Intuitive Eating and the No S Diet

- POSTED ON: Dec 14, 2011


I read a lot about various Diet Plans, and I've spent a lot of time experimenting with them.
I am not a fan of the Intutitive Eating Diet (and it is a Diet, although proponents like to label it a "non-diet"). 

My research and personal experience with it  has proven to me that "Intutive Eating" is an absolute disaster as a weight-loss plan for almost every person who struggles with obesity.  In my opinion, even "Faith Healing" has a better track record.

People who embrace the Intuitive Eating concepts sometimes develop Peace of Mind about their eating...but that usually lasts only until they realize that, not only are they NOT losing weight... they are Actually becoming fatter.

However, adding some simple guidelines to that concept can help stop the Intuitive Eating runaway train to Fat City.

I think that embracing the No S Diet plan is a useful strategy that can be helpful for people who have bought into, and found themselves trapped inside, the Intuitive Eating fantasy mindset.

Here's a very insightful quote by a long-time member of the "No S" forum:

When a thin person says she eats as much as she wants, it is a different "as much" as the typical overweight person.

Most thin people have a different definition of what full or stuffed is. Most of them hate the feeling of being stuffed. And most of them will routinely wait a long time to have a meal, if necessary. If they have to wait longer for dinner one day, they just get hungrier and wait. They will leave even food they love on their plate when they are full.

If eating as much as you want routinely means eating when you are hungry and beyond full or slightly less than full, you will not lose weight.

In the meantime, when you are intermittently reinforcing the habit of overeating, eating just because you have an urge that has nothing to do with hunger, responding to environmental cues, etc., you are making that habit stronger and stretching out the time it takes to help establish and solidify the habit of allowing yourself to get hungry several times a day by eating moderate amounts and then waiting an appropriate amount of time.

I spent years looking at why I ate. It wasn't until the No S Diet that I realized that it didn't matter. The best way to cut the cord between multiple reasons to eat and eating was to surrender to the one-plate 3-meal structure.  I won't ever be able to remove all the reasons I would like to eat.  On N (normal) days, most N days, they are irrelevant.  The problems don't go away.  The random eating has.

I eat my meals, some light, some heavier.  I get hungry, I satisfy the hunger.

It is ten times easier (but not easy at the start) than anything else I've done and that includes several years wasted trying to just read my body's signals. It is too easy to lie to yourself or to just not be sensitive enough. Besides, on that system, I was routinely getting hungry even fewer times per day because I would overeat the wrong foods all the time. Do you think you can get used to that?

Then again all the experimentation did finally make me see the futility of the other methods for me.

Leave me a comment.

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Existing Comments:

On Dec 14, 2011 Karen925 wrote:
Every diet can work for someone, I suppose. But for me it was both a total disaster and my greatest find. I followed all of the precepts of the diet exactly and got fatter over the course of 18 months. That I gained ONLY about 15 pounds in that time is something I am grateful. It took me this long to realize this because I ditched the scale and was using how my clothes "fit". However, this disaster, my only failure with dieting, spurred me on to take resposibility for myself and my health. No other entity would ever make eating decisions for me- whether it was WW, SB,Atkins, USDA, AMA, or No-S. For this, I am deeply grateful. I also connected with you there, and I am happy for that!!! Logging everything I eat, weighing once daily gave me the information I needed over a sustained period of time to determine what and how to eat. I am currently experimenting with JUDDD within a context lower carbs for maintanence. I do not visit No-S anymore. It was too hard for me to see the struggles with the fantasy of eating whatever one wanted as long as it fit on a plate three times a day. The "whole,clean,healthy calories" I fit on my plate staggers the mind. This is why I am surprised I only gained what I did. This weight was also my highest weight. I shudder to think of the joy I would have missed if I had not taken matters into my own hands.

On Dec 14, 2011 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Karen, I have enjoyed watching you succeed with your plan, and I am interested in watching your progress. I've also done quite a lot of experimenting with JUDDD... alternate day eating...which is normal calories on one day, and very low calorie the following day. I have positive feelings about this type of plan, although I'm not doing it at present. One of these days I will write about my experiences with it.

On Dec 14, 2011 TexArk wrote:
As you know I agree with you 100% on the diet disaster called Intuitive Eating. It certainly legitimized my denial long enough to gain many pounds. The NoS Diet principles are great, especially the idea of one plate, no snacking and no sweets. My problem with NoS was that on the S Days I undid all the good habits of the N Days. Like, Karen, I can hardly bear to read the posts on the NoS forum. I don't comment to others any more because so many do seem to be adding elements of intuitive eating to the NoS structure and are not successful in weight loss. I am now maintaining and actually losing a little by following what some would call a paleo diet (gluten free, sugar free, no seed oils). It works for me and I have no cravings whatsoever. I feel very calm and for the first time in my life I am no longer "searching" for an answer to weight issues.

On Dec 14, 2011 Dr. Collins wrote:
             TexArk, I'm pleased to see your success as well.. BTW, this week, I was able to get my wedding ring on my finger. I thought of you and you telling me when you were able to again wear your ring after your own broken arm, when I was able to do this too...Just a couple of weeks ago, I told my husband that after the first of the year, I was going to have my ring resized because I was tired of not being able to wear it, and it didn't look like I ever could again. I'm so pleased to look at my hand and see it there.

On Dec 14, 2011 Karen925 wrote:
Texark- I am very glad you have found your solution. I have incorporated some of the ancestor/ paleo way of thinking into my eating plans. I enjoy your insightful thoughts.

On Dec 19, 2011 Karen925 wrote:
I was sure to come because I have such opinions and then saw that it was my comments you quoted. So far, I'm still happy with No S, though I wouldn't say I use much of anything from Intuitive Eating with it. Because I aim most days for a certain ratio of foods at each meal, one that I've found satisfying and delicious most of the time, it's rather predictable what my calorie range is. My S days are getting lower, too, and I doubt I would have done better with anything a lot stricter sooner. I'm still committed to it plus one more 90-day round of resistance plus walking/cardio 5 days a week (until approximately the first day of spring) before I consider something else more strict. I just enjoy myself too much and feel the effects very fast if I start trying anything more restrictive. But I appreciate that others have to find another way to navigate the land mines of modern life.

On Dec 19, 2011 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Oolala, I always enjoy your comments, and when I read this one at the No S forum in response to another's member's comment about Intuitive Eating principles, I HAD to quote it because it was just so RIGHT ON !!! Thanks for posting it, and Keep up the great work.

On Nov 01, 2012 Dr. Collins wrote:
Revisiting this link shows me that an error exists here in the comments, in that due to a technical glitch, the above-December 19, 2011 post that was made by member, Oolala, was credited in error to Karen 925. My response to the comment shows that at the time I addressed Oolala, which means that the glitch occurred some time AFTER the original posting. I apologize for the error.

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