The words “normal” eating mean all kinds of things to all kinds of people. In my line of work with eating disorder clients I’m often encouraging them to move towards a more “normal” eating plan and we discuss what that looks like. Today I asked on twitter what “normal” eating means to people and below are some response combined with other responses from my group sessions with patients and a few from myself It generated quite a debate, so I thought I’d share it with you, what do you think?
Normal Eating is:
- eating something at least three times a day.
- eating more than you feel you need to eat on some occasions (over-eating) and eating less than you need on other occasions (under-eating).
- Listen to your body, eat when hungry, stop when full. No food is bad food, everything in moderation.
- A regular meal pattern that maintains a healthy body weight & provides a correct balance of nutrients.
- Ensuring a healthy balanced diet for optimal health & wellbeing with enough fluid too.
- Not eating in response to your emotions, so eating or not eating on occasions because you feel unhappy, “bad”, or tense.
- eating foods, without feeling guilty.
- eating in a flexible way so that it does not interfere with your work, study or social life.
- eating sufficient food and a variety of foods, all things in moderation.
- being aware that eating is not the most important thing in life but knowing that it is important for good health.
Normal Eating is:
- not counting calories weighing food, or following a strict diet.
- not always eating low calorie/diet foods
- not eating to lose weight but knowing that you can “watch your weight” if you want to.
- not assuming that you can control the amount and type of food your body needs better than your body can.
- not having to constantly weigh yourself for reassurance.