Satisfaction Factor

#51 - Is Intuitive Eating For Everyone?

September 14, 2022 Naomi Katz & Sadie Simpson
Satisfaction Factor
#51 - Is Intuitive Eating For Everyone?
Show Notes Transcript

Often when we talk about Intuitive Eating with new people or on social media, we hear variations of "I'd love to eat intuitively, but I can't because..." The end of that sentence is sometimes about weight loss, sometimes about health concerns, or sometimes about something completely different. So this week, we're talking about who gets to practice Intuitive Eating! We're digging into all the nuances of whether or not Intuitive Eating is really for everyone, including: whether you need to lose weight first; whether you can practice Intuitive Eating if you have a medical condition; how Intuitive Eating might work for folks in eating disorder recovery; and whether Intuitive Eating is actually accessible for folks from marginalized communities or who are experiencing financial insecurity or food insecurity.

And we're just a couple of weeks away from the opening of our upcoming online community, The Satisfaction Space! Click here to join the waitlist & be the first to know when the community opens!

You can stay up to date on all things Satisfaction Factor by following us on Instagram @satisfactionfactorpod!

Here's where to find us:
Sadie Simpson: www.sadiesimpson.com or IG @sadiemsimpson
Naomi Katz: www.happyshapes.co or IG @happyshapesnaomi

Referenced in this episode:
Julie Duffy Dillon
Intuitive Eating Professional Directory
Lindsay Sarson
Chrystyna Johnson
Patrilie Hernandez

Naomi Katz:

Welcome to Satisfaction Factor, the podcast where we explore how ditching diet culture makes our whole lives more satisfying. Welcome back to Satisfaction Factor. I'm Naomi Katz, an Intuitive Eating, body image, and self trust coach.

Sadie Simpson:

I'm Sadie Simpson, a group fitness instructor, personal trainer, and Intuitive Eating counselor. So before getting into the episode, we wanted to let everyone know that we have some big changes coming soon. For almost an entire year, we have been releasing new episodes of the Satisfaction Factor podcast every single week. And after we approach this one year mark, we are going to be switching to every other week

Naomi Katz:

of free time

Sadie Simpson:

you say that, but we have lots of other things in store. So if you're out there listening, and you're worried about missing us every other week, and you want to get your satisfaction factor fixed, don't worry, because we are also launching an online community with bonus content, live q&a sessions and a chance to connect and build community with other podcast listeners and like minded friends. So with that said, if that sounds like something you're interested in, we're gonna go ahead and put a link in the show notes. So that way you can get on the waitlist to be the first to know when all of this information is released. And we'll be talking about this a lot more next week too. And if you are interested in being involved in our satisfaction factor podcast community, you're probably going to want to get on that waitlist sooner rather than later. Because we have some fun free bonuses and gifts to give out to the first 25 People who sign up for our community. And in order to be one of those first 25 people, you need to be on the waitlist.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, we're really excited about this community, we think it's going to be a really great opportunity for conversation. And I think you'll know how much we love having these conversations. Yes, speaking of which, today we are talking about something that comes up in conversations a lot when we're talking about intuitive eating, you know, we'll talk on social media, or maybe to somebody we know about intuitive eating, and they'll say, I wish I could do that. But and then there will be some version of I need to lose weight first, or I have x medical condition. So things like high cholesterol, diabetes, PCOS, food allergies, or sensitivities, things like that. And so today, we're talking about who Intuitive Eating is for, like, is it for everybody? Can everyone practice intuitive eating? Or are there prerequisites to this practice?

Sadie Simpson:

Yes, I love this topic, because I feel like this comes up a lot in person. And there's a lot of conversation about this happening online, too.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, as usual, I'm sure none of you will be surprised to hear that the answer is pretty nuanced. It is definitely not like a black and white yes or no answer. Having said that high level like super high level, I'd say that the answer is yes. Intuitive Eating in some form is for everybody. And intuitive eating, as written in the books is definitely not for everybody.

Sadie Simpson:

I think that's a very fair answer right there. And this is one reason why it's really valuable to look into potentially working with somebody who is an intuitive eating coach or professional, especially if you're drawn to this idea of intuitive eating or you're interested. And if you feel like you're just not ready for it, or it might not be for you, for whatever reason, working with somebody else to navigate some of these nuances that we're going to talk about in just a minute can be very, very helpful. Yeah,

Naomi Katz:

definitely. The thing about working with somebody who is familiar with the framework is that we can help you navigate which parts might be for you and which parts might not be for you and which parts might need to be practiced differently than what's in the book and stuff like that. So let's elaborate on all of that nuanced by digging into some like specific circumstances that people sometimes see as reasons why they can't do intuitive eating. So I think a great place to start is I can't practice intuitive eating because I need to Lose Weight first.

