If you are struggling with what to eat and when, trying to figure out what foods help you feel your best and which ones are causing problems, mindful and intuitive eating might be helpful for you. Today we are going to cover what these terms mean, how to effectively tap into your intuition, and how to figure out what foods are best for you.

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Read the Transcript:

Thank you so much for tuning in today, I’m Dr. Alison DiBarto Goggin and we are kicking off 2023 with a free mindfulness eating challenge course. It’s free and in my Facebook community. I’ll post the sign up link below!

I really love the idea of intuitive eating, but it can be difficult to accomplish in many ways. It is different from mindful eating, which  is a focus on using your hunger scale, acknowledging your eating habits and beliefs, and really slowing down to focus on your meal. Intuitive eating can be a focus on listening to what your body needs and allowing yourself to have those foods.

Most people joke that if they did intuitive eating that they would just eat cookies and coffee all day and would never eat a vegetable again so we have to develop these cues from our body first.

So here is where I like to start with most of my patients. Of course, everyone is different and based on their symptoms, physiology, digestive patterns, different eating styles will be more important.

First of all, food has no morals. So I don’t even want to use the terms ‘good’ or ‘bad’ because no food is bad. You are not bad. Your body is not bad. You aren’t doing something horribly wrong, most likely.

Food is fuel, it is nutrition, and we eat so our bodies can move, heal, think, make hormones and function. And food can cause problems within our body, so it is important to recognize how YOU feel with different foods and styles of eating.

Second, I want you to look at food as an experiment. There is no one size fits all answer when it comes to food. And no one size fits all with food with any specific health issues. All of my SIBO patients are triggered by many similar foods like garlic and onions, and then each person has their own sensitivities. Like one SIBO person might be sensitive to brown sugar and the other might be sensitive to peppers. You get to figure out for yourself what you need most. And this is why mindful eating is so important.

Say you are someone like me, who has digestive issues, autoimmunity, Crohn’s or colitis, and you just can’t get the pain, bloating, and IBS to stop. I had to learn and experiment with foods to see how I feel and it takes time, which is one of the most frustrating parts.

When I got out of the hospital, I was fully vegan. It was what I thought was best, what I was trained was best and I also ate mostly cooked foods or liquids to try to help my gut heal. But I just kept getting worse and worse. So I slowly added more variety of foods back in, including meat.

Then, when I learned about the carnivore diet, well, my first thought was this is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of. Until I sat down and did the research, read the books, listened to the experts and the patients who were healing as well. Once I cut out the high oxalate foods, meaning the greens and most veggies, my gut pain almost immediately was gone.

I personally don’t believe that one diet is a great plan for life, so I didn’t stick with carnivore forever, but I did learn a lot about what my body prefers and feels best on. I also experimented with keto and learned that my gut and immune system prefer that as well.

I was able to use mindfulness with my eating to notice what I was eating and why. I can eat a lot of sweets when I’m feeling sick and down and tired of trying to take care of myself. I can eat really healthy when I feel really good but I also struggle with eating consistently to keep my blood sugar stable.

So through this process of experimenting with food, different styles of eating from vegan, to vegetarian, to carnivore. From keto to “OMG it’s Christmas cookies for breakfast” I have been able to see first how my body reacts to food, which gives me the intuition on what to eat and when. And really actually forces me to be mindful of the foods I am choosing.


I would love for you to join my free masterclass on mindful eating this January. If you aren’t on social media, don’t worry. When you register for the group, you will get access to the drive with the workbooks, classes, handouts, all in one place!