Melanie Sivley Counseling
Radical Nutrition Thoughts!
Radical Nutrition Thoughts!
How do you think about Food, Eating and your Body? Consider these 7 radical nutrition thoughts!
(1) What is moment by moment nutrition? We only ever make choices about nutrition in this moment. Are we hungry? How does our body feel? What do we need? Did we eat too much? We can plan all we like (and planning can be helpful), but we make the final decision in this moment. The moment to show up and care for ourselves nutritionally is always the moment we are in. This is true even if you just binged on 3 gallons of ice cream or pasta. Check in with yourself right now. When was the last time you ate? What did you eat? How does your body feel right now? Do you feel energized? Do you feel sluggish? Are you thirsty?
(2) Do you eat with your head or your body? The Idea of a food is different from the Experience of eating a food. For example when we hear or think the words “pizza, chocolate, pasta, bread” an idea of each of these foods pops in our mind. An idea of pizza could be a box of delivery pizza, a frozen pizza, a pizza from a gas station, a pizza from a nice restaurant, a homemade pizza, or even a pizza from Italy. It is still just an idea or thought in our mind. This idea or thought might make us want to eat a food believing it will bring pleasure; however, if we remain attached to just the idea of the food in our mind, we miss the experience of actually eating AND we miss the opportunity for pleasure in the moment of eating.
(3) Do you trust your body? Our body sends us infinite signals that can guide our nutrition choices. One basic signal to begin to notice is hunger and fullness. If you are not hungry, you do not need food. If you are hungry you do need food. Starting to listen to your hunger and fullness signals can help you tune in to more subtle eating cues. Sometimes this skill is called intuitive eating or learning to eat based on the intuitive signals our body sends about what it needs. If you tend to eat a lot of junk food it may be more difficult for you to hear what your body needs nutritionally. As my clients make healthier nutrition choices, they often are able to better tune into the body nutrition wisdom speaking and follow this guidance.
(4) Is a nutrition choice motivated by fear or kindness? Nutrition choices motivated by kindness are more likely to stick. Who wants to scare themselves all the time into changing? Another way to think about this is do we motivate ourselves in a gentle or tough way? Often we turn to tough motivation because deep down we believe that if we were gentle we would never change.
(5) Do you find joy in foods you eat? This is radical if you have never been taught and never considered that joy is one benefit of eating. This can also be tied to shame about feeling joy in general or specifically related to the body. I asked this question recently to a group and at least a third to half of the participants expressed some discomfort feeling joy when eating. Notice if this is uncomfortable for you and begin to experiment letting yourself enjoy the foods you eat.
(6) Do you have a magic weight? This is the weight where we believe that our life will be perfect. Our clothing with fit, everyone will love us, we will wake up well rested and happy every day. As sad as it is to give up on this dream, waiting for our life to begin once we reach a magic weight prevents us from actually noticing our life now. There is no perfect weight for everyone at every stage of life. Even if a weight worked well in the past, keep an open mind about what the best weight is for you today. Let go of the number and work towards health.
(7) What is your end nutrition goal? Sometimes we can start with the end goal. If losing weight means you will feel comfortable taking dancing classes, take them now. If cooking more at home means you will spend more time with your family, spend more time now. If being healthy means you will be able to travel when you retire, find a way to travel now. Don’t wait until you reach your nutrition goal to begin living your life the way you hope to when you reach that goal. Start now!
Written by: Anna Jones MS, RD
Anna teaches mindful, intuitive, and kind nutrition and fitness meeting each client exactly where he or she is. Her professional credentials include Registered Dietitian and Eating Psychology Nutrition Coach with a Master of Science degree in Kinesiology and Biomechanics. She encourages you to visit her blog and sign up for weekly emails at www.annanutrition.com. You can also join her free Mindful Nutrition meet up group. She is currently accepting nutrition clients and offering June Specials at www.annanutrition.com. Feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.