Namasté, my love!
“Your body loves you. It loves you unconditionally.” – This statement carries a whole lot of truth and wisdom. Your body does not blame or judge you. It is working for you 24/7, without taking any rest, without complaining. Your body is forever forgiving, no matter what it went through – it can truly heal. It always and deeply strives toward healing. When you tend to it in a loving way, it is able to restore from the most extreme conditions. Remember: Your body does love you, no matter what! However, most of the times, we tend to forget what a miraculous vehicle our body is. We forget how much it is supporting us. We tend to lose connection to our bodies. Furthermore, we lose connection to our souls. We take our bodies for granted. We complain, disregard, neglect, or even abuse our bodies. They become the victims of the mind. Of our mental suffering and emotional pains …
“And I said to my body…softly…
‘I want to be your friend.’
It took a long breath, and replied
‘I have been waiting my whole life for this.’”
Eating. It is one of the most intimate ways to connect with your body. However, food and eating have become a mental concept nowadays. A conceptualized theory in people’s minds. The industry, stockbreeding, subsidies, social concepts and rules around eating, body image conditions from society, dietary promises – the list goes on. The true purpose of eating has become totally distorted. I believe the true purpose of eating is fuel your body with nutrients and (life force) energy, so that it can thrive for well intended actions. For your individual service, your heart’s purpose. If you truly thrive from the inside out, you are able to think, speak, and act from your highest interest. But… how do we come back to true nourishment and eat what serves our bodies mostly…?
Intuitive eating has become a buzzword nowadays. Doesn’t it sound good to use your intuition when making food choices? – Absolutely. And deep down, I feel the truth in that concept. However, … eating intuitively can easily be misinterpreted or used in a distorted way. Simply because of we have become totally disconnected from our bodies. From nature. From truthful nourishment. Ultimately, disconnected from our own intuition.
“Intuition is knowing without knowing.”
Your intuition may have guided you to read this article, in this very moment. Right now. And it does guide you to every single decision in life. You can feel it when you’re truly listening. Deep into your heart. When you let go of the mental chattering. When you find stillness. Find space within.
I invite you to take a deep breath, to lean back, and to feel into these lines…
What does your heart say? 🙂
~ What is intuitive eating? ~
We’re bombarded with nutritional information online as well as offline, nowadays. You’ll even find definitions and principles on the concept of intuitive eating. My intention with this article is not necessarily to reproduce those information, but rather to focus on your intution and how it applies to making food choices.
Let’s start with intuition. It is the part inside you that is connected to the Higher Consciousness, the universe. Your intuition is an infinite source of wisdom. It can present you all answers and guide you to your highest fulfillment possible. Yes, this also includes health and vitality. Your intuition is pure consciousness, and it sits within every cell of your body. You can also call it your “intuitive body”.
“Intuition is a very different kind of knowing. (…)
It is not simply a mental process,
but one which involves our bodies, our hearts, and our spirits.”
The gift of your intuition looks like an innate powerhouse, doesn’t it? It truly is. 100 %. However, we grew up in a world that encourages us to disregard our intuitive sense perception. We were taught to valid only knowledge from the outside world which we perceive through our five senses. We were taught to value only what is rational, logical. We were basically taught to live in the head, in the mental body.
I want to clearly distinguish between different ways our food choices can come from:
- Mental beliefs: Thoughts, such as “I should it this, because it’s good and healthy for me.” or “I shouldn’t eat this, because it’s unhealthy. Everyone says it’s not good!”
- Emotions: Unconscious urges which distract you from the underlying emotional pain temporarily.
- True physiological signals: When fully present and aware of the body, you can sense and respond to its communication with you.
When fully aligned with your intuition, you are aware of your body. Then, a clear resonance with certain types of food naturally arise. Your intuitive body knows exactly what nourishes you the most. If you deeply listen, you will naturally gravitate towards those foods. In other words: The only guru that knows your exact individual needs -day in day out- is your beautiful wise precious intuitive body … Indeed, intuition is knowing (from the body and heart) without knowing (from the brain).
“Follow your instincts.
That’s where true wisdom manifests itself.”
This may sound woo-woo and intangible, because we’ve always learned to seek after information outside of us. What makes this whole process even more challenging: The messages from your intuition do not necessarily match up to what everyone around you says. Yes, it can take time. It takes reflection, support, and forgiveness. It takes a greater level of self-awareness. Self-care. And self-love. The access to your intuition will arise when prioritizing time for introspection. When you go within, and deeply communicate with your body and heart.
~ The challenges of intuitive eating ~
“What should I eat?”, “What should I not eat?”, “Which foods are good, which are bad?” – Are you familiar with these statments? You might have found yourself in a similar situation. Not knowing what food to eat. Judging food, blaming your body, or your food choices for how you feel. Whether you’ve suffered from (chronic) illnesses and mysterious symptoms you didn’t get an answer from medical professionals. Or you wanted to lose or gain weight. Or you’ve struggled with mental and emotional issues around food and eating.