Sadie Simpson:

Yes, that one comes up a lot,

Naomi Katz:

a lot. So I mean, right off the bat, intuitive eating does not have a weight limit. It absolutely can be practiced at any body size. This is actually a core concept within Health at Every Size. So if this is based on health concerns, well, body size and health are not the same things. You know, we've talked about that a lot over the course of this almost a year that we've been doing this podcast. And there are tons of studies that show the health benefits of intuitive eating versus intentional weight loss, largely because weight is not a behavior. When you're practicing intuitive eating, you can focus on actual behaviors that can improve health. So things like movement and variety in our food choices and self care and things like that, that are shown in studies to actually move that health dial much more than just intentional weight loss would. Having said that, a lot of times this is grounded in a fear that, especially if we're already in a larger body, it's like we can't afford to give ourselves unconditional permission around food, and possibly end up in an even larger body. Hmm, yeah, I think that, on some level, like people understand that, you might gain weight when you do intuitive eating. And so they feel like they are better off if they start off in a smaller body. And that way, if they gain weight, maybe they'll just come back to where they currently are. And not bigger than that, or something like that. So first, there is no body size at which it becomes healthier to diet or restrict. dieting and restriction have the same physical and mental health risks to bodies of every size. So weight cycling, deprivation, risk of eating disorders, you know, all of that stuff happens in bodies of every size, that diet or restrict, there is also no body size at which we stop deserving the nourishment that we get from food. So the pleasure, the connection, like all those things that we rob ourselves of when we're restricting, there's also no body size at which that binge restrict cycle stops happening as a result of dieting. So really unconditional permission is the only way to find a long term sustainable relationship with food. And because nuance. It's also totally understandable why folks who are already in marginalized bodies would be afraid of being in an even more marginalized body. Because obviously, that like weight stigma and marginalization increases as your body gets bigger. So here's the thing, we can't predict what will happen to people's weight when they practice intuitive eating. Some people gains some people say the same, some people lose, it's different, we don't know. And that's true, even for folks and larger bodies, might gain might stay the same might lose, we don't know. But we actually can kind of predict what might happen to people's weight when they diet. There are a lot of studies that show pretty consistently that folks who diet will gain back the weight that they lost. So we know that there is no long term decrease in body size with dieting, and about two thirds of people will actually gain more weight than they lost. So if you think about it, like there's this sense of like, well, I can't practice intuitive eating because I can't risk my body getting any bigger. But like dieting is not the safe alternative to that dieting doesn't remove the risk of your body getting bigger. If anything, there's like a reasonably good chance that dieting will actually lead to your body getting bigger. And so if you have the choice between these two things that risk the same thing, one of them does a lot of harm, and one of them might actually lead to a long term sustainable relationship with

Sadie Simpson:

food. Yeah. Oh my gosh, I'm glad you pointed that out. Because the general assumption is that we're going to diet and we're going to lose weight and we're going to stay at that weight forever and ever and ever, when the research has proven over and over and over again that that is not what's gonna happen. And it's just it just feels so ironic and almost backwards that the opposite is gonna be true, but we really have to dig into the research Which and is so interesting with intuitive eating, and with disengaging, from dieting, and from diet, culture and all of that. It's just such a different concept than what we have just been taught and what we have learned our whole lives, like, it's really hard to wrap our minds around the fact that we can't predict what's going to happen when we begin to Intuitive Eating practice. But we can't predict what's going to happen with restrictive dieting. And that is going to be this restrict binge, possibly weight cycling, just all the stuff that that studies have shown us again, over and over, that is going to happen. And recently, like just a couple of weeks ago, I was talking to somebody about intuitive eating. And one of the things that they asked, which I felt like was very, relative to this whole point was what would happen if I tried one last diet, like one last attempt at weight loss before implementing an intuitive eating practice. And for literally all of the reasons that you just shared, this is why it's not a good idea to attempt one last diet, even though it feels like sometimes that's what we need to be doing before we start an anti diet, basically. And if you're listening to this, and you have read the intuitive eating book, and I think we've mentioned this a couple times on previous episodes, but within the intuitive eating book, the author's talk about this last supper mentality, like we're gonna have this last big meal on Sunday night, and then we're going to start a diet on Monday, and it's going to stick and it's going to work and it's going to do all of these magical things. And I think this is really similar to that. But kind of the opposite. Like we're going to do one last diet before we start the non diet.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, I definitely can see that parallel there. And, you know, I do think again, Nuance always right, like, I do think that sometimes people need to do that one last thing just to like, prove to themselves that it really wasn't going to work. And like, you know, and now they're they're actually ready to go down this path of intuitive eating and like, okay, like, I totally get that. Yeah. But I also think there's a difference between that and like, I need to do this one last diet, so I can start intuitive eating at a smaller body size. Yes, those are different, like motivations and stuff for them. So I mean, bottom line, yes, Intuitive Eating is for people in all body sizes. There is definitely not a weight limit on that. Yes. The next one is I can't practice intuitive eating because of my medical condition. There are a couple of things behind this objection. So first, there's the fact that things like diabetes and high cholesterol and PCOS and stuff like that have traditionally been treated with weight loss and dietary restriction. And second, there's this misconception that intuitive eating means you have to eat all the things, and that it's not intuitive eating, if you're restricting anything for any reason, including allergies and sensitivities, which is just not accurate. And we'll get more into that in a second.

