1. We don’t realize how much food impacts us.
We normally think about going on a diet to lose weight or improve digestion. But food impacts far more than that. It impacts almost everything about us physically, mentally and emotionally.
Modern science is revealing more and more about nutrition’s link to physical ailments and disease, as well as its effect on brain function and mood. Ancient sciences, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine, explain in fascinating detail the connection between food, mind and body.
In Cravings Master, you look at the many ways food could impact you, which helps you identify the best foods for you. It also helps you better understand your cravings and what to do about them.
2. We think we should eat the same as everyone else.
We’re each incredibly unique and nowhere is this truer than with nutrition. We each need different types of food to fuel, support and heal our bodies. “Healthy” is a relative term. What’s healthy for one person isn’t healthy for the next due to differences in our:
- Genetics and inborn biology
- Current circumstances and conditions
- Goals and desires
However, many of us just eat how everyone else eats, especially our families and friends. Or we may see an attractive person and believe we could look like them if we ate the same way.
While it’s helpful to have another person’s example to follow, we also need to appreciate our uniqueness, follow ourselves and find the nutrition that’s right for us.
Many health and nutrition experts believe nutrition can be standardized. They give the same plan and advice to everyone, and they don’t know how to identify individual differences and then individualize the nutrition according to those differences. They may also set unrealistic standards without considering what the client or patient wants or has the ability to do.
In Cravings Master, the uniqueness and individuality of every person is honored and respected above all else. You’re never put into a box or expected to fit a standard. Instead, you’re taught how to listen to and trust in yourself so you can identify and follow your unique wants and needs in nutrition.
3. We aren’t taught how to listen to our bodies.
Our bodies are incredibly intelligent and the greatest source of information about how they need to be taken care of, which makes our bodies our best nutrition guide.
So to know how to eat, we need to learn how to tap into our bodies’ guidance and understand how they inform us about the choices we should make.
We allow our bodies to guide us by observing two aspects about ourselves:
- Our experiences
- Our intuitions
Our bodies produce signs and symptoms that show us when and where we’re off track so we can identify what’s right for us by observing how we respond to food. We’re also equipped with instincts that allow us to suss out the correct choices.
If we disconnect from our bodies, then we can’t access our bodies’ intelligence. We disable our abilities to accurately assess and intuit how we should eat. And we lose our greatest source of nutrition advice.
No matter how much we believe a diet is good, we can’t stay on it if our bodies don’t respond well to it. We can’t let ourselves be persuaded into following a diet that our intuitions and experiences don’t agree with. Others can help guide us in nutrition, but we have to do our part in observing ourselves carefully.
However, we aren’t taught how to connect with our bodies and listen to them. Most nutrition programs and health experts only give instructions (which are typically one-size-fits-all) and then encourage us to use disincline to carry out those instructions.
In Cravings Master, you focus on learning from your intuition and experience, instead of from what others say. You work on listening to yourself and understanding how food impacts you so you can determine what’s uniquely right for you.
4. We have inaccurate or misleading information.
Another important reason to listen to ourselves is because nutrition information isn’t always reliable.
Nutrition recommendations are changing all the time, as new scientific discoveries come to discredit the old. And some health information can be quite misleading, especially if it’s intended to sell a product.
There’s a great deal of conflict among experts about how we should eat, yet each conflicting point of view is equally persuasive, logical and scientific. So it’s very difficult to tell who’s right.
If we base our eating choices solely on information that comes from the outside, we can be persuaded into believing what isn’t true. Many people are led to believe in nutrition myths and then make dangerous mistakes, such as eliminating an important food group or taking the wrong supplement.
The most important health information will never come from outside us, but from inside.
In Cravings Master, you develop inner knowing and the ability to assess if nutrition advice is right for you. You work on increasing self-awareness and accessing internal information through self-observation and intuition.
5. We think information will solve the problem.
Knowing the foods that are unhealthy isn’t always enough to stop us from eating them. So even when we’re well informed about what to do, it doesn’t necessarily mean our problems are solved.
Say you go to a nutritionist who gives you good recommendations on what to eat. You start the plan and see positive results within a couple of weeks. You’re full of inspiration and hope, but then you quit. What happened? Why did you quit something that was good for you?
Information is necessary to help us become more self-aware. But information isn’t always enough to change behavior.
Many of us, including health experts, underestimate how difficult it is to change patterns that have been forged over a lifetime. And how difficult it is to reduce strong pulls to eat, especially when we’re stressed or feeling down.
Most nutritionists don’t understand the nature of change and how to guide people through the process, so good advice goes to waste.
