Tuesday, March 29, 2011

5 Tips for Weight Release through Intutive Eating

Sprawled on the stained kitchen floor, frantically scooping mounds of Green Tea Soy Ice Cream into my mouth like a ravenous animal, I knew I had to find a way out of my disordered eating patterns.  This was a common scene a dark period of my life called the Diet Addiction years.

For six years, my life was ruled by rigid eating and dieting, replete with obsessive exercising.  The constant deprivation would soon lead to binging.  My body was not happy and I did not trust it to find its natural weight and size on its own.

Consequently, it rebelled by gaining weight.  I believed that I had to force my body to the ideal size by following strict rules and guidelines from a multitude of trend diets.  I tried everything from veganism to Atkins. My weight was constantly yo-yoing and no matter what my size, I did not love what I saw when I looked in the mirror.  In fact, I loathed my reflection.

Not long after the Green Tea Ice Cream experience, I went to the library to find another diet book, and instead saw How Much Does Your Soul Weigh, by Dr. Dorie McCubbrey.  The book introduced me to Intuitive Eating, an incredible strategy for weight release and most importantly for FREEDOM from the Diet Addiction.

Here are 5 tips for weight release through Intuitive Eating:

1) Decide to trust and accept your body (and let go of the diet mentality)

During my Diet Addiction, I was sure that if I trusted my body’s wisdom, I would blow up like a balloon.  Little did I know that my body actually wanted healthy food…eventually! When I started letting my body run the show, at first it wanted sugar cereal morning, noon, and night.  Of course! I had deprived my body of this food for a very long time.  Soon, my body started gagging at the site of a cardboard cereal box and started asking for fruit, veggies, protein and other healthy foods.

I also let go of any rules, regulations, and plans that contributed to the diet mentality.  For example, “no eating after 8pm”, “don’t mix carbs and protein”, or practicing strict calorie counting.  These mind games confuse our body and cause us to stop listening to our body’s true hunger signals.

Our bodies know their natural size and weight better than we do! When we trust our body’s wisdom about what to eat, how much, and when, our bodies find their natural set point on their own.

2) Recognize You are Hungry (A GOOD thing!)

For years, I thought that hunger was the devil.  If I felt it, I tried to talk myself out of it, drink tons of water, or chew gum.  I thought if I just pretended that I wasn’t hungry, then I would reach my ideal size and finally love my body.  Instead, I would wait to eat until I was famished, and then finish off so much food in one sitting, I could rival Michael Phelp’s meal sizes.   Consequently, I felt awful.

In Dr. Dorie’s book, she recommends the Hunger Scale.  My clients and I have found this very helpful.   The Hunger Scale consists of the numbers one through five. At one, we are completely full and at five, we are famished.  The goal is to eat when we are at a three or a four, not wait until we are famished.  It sounds simple, but can be life changing.  Eat when you are hungry!  Our bodies know what they are doing!

3) Discover WHY you feel hungry.

Most of the time, when we are hungry, our bodies are asking for energy! Yet, sometimes, we think we are hungry when we are not.  We might see a piece of luscioius carrot cake, and trick ourselves into thinking we are at a 3 or 4 on the scale.  The key is to be aware and mindful while salivating over the dessert.  If you know you are not at a 3 or 4, have a small piece or a taste.  There is no reason to deprive yourself as this can lead to binging later on. (Green Tea Soy Ice Cream incident)

A third reason we might feel hungry is because we are emotionally hungry.  I have a client who found herself eating at night when she was home alone and bored. She knew she wasn’t hungry, but the food helped numb the loneliness.  Together we worked on strategies to help her express the emotion instead of try to shove it down with chocolate.   Her favorite idea was playing loud party music and dancing around the apartment.
What are your strategies for Emotional Hunger?  Some examples are dancing, singing, writing, calling a friend, going outside, screaming, crying, or laughing.  The main point is to EXPRESS YOUSELF!