Sadie Simpson:

Yeah, well, it's kind of funny that you mentioned PCOS. And you know, that's very appropriate that it's kind of lumped in with some other conditions that people tend to treat weight loss with, because I was in a mom Facebook group last week, and someone comes in that had recently been diagnosed with PCOS and didn't get a lot of direction from her doctor, and was of course asking the Facebook group on what they were supposed to do. And of course, like, keto, such and such weight loss diet, this supplement from this MLM company, I mean, like 50 or 60 comments of the similar restrictive recommendations, obviously from people who are not registered dieticians have no nutrition background whatsoever, just stuff that they've heard, or maybe anecdotally they have tried. And it was so interesting. Like a lot of folks recommended keto. And in the same comment, they were like, well, I did keto. And it worked until I stopped doing it. And in my mind, I'm like, you know, that's what happened.

Naomi Katz:

That's literally the story of every diet ever. Yes,

Sadie Simpson:

yes. Yes. Oh my gosh. So I tried to stay out of a lot of these vom group Facebook conversations, but I like I just had to chime in. And I was very subtle. And I said, Hey, here's another recommendation that somebody has suggested. So I don't know if you've heard of Julie Duffy Dylan, but she's a Intuitive Eating Counselor, Registered Dietitian. I'm pretty sure anti diet PCOS person like the person on the internet that is great to refer folks to who have questions. It's about PCOS. And one person in that entire comment thread liked my recommendation. But I was very happy to see that there were a couple of folks mentioning, like, you need to see your registered dietician and one specifically mentioned nutritious thoughts, which is our local Health at Every Size a lot dietitian practice here in Asheville. But yeah, I was really excited to see that. And I was, like, I just thought about that in relation to this conversation. Especially because I just think is so important to know that random comments in a Facebook group should not be taken as prescriptive nutrition advice. And seeing an RD for these specific needs is a really good suggestion. And we just live in this society that takes advice for random people on the internet as like the gospel truth, and it's just not cool. But anyway, total side tangent here.

Naomi Katz:

It's not though it's very much. And also, I love when you tell Facebook mom group stories. It's one of my favorite, I feel like we should have like a whole segment of like Sadie's, Facebook mom group stories, because they're my favorite.

Sadie Simpson:

Honestly, like, that could probably be a really good episode of debunking the crap that comes up in a Facebook mom group as it was related to, like eating and exercise and bodies and things like that. But that's for another day.

Naomi Katz:

Yes, we are doing I love that. So let's dig into this. Let's do it. This idea here. So first, there is again, a ton of evidence about the effectiveness of an intuitive eating focused approach to conditions like diabetes, high cholesterol, and PCOS, especially diabetes, I think I've seen a whole bunch of studies on that one in particular. And like, in fact, there are studies that specifically compare so it's not just about, well, Intuitive Eating is effective. There are studies that specifically compare the effectiveness of a weight based approach versus a weight neutral, intuitive eating based approach for diabetes. And guess which one always has better long term results

Sadie Simpson:

dealing with. sound bite in there. I know. Exactly.

Naomi Katz:

And, you know, the big reasons for this are sustainability, and the binge restrict cycle. So diets and restrictions are not sustainable in the long term. So people can't stick to those kinds of rules for very long, even if those rules exist for what they consider to be medical reasons. And so they end up with like highs and lows in the management of their medical conditions, instead of long term consistency with diabetes specifically, you know, people traditionally get told to like, never eat carbs or sugar, so they have to restrict. And they'll do that for a while. And then like, at some point, they'll eat a whole bunch of carbs and sugar, so they'll binge and throw their blood sugar like way out of whack and like kind of create this like blood sugar and insulin like roller coaster or type of a situation. Now, we are not dietitians, but my understanding of the way Intuitive Eating works with that is that you can actually eat some carbs and sugar regularly, so that you end up with controlled regular blood sugar and insulin levels. I think like you can kind of think of it as with an intuitive eating maybe you have like one piece of candy every day as opposed to no candy for like two weeks and then 10 pieces of candy in a single day, or something like that. You know, from a medical management perspective, you're better off with consistently controlled insulin and blood sugar levels than you are with these like high low peaks and valleys type of things. Having said all of that, like I said we are not dietitians. There are a ton of intuitive eating certified registered dietitians out there who specialize in helping people manage medical conditions without dieting or weight loss and through an intuitive eating lead. We will put the link to the directory for these types of providers in the show notes and also some recommendations for Instagram accounts to follow about these specific things. So you know, Sadie mentioned Julie Duffy Dylan is a great resource for non weight based recommendations for PCOS. There are some others for PCOS. There's also some people who like specifi and things like diabetes and stuff like that. So we'll Um, we'll put some accounts in the show notes for like those specific things too. And then the second part of this is that unconditional permission doesn't actually mean you have to eat all the things. We talked about this in our intuitive eating deep dive episode on making peace with food. The concept behind making peace with food and unconditional permission is something called habituation. Which just to refresh our memories, because that deep dive episode was quite some time ago. Habituation is essentially a process where we take the novelty out of certain stimuli by making them accessible, the more you eat ice cream, the less ice cream is going to feel like this thing that like, Oh, my God, I have to eat all of it every time and that kind of thing. And it works without us having to literally eat every food. Basically, we eat some foods in a you know, kind of structured and mindful way that allows us to take the fear out of it and and take the narratives out of it and stuff like that, we start having those foods around, they become less of a an out of control situation for us, because we've habituated to them, we move on to some other foods, and we go through this process with specific foods for a while. And then at some point, we kind of realized that like, we feel that way about all food. Now, we don't literally have to eat every food in the world in order to get to a point where we have overall made peace with food and embrace that idea of unconditional permission with food. So what that means is that we can make peace with food. And we can experience the benefits of unconditional permission, without having to eat foods that we're allergic to, or that we're sensitive to, or for things that we have ethical or religious objections to, because that falls into this category too. And generally, we can still limit those things without a huge feeling of restriction about it. Because we're making an autonomous choice to limit them, sometimes based on our well being and what actually feels good in our bodies. And sometimes based on our values and stuff like that, but it's an internal motivation, rather than an external rule is what it ultimately becomes. And so that kind of limits how much of that feeling of deprivation and restriction we feel about it. And that's also

Sadie Simpson:

where I feel like principle 10, of intuitive eating, honoring your health with gentle nutrition comes in because to me, gentle nutrition is exactly what you just said it is having the ability to make an autonomous choice to eat foods that aren't going to make us feel bad, and maybe even choosing foods that we know are going to make us feel better. And that's going to vary from person to person. And the principle of honoring our health with gentle nutrition is something that we don't typically address with folks until they've been practicing intuitive eating for a while. And I've worked through some of the other principles specifically disengaging from the dieting mentality, and learning how to respect our bodies and all of that. But for folks who have some specific health concerns and health conditions, I don't want to say like skipping ahead to the gentle nutrition principle is the way to go. However, there may be some components of that that may be helpful for folks that have some specific concerns that they need to address.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, absolutely. Like, you know, again, as people who are not dieticians and who don't work specifically with folks who require this kind of like medical nutrition therapy, we usually don't do gentle nutrition with folks until the end, yes. Somebody who is a registered dietitian is specializing in this kind of intuitive eating lens on medical nutrition therapy and stuff like that, is probably going to do the gentle nutrition stuff alongside everything else, like, you know, definitely not waiting till the end. So I think that's another thing that I'm really glad you brought that up. I think that's another thing that comes in here is that. I mean, there's a real big misconception that intuitive eating doesn't care about nutrition at all. And I mean, that's just patently untrue. That's just somebody who doesn't know anything about intuitive eating as a framework, even for folks who do know that there's a framework and there is a principle of gentle nutrition. I think there's the sense of like, Yeah, but it's the last one and I can't not I'll do that until the very end, because I have this condition that needs to be, you know, monitored and cared for and stuff with nutrition. And like that's, that actually can happen. As we say all the time, there are principles, not steps, they go in whatever order you need them to go in. But also, a lot of times they run parallel to each other, like you can be doing two of the same things at the same time. And if you have one of these conditions, then like, your greatest need is going to be moving that gentle nutrition concept up and then doing the other stuff alongside it. And that's what people are trained to help with and support with and stuff like that.

Sadie Simpson:

I love that you mentioned that because people who are certified Intuitive Eating practitioners come from a variety of backgrounds like some people are registered dieticians, some people are mental health counselors, some people are health educators, some people are doctors, and some people are fitness folks like me. And like I think I've mentioned this before, but often for the people that I've worked with, we work on the joyful movement stuff alongside all the other stuff. So that feels very parallel to that if someone is registered dietitian, they're going to be working on the digital nutrition alongside all the other stuff. If someone is a mental health counselor, they're going to be working on probably a lot of the respect your body and unlearning narratives alongside all the other stuff. So I just really love that you mentioned that.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, absolutely. Like My background is as a, you know, primarily body image and self trust coach. So yeah, we do a lot of like, body image and body respect and like coping with emotions with kindness and like all of that stuff alongside all the other purchase. Absolutely. So yeah. So I mean, again, bottom line, yes, you can absolutely practice intuitive eating, even if you have medical conditions, or may as well throw this in there to ethical or religious, you know, food restriction type things. Yeah. Okay. So those are a couple of categories that are like, pretty firm, yes, even as written, intuitive eating can like yes, you can practice intuitive eating. So now let's talk about some groups who might struggle with practicing intuitive eating, especially as it's written in the books. So not necessarily folks who can't practice intuitive eating. But folks who are going to need intuitive eating to look a little different than it does as written. So I would say the first group there is people with active eating disorders or early in eating disorder recovery. It's interesting, because I believe that intuitive eating is actually considered like the gold standard for eating disorder recovery, ultimately, like in the end, but it definitely doesn't work like that for people right away. Like, you definitely can't take somebody who is in an active eating disorder, or very earlier in their early in their eating disorder recovery and be like, intuitive eating, here's the framework, follow it. So first, a lot of people in this category don't have the ability to feel hunger and fullness cues accurately. So the can't rely on them. hunger cues are muted a lot of the time, and early fullness, like premature feelings of fullness are often a thing too. So if someone with an eating disorder was relying purely on those sensations to do things like nutritionally restore or something like that, they would never get there. You know, we've talked before about how honoring hunger sometimes requires us to schedule meals or snacks or things like that. And so for every buddy honouring hunger sometimes requires more than just relying on our physical cues. This is totally one of those times, but it often goes like a whole other step, and actually requires like specific meal plans to ensure that there's enough food and that there's enough kinds of food. So especially because the foods that people might choose on their own. So like, let's say that you gave somebody in this situation, a schedule for eating but didn't give them a meal plan of what they were supposed to eat. They still might probably not be eating enough, even if they were eating at all the scheduled times. And they might not be eating foods that would sustain them and like would actually do the nutritional restoration and stuff like that. Because they might be very limited in what foods they're willing to choose. Which kind of leads us to the other thing, which is that making peace with food and unconditional permission might feel really unsafe for folks in active eating disorder or early recovery from an eating disorder. So, diet culture can mean that any of us have food rules and food fears, like most of us have some of that weight, especially when we're first approaching intuitive eating. This is much more extreme for folks with eating disorder so so especially with restrictive eating disorders, but even for folks with histories of binging. So we've talked that, you know, a lot of times when you first give yourself unconditional permission, you feel a little out of control around that food until the habituation kicks in. That feeling of being out of control, that initial feeling can feel really, really triggering for folks who have a history of binge eating disorder, because it feels similar to the onset of a binge. And so like, that's not like, again, you can't just like throw people into this stuff. And like practice it as written if they've got this other stuff going on.

Sadie Simpson:

Like here's the book Intuitive Eating good luck. Like that's not how this works.

Naomi Katz:

Absolutely. Things like joyful movement and gentle nutrition can also be difficult and the stage because those things might have been used in harmful ways within the eating disorder. Does this mean that people with an active eating disorder or an early recovery can't practice intuitive eating? No, that is absolutely not what it means. It just means that they can't necessarily practice all the principles as written, they can still do rejecting the diet mentality, they can still work on body respect, and challenging the food police, they can still work on coping with emotions with kindness and down the road, they may be able to work on all those other principles, too. This is one of those places where like, you definitely want to be working with a registered dietitian and a licensed mental health professional who specializes in eating disorders and intuitive eating. Again, we will put that directory in the show notes. So if that if this is something you're struggling with, I highly recommend checking out that directory and finding somebody who is a registered dietician. And or a licensed mental health professional, and who specializes in eating disorders, not just like anybody.

Sadie Simpson:

And there, fortunately, are folks out there who meet this criteria. I know it feels like hearing these like very three specific things. Seems like a unicorn out in the magical woods. But there are folks, especially even here in the Asheville area. I know we've got a lot of listeners locally, we've got a good amount of resources in our area that kind of meet all three of those criteria. So yeah, that resource that we'll put in the shownotes will be very helpful. Yeah, absolutely. So we've talked about folks who are in early eating disorder, recovery, or maybe are in an active eating disorder. So another argument that I've seen against intuitive eating, and I think is a pretty valid argument is the idea that folks who are in marginalized communities or people who experience food or financial insecurity, cannot practice intuitive eating. Let's talk about that a little bit. Because I know that's another community, another sector of the population that may not be able to access intuitive eating as it is written in the book.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, this is a real important one. So there's a lot of really super incredibly valid criticism of the intuitive eating framework out there. And the basis of it is generally that this is a pretty big missing perspective within the intuitive eating framework, as it's written. As written, the practice of intuitive eating is like pretty friggin privileged. Yes, it kind of expects that you have time that you have secure access to food, that you have financial privilege of some sort. And, of course, when we make those assumptions, and leave out folks with less financial means and less food security, it also means we're leaving out other marginalized groups like black folks, people of color, trans folks, fat folks, etc. Because those groups are disproportionately affected by food and financial insecurity. So like there's a lot of like intersectionality that goes into why intuitive eating as written doesn't feel like it applies to these groups. I mean, there's a reason why so many Intuitive Eating coaches are thin white ladies, right? It's, it's because it's a framework that is much more easily accessible to us. And that also means that a lot of folks within these marginalized communities don't see themselves or their lives, represented in conversations about intuitive eating. And they can feel like Intuitive Eating isn't for them, which is totally understandable. Like, if you don't see yourself represented in a space, then it's really hard to understand how you belong in that space, it should go without saying, but I'm gonna say it, there is definitely no exclusion to intuitive eating for race or gender or anything like that, like that is explicitly untrue. And Intuitive Eating is also possible for folks experiencing food insecurity, financial insecurity, things like that, but definitely not as written like it is simply not accessible that way as written.