We’re constantly exposed to external stimuli: the food industry, the media, online ads, health gurus, our social environment – there’s an infinite amount of information out there that is trying to tell us what’s right for our bodies. The tricky thing is that the information is not necessarily congruent. The opposite is the case: It can be highly contradictory. Is there a better recipe for confusion and mistrust?
However, as eating is an essential and necessary part of everyone’s day-to-day life, it is tempting to research for dietary advice that fits our belief system, preferences, needs etc. The information out there can be so triggering that we lose connection to our own bodies. The minds starts to control the body. Our eating routines may feel like they’re a part of who we are (including unconscious addictions and unsustainable choices) – no wonder that mental and physical illnesses are on the rise.
There’s so much confusion in our minds when it comes to diet, nutrition, and body image which ultimately affects the relationship with our bodies and health in a harmful way … can you relate?
“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.
We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.”
Confusion arises when the body, mind, and emotions are out of alignment from their natural state. Then there’s a gap between what we think we need and what our physiology truly needs in order to thrive. Isn’t there…?
The body is confused…when we’ve deprived it from natural sources of nourishment, or abused it with too much food, maybe even with harmful substances.
The mind is confused…when we’ve delved into a jungle of contradictory information about diet and nutrition.
Our emotions get triggered…then we unconsciously act out of emotional pains.
What’s the result? – Chaos.
Then, the subtle, soft voice of your intuition cannot access your consciousness.
Then, your intuition feels numb. Non-existent.
Then, the lack of clarity from your own body and heart will leave you astray…
~ Intuitive Eating 1:1 – Top Tips for You! ~
Let’s move on to the gripping question: How do we get in touch with our intuition and start intuitive eating?
As I mentioned before, intuitive eating means to eat when sensing intuitive hunger cues from your body. This deep body awareness requires you to let go of mental concepts, dietary theories, belief systems, as well as emotional pains. It requires to let go of “thinking”, to let go of unconscious (emotional) habits. Intuitive eating is truly about following your gut feeling …
1.) My number one tip for you is to expose yourself to nature. Immerse yourself in the source of where your body came from and what it is part of. We’ve profoundly disconnected from natural environments and subsequently from the body itself – for it is an essential part of nature.
Get in touch with the elements in nature and discover the elements within your own body. In other words:
- Earth: Touch the ground, hug a tree, grow your food – connect with the natural source of nourishment which builds up your physical body (earth element).
- Water: Hydrate yourself with fresh clean water and support your natural elimination system through the kidneys. Your body is made up of around 60 % water (water element). If possible, take a swim in a natural water place.
- Fire: Expose yourself to the sun. Move your body out in nature and you’ll support your digestion and metabolism (fire element).
- Air: Take deep conscious breaths of fresh air on a daily basis and feel the air inside your lungs. Imagine the oxygen being delivered to your cells along the bloodstream, keeping you alive.
- Space (Ether): Allow yourself to enter the state of stillness and spaciousness within yourself. This can easily be done in a calm and quite place in nature. Your own consciousness mirrors the space element.
Nature is the perfect environment for you to still the mind, increase your awareness, and connect with your intuitive body.
2.) Get to know your body. Check in with yourself on a 2-3 hour basis, starting in the morning right upon waking. Take deep breaths and allow to let go of the mind. Ask your body questions, such as “What would nourish you mostly right now?” You will get subtle, but clear cues. The answer will appear. You can trust it. Yes – It is that miraculous!
3.) Honor your physical sensations of hunger without questioning, thinking about or judging them. Just follow those signs from your body as they come up and then feed yourself accordingly. When you suppress those initial signs of hunger, they will build up and at some point you’ll end up in ravenous and make unconscious choices. The same principle can be applied to your emotions: Pay attention to the subtle nudges telling you … If you suppress your emotions, they will accumulate and you’re like a ticking time bomb.
While eating and after eating, close your eyes and feel into your body. Once again, take deep breaths and allow the mind to relax as you let go of thoughts. Become present with your body. Ask yourself “How does that make me feel right now?”
4.) Connect with your food. The best way to do so is growing your own food. If that’s not possible for you right now, choose your food with the before-mentioned intuitive resonance from your body.
5.) Eat mindfully. I invite you to eat at least 1 meal a day without any distraction. Fully focus on the plate in front of you. Enjoy the meal with all your senses, experiencing every single bite, and observe your bodies signs.
6.) Appreciate and praise your meals. Before eating, I invite you to give thanks to the food on your plate. You can close your eyes,
7.) Treat your body the way you would treat (feed) your own baby, your best friend, your puppy or little kitten. An innocent, truthful, caring, beautiful being that deserves the very best in order to thrive.
