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10 Prinzipien Intuitive Ernährung 10 principles intuitive eating - Intuitiv Essen lernen

10 Principles of Intuitive Eating

The 10 principles are intended as a guide. They aim to support you in recognizing and understanding yourself and your needs. Sometimes people who have been on a diet all their lives take these guidelines as strict instructions and enforce them with the same rigidity and urgency. This is an invitation to not do so.

1. Reject the Diet Mentality

2. Honor Your Hunger

3. Make Peace with Food

4. Challenge the Food Police

5. Discover the Satisfaction Factor

6. Feel Your Fullness

7. Cope with Your Emotions with Kindness

8. Respect Your Body

9. Movement—Feel the Difference

10. Honor Your Health with Gentle Nutrition

Learn intuitve eating - how does it work?

That depends a bit on what kind of a learner you are. In my experience, the best way to achieve your goals is to get support from an expert like me who can guide you through this process.


'If a problem looks difficult, relax. If it looks impossible, relax even more. Then begin encouraging small changes, putting just enough pressure on yourself to move one turtle step forward. Then rest, savor, celebrate. Then step again. You'll find that slow is fast, gentle is powerful and stillness moves mountains.' Martha Beck

1. Reject the Diet Mentality

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If diets worked, it would only take one. Is this your experience? 
First of all: why do you want to lose weight at all? Is that your own wish or does this pressure, this expectation come from outside? What promises do you make to yourself? (If only I were skinny, then...).
Every time you go on a diet, you're signaling to your body that you need to survive a famine. This ancient program means that as soon as there is food again, your body compensates for this energy deficit . That's a good thing. Your body provides balance and makes sure you have enough strength to go through life.

Also, for a certain time after a diet, your metabolism changes (metabolism = energy utilization), which means that you usually regain the lost weight, even if you eat less than before. Often this is the start of a long and arduous 'diet career'. The so-called yo-yo effect accompanies you now.
The question is: do you want to keep spending energy, time and money on a concept that simply doesn't work at all for a lot of people in the long run? If not, then say goodbye to this false hope that the next diet will finally be the right one. No, there is no such thing as a quick, easy and permanent diet that will magically fix all your issues in life.

2. Honor Your Hunger

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Your body needs energy. It signals this to you clearly and distinctly. If you don't listen to these completely natural and meaningful signals, it can trigger a so-called 'primal hunger'. You can compare this to your breath. If you're swimming in the ocean and get caught by a big wave, something similar happens. Yes, you can hold your breath, but at some point it becomes so urgent, so essential for survival. You need air. If you starve your body for a very long time, a similar reaction occurs. You have to eat. It feels like it's a matter of life and death. And as a rule, you don't eat lovingly prepared appetizers – no, you need energy. A lot of energy! 

In such moments, after not listening to your hunger, you may fall to the other extreme and completely overeat. It all happens so fast and you don't even notice how much you've eaten. It's only when you're already nauseous that you realize you've eaten way too much.
It's important to keep your body biologically fed with adequate energy. Otherwise you may trigger a primal drive to overeat.

3. Make Peace with Food

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This thinking about food, this 'Should I, shouldn't I?'. When food becomes religiously rigid and food is suddenly 'good' or 'evil' – are you familiar with this way of thinking? Feel free to ask yourself if this is not too tedious for you? Wouldn't you like to find a liberated way to eat and enjoy food? By making peace with any food, you're on your way to a more relaxed form of eating.

No, the plate of fries will not immediately lead to fatty liver. That piece of cake will not automatically make you diabetic. And, if you think that without strict eating rules, you will only eat unhealthy things, let me assure you that it is very unlikely that you will want to eat only fries and cakes for the rest of your life. Your body will most likely signal to you very soon when it craves more variety and freshness. Until then: there are no forbidden foods.

4. Challenge the Food Police

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Often it is the inner voice that rants or condemns you for eating something 'bad' or praises you for eating the minimum amount of calories. The Food Police: Where do their laws come from? What are they based on? Are they even correct or make sense in any way?

Also, the voice of the food police can be a very real one. Many times, well-meaning relatives and acquaintances cause lasting damage with their abusive statements about your way of eating or your body. It is also important to protect yourself from them.

Substitute the voice of the food police with an inner dialogue that is beneficial for your health and well being.

5. Discover the Satisfaction Factor

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What do you really like to eat? Have you been eating salad with chicken for years even though you do not enjoy this dish at all? Do you eat all sorts of 'healthy' alternatives (from rice crackers to carrot sticks with dip to low-calorie and low-sugar weight loss snacks) when all you really want is a piece of cake or plate of pasta? If you eat exactly what you feel like, ideally in a relaxed, inviting environment, this pleasure will help you feel satisfied and full. That way you will discover the sweet spot where you have eaten neither too much nor too little, but simply enough.

6. Feel Your Fullness

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In order for your body and mind to realize that you've eaten enough, it's important that you eat what you really feel like eating. Take a short break during the meal and ask yourself: how do I like the food? How hungry am I right now? Learn what it feels like to listen to and trust your body.

7. Cope with Your Emotions with Kindness

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Be aware that any diet, any calorie restriction, can trigger a feeling of loss of control. This means that the diet can lead to uncontrolled binge eating, and this does not necessarily mean that you are an emotional eater (also: nothing is wrong with being an emotional eater, emotional eating can be a strategy that might have served you in the past). Of course, it can also be that you reach for food when you have certain feelings (boredom, frustration, stress). It makes perfect sense to find tools for dealing with unpleasant feelings. Food will not eliminate the trigger for these emotions. It may comfort you in the short term (and it's completely human and understandable that temporary solutions are attractive to us) or distract you - but in the long run you will want to deal with the cause of these feelings.

8. Respect Your Body

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Learn to accept that we come into this world in different shapes and sizes. Just as you are most certainly suffer when you are wearing shoes that are three sizes to small, it doesn't make sense to want to wear size zero if you're an athletic person with a tendency to build muscle easily. We utilize and process food in different ways and store our energy in different parts of the body. Yes, the diet industry tries to convince us otherwise, but it's only when you give your body a break and let him or her be who he or she is for a moment that you can start to feel better. And remember: you have a body, but you are not your body. And everyone, absolutely every body, deserves respect.

9. Movement—Feel the Difference

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Forget about militant sports with the ultimate goal of burning as many calories as possible. Pick an activity that you enjoy and feel the difference. If the focus is on feeling (for example, you feel full of energy after a walk, have a clear head after gardening, or have less lower back pain if you're dancing regularly), it's easier for you to move. Find out how you like to move: alone or with other people, intense or laid back, outdoors or at home? Whatever feels right to you will be the easiest to integrate

10. Honor Your Health with Gentle Nutrition

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Make your food choices by asking yourself: What is good for my health, tastes good to me and makes me feel good? And remember: you don't have to eat perfectly to be healthy. In fact, health is multifactorial. The type of diet that suits you, provides you with all the nutrients and gives you pleasure - you will be able to maintain it in the long term. Furthermore, learing and development are the goals, not perfection.

Be brave. Be yourself. Feel at home in your own body...

How can I learn to eat intuitively?

That depends a bit on what kind of learner you are. In my experience, the best way to achieve your goals is to get support from a professional like me. I will accompany you through this process.


''If a problem looks difficult, relax. If it looks impossible, relax even more. Then begin encouraging small changes, putting just enough pressure on yourself to move one turtle step forward. Then rest, savor, celebrate. Then step again. You’ll find that slow is fast, gentle is powerful, and stillness moves mountains..''

Martha Beck

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