New Year- New Emmy

Is it me or did 2015 just fly by faster than a blink of an eye? With so much time dedicated to school, family issues, and recovering on top of that- time is something you crave more of. 2015 was a pretty good year. I got a lot accomplished:

  • graduating high school with honors
  • gaining 15 pounds of life
  • mending relationships with my friends
  • overcoming my fear of irrational things
  • surviving my first semester of college
  • meeting new people and experiencing new things
  • learning how to adult and pumping gas for the first time

and probably more things I just can’t think of at the moment… πŸ˜‰she grad

I tend to set smaller goals instead of larger ones because it’s easier on my brain and gives me a more reasonable expectation for myself. I plan to make 2016 a MUCH better year. These are some goals I set for myself and I WILL accomplish them:

  • gaining about 5-10 more lbs
  • getting my period back
  • being less of a perfectionist and going with the flow
  • getting a job over the summer (my first job…)
  • accepting the things I cannot change about my body and loving it for what it is
  • become closer with both my brothers
  • become an intuitive eater once I am where my body needs to be
  • making new friends at college since I tend to isolate myself too much
  • spend less time on social media comparing
  • get stronger πŸ™‚

Just some thoughts in my head right now and I may think of more down the line. There are really so many perks to being healthy- but I over anything I do want to be happier. I don’t want to stress out over the little things and I sure as hell don’t want to spend my life trying to be someone else’s version of perfect. Screw the people that tell you that you aren’t perfect just the way you are when you are at a healthy weight. The people that matter most in your life are the ones that love you no matter the number on the scale or the size of your jeans (hahaha who wears jeans anymore?!) And most importantly, you cannot expect to love someone until you love yourself first. I have tried and there is a big part of it taken away.

I hope you all make better choices for yourself this year. No, that does not mean the latest detox diet or going to the gym for hours daily. Find YOUR true healthy, find YOUR true happy. Absolutely no one in this world can force you to change, it all comes from within. And love, you are strong.

What is one of your goals for 2016?

Who is one person that takes all your worries away?

 

Email: emlove814@gmail.com

 

 

WIAW: Vacation EatsΒ 

I really had no time to post on Instagram all the yummy food I ate over my trip- mainly because it would have been awkward but I like to take social media breaks and focus on my family.

I decided to take pictures the last day of my visit when I wasn’t around extended family as much.

My day started off a little later than usual for breakfast and my tummy was growling so much!  I got a veggie feta omelette with hash browns and buttered toast! It’s amazing something as simple as buttered toast tastes sooo delicious! πŸ˜‰

Literally an hour after this I could tell I was still hungry. I don’t usually have morning snacks so it was a little hard to accept that I was hungry but I need to start listening to my body more and learn to flow with it. I had a dark chocolate peanut Nugo bar in my purse. Always be prepared people!

Considering that breakfast was later, lunch was obviously later too. My mom wasn’t hungry but I know I cannot skip meals. We settled for something simple but my favorite- PANERA ❀

 My favorite sandwich there is the bacon turkey bravo on their fluffy tomato basil bread. I also got a classic salad and an apple with a large tea. Simple and satisfying πŸ™‚

It wasn’t long until we had dinner either. Not going to lie when I said my hunger was non existent. But I can’t deny dinner and a time out with my family. Girls gotta eat regardless! I got a chicken enchilada and a spinach cheese mushroom enchilada with a side of fajita grilled vegetables. I also tried one of my mom’s chicken fajita nachos (which was the BOMB)

 Before this, we shared chips,salsa, and guac and I found the master tortilla chip πŸ˜€ Ignore the Elsa doll in the background, it was my little cousin’s…. Later to be covered in salsa.
 I usually do have more snacks during the day but vacations are unpredictable. I just made my meals bigger and tried to be flexible. Sometimes, you just have to learn to get off routine and go with the flow even if it’s not what you want or your normal times. This was a completely intuitive day for me and I’m really happy to see how I did and making sure I kept my intake up.

Do you enjoy eating out?

Favorite thing to order at Panera?

