Our bodies give us very specific cues to help us regulate our food and nutrient intake. The problem is that some of us begin ignoring those cues at some point in our life. Either as a child when a parent thinks that a child has surely eaten enough, and tries to tell them they can’t possibly be hungry…repeatedly. That child begins to doubt the signals that they know as hunger or the signals that indicate they are not quite satisfied yet. Or as an adult, when they think that they “should” be satisfied after eating the allotted calories they were told is proper for their build, yet still feel hungry. When this and other variations happen repeatedly, then they begin to question the signals that their bodies give them.
This becomes a very tangled psychological web weaved within a metabolically complex and biological web, and generally happens over a long period of time. There are so many different scenarios and examples of what these webs look like in various people’s lives, that the advice also becomes very personalized and specific. Renewing one’s eating competence can also be a lengthy process. However, I believe that it is foundational to having a healthy relationship with food, and needs to be a primary focus (before all other focuses), specifically for those people who are interested in losing weight, but have been previously unsuccessful.
People who maintain a normal weight and/or whose weight does not fluctuate, generally do not have a problem with this issue. The reason being is that our body’s natural gage is to eat the amount necessary to maintain our weight. Both losing weight AND gaining weight take certain effort, and I am going to give you some personal examples of this tomorrow. But for now, the message is to trust me, that you can trust your body! I will also be passing on some tips for how to do that tomorrow as well…So check back!