4) Listen to what your body WANTS to eat. (Letting go of the shoulds)

I used to have the world’s largest Good Food and Bad Food List,  based on whatever diet had become my most recent religion. To truly practice intuitive eating effectively, I had to throw away the list! It was scary, but I did it!  I allowed my body to guide me towards what it wanted to eat.

When you are aware that you are at a 3 or 4 on the hunger scale, don’t look in the fridge or cabinets.   If you are at a restaurant, refrain from looking at the menu.  Decide what your body wants FIRST.  Then, do your best, to follow your body’s wishes, even if that means placing a special order at the restaurant.  You will start noticing that your body knows what it needs and will balance out naturally between proteins, fats, and carbs. You do not need to overthink the process of choosing what to eat.  Just listen.

5) Eat the amount of food that your body needs! (It’s not about “finishing your plate!”)

Our parents had good intentions when they told us to “finish your plate.”  This may have been followed by the guilt trip regarding children with no food in 3rd World countries.  However true statement might be, we live in a country with a love affair with MEGA portions.

When intuitive eating, you do not need to eat the portions you are served.  Remember that it takes the body twenty minutes to register it is full. I recommend getting up from the table, starting the dishes or using the restroom, and then coming back to the plate to see if you are still hungry.  Also, the stomach is approximately the size of your fist.  It does not need much more food than that in one sitting.

Mindful Eating will assist you in this endeavor.  When enjoying food, always sit down, slow down, and chew each bite at least 10 times.  Experience the food and the succulent flavors.  Appreciate where the food came from and what people helped bring the food to your plate.

When you think you might be full, YOU ARE FULL.  And remember, you can ALWAYS have more food later if you are hungry.

When I began to listen to my Inner Guidance about eating, I finally made peace with food, found my natural weight, and most importantly began to love my body.  I now live in awe of my body’s wisdom and support clients in reaching a similar place of acceptance and freedom.  It used to be painful for me to catch my reflection in the mirror.  Now, I look in the mirror and see Love.

For support on loving YOUR body and releasing weight, email Coach Cora at cora@sexysoulwellness.com to set up a F.R.E.E. 30 minute Inuitive Wellness Coaching Session.  (All sessions are over the phone!)  www.sexysoulwellenss.com

Picture from: http://woldfitness.com/2009/08/mobile-unit-frozen-heat-for-a-hot-body/

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

I'll take Fries with that Shake

by Sexy Soul Guest Blogger, Currie Rose

Last night, I was elated to have a few dollars to eat at In 'n' Out Burger.  While I sat and waited for my oh so good yet oh so bad indulgence, I noticed a homeless man walking around asking for spare change so that he could buy some french fries.  Most... no every person he asked turned him down.  I think it was because he was either really drunk or so lonely that he was on the brink of sort of losing his mind.  I mean, he was drooling a bit and couldn't walk very well... and his speech was very slurred and quite loud.

My heart went out to him as everyone he approached turned away or squirmed in discomfort from having to witness or maybe even be part of the "spectacle" he was making.

I wanted to walk up to him and give him my left over change which was more than half of what he needed to purchase fries... but part of me was also uncomfortable being brought into his awareness.  He eventually did approach the bench I was sitting on and slurred out, "Excuse me, do you have spare change so I can buy french fries."

Everyone else in my area either looked down or pretended to be busy.  I reached in my pocket and pulled out the change I had and handed it to him noticing that his hand was wet, so I diligently dropped the change in, trying to be full of unconditional love.

His eyes lit up like a little boy and he said, "THANK YOU!"  I smiled and watched him get in line to order his fries.  As he stood waiting, he looked at me and waved like a little boy who was having THE BEST day of his life... "I'm gonna get some FRENCH FRIES!!!!!!"

I felt sort of like the mom observing her kids at the McDonalds Play Palace.  I waved back from my bench trying to feel comfortable and stay centered in my own choices/loving rather than judgment from others.... or even from myself.

When he had his precious fries he gleefully walked up to me and said, "Thank you!  Here have a fry."  I said, "Oh thank you!!! but I am going to get some of my own... you keep them ALL."  He persisted and eventually I took one... wanting to eat it and show by example that he is worthy... but also wanting to protect my own health because he was drooling.