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cookies are one of the most wonderful creations. Who can agree? πŸ˜‰ I had a LOT of extra peanut butter and time on my hands to use so my baking addiction found me. I adapted this off several old recipes and pleasantly surprised how well they turned out. You could easily not add the chocolate chips but what fun would that be? When chocolate meets peanut butter, it makes your taste buds go crazy πŸ˜€

IMG_9110

The recipe is simple:

  • 1 1/2 cup peanut butter (I used toffee n cream by the Lion’s Choice)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2-3 tsp vanilla extract
  • dash of cinnamon
  • a little over 1/3 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a large bowl, add all ingredients except chocolate chips and mix really well until everything is combined. Fold in chocolate chips.

The batter is really thick so use a small spoon to scoop it out into balls on a cookie sheet. Bake for 10-11 minutes and allow to cool on cookie sheet at least 5 minutes. Enjoy!

I love this recipe because you can add different flavors of chocolate chips and it will always be delicious!

*You can substitute blue agave syrup if you don’t have honey.

 

My Christmas Success

When is the last time you ordered a large bag of movie theatre popcorn? Remember the first bite- the salty buttery crunch that entices your taste buds for more? Popcorn at the movies has been one of the biggest foods I have kept “off limits” for the longest time. 
When I was growing up, I could eat a large bag easy and it was just considered a normal snack! After hearing so much about how “bad” it is for you I put it on the list of things never to eat, ever. It was Christmas Day right after breakfast, my family decided they wanted to see Star Wars to kill time before going over to see relatives. While the idea of sitting for 2 long hours after being in the car 8 hours the previous day, really turned me off and provoked some anxiety. However, I gave in because I had no choice.

Once we got our seats, my mom wanted to go get some popcorn and I wanted a drink. I had absolutely no intentions of eating because we ate an hour before and I wasn’t really hungry. 

I was the one holding the bag in the middle and had a bite because it still smelled really good. Before I knew it, I kept popping more in my mouth. I ended up eating a bag and a half with my mom.   I don’t think I have ever experienced a true binge before and most people would consider this a small “binge”, losing control, or mindless eating. You know what though? I. Don’t. Care. I don’t even consider it to be any of those because intuitive eating means eating even if you aren’t truly hungry. It means eating when something sounds good and it sometimes means eating past fullness. 

This was a moment in my life that I truly felt like my old, carefree self again. Yeah, their were some mean thoughts about myself coming into my head but did I let that stop me from having the full movie experience? NO!

I may have eaten over a days worth of fat in just a snack, but I’m OKAY. The world keeps revolving and it will not kill you. Your body CAN and WILL use it! 

Later on that day I had a normal Christmas dinner at my uncle’s house without thinking about restricting from food earlier that day. 

This wasn’t just a recovery win for me, but a big wake up call for just experiencing NORMALCY. I need to stop holding myself back when something sounds good because of some irrational thoughts at the time.

I don’t want to look back on my life with regrets of not truly living. I want to remember being happy. 

I hope you all had an amazing holiday and were able to treat yourself and enjoy it. If not, don’t beat yourself up. There is always next year and it’s never to late to start challenging yourself. Go live, eat what YOU want, and don’t let anyone or your own self hold you back. 

What yummy treat did you have for Christmas?

Sometimes, you need to tell on yourself.

I would say when I look at how far I’ve come in my recovery as a whole, I am almost a completely different person now and I am proud of my accomplishments. It didn’t occur to me until the other day when deciding what to have for lunch did I really question my mental recovery. Some part of me slipped and had the urge to eat a TON of veggies and quinoa and egg whites. Why though? It didn’t sound good…. I just felt like I “needed” too because of what I had eaten prior that day. But really, a good old peanut butter jelly sounded good. After standing in the kitchen for 15 minutes fighting with myself, I made my PBJ and instantly felt satisfied but I was just a little frustrated at myself for making such a big deal about one meal.

I would guess that roughly 90% of people with or with a history of an eating disorder have stumbled down the path of “clean eating”. I know I have gotten my head in a bunch thinking about ways to totally detox my body and eat only whole foods. When I realized that this was not only hindering my recovery but not getting me anywhere with my weight gain goals I stopped, but that doesn’t mean it just stops in your head.

