IE: Discover the Satisfaction Factor

Posted by Jennifer Campoli on June 8th, 2010
Filed under intuitive eating | 5 Comments »

Good morning friends!

How do you like LiveWellFitNow's new look? A bit nicer don't ya think? I've been working on this with Blain at Adjacent Concepts for nearly 2 months now. He is incredible and has done some awesome awesome things here. I'm really excited! A few more changes to come but hopefully no glitches! I'm happy you are here and I hope you are here to stay! We're just getting started…

I thought it was time to bring out another one of my favorite Intuitive Eating Principles. This principle has some very cool ideas that I think anyone can grow and learn from, no matter what kind of relationship you have or hope to have with food. Please enjoy!

IE Principle 6: Discover the Satisfaction Factor

“The Japanese have the wisdom to promote pleasure as one of their goals of healthy living. In our fury to be thin and healthy, we often overlook one of the most basic gifts of existence- the pleasure and satisfaction that can be found in the eating experience. When you eat what you really want, in an environment that is inviting, the pleasure you desive will be a powerful force in helping you feel satisfied and content. By providing this experience for yourself, you will find that it takes much less food to decide you’ve had enough.”

Basic human nature: if we are satisfied, we are not looking for something. If we are unsatisfied, we are constantly looking for “that” something. This applies to the big and the small things in life, especially food. I can remember going on the Atkins diet for about a year. Bread, pasta, rice, grains, corn, potatoes, and oatmeal were not “allowed” in my life. Do you want to know what I dreamed about nearly every night during that year? Do you know what this little mind focused on when the bread basket arrived at the restaurant? It wasn’t the conversation. If you are not satisfied, if you do not allow your body to enjoy what it is asking for you will be constantly searching for unfound contentment. This is the essence of principle 6 in Intuitive Eating.

American society has become so focused on what we are supposed to eat, how much of it and what we are not supposed to eat, that the idea of food providing pleasure during a meal is a novel one. Indulging often equates to guilt, shame, even wrong doing. Intuitive eating allows you to open your eyes to the idea of pleasure again without negative associations. And the beauty is that you will discover how little it takes to satisfy your body when it is not deprived.

Upon first reading this chapter I didn’t believe I could ever reach a point where small amounts of food truly satisfied me. I had been walking around looking at food I could not have for so long that idea of eating only a portion of my mashed potatoes and feeling content was unreasonable. I began to follow the suggested steps on how to discover my satisfaction factor.

1. Ask yourself what you REALLY want to eat
This idea goes in conjunction with giving yourself unconditional permission to eat. Anyone who has been on a diet likely struggles with opening the pantry or walking through the grocery store aisle wondering “what do I really want to have?” Remove labels, remove good or bad, remove calories, remove fat, remove ingredients. What do you truly want?

2. Discover the pleasure of the palate
This step requires to start experiencing or savoring your food.
Think about taste
Think about texture
Take in the aroma of your food
Look at the appearance of your food
What temperature do you prefer
Think about the volume of your food

Consider all of those elements of your food and rediscover what you enjoy

3. Make your eating experience more enjoyable
Let’s take a trip to Italy today. It’s about 1:30 in the afternoon. All stores are closed, people have gone home or to their favorite cafe. Everything is focused on your meal ahead with friends, family, new acquaintances. The next few hours involve an eating experience that all appreciate and desire.

Try to think about how you can create a new eating experience: make time to cook and enjoy the creation of your meal, sit down at the table, try to eat slowly, pay attention to eat bite, put your fork down to take a break, surround yourself with a friend or family member who can partake in the experience with you.

Is this idea realistic for every meal every day? Sure isn’t. But you can bring in different elements at each meal and allow your time to be focused on appreciating what you eating, how your taste buds respond and what your body feels like.

4. Don’t settle
You are in control of what you decide to put in your mouth. You are also in control of what you decide NOT to put in your mouth. Your body is yours. Treat it well and only put food in it that you enjoy and appreciate.

5. Check in: does it still taste good?
If it doesn’t, why don’t we put down the fork? This is never an easy decision. Listen to your satisfaction, your hunger and your taste buds. If you’ve had enough or if your food isn’t what you had hoped it would- don’t eat. Check in with yourself during meals so that you can learn how to sense when you are satisfied and what that sensation feels like!

Something worth spending a moment on today…

We are NOT PERFECT! Every meal won’t be all about pleasure, some meals may include 10 extra bites than needed for no reason at all other than it tasted good. Other meals will be about your day, your moment, your frustration or simply what is in front of you. Intuitive Eating principles are not rules. They are ideas for you to consider and mold so that they will fit into your life if you identify with them. Make mindful and balanced eating work for you!

So, think about your satisfaction factor today. Sit back, breathe, relax and enjoy your next meal!

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5 Responses to “IE: Discover the Satisfaction Factor”

  1. Even in all of my intuitive eating glory, I still struggle with this one. Especially the part about just sitting and eating instead of multi-tasking. Sometimes, there just doesn't seem like there are enough hours in the day.

  2. Oh, and I love the new look. I have been wanting to add one of those greeting type boxes at the top of my blog for my health and wellness coaching, too.
    Christie {Honoring Health}´s last [type] ..The Tapes We Play in Our Heads

  3. Jenn says:

    I know Christie…this is not an easy principle. As I'm sitting here typing and eating my oatmeal at the same time! That is why perfection is not the name in this fabulous intuitive eating game. :)

    Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Jenn says:

    Thank you thank you!!!

  5. BostonRunner says:

    Love the new look! I'm so behind, I need to catch up!!
    I think the number one thing for me to prevent overeating and being satisfied is eating what you really want to eat. If I'm craving something a little less healthy and opt for something more healthy that I don't really want, I'm not going to be satisfied and will probably end up eating MORE or that thing that I wanted in the first place in addition.
    BostonRunner´s last [type] ..Breaking Free

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