So, I held onto it and he said, "I love LOVE.  Thank you.  I love you... You are nice." (I didn't get a creepy vibe from it... I think he was just acknowledging universal love and compassion).  I wanted to say something like, "You are loved... I'm so glad you exist!!"... but I didn't want to attract more attention... so I smiled and said, "Thank you."

He went on his way and I walked away feeling a little happy to have helped him and a little sad that I stayed small and didn't express compassion the way I would have wanted  for fear of judgment from deviating too far from social norms. I am quite grateful I met him though... as I understand it, he served as a brilliant teacher in getting me to think bigger in terms of compassion... he certainly brought me out of my comfort zone... and isn't that where the best learning and growth takes place?

Rob Brezsny said, "The greatest gift you can give might be the gift that you yourself were never given.  Give that gift...Heal yourself by healing others."

I've always wanted to be loved and accepted just as I am in any moment with non-judgment and no condemnation for where ever I am in my life... Well, in honor of being the change I wish to see in the world, I was given a brilliant opportunity to give what I always wanted and to be aware enough to practice non-judgment and non-condemnation.  For that, I am very grateful.

Afterward, I got to thinking.... Since I believe we are all one, the discomfort I felt in his presence must have been a reflection of a disowned aspect of my own self and his existence triggered that part of me and caused me to feel resistance in showing him (or really myself) love....   I love that I was given a chance to give the gift of unconditional love not only to a valuable person.... but also to myself.

Currie currently resides in Southern California on random couches and in her car.  She enjoys making waves and thinking outside the box.  Currie's goal is to travel around the world, spreading love and building community. She is currently working her way to Minnesota for her next tour stop and is reviewing offers for anything beyond that.  For more information on her travels or how to host her go to:  www.currierose.wordpress.com

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

My Crazy Ex!

Hi beautiful Blog family!!!
Please check out my article on Kris Carr's Crazy Sexy Life Site!
THANK YOU!! Please comment if you feel so moved!

Photo credit: incurable_hippie

Sunday, March 06, 2011


By Suzanne Boothby! (an AMAZING, SEXY, and MYSTERIOUS Guest Blogger!)

A few friends of mine have recently commented on the color of my hair.

“Your hair looks so red. Did you dye it? Did you change your shampoo?”

“Nope,” I reply.

But it’s funny. My hair does look redder these days. In the summer, it gets these amazing golden highlights. But usually in the winter in turns sort of brown and dull.

I have no idea why my hair turned a deeper shade of red. But, oddly enough, it does coincide with a moment that happened about a month ago.

I had just returned from an intense business trip. My boyfriend and I broke up. A few freelance projects fell through. The bathtub in my apartment backed up with water and almost flooded my entire apartment.

I was a total mess. I was not planning on any of these events.  But I couldn’t help but notice with so many things going awry, maybe I needed to tap into my spiritual well.

So I took a day off from friends, family and work and just listened.

One persistent thought came to me. “I need to embrace mystery.”

Mystery is not something I typically put in my calendar of to-do items. I like to plan my work and work my plan. I like to voice my goals and then put them into small manageable pieces, so I can make them happen.
When my life suddenly overwhelmed me with unplanned events, the message seemed so clear.  Embrace mystery.

So I did.

And then the most unexpected, wonderful things started happening.

My best friend from high school called me out of the blue and we made a date to hang out. A former co-worker came to me with a business idea that we are now working on. I applied for a freelance writing gig that I thought was a long shot and they wrote back.

I could have never planned any of these events. They all came from a mysterious place of letting go and just letting myself be.

Mystery is an active practice for me. I continue to play with the unknown. How can I open up to mystery each day? How can I let go of my plan a little and find some time for something unexpected?

I’ve already got organized down. Why not try something new?

Suzanne Boothby is a Brooklyn-based wellness author and writing coach who dabbles in social media and marketing. When she is not immersed in the world of communication, she loves traveling, gardening, yoga, dance and eating burritos. Visit her website www.suzanneboothby.com for a schedule of upcoming classes.