Are we talking about food or sex?

Two women putting food on a picnic table
Finding pleasure with food isn't a moral failure

It's hard to find pleasure with food if you've never felt safe feeling pleasure period.

How often do you hear the words or phrases, "it's sinful, dirty, indulgent, immoral, something only bad girls do?"

I'm confused......are we talking about sex or food? The difference between the two gets blurry real fast when it comes to pleasure and satisfaction.

Messaging from family, religion, cultural standards, has conditioned women to shy away from pleasure and satisfaction. Additionally, if there's a history of sexual trauma, physical or verbal abuse, it can feel incredibly unsafe to even consider what might be pleasurable - with food or any experience.

To top it all off, when diet culture moralizes foods, it's no wonder that you feel ashamed by eating dessert or a burger with fries or pizza or chips and salsa and enjoy it! It's no wonder that you feel like you're being bad when you're eating "unclean!"

Then there's the snowball effect.

When you don't feel safe to experience pleasure or can't allow yourself full permission to feel pleasure, trying to figure out what foods to eat and how to savor every bite of them is challenging.

And when you struggle with feeling satisfied with your meals, it's hard to hear fullness cues - leading you to eat more than you'd like (not a bad thing, but stomach aches are uncomfortable) and feeling like you're a failure at trying to eat intuitively.

Remember there's no right or wrong when it comes to intuitive eating. If you're feeling shame about seeking pleasure with food or your experience with trauma is getting in the way of figuring out what foods are pleasurable, reach out to a trauma-informed therapist and dietitian. This can be a sticky web that you don't have to untangle on your own.

Learning to find pleasure and satisfaction with food is important to create a peaceful relationship with food and your body. It's 1 of the 6 strategies I teach in my free download, Six Strategies to Savor Food Without Guilt. You can download the strategies here and start finding more pleasure in your meals today.