We are all exposed to people with this kind of diet. It could be a parent, a friend, in a magazine you read at the doctors office, or of course social media. It is ever so stressful to try to challenge yourself when you have all these diet messages thrown around like crazy.

What really helped me was reminding myself that absolutely NO ONE eats “perfectly”. Some people would argue that veganism is the healthiest way to go, but for me personally, I CRAVE meat,dairy, eggs. I cannot imagine cutting those things out of my diet. Others would argue that paleo, juicing, gluten free, or “clean” food is the way to go. Not necessarily for YOU though. If someone chooses that lifestyle (disordered or not) then LET THEM.

We need to focus on OUR own health rather than spend time comparing or making yourself feel bad for what you wanted to eat.

I love having a wide variety of foods to choose from. To me, it’s what makes life so much more enjoyable and exciting. I can go out with friends and order what I want, not because I need to eat a certain way for comfort.

Sometimes we need to tell on ourselves and that’s what I’m doing in this post. I am not ashamed for having a struggle, I would be lying if I said I lived in a perfect little world everyday and just ate carelessly. I am human and recovery is a continuous process. Like I said, I am proud to say I don’t really have “fear foods” anymore, I have made emends with many foods and starting to accept my not-so-perfect body. I have come far, but some things just need more attention. I am continuing to work on this clean mindset and just seeing all foods as fuel for my body.

The only time food can truly end up hurting your body more than anything is when you stop eating it. Listen to your body and feed it.

So I’m curious…

Have you ever been pressured to eat a certain way because someone else did?

What is one food you would never ever give up?

 

 

Banana Walnut Bread

It has been quite a long time since I did some baking in the kitchen 😦 When I saw that we had almost a bunch of already spotted bananas I knew it was time to make some good ole fashion nana bread. I don’t like having nats in the house either… I found an old family recipe and made some changes to it. Let’s just say it came out fantastic and made the house smell AMAZING!

bananabread

Recipe:

  • 2 large spotty bananas; mashed
  • 1 3/4 cups flour (I used a mix of whole wheat and oat flour)
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup agave syrup or honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4-1/3 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • lots of dashes of cinnamon… because cinnamon… ❀
  • about 1/3-1/2 cup chopped walnuts (depending on how nutty you want it) plus more for topping

First, make sure you preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a 9X5 inch loaf pan really well (don’t forget! It would ruin everything!)

Combine the melted coconut oil and agave/honey in a large bowl. Preferably use a whisk to mix it all together so it looks like an interesting thick mixture.

Add the eggs and mix until all combined. Now add in the mashed banana and milk and whisk.

Now add the vanilla, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt and stir well.

Sift in the flour and keeping mixing until no clumps. After that, fold in the walnuts.

Pour into the greased loaf pan and top with more nuts and a sprinkle of cinnamon (optional). Bake for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Make sure you allow it to cool completely before cutting. I find it best to store it in the fridge up to 5 days. After that, beware of mold because the moisture finds it. But who are we kidding, this may not even last a day πŸ˜‰

You’ll go bananas πŸ™‚

 

 

 

Q&A 12/17/15

I’m currently typing this in my bed because my energy has been so low and my body just wants to sleep! But I will take this time to get something done and answer those questions you all had for me πŸ˜‰ The only ones I am not going to answer are the ones that I don’t find relevant or helpful for my own or anyone else’s recovery. If you have more personal questions, you can always email me at: emlove814@gmail.com ❀

Here we go:

What motivated/pushed me to recover?

I got this question by several people and to be flat out honest: I’m tired. So damn tired of being tired. Drained. Constantly worried about food and my body. I just want to be fully happy again. I want late night ice cream runs and to go a week without working out and still look at myself as beautiful. I have put my body through so much damage too many times and my parents told me they wouldn’t send me to treatment. They wanted me to want recovery badly enough that I would ACTUALLY choose it. So I did, and decided to recover at home this last time around. No dietitian, no therapist, just me and facing my fears. I wouldn’t call myself 100% recovered but that’s because I am far from perfect and recovery is an ongoing process for some people. Sorry for the novel.

How did you deal with weight gain and eating even though you knew each week you were gaining?

