Should You Count Calories To Gain Weight?

I have gotten this question more often than I eat peanut butter… which is A LOT.

The answer is: it depends on the person.

Some people find that it helps them if they don’t get normal hunger cues or if they have a busy schedule they need to work around.

For other people, they prefer not to get numbers involved.

Neither way is right or wrong, they are two different ways to approach an adequate recovery intake for the specific individual.

But really….. You DO NOT necessarily need to count calories to do Minnie Maud.

Here are some tips that worked for me to gain weight:
Drink a high calorie supplement with your snacks or add liquid calories to meals and/or snacks.
Stop buying diet and low carb/fat/calorie products. Not only will it help you physically gain weight, it helps with the mental aspect of recovery and challenging the “diet” mentality. In recovery, you need to be exposing yourself to foods you have been avoiding and that are REAL foods.
Cook more food with fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, butter, etc.  Adding more fats to your diet is going to do amazing things to your hair, nails, and skin. They are an essential part of a healthy body and should never be avoided.
If Minnie Maud doesn’t seem like it will work for you, it might be in your best interest to see a dietitian to help you set up a meal plan that is based on exchanges or a certain guideline to keep you from thinking about calorie counts all the time. There are different approaches that will work for each individual.

Even when you see a dietitian, they still get your intake up to about Minnie Maud calorie guidelines without putting focus on the specifics.

Remember this: food should not be seen as numbers. When you sit down to a meal, do you really want to look at it and start adding everything up? NO! You should be savoring every bite and being thankful you are blessed with nourishment.

Coming Out About Your ED

fdsEating disorders are made up of several traits. One of those traits is being secretive and not wanting others to know about it. It wants you all to itself and allows no one in. I remember years ago when I didn’t even think I had an eating disorder and lashed out at the doctors when they told me I had one. However, one of the most important things you need to do when you feel you have signs of any kind of eating disorder is to tell someone.

Even if you need to tell just one person. Someone you are close with, that supports you, or even someone you know that you just enjoy talking to. It is NOT as bad as your brain tells you its going to be. More than likely, the talk will bring you closer to that person and they might feel honored that you chose them to tell.

When people at school found out about me going to a treatment center, I was freaked out about returning and what people would say to me. When I came back, it was like normal. Sure people spread the word and pretty much everyone knew… but they treated me like they would have if I hadn’t left. I did receive one comment from a kid in class saying something like “at least you have some meat on you now.” This comment has stuck with me to this day. A part of me felt like he was calling me “fat” but logically, he was calling me “healthy”. He was so ignorant to how sensitive I was to words like that and I recognize this now. STOP GIVING A SHIT! Just because he made that comment does not change the fact that if I had continued down that road, I would have died. He didn’t know that. But I did. You must be stronger than the words that get thrown around and just move on. Easier said than done… but very possible.

What you need to understand is not everyone in this world is going to be your friend and love you. That’s just the way it goes. Make peace with it. Focus your attention on the ones that lift you up and make you smile. Those are the ones that are going to matter for you in the long-run.

No one deserves to be left to suffer by themselves. This is similar to people with an addictions. Do you think it would be right for them to keep engaging in their addictive behavior knowing that it is slowly killing them? NO! Every person has a right to voice any problems they are going through. Voicing this does not make you weak, it does not make you a failure. It makes you STRONG because you are taking the first step toward recovery.

recoverQuite honestly, I do not think I would have recovered if my family knew nothing about it. They eventually would have had to find out because it starts becoming super obvious, but having that talk truly makes your relationship better rather than taking a hard fall. I give my parents SO much credit for taking me to 4 different treatment centers within the 4 years I was struggling. They came to visit me, attended family sessions, and we worked together to figure out how to improve “family life” back at home that may have been a “trigger” for me. (hate that word, lol, sorry)

Explain to them what is going on in your head. Let them know that you did not ask for an eating disorder- NO ONE DOES! But recognizing it and having a support system to help you fight for your life back is the greatest gift you can receive.

Keep in mind, you DO NOT need to be underweight or taken to the hospital to suffer from an eating disorder. Absolutely not. Do not wait until you get to that point because let me tell you, it’s no fun. It is not glorious, you will regret getting to that point as it will serve you nothing for your future or your health. Fight it before it spirals out of control. Fight it so you don’t have to wake up every morning freezing and frail. Fight it so you will have healthy hormones. Fight it, but don’t fight it alone.

Dealing With Stress

As you all know, I am a college student. That being said, stress is quite the friend of mine. I am taking really time-consuming classes such as anatomy, lab, algebra, english, public speaking, and some university experience class.
There is never a time I am not  working on a paper or a project of some sort. I also have joined 2 groups that require volunteer hours and I must show up to their weekly meetings.

There is just not enough hours in the day…..

I am finally getting into the routine of things and figuring out when I have time for eating and socializing.

Just because I feel like crawling into a ball and crying because of the amount of things that need to be done, I take deep breaths and reassure myself. Instead of looking at the big picture, I take it day by day. I make a list of all the things I need to do in one day and focus on that. I’ll deal with tomorrow when it comes.

It’s okay to cry. I think I have done it at least once a week since I have moved in and ITS OKAY! Bottling up your emotions only leads to break downs in the long run and snapping at someone at someone innocent. (I know I am guilty of that)

I don’t take out my feelings on my eating habits. Eating intuitively is new to me I will admit, but I am listening to my body even though I question myself a lot. If I am still hungry after eating, I grab a snack or dessert to satisfy me. Without being fully satisfied, you might obsessively think about food until the next time you eat. It’s also OKAY to eat a spontaneous treat that you are not hungry for. That is called balance.

 NO REGRATS!!!

I do sincerely apologize for neglecting my blog. But realistically, by the time I am finished with my day and all my work, I have a snack and lights out! Sleep is one of the key factors of success in college. For sure.

I hope to update again shortly!

Anyone have any blog topics you would like me to write about!?