Cali grew up in a medical household. She learned about the world of conventional medicine as she watched her father prescribe drugs and manage symptoms instead of treating the root cause of disease. As a teenager, she transitioned to a plant-based diet, and her passion for wellness lead her to become a holistic health coach. Cali has worked with more than a thousand people one-on-one as a personal health coach over the last twelve years. Her clients have ranged from stay-at-home moms to self-employed multi-millionaires, construction workers, and athletes to CEOs and executives. Cali has also taught in Universities, medical clinics, health-food store programs, medical doctor- directed programs, and national corporate wellness programs. Through her coaching experience, she started realizing that the stricter the “meal plan,” the harder the “rebound.” Realizing how other women struggled with food and body image just like she had, she pioneered the “Healthy is greater than skinny” movement and founded the Fork Chakra. Cali now runs mentorship programs for women to help them end the fight with food and become intuitive eaters. This juiciness is what we’re going to dive into today!
Listen to the podcast here:
Revolutionizing Weight Loss With Cali Cutler
I am so excited for each and every single one of you tuning into this episode. I have a special guest who is going to blow your minds and get into your hearts when it comes to learning about eating, diet, nutrition, and health from a place of putting you first and being much more intuitive about it. I’d love to welcome my amazing friend, Cali, who is an incredible coach when it comes to intuitive eating.
I’m so glad to be here with you.
I’m so excited to have you on. I know Dan and I were diving in on some of the other episodes. I was like, “Who do I know that it’s amazing when it comes to intuitive eating, into the self-love and self-confidence?” The first person that came to mind was you. Knowing how much work you’ve done around yourself, especially creating a lifestyle that is based on not just how you look but how you feel and feeling more confident through that.
It’s a process that we’ll talk about. It’s not one pill and done.
[bctt tweet=”Women do crazy things when they’re desperate.” via=”no”]
Let’s go ahead and dive right in. I’d love to jam out and start with where people start when they come to find you. For a lot of us, especially in the Western world and in California, there’s this idea around needing to constantly look a certain way and have your body look a certain way. For a lot of women, the body stigmas go around that, having to be thin, look fit, all of the diets and exercise. It’s not to knock on any of them because that may be appropriate for where you are in your life. Talk about how that takes a toll and effect on some people’s mentality and mindset when they’re so focused on trying to look a certain way versus focusing on how they feel.
This society we like to say, the beauty standards and the diet mentality start when we’re going by how we look over how we feel. The women that come to me are quite frankly desperate. They’ve been on diet after diet and they basically hit diet bottom. They’re so desperate that they’ll think about doing anything. That’s something that we have to address when we talk about food. If the intention to start changing your behavior doesn’t start and be reformed from the inside, it’s not going to last. We see in these long-term studies that the dieting category does not work and turns back even worse. Afterwards they gain more weight and more unhappiness. There’s a lot of what you’re saying. Biologically and psychologically, there are these two deadly things that go on in this diet cycle.
For a lot of women especially, there’s this concept of, “I have to look a certain way in order to feel good about myself.” Many women attached their self-worth and the way that they feel about themselves to their body. For a lot of women, that’s where the diet mentality starts. I want to feel better so I need to look better. Let me go and either starve myself, go on this crazy diet, this fad or whatever will create the body that is going to give me the confidence. What’s interesting about that, especially from personal experience when I was doing the Bikini comp training, I was doing all of the dieting, crazy training and what I was finding was I was tired. Sure, my body was the best that it’s ever been but at the same time, I had never felt worse physically and emotionally than I had at that point in time. I’d love to get your perspective on it and understanding what’s happening for these women when they’re so focused on the idea that it’s the body image or the way that they look that’s going to make them feel better.
