Practical Intuitive Eating Advice


If you watched Video 2 of my training series, you know that one of the the best ways to heal your relationship with food is to learn to honor your hunger and fullness — to listen to your body tell you when it wants to eat, what it wants to eat, and when it’s had enough.

This approach to eating, often called Intuitive Eating, is awesome for healing food and body image issues.

But it requires a little bit of planning.

Sure, it’d be nice if every food your body could possibly need was always available to you at any given moment, but that’s not really practical. The reality may look something more like this: you grocery shop just once a week; you aren’t always at home or close to food; you don’t have time to prepare an entire meal; etc. In other words — living a normal life requires a practical approach to food.

So after you’ve practiced honoring your hunger and fullness and have learned your general eating preferences (these steps are not to be rushed!), here are some great ways to honor your hunger and fullness while living a full and normal life:

1. Bring Snacks

I became a mom while recovering from binge-eating. I couldn’t believe I brought snacks for my son just in case he got hungry during an outing, and didn’t show myself the same compassion. Bring yourself some snacks and save yourself the headache (perhaps literal!) of not having food on hand when you need it.

2. Bring Extra

Just like you learned in Video 1 of my training series, even though you have a general sense of what you like to eat and how much you tend to eat, your body’s specific, moment-to-moment needs cannot be predicted. So if you’re one who packs a lunch for work, pack a little more food than you usually eat. If you’re one who eats out for lunch, see no. 1.

3. Meal Prep

If you have a history of dieting, restriction, or any level of obsession with “fitspo,” meal-prepping can be super triggering, I know. It might remind you of your weight loss, “craving management,” and restriction days.

But consider this: meal prepping (like emotional eating!) is benign in and of itself. Your motivation—your why—is what matters: why are you meal prepping? Are you motivated by self-hatred and a desire to lose weight? Or are you motivated by self-love and a desire for efficiency?

Think on this, too: when bingeing on Oreos is the alternative to not having something on-hand and ready to go when you come home tired and hangry, meal-prepping starts to look pretty good.

Find meal-prep habits that work for you, and temper this advice with no. 1 and no. 2.

Approach meal prepping with caution. If it feels triggering and you find yourself planning to restrict, back off. It took me about a year to start meal prepping after recovering from binge-eating.

Couldn’t a little bit of planning go a long way toward helping you take care of your body’s food needs? What do you think? Try it out and let me know how it goes. And it should go without saying, reach out if you need support in your recovery journey. I’m literally a professional at it. Click for more information about the work I do to help women heal their relationship to food.

Want more practical intuitive eating advice? Here’s Practical Intuitive Eating Advice: Restaurant Edition.



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Hey girl hey. I’m Holland Hettinger, and I help women stop binge-eating. I believe your life doesn’t have to revolve around food. Your mind can think about something other than what you eat. You don’t have to shrink yourself and hide your body. There is an alternative to food guilt and body shame. And none of it includes dieting, meal prepping, weighing yourself, or forcing yourself not to binge-eat for just one—more—day. (Insert sigh of relief here.) Through training videos, coaching emails, and one-on-one work, I teach women to stop binge-eating for good.

Holland Hettinger