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Use these intuitive eating journal prompts to gain a better understanding of your relationship with food and your body, your history with food, and goals to guide your intuitive eating process.

38 intuitive eating journal prompts to help you heal your relationship to food

Intuitive eating is a non-diet, self-care approach to nutrition, health, and well-being that helps you make decisions based on your body’s inner wisdom instead of external rules or restrictions.

When you’re working on integrating intuitive eating principles into your life, it’s important to gain an understanding of where your thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors are coming from.

The following intuitive eating journal prompts will help you to reflect on your experiences and put what you’re learning about intuitive eating into practice.

Prompts to Explore Your History with Food and Your Body

  1. What memories come to mind when you think about food and childhood? What was food like in your house when you were growing up?
  2. Do happy memories come to mind when you hear the above question? What about any anxieties or fears?
  3. Were there ever times when food was scarce when you were a child?
  4. Did you ever have food prepared and provided by a loving caregiver? How did that caregiver use food to express love and comfort?
  5. Did you ever feel you needed to sneak, steal, or hide food? If so, write about this experience.
  6. Was food ever used as a reward, or maybe even a punishment?
  7. Write about a food or eating experience from your past that still holds emotional weight for you. What can you learn from that experience?
  8. How was food discussed by your family or caregivers?
  9. Did any of your family or caregivers restrict their own food choices? Did you understand why?
  10. Was your own body size discussed in relation to food choices? What about other people’s body sizes?
  11. Growing up, what were you taught about how you were “supposed to” behave, dress, eat, or look?
  12. How do your memories related to food change as you age? What about memories of your body? How do things differ between childhood, adolescence, and then into your late teens and early twenties?
  13. What are your beliefs about weight and body size? Where did you learn these beliefs? How have they affected you?

Prompts to Explore Diet Culture’s Impact

Review the different forms that diet culture and sneaky diet culture can come in, then answer the journal prompts below.

  1. Think back to the first time you dieted or tried to restrict your food intake. What was going on for you then? What may have played into your decision to diet and/or desire to lose weight?
  2. How has dieting affected you mentally, emotionally and/or physically?
  3. How has dieting affected your food and eating behaviors?
  4. What have you given up or not done because you were dieting or because of how your body looked?
  5. How much time do you spend each day thinking about food and your body?
  6. For one day, pay attention to instances of both external diet culture as well as internal diet mentality. Make a list of all of the different forms that you notice throughout the day. Review your list. Are there any that surprise you?
  7. Consider the impact of external influences on your eating habits and body image, such as social situations, media, or cultural expectations. How do these factors shape your behaviors, thoughts, and/or beliefs?

Prompts to Explore Your Connection to Your Inner Wisdom

  1. How do you feel hunger during the day? Where in your body do you feel the sensations of hunger?
  2. How does it feel in your body when you are really hungry? Are you able to notice any of the more subtle, earlier signs of hunger?
  3. Are there times when you feel hungry, but didn’t eat? Why?
  4. Are there times you eat past the point of “comfortable fullness“? If yes, what was going on that day, that moment, that meal?
  5. Recall a time when you felt truly in tune with your body’s hunger and fullness cues. What did that experience feel like?
  6. Make a list of all of the words that you use to describe or think about food. Which of these words have judgment attached? How do these terms affect your thoughts and/or behaviors?
  7. Do you eat differently when you’re alone vs. with others? If yes, share more about why.
  8. What foods do you really enjoy eating? What aspects of these foods make them so enjoyable?
  9. What foods do you not enjoy eating? How come/what about them do you not enjoy?
  10. Do you ever have any (conscious or subconscious) mentally or emotionally restrictive thoughts that you have during the day? If yes, how are these thoughts or beliefs affecting your eating behaviors? How might they be getting in your way of connecting to your inner wisdom?
  11. Explore your emotions and how they relate to your eating habits. Are there certain emotions that trigger specific food choices or behaviors? Where may these coping tools have originated? How may they have been helpful in the past? Are they still beneficial today?
  12. Explore the concept of self-care in relation to your eating habits. How can you prioritize nourishing your body and mind as a form of self-care, without falling into the trap of rigid rules or food restrictions?

Intuitive Eating Journal Prompts: Explore Your Goals

If you’re reading this article, my guess is that there is a part of you that is tired of spending so much time worrying about food and your body. If this is true, connect with that part of yourself and answer these questions:

  1. Reflect on your relationship with food. How would you describe your current approach to eating? Are there any patterns or habits that you notice?
  2. Why is it important to you to heal your relationship to food and your body? Write down all the things that come to mind.
  3. What would it look like to you to have a healthier relationship with food? With your body? Be as specific as possible.
  4. What is dieting, food- or exercise-obsessing, and/or body anxiety standing in the way of?
  5. How would you know if you had a more positive body image?
  6. How would your life be different? How would you treat your body differently if you had a positive body image?

Food can be a powerful entry point into exploring more about yourself, your beliefs, your values, and what you truly want out of life. Your relationship to food is the starting point, but the real work becomes stripping away all of the things that have been imposed upon you by society so you can find yourself again.

More Intuitive Eating Support:

My team and I offer virtual one-on-one nutrition coachingsupporting people with intuitive eating, disordered eating and eating disorders, and more.

I also recommend my Unapologetic Eating 101: Foundations of Intuitive Eating Coursean online, self-paced intuitive eating and body image program to help you liberate yourself from dieting and make peace with food and your body.

Author Bio

The post was written and reviewed by Alissa Rumsey, MS, RD, CDN, CSCSa registered dietitian and Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor. She specializes in weight-inclusive care, intuitive eating, body image healing, mindfulness, self-compassion, and healing from chronic dieting, disordered eating, and eating disorders. Alissa holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutrition and Exercise Science, and a Master’s Degree in Health Communications, and is also an NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist.

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