I hear you too. I wouldn’t have called myself a chronic dieter. I was a raw vegan. I was super into health very strictly like, “Don’t wash my lettuce in tap water,” very careful, very health conscious. I was a closet dieter and on the outside, very healthy. I was putting off this image like we do to aspire to the image. On the outside, everything is smiles and kale smoothies. On the inside, things are very disruptive psychologically and very emotionally draining. I’ve realized I was not in a good spot, I was at diet bottom but it was more of realizing, waking up, I was on this medical weight loss, 500 calories a day. Women do crazy things when they’re desperate. I was living in Ohio, California and I was the thinnest I’ve ever been, the bangability factor was high and I was miserable. I was slapped in the face on that last day of my diet. I look this way and something is very wrong. I feel depressed. I can’t get out of bed. There’s something missing. That is the point that I realized I want something more than I want to be thin and that is happiness. Happiness and healthy, that’s where this all morphed from. It’s not only the health aspect but the spiritual aspect and the emotional aspect that has to be there for a truly healthy holistic being.
It rings true for so many women when we work so hard to get the specific body type. We get there and then we realize that we’re still not happy with ourselves. We still don’t have the self-worth or the self-love. It can become devastating when you’ve worked so hard for something, you’d get it and you realize that it’s still not what you wanted. It’s interesting because from there it’s like, “Where do you go?” The answer to that is the only place you can go, which is inwards. You have to start looking at what’s showing up for you internally and what your beliefs are about yourself, how you feel about you. I know for me it was similar to what you’re talking about. It was wanting to be happy but more importantly, it was wanting to have the energy to get through the day. My calorie deficit is insane. The lack of carbs and all of the other macronutrients was so disproportionate that it was no wonder why I was having the anxiety, the adrenal fatigue and everything else that was coming up because I was pushing way too hard. Not to say that for certain people that may be great for what you’re doing, but for me at that point in time, it didn’t make any sense anymore.
If the pain with the body, food and that struggle is so deep, it’s like Geneen Roth’s quote, “Everything has a crack in it. That’s how the light gets in.” With that being the biggest food struggle, the biggest obsession and being so painful, we use food and the body as the crack to enter into the light. We use that as the pain point to use food as your portal to your own spiritual nature. That is forever fascinating to me because it’s what we’re looking for. It’s truly what we’re craving.
I know a lot of women have different understandings or ideas about health and what that means or intuitive eating specifically. I know for a lot of women there’s this fear that, “If I’m not on a diet or if I’m not restricting my calories or if I’m not counting my macros, how will I ever get the body that I want?” I’d love to hear your opinion on that.
It’s such a prevalent fear because diet mentality is so strong. It put us in this place where it’s like, “If I don’t have this, I have no lifeline and I’m going to let myself go.” That’s a big fear. Let’s talk about intuitive eating. It’s based on the premise that every person is born with all the wisdom that he or she needs to know how, what, how much and when to eat. These are all things that we’re told externally. If you’ve gone on a diet or have done any meal plan or something, then that thing will dictate how, what, how much and when to eat. A lot of conflicting information appears in the mind chatter part of eating. I work with so many clients that are weary of dieting but they’re terrified of eating. They’re rocking the hard place like, “What do I do then?” The intuitive eating process is essentially the cure to the symptoms, which looked like, “How many calories are in this? Am I getting enough protein? Keto, Paleo, do I do a juice cleanse? How many carbs are in this? This is going to make me fat. Is this low sodium?” All the things.
[bctt tweet=”Everything has a crack in it. That’s how the light gets in. – Janine Carroll” via=”no”]
In fact, lots of women that have food struggles come to me and they say they know what intuitive eating is. It’s very easy to think that intuitive eating is mindful eating or listening to your body and that’s as far as it goes. Contrary to popular belief, it is a very specific process created over 25 years ago by two dietitians over in Beverly Hills. This process has been perfected over the last 25 years with clinical research, other health practitioners. It’s the premier system to help people in this place to get food freedom, peace with food and self-love. That there have been over 90 studies now on this process and it’s an actual step by step guided process. It’s not, “Listen to your body,” like a lot of people might think. There’s a woman named Tracy Tylka back in early 2000. She did a study on 1,300 females that did the intuitive eating process. She found they have a higher sense of self-esteem, not only increased optimism but lower BMI, which is body mass index.
