The Importance of Slowing Down and Preventing Stress

Especially if you are trying to lose weight.

In today’s society, life moves very fast. People seem to think that they should always be doing more, staying busy, and constantly running around. But while it is important to keep your goals in mind and work hard to achieve them, you also need downtime to regroup. Signs of stress can sneak up on you. Here are some reasons why you might need to slow down.

You Can Avoid Burnout

Most people face burnout at some point, but it is actually completely preventable. You tend to have burnout when you are overwhelmed, work too much, and just try to handle everything without giving yourself enough breaks. Burnout causes stress and a feeling of being overwhelmed. You might find that you can’t focus on work, your productivity goes down, or you lose interest in things you used to enjoy working on. These are all common signs of burnout.

You Gain More Clarity

Slowing down and giving yourself more time off can also help you to gain some clarity. Have you been struggling with making decisions lately? Do you feel like you are working your fingers to the bone, but not finding success? This can often be from a lack of clarity. You need to slow down and sometimes even stop what you’re doing, take a step back, and evaluate what you have been working on and how you spend your time. You just might find the piece that is missing. 

It Helps You Focus on Your Priorities

With just a little more time in between projects and daily responsibilities, you are able to focus on what is most important to you in life. Maybe that means more self-care time, spending time with loved ones, or in some cases, figuring out where your work priorities are. Slowing down is essential to figuring out what your progress is and deciding if the path you are currently on is the right one.

You Can Pay Attention to Stress in Your Life

There may be some hidden sources of stress in your life, that you don’t realize is affecting your mental and physical health. We often move so quickly from one thing to the next, that we don’t stop long enough to check in on ourselves. If you don’t remember the last time you just stopped to pay attention to your own mind and thoughts and how your body feels, it is possible you are missing out on some important sources of stress that need to be addressed.

How Does Stress Affect Weight Loss

When you are high-stress, your body produces more cortisol, which is a stress hormone that promotes more body fat, especially around the middle. This produces more visceral fat which surrounds your organs and increases your risk for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. This also releases more fatty acids in your blood, raising your cholesterol and insulin levels. This is not something you want to mess with. 

You may already be struggling with a lot of stress so don’t fear, as there is hope to make this change in your life. What is most important right now is recognizing where the stress is in your life and finding ways to resolve it. 

Grab this checklist to see if you are under too much stress.

Other Ways Stress Affects Your Life

Stress usually will cause people to eat more as it is a symptom of emotional eating. We crave sweet treats, or high-fat foods because they stimulate the brain to release pleasure chemicals that reduce tension. This comfort eating can be very soothing and feels like it alleviates our stress in the short term but it actually is making your life worse. After your bout of stress eating, you find yourself feeling more frustrated as the scale goes up and you feel more lethargic from the sugar crash!  

Stress can also cause people to sleep less. Ghrelin, the primary hunger hormone, will rise without sleep and tell your body to eat when you aren’t even hungry. If you are practicing Intuitive Eating, this can upset the balance and send you the wrong signals. Alcohol also releases Ghrelin as you experience the numbing” effect when drinking. The bottom, line is that sleep is important to send the right messages to your body so you don’t make decisions that you regret later. 

Everything you need to know about Intuitive Eating Principles


There’s a way to ditch the diet culture, make peace with food, and prioritize your physical and mental wellbeing.

It’s called “intuitive eating” and it’s not a weight loss program!! Instead, it’s a way to get back in tune with your body and refocus your mind away from “food rules.”

Intuitive eating deprioritizes weight as a primary measure of health, while inviting you to eat the foods you want
when you’re hungry—and stop eating when you feel full. This isn’t a “free for all” to give up and eat how much you
want of whatever you want whenever you want it, either. It’s about getting back in tune with your body and
showing it the respect, it deserves

Eating intuitively means being curious about what and why you want to eat something, and then enjoying it
without judgment. [Yes, without judgment.] It’s about trusting your body’s wisdom without influence from outside
of yourself.

It’s about removing the labels of “good” or “bad” food and ditching the guilt or pride about eating a
certain way. It’s about accepting food—and our bodies—as the amazing wonder that they really are and a belief
that there truly is no “right” or “wrong” way to eat.