Sadie Simpson:

No, not at all. Because there are so many things. In the book, I can even remember from the first time I read the book, and I was coming from a very financially privileged, thin white woman space reading this book. You know, however long ago it was, and I can remember even thinking then I was like, huh, how is somebody who doesn't have access to a lot of varieties of food to do the practice where you know, you practice eating foods that have previously been off limits, like, say, for example, you restricted ice cream, and you did not allow ice cream in your life. And in the book, you know, there's this exposure practice of Eat foods that have previously been banned from your house and your diet and that sort of thing. But like, what if somebody can't access these foods?

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, totally. There's a lot of practices like that. There is literally an intuitive eating practice. I remember this from the certification. And I honestly, I don't remember whether it's in the book, or the workbook, or one of the like, audio practices that was part of the certification process, or what, but there was literally a practice around fullness or satisfaction, where the instructions actually told you to make sure that you had prepared enough food that you could throw some of it out.

Sadie Simpson:

Yeah. That was in that book. Like, I want to say that, I'll have to go find it that may have even been in the edition of the book that I first read, because I can't even remember, I don't know if this was specifically in the book, or if it was in a blog or something that I had read years and years and years ago. And it was in correlation with intuitive eating, but it was something like, you know, you've got all of this food on your plate. You can either eat it past the point of fullness, or you can throw it away either way. It's it was something along the lines. And this wasn't from the book. This was from a blog, I can remember what it was. But anyway, but it was something along the lines of regardless, it's like, essentially, going in the trash anyway, it was something along those lines. I can't remember verbatim. Yeah, but it was

Naomi Katz:

screaming before. Yeah. Yeah. And like, what? Yeah, what? Like, even if you have, even if you have a secure access to food, like even if you have food security, why the hell would you not save that as leftovers? Like, why is the choice eat at all right now or throw it out? Like, it's just so it's, it's written by somebody who has never, ever had to wonder if they were going to have food available to them, and look, like a lot of people in this field. That's true for and so, you know, you live you learn all of that stuff. And I will also say that I, I'm pretty sure that that practice that I was thinking of, was not in the most recent version of the book, which has made some updates to this stuff, but still isn't like, really embracing of it and accessible. There's also a ton of practices that talk about, like creating these peaceful, beautiful eating experiences and like that's hugely privileged to like, so many people don't have the luxury of things like child care, or even lunch breaks and you know, stuff like that, like Are any of the things that would have to come together to allow for like consistent, nondistracted peaceful eating experience? And, and so like resting some of our practices on like this, like idealized eating experience. I don't know that that's helpful for a lot of people. Yeah, like honestly even people who, again, like have food security and like still aren't going to be able to have these like perfectly peaceful meals all the time. Yeah. And then like more specifically, things like honoring your hunger and making peace with food can be really complicated and hard to address if the person is experiencing food insecurity, like how are you supposed to let go of restriction if you literally may not have enough food to eat? How are you supposed to work on satisfaction or unconditional permission? If you have limited food quantities are limited food options available to you? How are you supposed to work on like coping with your emotions outside of food, if you can't afford health care, mental health care if you're in an unsafe situation, like all of that stuff, frankly, you don't you don't do any of those things in those situations. But that doesn't mean that intuitive eating doesn't have a place here to in some form. So there's new research that shows that there's a big connection between food insecurity and eating disorders, the reasons for that are multifactorial and intersectional, and all of that stuff. But a couple of the reasons we can sort of discuss here, so part of that is because there can be in like an inadvertent binge restrict cycle that becomes learned behavior over time. So like, assume you are on like financial assistance for food, a lot of times you'll have money and food at the beginning of the month, and much less at the end of the month, where you're really trying to stretch things out. And so that ends up looking like a restrict binge cycle where like, you're really, really restricted at the end of the month, and then you're flush again at the beginning of the month. And you're like just trying to restore, you're trying to like, you know, get back to the calories and the energy and like everything that your body needs. Plus, like the mental like the sense of safety, and all of that stuff. But again, that has to taper out over the month, because the benefits diminish. And so you end up in that restriction towards the end of the month. And so you get this restrict binge cycle that like you don't really have any control over. And it can become this learned behavior. But another part of why this shows up is because there's so much stigma around the types of foods that our most accessible to folks experiencing food insecurity. So fast food foods that are high in calories and carbs and fat, convenience foods, you know, things like that. And that stigma around literally the only foods that are accessible to people can drive certain eating disorder behaviors. As usual, there's not really any need to get into the specifics of those behaviors here. But like that can be a big factor. So all that being said, within intuitive eating, if we do things like work on rejecting the diet mentality and challenging the food police, and then that can help people let go of that stigma around the foods that are accessible. And it can help them better honor their hunger, and like interrupt some of that thinking that can lead to those behaviors and like eating disorder tendencies, challenging the food police also is a big thing in terms of making peace with convenience foods, so that we can honor our hunger, even if we have time constraints, making peace with cultural foods that may have been demonized within, like white diet, culture can be a big thing for these groups. You know, we can always work on body respect, we can work on being compassionate to ourselves in understanding food as a valid coping mechanism, especially, like always, but especially if we don't have access to other coping options. So you know, there's actually a lot of benefits in the intuitive eating framework for folks in this group, even if the framework as written doesn't address it directly. And even if we have to, like make some changes to how we approach it.

