Intuitive Eating for Healthy Aging: Part 1

Did you know… that more often than not, strict food rules or diets fail to sustain positive health changes in the body? A recent review in the medical journal, the BMJ concluded that 1 year after a “successful” weight loss diet, the majority of cardiovascular benefits had diminished. This may sound disappointing, but there is good news to be had!

You may have heard the words Intuitive Eating popping up in articles and blogs about self-care with statements that sound vague and euphemistic, like “Listen to your body” or “Eat whatever you want”. Though positive in their tone, these statements, when taken out of context, are far from helpful.  With more context, Intuitive Eating can be just what the doctor ordered when it comes to healthy aging.

Intuitive Eating is a helpful framework designed by two dietitians, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch in the 1990s, for eating without self-judgment, but that’s not the whole story. Among other principles, Intuitive Eating includes identifying health goals that are unique to your needs, setting and achieving these goals, but maintaining focus on healthy behaviors instead of the number on the scale. Good nutrition can feel like it comes with a ton of rigid rules and Intuitive Eating breaks that mold to give you space to not only enjoy food but also to promote healthy aging!

Next week, in part 2 of this series, we will explore the basic principles of the Intuitive Eating framework and also answer a reader submitted question or two. You can email questions about Intuitive Eating or anything else nutrition-related to:

-Written by Jamie Rincker, MS RD Vivo Head Nutritionist

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