The 10 principles of intuitive eating

The two dietitians who popularized intuitive eating in 1995, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, have outlined 10

1 – Reject the diet mentality

Ditch diets that give the false hope of losing weight quickly, easily, and permanently. You are not a failure for every
time a diet stopped working and you gained the weight back. Until you break free from the hope that there’s a new
diet around the corner, you cannot fully embrace intuitive eating.

2 – Honor your hunger

Your body needs adequate energy and nutrition. Keep yourself fed to prevent excessive hunger. By honoring the
first signal of hunger you can start rebuilding trust in yourself and food.

3 – Make peace with food

Stop fighting with food and give yourself unconditional permission to eat. Stop fostering intense feelings of
deprivation by denying yourself a particular food, as these can lead to cravings and bingeing. You don’t want your
“giving in” to lead to overwhelming guilt.

4 – Challenge the food police

Confront the thoughts that you as a person are “good” or “bad” based on what and how much you eat. Diet culture
has created unreasonable rules. The food police are the negative, hopeless, or guilty thoughts that you can chase

5 – Discover the satisfaction factor

Pleasure and satisfaction are some of the basic gifts of existence. By allowing yourself to feel these when you eat,
you can enjoy feeling content and fulfilled. When you do this, you will be able to identify the feeling of

6 – Feel your fullness

Trust that you will give yourself the foods you desire. Pause in the middle of eating and ask how the food tastes.
Listen for the signals that you’re not hungry anymore. Respect when you become comfortably full.

7 – Cope with your emotions with kindness

Restricting food can trigger a loss of control and feel like emotional eating. Be kind to yourself. Comfort and nurture
yourself. Everyone feels anxiety, loneliness, boredom, and anger. Food won’t fix these feelings—it’s just a short-
term distraction. Ultimately, you have to deal with the uncomfortable emotions.

8 – Respect your body

Everyone is genetically unique, whether it’s shoe size or body size. Respecting your body will help you feel better
about who you are. Being unrealistic or overly critical of your shape or size makes it hard to reject the diet

9 – Movement—feel the difference

Feel the difference activity makes. Not militant or calorie-burning exercise, but simply moving your body. Focus on
how energized it makes you feel.

10 – Honor your health—gentle nutrition

Choose foods that honor your tastebuds and health. Don’t focus on eating perfectly. One snack, meal, or day of
eating won’t suddenly make you unhealthy or deficient in nutrients. Look at how you eat over time. Choose
progress, not perfection.

The science behind intuitive eating

Studies show that people who eat intuitively tend to also have lower body-mass indices (BMIs) and higher levels of
body appreciation and mental health. They are also associated with lower blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and

A review of eight studies compared “health, not weight loss” eating styles with conventional weight-loss diets.
While they found no significant differences in heart disease risk factors between the two types of diets, they did
find that body satisfaction and eating behavior improved more for people in the “health, not weight loss” groups.

Another review of 24 studies of female college students showed that those who eat intuitively experience less
disordered eating, have a more positive body image, and greater emotional functioning.

Overall, there is a growing amount of research that shows the benefits of intuitive eating on both physical and
mental health.

Intuitive eating and Health at Every Size (HAES)

The non-diet approach of intuitive eating fits within the concept that there can be health at every size. The idea
behind Health at Every Size Ⓡ is to be inclusive of all weights and de-emphasize weight as the main factor to assess
someone’s health. The way someone’s body looks does not tell the whole story about their overall health and
wellbeing. Instead, their habits and lifestyle are more important factors than simply their size and shape.

Like intuitive eating, the HAES Ⓡ paradigm has several principles. They are weight inclusivity, health enhancement,
respectful care, eating for well-being, and life-enhancing movement. These include accepting the diversity of body
shapes, supporting equal access to health information and services, promoting eating based on hunger and satiety,
working to end weight discrimination and bias, and encouraging enjoyable physical movement.

Also, like intuitive eating, the focus of HAES Ⓡ is less toward weight loss and more toward sustainable healthy habits.

According to HAES Ⓡ , the objective is to “advance social justice, create an inclusive and respectful community, and
support people of all sizes in finding compassionate ways to take care of themselves.”
Tips to eat more intuitively

There are many things you can do to start eating more intuitively and ditch diet culture and “food rules.”