They’re not only within the within the healthy weight range, but they’re also not idealizing the thin ideals. They’re not trying to walk around looking like a supermodel, not a very healthy thing. What’s amazing about these processes is it’s like facing the programming and the crap that you’ve learned over the years. When you go through this process, in the end, you are healthier. For me being a raw foodist it’s like, “You’re at the top of the health whatever.” I’m a much healthier person now than I was because I’m not bingeing. I’m not closet eating, because of all these cravings toward foods and these unhealthy things. I’m a much healthier person in the end. It’s an interesting process and it’s toppling everything we know on top of its head.
It sounds interesting too because I love what you’re bringing up here. It’s shifting from thinking that having a specific body image is what’s going to make you happy. From what I’m hearing you say, it sounds like it’s learning how to prioritize your health through feeling healthy, feeling good in your body regardless of what it currently looks like. That’s what helps to bring the self-love to where you start nurturing your body to look a certain way, but from a place of health rather than a place of punishment.
Many women will say, “I’ve never taken care of myself to this level in my life.” That word intuitive is instinctual. It’s like peeing. We don’t have a lot of emotional charges around peeing. We just feel it and we do it. With hunger, it’s a lot different. There are a lot more complicated things that we’ve learned. It’s getting back to that basic body instinct. It knows what to do and I have the tools to learn how to listen to it.
For a lot of the women that you’ve worked with too, not only are they able to drop a lot of the emotional stuff. Let’s get honest about it. People don’t join diets because they want to look a certain way. They join diets or they do all these crazy things because of what they believe that doing that will make them feel. At the end of the day, people go on diets, people join gyms, people do whatever it is because they want to feel a certain way. It’s that emotional stimulation that they’re after. It’s interesting as we take away the emotional charge of, “The only way that you’re going to feel happier that you’re going to love yourself is when you get to a certain weight.” We reversed that. When you start to love yourself, nurture yourself, feel happy and energized, then you start to shift the way that you look. You start to feel better about the way you look regardless of you being at a specific weight or not.
We use food as a way to punish ourselves, as a weapon, as a way to control ourselves and to cope with our emotions. That’s why I love this process. We’re using food as a tool. It’s in your face three times a day or more. Use that as a tool to your own self-love as a portal to your spiritual nature, your emotions. It’s a tangible, physical tool that you can use to start opening these deeper things up within you.
I’d love to hear from you in whatever you feel most comfortable in sharing. Some of the results or the shifts that you’ve seen either for yourself or with the women that you’ve worked with, from the point where they came in, they met you and they were at the diet bottom. The shift that they had in going through this process and how it’s transformed not just their relationship with themselves but their entire life.
A lot of women come to me feeling hopeless about all of this. It’s like, “I am ready to do anything and I don’t want to do anything.” I relate with that because that diet bottom moment of mine, I thought, “Why would I be depressed about that? I shouldn’t be depressed on top of food issues.” It’s just because I can’t eat but it’s a real thing. A lot of women when they come in, they’ve been dieting. The weight will be trending upward in over the years. This is very common. In fact, 95% of people gained back the weight they lost on a diet between one to five years later. Their weight will be trending up. What happens is your body will stop gaining and stabilize. Although our focus isn’t on weight loss, that’s often the first thing people want to hear. If they’re carrying extra weight, we’ll return to their natural weight through this process. Your metabolism will become normalized again. Becoming healthy is a very general word, especially as a holistic nutritionist. That can mean many things to many people. The core of that is your body tells you and you start craving foods that serve you and that nourish you. It’s not this constantly falling off the wagon and getting back on the wagon, “I’m starting again on Monday,” thing.