Gaining is the GOAL. I know that is the hardest thing for people with an eating disorder to accept but gaining weight is what is saving your life. You are not only gaining weight but you are gaining your life back. You know that little sparkle you had as a kid? That is taken away with every pound you lose. Fight all you can for it back. I kept that in the back of my head.

If you could travel one place in the world for a week, where would it be and why?

I have always wanted to travel to Italy. Something about trying real Italian food and they have some of the most beautiful sights! It really seems like an easier way of life over there and I just love to explore. Also, I like my men tall, dark, and Italian πŸ˜‰

What is your favorite quality of yourself?

I like my wittiness. I find that I am mostly an introvert but when I am around others, a completely sarcastic and random side of me illuminates and I can get people to laugh or smile very easily πŸ™‚

Do you recommend residential treatment?

Depends on your motivation level. Some need to go to treatment to be away from outside stressors that may prevent them from reaching a healthy recovery. Some people can recover at home but having a VERY strong support team is crucial. Whether that be close relatives that you can talk to and work on things you struggle with or a therapist and dietitian to give you the tools you need to be successful and to prevent relapse. I personally found residential very helpful, but at the time I don’t think my motivation was as high as it is now.

What are some of your favorite ways to cope with anxiety?

Anxiety runs in my family, like hard-core. So dealing with it has been interesting…. What really helps me more than anything is talking/venting to my mother. She is my best friend and I am so happy to have her in my life. Other things that help are blogging, journaling, going for a small walk, laying in the warm weather, taking a hot shower, and listening to music fo sho.

What’s your favorite college experience thus far and what experience do you wish you could do over?

Oh boy, my favorite experience was probably being around a whole new group of people. I really needed to start over and have no one know anything about me. I wish I would have been a little more social but hey, I still have next semester and that is my plan πŸ™‚

What do you do to spend the Christmas and New Year without worrying about all the food?

Food is not the focus. It has taken me years to finally realize this. Food is just what brings people together and should be seen as an enjoyable thing- especially if that’s the one day of the year you get that kind of food. The less you stress about the food, the more you will smile, be present, and focus on the loved ones that truly matter. Enjoy your holiday πŸ™‚

What are some of your favorite ways to get healthy fats in?

For starters, I don’t like to think too much about if it is “healthy” or “unhealthy”. Fats are fats. I’m not saying eating a stick of butter is the best thing for you, but choosing butter over olive oil is OKAY. I actually love to butter my bread or spread some coconut oil on it. Delicious! Obviously I am a nut butter addict so I get a lot of fats in by adding a huge gob to my oatmeal. Not no little teaspoon shmear. That is so unsatisfying! I also LOVE LOVE LOVE avocado! YAS. Don’t throw away the yolk of eggs. No.

How do you know when to stop increasing?

Well it depends on your goals. If you are trying to regain weight, keep increasing until you gain consistently or just listen to your body. Nothing wrong with extra when recovering from an eating disorder. In other words, there is NO extra in recovery. It’s all important. You should probably be within a healthy weight range and getting your period before you can consider maintaining. But just because you are at a healthy weight doesn’t mean cut your intake again. If you are just wanting to increase your metabolism then add a little each week and see how you feel with your hunger cues.

What was the hardest thing about recovery for you?

Wow, this one is a toughy. It’s all hard. Nothing ever worth it comes easy. But I will never forget all the times I had to leave my family. I still can remember the tears on my mom’s face as she left me in treatment. Every damn time. I am so close to my family that it kills me to be away for so long. Oh, and can’t forget about the constipation….

What in your life has changed for the better since recovering?

EVERYTHING. Nothing ever good came from my ED. Nothing. I have my family and friends back. I can eat REAL food and actually enjoy it. I can sleep in my own bed. I have energy to walk up the stairs and my motivation to live back. I can exercise now (within reason) and feel strong. Recovery is more than great, it’s phenomenal ❀

If you could have any profession, what would it be?

I am going to college to become a dietitian. I feel as though God has put me through my struggle to overcome it and use it to help others. I feel as though I am far enough along to where I will never ever go back. Being a dietitian may even help me maintain a healthy relationship with food my whole life. I cannot wait to reach out to others and help them find their own balance.

