Now let’s look at how to solve our challenges in nutrition, starting with the first challenge: How do we determine what’s good for us?

We’ll look at how to answer this question and the common mentalities that might prevent us from seeing the answer.

One of the main misconceptions in nutrition is that we should look to others to find out what we should eat. We’ve been trained to follow directions from other people, particularly from authority figures. But we haven’t been taught how to connect with our bodies and find direction within.

But to know what to eat, we need to connect with our bodies.

Since we all have different needs, the only way to find out what we should eat is to know how to interpret our unique bodies, including the signals, signs and symptoms they give.

While it’s important to let others help us and to listen to advice from health experts, it’s equally important to tap into ourselves and seek answers within. We should consult with other people, but most strongly with ourselves.

To tap into our bodies and find answers within, we observe two aspects of ourselves:

  • Experience

    We can figure out what we should eat based on our personal experience, which we gain by observing how we respond to food and how it impacts our physical and mental health. We can act as scientists toward ourselves by forming a hypothesis about how we should eat and running an experiment to find out if it’s true. See a detailed list of the ways nutrition can impact us physically, mentally and emotionally.

  • Intuition

    To guide our eating choices, we also observe the feelings and sensations that come from our bodies, which include hunger, desire and intuition. We use all our senses—taste, touch, smell, sight and sound—to help us identify the right food. But the sixth sense of intuition is perhaps the most important yet the most overlooked.

    Each person’s intuition operates differently. It could be a gut response, a full-body resonance, a deep and serene inner knowing, an instinctual impulse or an internal whisper. Something might catch your attention or strike a chord within you. You might experience an inner calling. Or you might feel drawn toward something and develop an interest in it.

    Through intuition, our bodies communicate their needs and knowledge about what we should do. We use intuition to access our bodies’ intelligence and the valuable information it has about how we should care for ourselves.

    I also refer to intuition as our inner knowing, inner guidance and sense intelligence. Although intuition is a feeling, it’s important to distinguish it from other feelings we shouldn’t follow, such as emotional whims or fleeting desires. We need to get to know how our intuition operates uniquely and sharpen it so we can access the subtle cues that come from our bodies, and also tell the difference between superficial urges and true inner guidance.

Establish internal authority

We determine what we should eat by looking at experience and intuition—a partnership that forms what I call internal authority. Internal authority may agree with what others tell us, but it’s a separate judge and the judge we need to listen to the most.

Our conclusions about how to eat shouldn’t be based solely on what we read or on what someone tells us. There may be a strong scientific case for eating a certain way, which may apply to many but not necessarily to all.

When we eat according to what logic says is correct, but without observing our experience and intuition, we can fall into very unhealthy patterns. We may get stuck in a low-carb diet, thinking it’s the best but ignoring the signs that it’s not.

It’s very easy to be persuaded into doing things that aren’t good for us. I call this the logic trap. And I see it happen all the time.

Filter information

Think of advice as helpful guidance, but not true until it’s been verified within you. Always remember to filter the information through your internal authority, and only agree with advice if your intuition and experience also agree. Think of nutritionists, doctors and other health experts as guides who help you find answers within.

Our bodies are the ultimate source of information and the utmost authorities on how they need to be fed. And we’re the ones with the greatest access to them. So we need to hone our ability to understand our bodies.

In the Cravings Master method, I don’t cite scientific studies because I believe we need to break the habit of looking to others for answers. Scientific studies and expert opinions are helpful, but I want to encourage us to look within and build self-awareness by observing experience and intuition.

I don’t want to teach scientific findings, but how to interpret the findings so you can evaluate for yourself. I want to teach you how to become your own scientist.

Cravings Master is different from other nutrition methods because it doesn’t teach you what to choose. It teaches you how to choose. It teaches you how to listen to your body and interpret the messages it sends.

My goal isn’t to convince you that this method is the best because I don’t want to set myself up as an authority figure that tells you how you should think and act. I want to inspire you to try this method to see how it works for you.

I want to share this knowledge as a potential solution to your challenges in nutrition, as it’s helped myself and others.

Next Article: How to deal with cravings: View cravings as useful and good »