I would’ve never thought that intuitive eating would work out for me. My problem is I that never have a feeling of getting satiated. I just know the feeling of “starving-so much-that-I-could-eat-12-burgers-at-once” or “being-so-full-that-just-the-pure-thought-of food-would-make-me-uneasy”.
Do you know that, too?
And here I am, not weighing 275kg, but instead, 75kg. So – if this works out for me, there is the high probability that it could work for you, too!
If you’ve got a background of tracking your macros, as many fitness enthusiasts do, eating intuitively feels right out scary. At least.
But there is no need to panic. If you want to try out intuitive eating, there are a few things to know. One of them is how to divide your plate and structure your portion size.
Let’s take a look at how to do it!
Intuitive eating and portion size
At first, eating without a plan might feel like driving a car while blindfolded. Or even handcuffed. And thrown into the trunk. Who the fuck drives the car now?!
Anways, with some knowledge in your arsenal, you can quiet these captivating feelings easily.
Knowing the right portion size
That point may seem a bit paradoxically. How can you know the size of the portion you should eat without measuring it?
As I advise – everyone should track his nutrition first before going all-in on intuitive eating.
The problem is many have no knowledge about nutrition, or bad relationship with their body’s signals.
As if this is not hard enough, everywhere around us are calorie-loaden foods. You can’t even pass a street without getting the chance to purchase 10000 calories under 10 bucks.
Two great books on nutrition are Nutritional Grail* and the rather scientific Food and Western Disease*.
To counter this you should learn what your body needs. And the best tool for that is to track for a while. To learn which foods contain which macronutrients and where vitamins can be found.
After a few months, this is second nature to you. You know where you find your protein, how much you need to eat a day and the rough size per portion.
That is the perfect starting point to throw the whole tracking madness out of the window and try out to eat without this control mechanism. It is the chance to set your learned knowledge into action. And instead of a boring diploma, you get the chance to be more free within your nutrition.
Food Arrangement – the right way
One hack that helps me to roughly eat the right amount of everything that I need, is to divide my plate into imaginary sections.
Half of the plate is reserved for the protein section. You fill this space with your protein source of choice. Let it be chicken, fish, caviar1 or whatever you like to eat that meal.
One quarter should be filled with vegetables low in carbohydrates. This is your main source of fibers and micronutrients. Feel free to expand this section as you like. Veggies are your friends – they are really low in calories.2
The leftover quarter is quite individual. I would advise you to fill them with carbs – some rice, potatoes or whatever you like. 3
Last but not least, sprinkle some fats on top. This could be butter, olive oil or a sauce.
That way you ensure with every meal that you get in everything you need.
Consider this strategy as a rough guideline. For some meals, it is hard to divide your plate like that I know – Lookin’ at you stews!
It is as with many things. Do it for 90% of the time and you are fine. Stick to the basics – eat protein with every meal, eat veggies with every meal, don’t avoid fats or carbs and eat slow. This will get you a long way.
Most important – listen to your body
To listen to my body was very hard for me – and still is: “It tells me constantly – HUNGER! Eat, you starving son of a bitch!”
And that’s while I have a daily intake of roughly 4000 calories. I don’t know what’s wrong with this dude sometimes…
Considering you’re unlike me at this point and more like a normal human being, it is important to listen to your body. To learn to listen to it.
Eat slow and your body will tell you when he had enough. You will see you gaining size when you eat too much. Or on the other hand trimming down if you ate too less.
If you eat some food, you should better avoid in the future, he will show signs, too.
The hard point here is to be absolutely true with yourself. And to stay calm, relaxed and trust the process. And your knowledge of the ability to reset the ship’s course if you move too far in the wrong direction.
If you want to learn more about intuitive eating, go ahead and read my post about it.
OK, that’s it from my side for today. As always, if you have any questions, or want to share your experiences with me and the www – write me a comment. I always love to get some input from others.
Have a great day and aloha,
Sources and further reading:
- I first came about this idea of dividing your plate into divisions filled with food by Jeff Cavaliere aka Athlean X. I enhanced the idea the bit on my own terms but the idea stays the same.
- Most about how intuitive eating works learned me through trial and many errors. And I think that’s the point. There are a few guidelines worthy to consider out there, but in the end, you have to try out what works for your individual nutrition. You got your own preferences. Your own limitations. It’s just part of the process, but rewarding in the end. I could never again imagine wasting half an hour of my day to track my macros, weigh my foods and so on.
- Filling half of your plate with caviar?! You lavish son of a bitch, you! :-D
- I try to eat nearly 1-2kg of vegetables each day. That way I feel satiated and get many nutrients in. And – try to fit in some Oreos after 1kg of broccoli. That doesn’t work out technichally…
- If you aren’t eating that many carbs – fill this section instead with a source of fat. But don’t go rampage on fats and fill the quarter of your plate with butter just because your favorite keyboard warrior wrote it…