Sadie Simpson:

One thing that I love about this conversation is that even though you and I are both certified Intuitive Eating professionals, we are finding the gaps and seeing the gaps and I think that's so important for anybody in any profession, like you might be dedicated to this framework or this system or this certification or you might have gotten a degree in a certain thing or whatever the case may be, but the Being open to see where there are some spots that could use a little bit more nuance and a little bit more conversation. And just being open to questioning some of the pitfalls within the greater framework. I think it's just so important, not just in this conversation, but like in the world, and we need more of that.

Naomi Katz:

Oh, my God. Yes. And, you know, I think that's one of the reasons why, like, we've talked before about like, you know, what do you get out of intuitive eating, and like, we've talked about the skill of critical thinking and like, breaking out of binary thinking and stuff like that. And I think this is an application of that this is an opportunity for us to apply those skills. Because if Intuitive Eating has to be practiced, word for word, the way it's written out in these books, and is it anything other than a diet, like it's still just an external set of rules. I am a big believer in intuitive eating and Health at Every Size, and all of that stuff. And I kind of don't care what the books on either of these things say, What I care about is the underlying principles and goals, and how those things fit into the actual lived experiences of people. And I think you feel the same way. And I think that's how this becomes something that's internally motivated, as opposed to just a set of external rules we're supposed to be following.

Sadie Simpson:

You know, I think that's why there's so much conflict out there as to who Intuitive Eating is for and who it is not for. Because if you're just looking at this on the surface level, and taking the book for what it says as it is written, no Intuitive Eating is not for everybody. But when you do start to look at some of these other deeper systemic things that are going on, and are able to take this greater framework and kind of apply it in ways that are unique to each individual, or each subgroup or whatever, then yes, it is for everybody. So this is a great episode, let's

Naomi Katz:

keep Excellent. Also, in terms of talking about the nuance around intuitive eating for folks in marginalized communities, and experiencing food insecurity and stuff like that, I highly recommend checking out the work of Christina Johnson, who is at encouraging dietitian on Instagram, and potentially Hernandez who is at the underscore body live underscore advocate, who both talk about the nuances of this a lot. Another group who might find intuitive eating as written and accessible is neurodivergent, folks. And so for the sake of time, I don't know that we need to like go hugely in depth into this, I would definitely recommend going to check out episode number 31 With Rene Hammadi, because she talks extensively about her own lived experience and and her work as a certified Intuitive Eating counselor around dealing with neuro divergence in the context of intuitive eating bottom line. Yes, intuitive eating can absolutely work for neurodivergent, folks, and it might not look the same as it does for neurotypical folks, you know, maybe it requires some scheduling or tracking because of difficulty tuning into physical cues. I actually had a client share with me recently that a lot of the early hunger cues overlap with some of her neurodivergent experiences. So things like distraction, difficulty concentrating energy and mood changes, stuff like that, you can totally see how if that overlap exists, then it might be really hard to tell like what's a hunger cue and what's not. And that also like maybe you need to account for things like sensory concerns within, you know, the context of making peace with food and honoring hunger and stuff like there's like, there's a lot of nuance to this. And again, I would definitely recommend checking out episode number 31 for a much more in depth discussion around that. My general feeling on all of this stuff is that intuitive eating is really about meeting our needs to the best of our abilities without feeling shame about whether or not those needs or those abilities meet diet culture expectations. And if we interpret intuitive eating that way, I think it absolutely applies to everyone. That's not the same as saying that the intuitive eating framework as written applies to everyone. It leaves people out and it isn't appropriate for everyone as written but you know, it's like we said like we can approach this with a critical lens and we can find ways to take what we need and what works for us. Things like rejecting the diet mentality challenging food please buddy respect which mostly is accessible to everyone. And like leave the rest We don't have to practice this, as it's written as a set of rules as like a hard and fast framework.