[bctt tweet=”You can rely on your own internal compass for nutrition. ” via=”no”]
What I love about this process is you start to learn your own nutritional guidance system. There are two parts of this: the emotional guidance system and then there’s this nutritional guidance system. It’s like a compass that you start to attune within yourself. You get to point it and attune it to your own body instead of getting the Jenny Craig thing, the Dr. Oz thing, the Oprah thing and the Weight Watchers thing. You can rely on your own internal compass for nutrition. That is a priceless thing. Many women doing this over and over, the yo-yo dieting, the weight cycling, they don’t have any connection to what self-love means. We start with the very basic, which is body respect and learning what that is. They can then begin to not only respect but honor their body and then eventually get to body love, instead of constant self-criticism. That’s a beautiful benefit. If you do this process right, those are all things that you start to trust your hunger signals, your fullness signals. You become certain about eating in public and eating socially. It doesn’t become an anxiety situation anymore. It becomes one of joy.
Most importantly, this is the focal point, the hub of the wheel that drives it all is rediscovering the pleasures of eating. Over the years, we have decided that pleasure equals bad and satisfaction equals, “I must be doing something wrong with foods.” As a result of this process, there’s not a thought anymore in your head about what you should be doing or feeling guilty. You enjoy the satisfaction. You let the pleasure drive this process. That’s amazing. That is a huge shift because most women are opposite of that. It’s like, “My body’s my enemy.” When you have pleasure and satisfaction driving it, it makes this whole thing work and sustainable. That was a mouthful.
I love that it encompasses the bigger reasoning for women specifically and men, I’m sure as well. You and I can speak more relatively to the women. It was in the fact that it is like this idea of coming back to loving yourself, loving your body and nurturing it through nutrition versus punishing it, to get it to be a certain way. It’s sounding like you’re pivoting from being at war with yourself and with your body to being on the same team with your body and listening to it versus fighting it.
That’s a huge cognition. Often where we’ll see the biggest shift is when they have that realization for themselves. There are trillions of things happening within the cellular system that are trying to heal you, synthesizing things correctly, locking key enzymes are working in the right way. A lot of times, we forget that because we’re like, “My stomach growled, I’m going to suppress it.” It’s ignoring my body because it’s wrong and it doesn’t know. Whoever told me the rule knows and so I’m going to follow that. That is inherently where the problems come. It’s amazing. We see this with kids. The kids are popped out of the womb as intuitive eaters. They have their little intuitive eating on. Try feeding a baby when it’s not hungry, it’s impossible to do. Getting back to that state and this goes beyond women, seeing their careers and be able to drop the obsession. Focus what they’re good at in the world, their careers but also their children. We start to see their children have these beautiful intuitive eating tendencies too. For breakfast, “I want to have some Heart of palm and tofu this morning.” Imagine a little child has their little nutritional radar on.
What’s coming to mind as you’re talking about this too, it’s almost like what’s happening is you’re learning how to trust yourself. You’re learning how to be self-dependent and self-assured rather than looking outside of you for what to do, how to eat or when to eat but it’s like, “My body knows what it wants. My body knows what it means. I can trust myself to take care of me without constantly depending on someone or something to tell me what I’m doing right or wrong.”
As you can see, there can be a lot of pitfalls and stumbling blocks along that way. If someone’s doing it alone, if they don’t have the right guidance on that, it’s very easy to relapse and not see the bigger picture. It’s very important to get the right guidance through this very specific process. You can see all the little dieting mentality habits will come in, gobble up and sabotage the process.
It’s having somebody who can direct you and let you know, “That’s what that means. That’s what that body is signal means.” Being able to understand what your body’s telling you. It’s almost like you’re translating for people the language that their body is speaking so that they can start to understand that.
