This article comes as a result of several people asking me this question when considering signing up for any of my programmes. The short answer is YES the long answer is below.
There are a lot of misconceptions out there around the principles of Empowered or Intuitive eating, in particular the principle of 'unconditional permission' and whether they would suit someone who has food allergies or intolerances.
The good news is that the principles for this way of eating can actually work beautifully for these individuals.
It’s all about a shift in mindset and flexibility.
First, as with most things that can come across as ‘diet-y’ – reframe your intention. So, instead of things from the perspective of dieting or relating to weight, instead, think about how the food makes you feel. Food is meant to make us feel good and remember, health is a feeling, not a look.
It’s about choice and making an informed decision. So, instead of saying “I can’t have this food, I’m not allowed” shift it to “I choose foods that make me feel good” which could be foods that are free of gluten, dairy etc.
Another way to look at things is from a mindset of scarcity to abundance. We know that restricting foods can lead to feelings of scarcity and can cause us to overeat once we get a chance. Instead, of thinking about all the things you can’t have, think about all the things you can. Make these yummy foods that make you feel great abundant n your home or go to places where dairy-free or gluten-free foods are abundant.
We’re very lucky that there are actually some very tasty alternatives to these foods available to us now.
Remember you’re not avoiding food, you’re just avoiding the allergen.
Lastly, remember that we are all different. Not everyone for example, with a certain condition, should automatically assume that everyone with that condition should eat the same way and avoid the same foods (unless it’s an allergy of course). We are all unique. Play around with what works for you and what you know makes you feel great.
When we eat mindfully, and with intention, we can open ourselves up for choice and for a learning experience so that WE can decide whether we would like to have that food again in the future. We're in charge now.
So, long story short… YES you can do the programme and YES you can thrive! We’re all about a shift in mindset and brining in the art of choice so that you can feel empowered