As January kicks in, it can be tempting to embark on a diet to shed some of those Christmas pounds.
However, a new celeb approach that promises to be effective in working with your body without restriction is fast gaining popularity.
It's called intuitive eating and is considered to be a fightback against diet culture and the key to freedom when it comes to the food you put in your body.
Demi Lovato has credited intuitive eating with helping them combat disordered eating patterns and previously unhealthy relationship with food.
The singer said that simply listening to their body's genuine needs made a huge difference.
"Let this be a lesson y'all.. Our bodies will do what they are SUPPOSED to when we let go of trying to control what it does for us," they wrote. "Oh the irony."
The philosophy is to guidelines and says that you are the expert of your body and its hunger signals and the key to intuitive eating is listening to yourself.
The idea is that you should eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full without any guilt around certain foods while learning the difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger.
The term was coined in 1995 and advocates claim that diets don’t work and that lifestyle changes and personal care are more important for long-term health.
We spoke exclusively to four times award-winning eating disorders counsellor Ruth Micallef MBACP Reg who says anyone can start eating more intuitively.
She said: “An easy way to begin this is to bin the bathroom scales, unfollow and unsubscribe from any content which promotes diet culture in any way.
“Begin considering when you have made peace with your body, what health and life goals completely unrelated to weight loss will you set for yourself.”
She says that freedom comes from relinquishing yourself from diet culture.
“By stepping back from toxic diet culture, we allow ourselves to begin a new journey that is about nourishing, not punishing your body.
Ruth says that intuitive eating works off ten key principles that start by using mindfulness.
“Initiative Eating is an exercise that pulls us back to the present.
“It revolves around ten principles that encourage us to re-engage with food in a nourishing way and give us permission to reject diet culture in a healthy, sustainable way.
“The real pros of this practice are that it reconnects our bodies with our minds, helping us recognise when we are full.
“It also allows us to begin the building blocks of a nourishing relationship with food and exercise, and consider what respecting our body looks like.”
“A downfall of Intuitive Eating can be diving in too soon if we're struggling with an Eating Disorder. Binge Eating Disorder is one of the most prolific and underdiagnosed Eating Disorders in the UK, and like all coping modes is rooted in unprocessed trauma and adversity.
“Whilst Intuitive Eating can be an amazing step in the right direction, I would always encourage someone dealing with an Eating Disorder to reach out to a registered professional (such as the BACP or BPS), who can gently help you process your traumas, and collaborate with you on your recovery journey towards Intuitive Eating.”
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