Coronavirus: How do I eat intuitively during a time like this?
You might not be able to.
We are now in a Pandemic. The Coronavirus has changed our world in a matter of weeks.
Borders are closing. Travel is being restricted. Toilet paper is being hoarded. It is very possible that we might not have the availability of food we once had. Our financial worries are on our mind. Our futures are uncertain. Our health worries are heightened.
With the anxiety, stress, and fear that is growing, intuitive eating may not be a realistic goal for right now. You might eat emotionally. You might feel the irresistible urge to eat “clean” again.
It is okay.
This is a critical time to practice self-compassion. Do not beat yourself up. There is no perfection in intuitive eating. It is all gray, no black and white.
Right now, intuitive eating for you might look like:
Adding brownie mix to your pantry food storage so you have something fun to look forward to.
Allowing yourself to eat emotionally at the end of a long day even if you aren't hungry.
Eating fast food because that is easier than cooking.
Choosing to eat ramen with tuna because you don’t want to go to the store.
Working out at home instead of going to a dance class that you love because you want to stay away from crowds.
Drinking juice and eating saltines because you are feeling ill and that is what feels best for you.
This is a fluid time for all of us. Please do not add to your stress by trying to be a "perfect" intuitive eater at this time.
Take care of yourself by:
Eating regular meals. If you can, include a carbohydrate, protein, and fat. If you can't- that is OKAY. Do what you can.
Continue to nurture your mental health. Journal, create, communicate. Reach out to loved ones, FaceTime, Skype, text, email, videochat- do it all! We need each other more than ever right now.
Move your body how you need to. Does that mean stretching? A walk? Does that mean rest for a while?
Try to stick to a normal sleep and nap schedule. You might notice your body asking for more rest lately. This is a normal reaction to a higher stress level. Adequate sleep is important for our immune system.
Limit your exposure to news. Maybe this means limiting yourself to 10 minutes a day of CNN. Maybe it means allowing your significant other to give you the need-to-know information. Maybe it means complete avoidance of news, with a trusted friend/family member to reach out for critical news/information.