If I am ever given the choice between savory and sweet, I will undoubtedly choose the sweet option. I’ll take hot chocolate over a turmeric latte any time any day. It took me a long time to get to a point where I can genuinely listen to my body and what it needs. I used to over analyze all the food that I ate. I would try to reason with myself whether or not I really needed a piece of chocolate or if I should just have carrot sticks instead. I’m now at a place where I feel comfortable eating what I want when I want it.
So what is intuitive eating? For me intuitive eating is actual quite simple. It requires you to get in tune with your body and eat what your body is craving. Most mornings I can be found eating oatmeal or a smoothie, but this morning I woke up and was craving bread and bagels (something that I don’t eat that often). After not having much of an appetite the past few days due to the flu, I was surprised at what I was craving. I drove to the store, pjs on and hair amess; with the sole mission of buying a bagel (since I’ve been relatively immobile for the past few days I don’t have much food in my house). And let me tell you folks, the bagel was just what I needed.
For someone who isn’t in tune with their body, this method of eating may seem a bit difficult at first. I think it’s important for us to remember that we know ourselves better than anyone else. Deep down we know what are bodies are craving and what is going to sound the most appetizing. That being said I don’t go eating an entire bag of cookies because I feel like it. I believe that everything in moderation is good. When we start depriving ourselves of certain foods (carbs, candy, chocolate, ice cream, etc.) we can often find ourselves binging of that food once we actually eat it. I personally find it unhealthy to completely restrict what we eat by saying things like “I won’t eat ANY SWEETS”. Instead I think we should focus on having healthier relationships with foods that we tend to shy away from.
Rather than NEVER eating any chocolate, I regularly add chocolate to my smoothies or have a few squares of chocolate after dinner. And while I tend to not eat that much bread, I don’t restrict myself when my body is craving a good ole bagel. Taking a step back and listening to my body has allowed me to have a much healthier relationship with food. I eat what I’m craving and stop when I’m full. I don’t like to label foods as ‘bad foods’ or ‘clean foods’ because I feel like that can lead to poor relationships with those items.
And while I listen to what my body wants, I still try and make sure that a majority of my food is comprised of whole plant based recipes. I find that my body thrives most off of plenty of fruits, veggies, oatmeal, and peanut butter. But that isn’t to say this is the best or only way to intuitively eat vegan. EveryBODY is different so it may take some time to figure out what types of food make you thrive the most. Rather than comparing your diet to others, turn towards others for inspiration. Just remember that at the end of the day you should eat what makes you feel like the most authentic version of yourself and not be afraid to eat an entire tub of vegan ice cream every now and again.