What keeps you happy and wanting to wake up every morning?

Life. It is fascinating. Every breathing moment there is something to look forward to. Whether it’s nomming on your favorite breakfast or spending time with loved ones, life is constantly changing and you never know where the day will lead you.

Should someone jump to the recommended recovery intake or take it slowly?

For people that are severely restricting under 2000 calories a day, I would say take it slow at first. Start with about 2000, then the next week shot for 2200-2400. Increase in increments every 5-7 days until you reach the 3000 MINIMUM. Some people go over because again, there is no limit in recovery!

How can someone deal with bloating? I feel like I can’t enough food in because I am always so full.

Think about what you are filling yourself up with every day. People with an ED tend to want to eat foods with a lot of volume such as fruit, veggies, popcorn, protein bars, etc. Eating DENSER foods and cutting down some of the fiber and protein will help SO MUCH. Switch out the fresh fruit for dried fruit and see how you feel. Cut down the vegetable consumption because your body does not need that right now. (Read more about that here) Also, adding liquid calories helps incredibly when added to meals and snacks!

Have you ever been in love?

No. I had a serious boyfriend but I honestly won’t call it love. The time will come πŸ˜‰

Do you want kids someday? How many?

Yes ma’am! It would be awesome to have a boy and a girl.

What is the best way to stop counting macros/ only eating “clean foods”?

Food is not numbers. Your body takes in what you give it and uses it. Nothing just sits there. Realizing that if you eat protein, carbs, and fats throughout the day at meals, you are getting enough of what you need. No need to get so specific about it. Also, what you think is “healthy” and what another thinks is “healthy” could be completely different things. This link was somewhat helpful:

http://thefuckitdiet.com/2015/12/01/how-to-think-about-nutrition/

When did the weight finally distribute?

It just happens. Not overnight or in one week. The less you body check in the mirror and pick out every little detail on your body, the less it will even cross your mind. I would say for me it happened as I was gaining, I just didn’t even notice it. Give it time and don’t be hard on your body. It’s doing what it is for a good reason.

I hope this helped! πŸ˜‰

XOXO

Emmy ❀

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update on life lately! 12/14/15

Hey guys! Long time no post. Well let me tell you, college definitely kicked my booty this semester. I really went in with a good attitude and was in a great place in my recovery. I had just reached a minimum healthy weight and planned to maintain it and just focus on school and my social life. The first 2 months went pretty well… I was eating out a lot with people I didn’t know and breaking out a lot of my comfort zone. However, stress had a way of creeping into my life really quick.

I am going to be honest with you all and say the intake I was consuming before college had dropped when I started school for a few reasons. First, my schedule had been ALL over the place because I had joined 3 groups plus the busy every day routine I had. It became way too much for my brain to handle. I found at the end of the day my intake was just not where it needed to be.

I really did not have intentions on losing weight. Nada, just no. I was finally at a place where I could accept my body but I tried to intuitive eat and it just didn’t work. Not sure if I am just not ready or what because I wasn’t feeding myself enough for my body’s needs.

Luckily, I only dropped like 2 pounds. I don’t weigh myself hardly ever because the number doesn’t play a huge role in my life but I was curious one day to see if I was on track. No worries because I am going to spend my holiday break increasing my intake and weight back where it needs to be. I even plan on gaining a few more pounds to not be at the “minimum”.

It has been a solid 5 years without a normal menstrual cycle and boy do I desperately need that back. Whether or not I plan to have kids someday, the option would be nice and obviously if my body is not giving me any signs of hormones, I am not healthy enough. While it does scare me to imagine myself bigger when I already see a healthy enough person in the mirror, I know what needs to be done.

Aside from all that mumble jumble, I am home for a good 5 weeks and feel soooo happy! I get to cook again (which is obviously something I adore) and see my family more often. No need for stressing about deadlines, and sleeping in sounds amazing. I am going up north for Christmas to see my extended family but other than that I don’t plan on doing much but working on my goals.

So I want to ask you….

Has anyone else had to go through this?

What is your favorite Christmas movie?