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  • Julie Saalsaa, NC

Eating for the Holidays

Tips on how to become an intuitive eater this holiday season.

The holidays can be tough to navigate through the sea of endless food options. Here are some tips on how you can be an intuitive eater...


The holidays are filled with gatherings with friends and family, sometimes more than one gathering in a day. You feel like you have to eat at each one as not to offend anyone. Plus, all your favorite foods are there, and it's hard to resist! Then we pile on the socializing part; we tend to not pay attention to what and how much we put in our mouth while we are socializing. You may even find that you're eating and drinking more because you're stressed. Maybe you're stuck talking to that relative you dread seeing at your family gatherings because you're worried about being judged or getting into that same old argument. You may even eat when you're not hungry, but you eat anyways. I know, I've been there too. Does any of this sound familiar?


You may ask, "why is eating intuitively important?" Well, when we slow down and are aware of what we are eating, we digest your food better. When we digest our food better it lead to better health and weight management. Eating intuitively means you are aware of your body, it's hunger cues and body speak (what it's saying to you); you are present in the moment and aware when eating.


So to help you eat a little more intuitively, I'd like to share some tips.

  • First, ask yourself if you're actually hungry - what is your body saying - are you getting physical cues that you are hungry? If yes, then eat. If not, wait until you get those cues.

  • Before you take a bit, take 3 deep breaths, more if needed. This triggers your sympathetic nervous system (SNS) (brings calm to your gut so it can digest your food - we don't digest our food when we are stressed out)

  • Take deep breaths in between bits as well

  • Take a moment to give thanks for what you are eating - this also triggers your SNS

  • Just eat when you eat (no driving, reading, watching TV, etc.)

  • Chew your food and eat slowly

  • Put your fork/spoon down between bits

  • Enjoy your food: smell your food, taste your food - if it really doesn't taste good, don't finish it

  • Check in with your body while you eat - are you starting to feel full? If so, stop when you are 80% full.


If you listen to your intuition and try to be present while you eat, your body, that's typically stuffed by the end of the day, will be grateful that you did. It takes practice, but I know you can do it!



To learn more about being an intuitive eater, check out my Finally Free workshops.

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