My love, remember that you have free will. You can choose and set the intention to provide our body with what it deeply cries for. When you are willing to listen and act upon its signals, miracles are about to happen… they truly are!
~ My personal journey to intuitive eating ~
As you probably know, I studied nutritional science and I do appreciate the knowledge I was able to absorb during this time. Back in 2010, I hit rock bottom. The connection to my body and the food I was supposed to eat were basically non-existent. My intuition felt numb. Non-tangible. Back then, the idea of eating intuitively was an utopia. I wasn’t able to trust my body at all. Simply because I wasn’t receptive to any cues of hunger and satiety.
At that point in my life, I was literally struggling to survive. Emotionally and physically. I desperately tried to numb my internal suffering with cigarettes, coffee, a ton of work, and by being on my feet all day long. Every time I ate something, the pain intensified. As if I would become more grounded through the food in my body and experience the pain of life so much more deeply. Thus, I unconsciously decided to eat less. To not eat. In order to escape from that pain. Back then, I was totally identified with my thoughts. They told me “Life has to be that way”. And I ended up manifesting a reality based on those emotional pains.
My wake-up call was ending up in hospital. I knew I wanted my life back. I desperately wanted my health back. And I also knew that I am the only person who is able to find a way out of this misery. Back then, I only saw one tangible way for me to move toward health and healing. It was through studying, educating myself, researching, and gaining knowledge around nutrition and health.
“It is through science that we prove,
but through intuition that we discover.”
So, my journey to health and happiness started with science. Yet, I am undoubtedly sure that it was my intuition which has guided me to university. And from there to plant-based nutrition. To the power of natural whole foods. Living Foods. Back to nature. And my intuition guided me to Asia. To Ayurveda. I experimented with different dietary approaches, but it wasn’t until I tuned more into my own body, with the support of my spiritual practices, when I was finally able to re-built my relationship with food and body. I could finally trust my body, because I started perceiving the soft, subtle, yet truthful voice from my heart. I followed those internal nudges. I followed my intuition. Looking back, I couldn’t be more grateful for all these experiences. The relationship with your intuition is like an inner muscle that you’re strengthening over time as you start to listen and trust its guidance. No matter what everyone else around you is saying or doing.
Nowadays, my eating habits slightly change over time, depending on the season, the availability of local food, but first and foremost, depending on what my body says. Fruit has become my biggest passion over the past years and it is definitely a staple in my diet. Simply because I’ve never felt a stronger resonance with any other type of food than fresh, juicy, and colorful fruits.
I’m not sharing this little story of mine to tell you what to eat. But I want to show you that there is a way out of an unhealthy relationship with your body and food. There is a way out of suffering, addiction, restriction, and a distorted body image. There is a way toward a liberated and loving relationship with your own body and the food you eat. I’m here to give you hope. To show you that your intuition is speaking to you, always. Your intuition is dearly waiting for communicating with you. It is eager to guide you toward a healthy, vibrant body and fulfillment in life. It is there to remind you who you truly are. So you can express your authentic Self, your beautiful soul.
~ Conclusion: Intuitive Eating for Body and Soul ~
Eating intuitively can only happen when you shift your awareness from the head (thinking mind) down into your body and heart. When you make choices and take actions based on your truth. Your intuition. The divine wisdom that dwells within you.
Whatever you eat: Nourish your body, mind, and soul with welcoming thoughts about it. If you feel gratitude and love towards your meals, the food will love you back. It will nourish you from the inside out and give you all the required energy, nutrients, and vibration in order for you to thrive and follow your heart’s purpose.
“Always trust your instincts.
They are messages from your soul.
They are that inner part of you that strives to make you whole.”
Nowadays, it is so easy to lose ourselves in certain diet rules and belief systems around nutrition and body image. Paleo, Raw, xy-free, high carb-low fat, high fat, etc. Our minds love getting obsessed with certain structures. However, our bodies do not! Intuitive eating has become more and more challenging these days, and let’s be honest: who has not once thought about following certain food rules or diets?
When you connect with your body, you’ll give it the opportunity to communicate with you. Your body has an infinite intelligence that we can honor and appreciate. Innately, we do know how to feed our bodies so they can feel well. However, the mental conditioning has disconnected us more and more from this inner wisdom. Connecting with nature and spiritual practices of introspection can help you come back to your intelligence within.
“You know the truth by the way it feels.”
Remember: Your intuition is an invaluable gift that you were born with. As a sensitive soul, you already are deeply connected to its subtle whispers. The more you strengthen this connection, the more you bring awareness to it, the easier it becomes to live intuitively. Yes, also when it comes to food…
I’m sending you a big hug and all the love in the universe –
from my heart to yours!