Intuitive eating is defined as an adaptive way of eating that maintains a strong connection with the internal physiological signs of hunger and satiety. It has four elements: unconditional permission to eat whenever and whatever food is desired, eating for physical rather than for emotional reasons, reliance on hunger and satiety cues to determine when and how much to eat, and body-food choice congruence. In this study, we assessed the differences and similarities between intuitive eating, as measured with the Intuitive Eating Scale-2 (IES-2), and eating styles (restrained, emotional, and external eating), assessed with the Dutch Eating Behavior Questionnaire (DEBQ). Using a Spanish sample of mainly university students (n = 1,095) we found that (a) unconditional permission to eat presented a large negative correlation with restrained eating, r = -.82; (b) eating for physical reasons had a large negative correlation with emotional eating, r = -.70; (c) the dimensions of intuitive eating only showed very small correlations with positive and negative affect, satisfaction with life, body dissatisfaction or weight control behavior after restrained, emotional, and external eating had been partialled out. Altogether, the present results suggest that two of the dimensions of intuitive eating as assessed with the IES-2 are not very new or innovative. The most promising new dimension of intuitive eating seems to be body-food choice congruence.
- eating styles
- intuitive eating