Spotlight on intuitive eating

Food and nutrition

Published on 17 August 2021
by Isabelle Huot

Intuitive eating is gaining in popularity among both nutritionists and the general public. This caring approach takes into account both physical and mental health.


The concept was created in 1995 by two American dietitians, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch. Intuitive eating is based on 10 principles:


  1. Reject the diet mentality by stopping all forms of diets.
  2. Honour your hunger by eating enough when you feel hungry without waiting to feel starving.
  3. Make peace with food by giving yourself unconditional permission to eat. Deprivation can lead to different eating disorders. This is why no food is banned under this approach.
  4. Challenge the food police and stop labelling food as “good” or “bad.”
  5. Discover the satisfaction factor by ensuring that every meal and snack is a satisfying experience.
  6. Feel your fullness by listening to your body signals.
  7. Cope with your emotions with kindness and find ways to manage them without turning to food.
  8. Respect your body by accepting your genetic blueprint. Everyone’s body deserves respect regardless of its shape or size.
  9. Movement — Feel the difference by finding enjoyable ways to get mobile.
  10. Honour your health by making food choices that satisfy your palate and make you feel good.


What do the studies say?

Some studies have shown the health benefits of intuitive eating. This approach is associated with fewer eating disorders, a more positive body image and better emotional health. There is also a link between intuitive eating, lower body mass index and better psychological health.



Intuitive eating is an interesting approach that promotes healthy eating and contributes to physical and psychological health. Canada’s Food Guide encourages us to be aware of our eating habits, take time to enjoy food and learn how to recognize hunger and fullness—suggestions that align with certain principles of intuitive eating. 


Isabelle Huot
Doctor in nutrition