You know how difficult and stressful it feels right? You’re always trying to work out the “right” way to eat. It never feels right though. So you do more research, and you ask more people. Maybe you talk to another dietitian or some new diet guru. You’re forever reading up on how to eat on the internet. You try different diet plans. Some work for a couple of weeks. Then they stop feeling working, and you begin your search for the answer, again.

The reason that it feels like a constant struggle to try and work out how you are supposed to be eating, is because your body always seems to disagree with you. And by that, I mean you want to eat more than your diet — whichever one it is — says you should. You feel uneasy, unsatisfied, and pissed off. You’re frustrated because your body won’t play along with your plans. You want more food. You want the “wrong” foods. You’re sick of thinking about this. You hate how distracting food is, and you’re bored of the same things you have to eat day in, day out.

You want it to be easy. But you’re afraid of letting go. You know if you stopped being so organized and controlled you would eat and eat. You set up all sorts of barriers against that.

This is your daily war against your body. Body says “I want cake/bread/cheese!” and you say “Shut up body, you don’t know what’s good for you. Eat carrots. Eat salad. Eat nuts. Stop complaining.”

Well, guess what? Your body is never going to stop complaining. It won’t white flag this. It can’t. It is designed to keep you as healthy as it can. It will not shut up and put up with you underfeeding it, not allowing it all the fat it needs etc, and suppressing your bodyweight. It will continue to let you know that it is not happy. That it is hungry. That it wants cake.

If you want, you and your body can be in this battle until the day you die.

Or, alternatively, you can surrender to the wisdom that your body is, and stop trying to meddle with a system you know nothing about.

Yeah yeah, you think you know about this system that your body is. You might even have a nutrition degree. You know shit.

Tell me, exactly, how much energy an hour does your pinky finger use? How much energy a day does your liver use? How does your body create blood? How much blood does it create a week, and how much energy does that cost? How much does your hair grow a day, and how much energy does it take? How many muscles are involved every time you blink, how many times an minute do you blink, and how much energy does blinking cost your body a day? Come on. If you think you are in a position to dictate to your body how much and what food it should be eating, you should know everything about every equation that does on in there.

You don’t. Nobody does. It would be exhausting to even try and work all this stuff out because your body does a million actions a minute. We know shit. Nutritional science knows so very little. Far too little to be meddling or trying to tell the human body what it should and should not be eating. Let along how much!

The good news is that you don’t have to know, because your body does know. All you have to do is shut up, stop judging, and listen.

Allow it to be as easy as it was designed to be. You have more important things to use that brain of yours to be thinking about. That’s why basic bodily functions were designed to be mostly automatic. So we don’t have to think about them. You were never designed to micro-manage how often, how much, and what volume you pee. Nor were you supposed to micro-mange your food intake to the extent you feel you have to. One of the most freeing aspects of recovery, is handing control of your food intake and your weight back to your body. It was never supposed to be your problem in the way it is now. And that’s the very reason you feel like you can’t get it “right.” Because you were never supposed to be trying to get it right, and you were always supposed to be allowing your body to guide you, not the other way around.

He day I decided to stop fighting and start listening to my hunger was a huge relief. It seemed surreal to think that … I could just stop. Stop overthinking. Stop questioning. Stop judging. Stop calculating.

Needless to say when I stopped all that and sat back and let my body dictate to me how much I ate I had a lot more space in my head. Turns out I’m a good deal smarter when I’m not trying to micromanage a system I’m absolutely not qualified to micromanage. I’m also happier. So is my body because it doesn’t have an under-qualified jobsworth trying to teach it how to suck eggs.

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