● Put aside your guilt for previous diets that have failed you. (You have not failed them and you are not bad
for participating in them.)
● Stop focusing on finding or implementing diets that promise easy, permanent weight loss.
● When you feel like eating, ask yourself if you’re truly physically hungry (and not emotionally hungry).
● Eat when you’re physically hungry, don’t deprive yourself. Get back in tune with your body’s signals and
don’t wait until you’re extremely hungry.
● Ask yourself what type of food will satisfy you. (Remember, there aren’t “good” or “bad” foods and you
don’t need to judge yourself for eating—or not eating—them.)
● Pay attention to and enjoy your food while you’re eating it (eat mindfully).
● Stop eating when you are comfortably full.
● Treat your body with dignity and respect—regardless of its size or shape.
● Move your body in a way that is enjoyable and see how that makes you feel.
● Stop worrying about eating perfectly. If you get off track, gently bring yourself back on track.

Final Thoughts

Intuitive eating helps to improve your relationship with food and your body and mind. It’s about challenging
external rules and subconscious habits around eating. It also challenges feelings of guilt or shame associated with
eating a certain way.

To eat intuitively, listen to your body’s hunger and fullness cues, enjoy a wide variety of foods (because none are
inherently “good” or “bad”), and respect your body.

For a nutritious approach to health based on intuitive eating and Health at Every Size Ⓡ , consult a
nutrition professional who is versed in these programs.

I can help. Here is my link to book a chat about making sure to meet your dietary

Want to enjoy your foods without the guilt from diet culture? Need help seeing how intuitive eating and HAES Ⓡ can
work for you? Looking for ways to implement this non-diet lifestyle into your day-to-day life? Book an appointment
with me to see if my program can help you.




Association for Size Diversity and Health. (n.d.). HAES Ⓡ Approach.

Bruce, L. J. & Ricciardelli, L.A. (2016). A systematic review of the psychosocial correlates of intuitive eating among
adult women. Appetite, 96, 454-472. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2015.10.012.

Food Insight. (2020, January 8). A New Health Option for the New Year: The Non-Diet Approach. Retrieved from

Food Insight. (2020, June 19). The Science Behind Intuitive Eating. Retrieved from

Food Insight. (2018, July 27). Can Our Diets Be Stress-Free? An Intuitive Eating Expert Weighs In. Retrieved from

Health at Every Size Ⓡ . (n.d.). HAES Ⓡ Community. Retrieved from

Intuitive Eating. (n.d.). 10 principles of intuitive eating. Retrieved from

Khasteganan, N., Lycett, D., Furze, G., & Turner, A. P. (2019). Health, not weight loss, focused programmes versus
conventional weight loss programmes for cardiovascular risk factors: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
Systematic reviews, 8(1), 200.

National Eating Disorders Association. (2018). What does intuitive eating mean? Retrieved from

Sorensen, M. D., Arlinghaus, K. R., Ledoux, T. A., & Johnston, C. A. (2019). Integrating Mindfulness Into Eating
Behaviors. American journal of lifestyle medicine, 13(6), 537–539.

Today’s Dietitian. (2020, April). Intuitive Eating: Four Intuitive Eating Myths. Retrieved from

Van Dyke, N., & Drinkwater, E. (2014). Review Article Relationships between intuitive eating and health indicators:
Literature review. Public Health Nutrition, 17(8), 1757-1766. doi:10.1017/S1368980013002139


Life is hard…

or it can be if you believe it is. 

However, did you know that your beliefs become your reality?
If you believe you can never overcome your problems or roadblocks then you will stay stuck.


We are the philosophers of our own life. We have a philosophy about money, happiness, relationships, success, healing, and love. We believe in these things in the deepest part of our souls and we are not willing to change them.

Most often people will try to change their opinions about something and stick their feet in the mud and won’t budge. We don’t want to see another side or view; we just want to think what we want.


So what about what you believe about yourself?  


What you believe about yourself is how your life will unfold. Your self-belief governs what you think you deserve and what you don’t.

