Intuitive Eating Myth #6: Intuitive Eating Means No Structure
Compared to rigid dieting, yeah, I guess you can say that intuitive eating looks like there is no structure to it at all! With all of rules, guidelines, meal plans, to-do lists, and responsibilities that come with dieting, when we are told me can have food freedom, intuitive eating looks like a free-for-all! Sad, but true. Unlike dieting that tells you exactly what you are allowed to eat and what foods are forbidden, with intuitive eating, we have to make our own food choices. Unlike dieting, we do not get these black and white rules. Unlike dieting, we are forced to think for ourselves while considering our own unique individual needs! So yeah, intuitive eating has you do a very scary, rebellious, taboo thing in the nutrition world…do you know what that is? Get ready for it….drumroll please…it makes you THINK FOR YOURSELF! Heeeyyyy, get that, a way of eating that doesn't make you feel like you have no qualification to make your own choices! A way of eating that doesn't tell you that you have no idea what you are doing! Now, with you at the steering wheel for the first time, things get a bit intimidating and you can get really nervous without structure. However, although diets may seem like they may have a lot more structure, the fact is that intuitive eating has a lot of structure as well. The difference between diets and intuitive eating is that dieting is structured with rules whereas intuitive eating does not have any rules. The structure of intuitive eating is just a more FLEXIBLE, individualized structure. The ten principals of intuitive eating provide a framework that helps guide you but allows you to be free of any kind of rules or moral dilemmas attached to food choices. This myth is an understandable one since many people believe that if there are no rules, there can’t be structure. However, this is simply not true. Let’s take our lives for example. Think about these next two questions. Do we crave some structure in our lives? Yes, of course. Structure gives us the framework and guidance to pursue and live the lives we desire most. Now, let me ask you a second question. Do you want rules placed upon your life? Hmm, not me. Rules take away freedom. Rules tell me that I can not make changes, keeping me from growing and adapting. Rules keep me from listening to my mind and body. So I guess intuitive eating gets down to the core. What do you value in your life? Do you want a life of freedom with a bit of structure to guide you or do you want to live by a set of rules, keeping you in line? I think the answer is pretty clear.