I like to say you are the expert of your body. I am the expert of this process. As I guide you through this process, it’s up to you. You translate, understand and trust that your body is doing it right. A lot of people will think they’re broken. They come into it, “There’s something wrong with me. I’m broken. There’s nothing I can do.” They’ll think that they’re the special circumstance. That’s interesting. You probably see that too.
[bctt tweet=”When you’re radiating certainty, that does affect every single part of your life in a magical way. ” via=”no”]
You’re feeling special because your problem is so big that no one can solve it. It’s an interesting concept and I’m curious how that shows up for your clients or the people that you work with when they’ve been dieting for so long. They have this mentality, “I can’t get past this body weight. I can’t seem to fix myself or figure out how to feel good in my own body.”
That’s where trust and jumping like, “Jump, there is a net.” It’s a little bit of a scary thing if you can trust the other side. It’s helpful to know that thousands of women have done this successfully and change their worlds. It’s nice to have that in the back of your mind. It takes an awareness of what I have been doing hasn’t been working. They come in, “I want to lose ten pounds.” If that awareness isn’t there, this is not for you.
It’s doing the deep inner intuitive eating spiritual work. What’s interesting as I’m hearing you reflect on a lot of this, what’s coming to mind is how much this must impact every other area of someone’s life. When they start learning how to trust their body, trust themselves and listen to themselves, that has a ripple effect. Trusting themselves when it comes to relationships or money, kids or with their career, all of these other things.
I love that you brought that up because these things, these deeper beliefs if they’re not addressed, they are going to carry through to your financial habits. Money comes up quite a bit in this process because of enough-ness. It’s a big one having enough, not wasting food, not being able to throw that last bite into the garbage. Financial and relationship things that are hand in hand. It’s amazing that these women will come in and be like, “I can’t even let my husband touch me without feeling triggered. I can’t let in that love because my body has so many years of hatred upon it.” Can you imagine having sex and having no more body buttons? That is a huge change in a relationship. Not only that but self-confidence. Feeling your lover feel that from you and in your career. You can do what you’re passionate about in your career, do what you love in the world. It’s like a higher degree when you have this confidence, self- esteem and knowingness. It’s this vibrational aspect of certainty. When we started talking about radiating certainty, that does affect every single part of your life in a magical way.
For our audience who have been tuning in a lot, we have a whole episode touching around whole frequencies and vibrational frequencies. I love that you brought this up. It’s true, when you’re operating at a lower emotional state, for instance, guilt. You’re ashamed of your body, you’re feeling guilty about what you’re eating, you’re angry with yourself, you’re frustrated with what’s happening or how you look, that’s the emotional state that you’re operating on a regular basis. Therefore, the neurochemicals inside of it are moving at a much slower rate, which creates a much lower vibrational frequency. Therefore, you’re emitting a much lower electromagnetic field. Therefore, you become less attuned and less attractive inside of that. Whether it’s through intuitive eating, self-love, embodiment or whatever it is, when you’re starting to elevate your emotional state, when you are starting to create the embodiment of living from a place of truly loving yourself not just saying it but loving yourself, loving your body and being in alignment.
Number one, your mental and your physical match. Meaning that you love the way you look and you look the way that you love and you feel so good. That’s the emotional state that you’re operating from, a place of love, joy, gratitude, where frustration, guilt, and shame no longer exist. You in a way eliminated these mentalities and these belief systems that have this identity attached to it that says, “You look this way so you’re not worthy, you’re not enough, you’re not lovable. You should feel guilty and be ashamed.” That no longer exists because you’ve learned how to embody the state, “I love me, I’m perfect the way I am. I trust my body.” You’re in such a place of coherence where you’re emitting this incredible energy. I’m sure many of you have felt this. What is the movie that Amy Schumer was in?
I Feel Pretty.
Nothing physically changed but because of the level of confidence, self-assurance of how much she loved herself, she became so magnetic to other people. That’s such a huge point to touch on. At the end of all of this, when it comes to dieting, body image or all of the things, it’s you learning how to love yourself however you are and feeling confident in that and doing it from a place of health. Eating a ton of doughnuts and ice cream every day isn’t healthy, it’s not restrictive but it’s not healthy either. Making sure that you’re taking care of your body and feeling confident radiates into every single area of your life.
