Intuitive Eating – The Key to Never Dieting Again!

by Eleni Kapetanios

You’ve probably been on tons of diets before. Most women have. You followed a plan, were really good at first, then an event or a dinner out happened, and you cheated on your diet, fell off the wagon, and quit. Or you were successful at your diet, lost weight, then gained it back. Or you feel like you have to constantly diet and deny yourself the foods you love to stay at your desired weight. When you think about it, these are diets made up by someone who doesn’t know you or your body and has no idea how you respond to foods. Crazy, right?

But what if you never had to diet again? What if you could completely trust that your unconscious mind knew what you needed to eat, how much and when? What if you never had to worry about dieting again? With Intuitive Eating, you won’t have to.

Intuitive eating helps you to create a healthy relationship with food, and it is exactly what it sounds like: using your intuition and unconscious mind to know what your body needs. Your unconscious mind’s job is to preserve your body, and to make your body as healthy as possible. Sometimes, things like your conscious mind and limiting beliefs about food and other emotional baggage get in the way. When you eat intuitively, you are able to distinguish between physical and emotional feelings, make peace with food, and get the joy and nutrition that your body craves. How can we do this?

  1. Reject the diet mentality. Stop reading about the latest diet craze, thinking “oh – THIS will be the one that works”, and setting yourself up for failure. When you are eating intuitively, you absolutely cannot fail.
  2. Honour your body’s cues. Eat slowly and realize when you are full. Stop eating then. Eat when you feel hungry and at no other time.
  3. Realize that food is just food. You are not “bad” because you ate pizza, nor are you “good” because you just ate lettuce all day. Take away its power. If you choose to eat a treat, enjoy it and move on. Give yourself permission to have treats occasionally.
  4. You are in control. Learn to control your emotional state. You decide what to eat, when and how much. Think before you eat.
  5. Eat often. If you eat every few hours, you will never feel starving and start shoving food in your mouth. Keep your blood sugar level and you will feel more in control.
  6. Find pleasure in healthy eating. Your body craves healthy food – lots of variety, greens, protein, fruit and fats. Healthy food can be delicious. Experiment with recipes. Every time you give your body healthy fuel, it makes it happy. Notice how good and energetic you feel when you eat well. Eating good food is showing your body the upmost respect.
  7. Exercise. Move your body and notice how different you feel. You want to fuel your body with healthy, life-affirming foods when you exercise.
  8. Honour your feelings without food. It’s ok to feel sad, lonely or angry. Find what works for you to help you handle these emotions without turning to food. Feel the emotion. You don’t need to numb them. Feel the emotion, know it will pass, and move on.

It is so empowering to realize that YOU are in control of your body – not some dude who wrote a crazy diet plan – and know exactly what it needs to maintain its desired state. Eat slowly, love food, nourish yourself. Ask your unconscious mind what it needs to be satisfied. Breathe. And most of all, forgive yourself. It’s just food, after all.

 

caa0dbf6-8fa2-46c4-bc0e-3d7ff602b602Eleni Kapetanios has been in the fitness industry for over 15 years. She approaches fitness holistically, knowing that mind and body are fully connected and, once you change your mindset, weight loss can be easy and effortless.
Eleni specializes in working with women with body image issues, chronic or yo-yo dieting, eating disorders, inability to lose weight, slow metabolism issues and women who want to lose weight or get healthy but don’t know where to start.
She uses a combination of exercise, Intuitive Eating, Neuro Linguistic Programming and Hypnotherapy to help women manage their weight, feel beautiful and realize they can accomplish anything.


3 Secrets Women Can Use to Boost Their Self-Confidence

When I entered the women’s locker room after finishing my workout at the gym, I heard a conversation between two women who have been regulars since January; it’s now Feb 24th. The one woman was just furious and frustrated at her lack of weight loss, and her friend was making suggestions.

Try weighing yourself first thing in the morning. “I do.”

Are you on your period? “No!”

Then the woman stormed out. My heart broke for her. I’ve been there.

In fact, I bet most women reading this article have had a similar experience. Statistics vary, but one thing is certain: women, regardless of shape, size or age, have negative thoughts about themselves daily.

It might surprise you to know that learning to love myself, (ALL OF ME) has been a life long journey. I may give the appearance of ‘having it all together’ but I haven’t always felt it inside.

The road to self confidence has not been smooth.

As a young girl, I always felt I was a bit different. I had a knack of seeing and doing things differently than my peers; I danced to the beat of my own drum, so to speak. While friends played soccer, I was a baton-twirling majorette; while they played baseball, I performed dance and gymnastics routines – with neither grace nor training – for my parents on our front lawn, with the endgame of appearing on the Tiny Talent Time TV show.

Gosh, I laugh thinking back at how dreadful it must have been for them to endure. I’m sure they were grateful for a rye and coke and no, I never made it on the show. 🙁

Physically, I was the only blonde-haired, blue-eyed person in my family and my build was more ‘solid’ than my lean, thin parents and brother, and especially compared to the popular girls! I seriously was the oddball at school. I had a round booty before it was cool, thick thighs, small breasts, and gained 10 lbs within a month of going on birth control. (Oh, lucky me! I got to feel chubbier while exploring sex!)

Privately, I struggled with body image issues while simultaneously pushing the limits of what was the “norm” for fashion and hair trends in my small town. I am nothing if not a complex woman – LOL!

I was a yo-yo dieter for much of my teens and twenties. I deprived myself of much-needed calories while testing the latest fad diets, and I began drinking diet pop as soon as Diet Coke was an option. (And I still do – no lectures please!!! Yes, I know aspartame is bad for me.)

It wasn’t until my thirties that I really began to focus on eating to fuel my body and exercising as a means to a healthier, stronger body, mind and spirit, instead of a punishment for a binge meal or indulgent weekend.

Finally, I found a balance; I made peace with myself and my body.

I owe a great deal of gratitude to my parents for allowing me to own my quirks as a young girl, teaching me to stand my ground and accept who I am. Instead of coddling, I would be challenged to rise and show my strength, resiliency and individuality.

Personally, and in my work, unless YOU feel confident, beautiful, smart or whatever inside your own being, no one else can convince you otherwise. It’s an inside job, and for some it happens early on while for others it takes years to realize your greatness. And sometimes it gets lost in our journey after a tragic event or transition.

Here’s what I know for sure, women feel great about themselves when:

1. They are supported by a great group of friends.

I have said it before and I will say it again: my friends rock!

I am blessed to have friends who are supportive, fun-loving and non-judgmental. There is such diversity in my friendships and I love them all to pieces.

I once had a friend I actually dreaded spending time with. I remember saying things like “designers shouldn’t make white pants or bikinis for sizes larger than a 10!” I allowed her judgmental tendencies to influence my own self-image – and not in a positive way – so needless to say, I was happy when a move distanced us.

“If you can’t change the people around you, change the people around you.” – Jim Rohn

2. They exercise and eat well.

I am 47 and my body is maturing.

“Maturing” is a nice way of saying my waist is thickening, I’ve got back fat in places I never knew were possible, and my ass is no longer a full, round booty – despite the hundreds of squats I subject myself to!

Seriously though, exercising keeps me feeling happy, strong and sexy.

3. They are playing.

I’m often enrolling into programs and signing up for new adventures where I may or may not know anyone else!

But it’s often at these places where I form strong bonds with like-minded people who understand my desire for trying something new. The challenge of learning anything new totally creates more confidence and expands our sense of what’s possible!