Our thoughts about ourselves are more powerful than we realize. When you wake up in the morning with fear, it shapes your entire day. For example, knowing you have a review coming up can cause anxiety for days. You start each day wondering what your boss really thinks of you, reliving the good you have done for the company and the mistakes you have made. You ask yourself if you are worth a raise and likely tell yourself the reasons why you aren’t.

When you wake up thinking you aren’t good enough, guess what? Your brain responds that way all day. You see, our brain wants to protect you by any means necessary.

It will always choose the easiest way out.


When you allow this, you get stuck. 


This is why it is important to step outside your comfort zone into a world of unknowns and new beginnings, even if you are intimidated.

So what happens when you believe in your deepest self that you don’t deserve to be happy or lose weight?

Every belief is a self-fulfilling prophecy in life. How do we open up to new beliefs that are more joyous and liberating?

It only takes one loving thought to transform an entire belief system of fear. If you still think you aren’t deserving, it’s ok. Sometimes we need to make things a habit before they become a belief.

Start by taking a thought that is negative about yourself and flip it around where it is positive. Tell yourself this new thought every day until it becomes a belief. Give it time. Just start shifting those thoughts.


Shift happens when you change your beliefs!


Visualization Technique

Close your eyes, take a deep breath and picture a beautiful healing light shining into your mind and heart so no dark corners are left.

Imagine the screen clear of the old self so you can make room for a new self full of a belief system that inspires the change to create any new life you dream!

If you think you might be ready to make this shift, check out my Level 10 Health Hub where we walk through nutritional goals, fitness, and making this mind shift.

Amanda Roy


Is Gut Health and Depression Linked?

Depression is a very common ailment in this country and I think it is important to stop and look at all the potential reasons why. 


After doing some research after a recent move to a higher elevation state, I discovered some interesting facts regarding our serotonin production in areas of low pressure.

Due to this, our serotonin production is reduced and we tend to feel more “down.” In Utah, there are startling statistics that show Utah has a very high rate of deaths due to suicide.

It is important that we investigate what we can change so that we can protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our friends.

Watch the video for more of an explanation.

Here is also a link to an article. Click Here

Amanda Roy


Do You Feel Like You Cant Handle Your Stress Anymore?

It is easy to know when you are dealing with extreme stress, such as a serious illness or job loss. But there are so many other sources of stress that you might not realize are affecting your body and mental health. Here are some subtle signs that you are dealing with stress in your daily life.


Lady feeling stessed

You Are Constantly Tired and Fatigued


Do you feel like you are always tired, no matter how much sleep you get or the caffeine you consume? If fatigue becomes a problem, it might be from your emotional stress. When you have a lot of stress in your life, even very small sources of stress, it can cause your cortisol levels to be out of balance. This, in turn, affects your ability to get a good night’s sleep and also reduces your energy levels during the day. So, if you struggle with insomnia and fatigue or just being tired no matter how much you sleep, it could be a sign of stress.


Your Mood is Unpredictable


Another sign of stress that people often think is from other sources is when you are moody, agitated, or irritable. Your brain is handling a lot when you have multiple reasons to be stressed out every day, and you probably focus on your stressors more than anything else. This causes overwhelming panic, anxiety, and many more emotions that can lead to moodiness and agitation.


Your Anxiety is Getting Worse


You may also notice that when you have more to stress about, your anxiety is also worse. There is a big connection between stress and mental illnesses like anxiety and depression. People with chronic stress find their anxiety worse, and those with anxiety find that stress affects them more severely. It is a difficult cycle to be caught up in. If you have an anxiety disorder, it is even more important to recognize the signs of stress and try to keep it under control as best you can.


You Feel Confused and Lack Focus


Lastly, you might have brain fog from the stress, which can confuse, lack of focus, and poor concentration. If you notice that you are getting behind in work, you can’t focus on a task for very long, or your concentration is suffering, it may be from your stress.

If you say, “that is me” to 2 of these, you are experiencing a lot of stress. Stress leads to a lack of sleep, weight gain, relationship issues, and hormone imbalances.

If you are overwhelmed by these feelings and are unsure how to change the habits causing the issues, contact me, and we will discuss your next steps.

Amanda Roy