We often believe our ability to do the right thing is dependent on our strength of logic and self-control. But change is much more complex, requiring inner work and skill-building.
It’s important to think of nutrition as a skill, just like learning to swim. We can’t learn to swim by reading books and listening to lectures. Books are helpful. But we need to get in the water, drill in techniques and let others train us.
Nutrition isn’t just about gaining knowledge, but also about gaining knowhow, which is developed through practice and experience.
In Cravings Master, you focus less on information and more on developing your ability to live by that information. You learn the techniques needed to become a skillful eater.
6. We think the problem is a lack of self-control.
What do we tend to do when we can’t stick to a diet? Blame a lack of willpower or discipline, but that isn’t the real reason we make bad food choices or can’t control ourselves.
Unhealthy cravings and behaviors are due to physical and psychological imbalances that our bodies and brains are urged to correct. For example, if your body is deficient in a critical nutrient, such as protein, then it will produce a powerful urge to eat.
Or if your main way to relieve stress is through eating, then your rational judgment will disappear when you’re stressed and desperate for relief. Your need to feel safe overrides your rationality and willpower, and you’re urged to go where you’ve learned to feel safest. Which for many of us is in food.
By understanding what triggers our cravings, we can rewire our brains to respond to food differently. As we fix the root cause, change becomes natural, automatic and permanent. We never again have to fight with ourselves.
In Cravings Master, you work on understanding the causes of your cravings and behaviors, including the beliefs that drive unhealthy behaviors, and then resolve those causes at the core. We don’t force change, but we use techniques and processes that allow change to happen gracefully.
7. We try to get rid of cravings.
We often believe the key to healthy eating is to get rid of cravings—to control the feelings, impulses and desires that don’t fit with good behavior. We get mad at our cravings and just want them to stop. But trying to stop cravings actually works against us, and for two main reasons:
- All cravings have valuable information we need to have.
- An attitude of resistance toward cravings intensifies them.
A lot of the time, our cravings are healthy and appropriate, yet we assume they’re wrong because they don’t match what we believe is healthy.
But even unhealthy cravings are beneficial because there’s an important message within them. A sugar craving may be a need for protein. Hunger may be a sign of dehydration or lack of sleep.
We need to learn how to interpret these messages and tell the difference between the cravings we should and shouldn’t follow.
As I’ve said, we need to listen more carefully to what our bodies tell us and resolve the causes of unhealthy cravings so we crave what’s good for us. We need to work on accessing our bodies’ intelligence so we can let our bodies guide us toward the foods we need.
What’s more, when we mentally resist a craving, we actually intensify the urge, making it harder to resist.
The only way to heal our cravings is to embrace them. With a more accepting mentality, we don’t feel as controlled by cravings and can know when they’re right to follow.
In Cravings Master, you don’t try to stop cravings or judge them as wrong. The aim is to learn more about your cravings and regulate them. You learn to work with your body, never against it.
8. We don’t address our mentalities toward food.
The foundation of nutrition isn’t in the foods we eat, but in a healthy mentality.
With a healthy mentality, health and healthy behavior come as a natural result. When we improve our mentalities, our cravings and desires improve as a result, too. Then it’s much easier to incorporate nutrition into our lives and achieve our health goals.
So the primary step isn’t to focus on food, but to focus on how we perceive it, and then develop a more helpful perspective. To understand why we act and crave, we especially need to become aware of the misbeliefs and hidden fears that distort our cravings and behaviors.
Most of us have many hidden fears about food, health and body image that stop us from taking levelheaded action to achieve our desires to be healthy. For example, it’s common for people to want to lose weight, but also to have a hidden fear about being thin. With an unconscious belief that says it’s unsafe to be thin, they then undermine their efforts without understanding why.
However, most nutritionists only focus on nutrition, not mentality, and then don’t understand why people struggle so much to stick to healthy choices.
In Cravings Master, you place less emphasis on nutrition information and more on developing a healthy perspective toward nutrition to lay a solid foundation that supports success.
You develop a mentality that helps you align with your body’s intelligence and crave what’s good for you. You learn about your cravings and what they tell you about your needs. You examine the hidden fears that block your vision. And you work on building self-love and self-empowerment, which give you strength to make the right choices.
To see how Cravings Master is different from other nutrition methods, let’s look at 8 common pitfalls in nutrition and how this method helps you steer clear of them.
Popular nutrition has a lot of advice about how to eat and how to stop bad habits–advice that may appear helpful but might actually set you up for failure. I see people stuck in these traps all the time, including clients, friends and acquaintances, as well as dietitians, doctors and other top health experts.