[bctt tweet=”The shadows are scary, but the light, the freedom, the peace on the other side is worth it all.” via=”no”]
Touching on that vibrational set point, there are ten main principles in intuitive eating. The last one is learning gentle nutrition. It’s last for a reason because up to that point if we go to nutrition and we start out with that and we don’t address all the other things, the vibrational set point isn’t yet there. It’s not going to look like it would at the end when you have all these internal certainty points resonating from you. You have a knowingness and experience with them. It’s going to look a lot different when you have all these varied beliefs. When you’re free and you can sense from a higher vibrational standpoint, what vibration of food is going to resonate with you? That was my problem. I was trying to reach for that high vibrational point. Emotionally, I wasn’t resonating at the same frequency like that. It’s hard to keep up with that, at some point it’s going to break. I love that you brought that up and it’s a very important point, the nutrition aspect. Over my work of coaching 500-plus people, I know that if you have a body food plan that doesn’t address this stuff, it’s not in itself could sustainably take you to where you want. Not to bash any other process but it is that important or else there will be some rebound or something at some point.
I’m curious, for our audience who are feeling called to you or they deeply resonate with your message, where can they find you? How can they get in touch with you? How can they just learn more about Cali and all the things that you touched on?
You can go to my website, ForkChakra.com. There’s a self-assessment quiz on my website on how good is your intuitive eater now. Where is it at? This is a great place to start because this was adapted by research over time that has been able to address intuitive eating specifically. If you want to know where you’re at, go and take that quiz on my website. Also, we have a Facebook community of women. These are all women that I’m cultivating that faces a sacred space. You can dive into this journey with other women that are going through it.
What’s the name of the community so they can go ahead and Google it, find you on Instagram or Facebook as well?
Any other words of wisdom for someone who’s dabbling in this and maybe they’ve got some fear around it or they’re still working through a lot of the self-image, body image and they know the diets haven’t been working or feeling crappy with what they’ve been doing previously? They may be in a place where they’re like, “Cali, it sounds good but I’m not sure.” What’s something that you would want to share with them?
Knowing that is normal, first of all. That is a beautiful place to be in of like, “I don’t know but I have some willingness inside.” That’s a beautiful place. I saw this quote, “Then she faced her shadows so deeply and so completely that she fell in love with herself all over again, to reemerge from the ashes to the goddess she truly is.” The shadows are scary but the light on the other side, the freedom and peace on the other side are worth it. That’s what I have to say to you.
Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day and out of your busy schedule. I know that you work with so many amazing women. The work that you do is so powerful, not just from the place of looking a certain way but feeling and creating a body that’s in alignment with that you love and you vibrate at this incredible frequency. Every other aspect of your life is influenced and impacted by that, your relationships, sex is great, career, all of the things. Thank you so much for giving our audience such an incredible gift. For those of you who want to find Cali, go check her out on Instagram and Facebook. She’s got some amazing content. I would highly encourage checking out that community if you’re feeling called to learn more.
Thank you, Sophie.
We will see you in the next episode.
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- @CaliAnnCutler – Instagram
About Cali Cutler
Creative professional with 6+ years wellness counseling and plant-based food teaching experience, including classroom and medical doctor directed programs.
Sole proprietor with 4+ years’ experience teaching groups, particularly focusing on chronic disease reversal and prevention through whole foods nutrition and active lifestyles. Advanced understanding of bioenergetics, nutrition strategies, raw food benefits and preparation, intuitive eating, exercise physiology, and cleansing protocols.
Business communications leader specializing in priority management and interpersonal relations. High ability to direct and maintain communication, take personal responsibility and handle people, with a strong ability in administrative organization.
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