call myself a “dieter.”  I tried things but I never really thought they would work, they never made sense or felt right.  My gut feeling that this was not the way to go about it was always stronger than my fear of being fat.  Then I met a Registered Dietitian who introduced me to the process of intuitive eating.  The way I think about food and my body was changed forever.

Intuitive eating, as defined by Wikipedia, “...is a nutrition philosophy based on the premise that becoming more attuned to the body's natural hunger signals is a more effective way to attain a healthy weight, rather than keeping track of the amounts of energy and fats in foods. It's a process that is intended to create a healthy relationship with food, mind and body.”

If we heal our relationships with our bodies and with food we will have the freedom and the brain space to enjoy our lives in entirely new ways.  I’m not just saying this because it sounds good.  This has been true for me and for my clients, it is one of the most surprising and freeing side effects of this process.

Eating intuitively asks a lot of you, but it never asks as much as a diet does.  It never asks you to ignore your body and your self for a set of rules.  You get to be you, with all your preferences, stories, and wisdom, even if you can’t hear it yet. 

Caryn Gillen, MA is a Certified Life Coach and Intuitive Eating Professional. For a free bite sized guide to eating intuitively stop by www.caryngillen.com.
Caryn Gillen, MA, CPCC
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