The 4th Principle of Intuitive Eating is to free yourself from the voices in your head (the “Food Police”) that tell you that you are “good” for eating a certain way and “bad” for eating another way.
The Food Police monitor the large collection of rules that you have created as you have gone on and off diets. As soon as you’d like to enjoy a piece of birthday cake or reach for a cookie, you’ll hear the Food Police spit out negative comments, hopeless indictments and guilt-provoking criticisms. Here are just a few of the common comments made by the Food Police…
- That is fattening
- That has too many calories
- That has too much fat
- That is bad for you
- That has too many carbs
- That has too much sugar
- If you eat that, you will get fat.
- If you start eating that, you won’t be able to stop.
- That will ruin your dinner
- You shouldn’t have/want that
- Don’t eat that. Avoid the temptation.
What the Food Police wants you to believe is that you are bad for eating one way, and good for eating another.
You are not “good” if you stay on a diet (or “bad” if you fall off)!
You are not “better” when you weigh less or “worse” when you are heavier!
It is not illegal to nourish your body a certain way or to enjoy the taste of food!!!
The way you eat is not a reflection of your worth!
The irony of the Food Police is that the intent of all the policing is to keep us from eating certain foods. The reality is, the deprivation we feel when we don’t eat what we want (and the guilt and shame we feel when we go against the Police and do) only drive us to eat more!
Silencing the relentless Food Police is a critical step to learning to eat intuitively.