Sadie Simpson:

Yeah, totally 100% agree, I really feel like the only thing that has to be a hard and fast rule of intuitive eating is that we don't intentionally turn it into a weight loss diet. And then other than that, I feel like we can interpret this however, we need to, to meet our unique and individual needs. But at the end of the day, for me, this is about getting our needs met, it is about disengaging from diet culture. It is about exploring options to eat and to live and even to exercise and move without having to follow the strict set of rules that like mainstream health and fitness and wellness culture says that we have to, and to be able to just make choices for ourselves.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, hard agree. Yeah, about all of that.

Sadie Simpson:

Awesome, so sad, what's

Naomi Katz:

satisfying for you right now.

Sadie Simpson:

So last night, we had the fortunate opportunity to have a child free evening, in training with and did something that we haven't done in a while and we went out to a brewery and play trivia and like, mingled with adults, it was just us, we were our own team. We weren't with a big group or anything, we didn't expect to win. But it was just fun to get out. And to do some things. We were sitting there and it was like halftime of the trivia. And they put up a way to earn bonus points, like you could go up to the trivia host and give them your email address or play Rock Paper, Scissors, or guess what number is on their piece of paper or whatever. And I was like, Oh, that's a cool way to get points. And then Trey and I both looked at each other. And literally at the same time, we were like, I'm not getting up, are you getting up. And we're like, I really don't care if we win. Because that is not the whole point of this. The whole point of this is to like, get out and do something different. And also not to have to, like get up and down every five seconds, because that's what happens when you have a kid. So it was a really fun and satisfying evening. But it was also very telling of both of our desire to sit for a long time. Both of our nine competitiveness it was it was an interesting revelation. But it was fun. We did not win. And it was okay.

Naomi Katz:

I love that so much. I'm a huge fan of trivia in situations like that. But I'm also a huge fan of sitting down. I love that. That is what like one out for you here. Fantastic. Like yeah,

Sadie Simpson:

we're sitting it's awesome. What about you? What is satisfying for you right now?

Naomi Katz:

What's satisfying for me right now is that I just made an appointment. So I recently discovered that there is a like, we inclusive sex positive LGBTQ welcoming medical group within Asheville. And know the was it the FOSS? FOSS tonight?

Sadie Simpson:

I don't know how to pronounce that. But I've been following them on Instagram for a while. But

Naomi Katz:

yeah, I learned about them from Betsy and all body movement and wellness. Yep. And I have like really been having a hard time finding a medical provider that I want to go see lately. And like I recently went to try out a new primary care doctor and I will say that she was great. But her practice made me bonkers. Like I couldn't handle the practice around her basically. And yeah, so when I found out about this, I was really excited. So I actually just made myself an appointment and I'm gonna go for my first appointment with them next week. And yeah, I listen, I haven't been there yet. So I can't like vouch for the experience. But this is the first time in a really long time that I have not had a huge like just rush of anxiety, right after making a doctor's appointment like I am actually looking forward to going to this doctor's appointment like that never happened. So yeah, that's really satisfying.

Sadie Simpson:

That is so fun. I cannot wait to hear how this goes. Which obviously you're not going to share all of your like personal medical stuff with us all the podcasts. But I've been following them on Instagram and they have really cool Instagram posts and rules and stuff. So I just feel like kind of excited for you to to go to this new medical practice because they look really fun and great on the internet.

Naomi Katz:

Yeah, and I actually totally well I mean obviously I won't share my medical But I will absolutely share about how the experience was afterwards because I think it's really important for people to know if there is an option like that for them. And we will also put, like, we can put a link to them in the show notes. Yeah, good idea for anybody who's looking for a provider like that. So sounds

Sadie Simpson:

great. Yeah. Awesome. All right. So once again, quick reminder, if you are interested in getting on the waitlist for our upcoming satisfaction factor, podcast community, and you want to be one of those first 25 people so that way, you get a super fun prize from us, be sure to visit that link in our show notes, sign up, and you will get that information as soon as possible.

Naomi Katz:

And then as always, if you've got feedback on the show, or anything that you would like to share with us, feel free to reach out to us on Instagram at satisfaction factor pod. And of course, one simple thing that you can do to support us is to leave us a rating and a review on Apple podcasts or Spotify. Those ratings and reviews bump us up in the rankings and help us reach more people and we always appreciate that.

Sadie Simpson:

That's it for us this week. We'll see you next time.