For lack of a better word I’ve been calling it Intuitive Eating. For lack of more resources, I’ve been religiously listening to “the F it diet radio” podcast. And for lack of leaving you in the dark any longer. . . I’m on a weird journey. One out of food and mental restriction. Period.
It started with reading Intuitive Eating, and then discovering The F*ck it Diet, and devouring both. Binging on podcast episodes, reading interviews and scrolling their IG accounts, and feeling… liberated? Inspired? Bolstered by the immense amounts of science to back it up.
After about a week of taking in this information I decided… Why not. I’ve given weirder diets far more of my time and money. It’s time.
Basically it boils down to this (but check out both their sites and info for WAY more detailed info);
When you restrict food your body begins to think you that you’re in a famine. And it starts to respond that way. This is the main reason that most people end up gaining weight after a diet, often more weight than they lost. Messing up your hormones, metabolism, hunger cues, and body responses to the food that you do consume. This typically ends in binging, long term health problems, new found food “sensitives” after you abstain from a food for long enough, and a seriously hard time recovering from all of those effects.
Also the idea that we have a weight range, ‘set point’ and our body wants to work hard to stay in it. It’s often about a 20-30 pound range that we almost always end up in. And it’s the bodies ‘happy place’ and it will try to stay in it always.
For me, both of these ideas are basically revolutionary. Embarrassingly shocking. And ridiculously sensible and simple.
So, I embarked. On what exactly? Well… nothing. And, everything. I removed all restrictions and decided to eat whatever I wanted. Whatever sounded good. Whatever I had on hand and liked.
I was petrified that I’d find myself eating whole boxes of cereal and endless chocolate. But the reality was much less dramatic. Though it did/has involved some over eating as I really figure out what my body feels/sounds like without the megaphone of diets/restrictions/phobias. Now about a week and a half in, I feel like my hunger cues are beginning to be decipherable and I’ve been more or less shocked at every choice I make.
Most shocking OF ALL SHOCKS… I’m not hungry at night anymore and I am hungry in the AM. Most evenings I’ve been ravenous. like, want to eat at least two whole meals. I think my evening eating stuff has lifted for two reasons… One, I gave myself total permission to eat at night (and the first several nights I did!) and Two, I’m eating a LOT more during the day.
Decades of food stuff and that loud confusing ED voice is being undone, it’s hard to not want it to move quickly. It’s rough to not want “results” and it’s incredibly frustrating to eliminate the diet vocabulary and shaking off the unending thought processes that I’ve come to adopt as normal for years now. I’ve known that diet culture runs deep. But… WHOA DIET CULTURE RUNS DEEP.
So deep that this ‘not diet… diet’ was messing me up. The language, the idea of “being on the F*ck it diet” and all the ways I could fail at that, nearly undid me. So? I’m not doing that. I am just… eating. And trying to listen to my body and my cues and realize that no one (really, NO ONE) can tell me (or you) how to eat. Because zero bodies are the same. And no ones body is the same every day. So every day I am listening, and it’s getting easier, quicker, and weirder. Like, just so weird.
But, I’m doing it.
I’m really in the thick of it right now. Weight gain, disgusting thought processes that I had NO idea I held deep, and immense anxiety at strange times. However, I’m coming through. And the benefits feel already undeniable. I have more space in my brain. Grocery shopping feels doable. Meal planning isn’t so stressful. And food tastes WAY better.
I’m looking forward to sharing more about this as I keep on muddling through, figuring it out, and feel ready to share the harder pieces. Stay tuned. . . next I plan to share the things that are really surprising me and weirding me out the most about this. But I want to live it a little longer.