So this post is going to be about listening to my body.
Disordered eating does all sorts of messed up things to your body. I’m not going to go into all the details, because you can read up on all of that on-line (although I personally wouldn’t – it’s not very pleasant reading material). I was lucky enough to escape all of the various serious medical complications of severe malnutrition, and I thank God every moment of every day for that. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t experienced negative reprecussions of my past actions.
One of the major ways my old eating habits have affected me is that they have totally messed up my digestive system. I went from being a girl who could eat things like this :
…to being a girl that struggles to find foods that will not result in severe stomach pain. It’s sad to see how much I’ve messed up my body due to my ED, but it’s also a constant reminder not to go back to where I came from.
Recently though, I am practicing understanding and listening to my body more. This came as a struggle for a long time, because most of my “safe foods” included fruits, veggies and maybe some beans and a tiny bit of grains – not an ounce of fat anywhere. Eating like this did NOT make my stomach happy to say the least (now it’s pretty obvious why). When I first started trying to normalize my eating habits every meal was sheer torture for me. For a long time I figured it was because my body was not used to eating anymore, and these symptoms would fade with time. They lessened with time, but have never completely disappeared. This not only baffled me but made eating an unpleasant experience. I was so frustrated because here I was – trying to do the right thing my nourishing my body, and it was rejecting all the wholesome food I was trying to give it.
The last week on the other hand, has been the best week eating wise I’ve had in a while. I’ve experienced minimal pain and discomfort. And what changed, you might be wondering. I’ve started incorporating a higher amount of fats in my diet. This was a struggle for me for quite some time, but now I’m coming to realize that it’s what my body needs to function properly. Nuts, nut butters, cheese, avocados- all that when combined with other foods helps me digest and assimilate what I’m eating. It fills me up, gives me energy, and I don’t experience bloating or pain. I’m still learning how my body is affected by certain foods, but I’m definitely honoring my body cues and signals a whole lot more then in times past.
I have a hard time with milk and some milk products (thankfully yogurt is not one of them), I need to combine fruit with fats or proteins of some sort, and I can’t eat too much fiber in one sitting. I need to eat 5-6 small meals in a day, and I can’t eat just a salad for any of those meals. And that’s ok!
It’s sometimes hard for me to accept the way my body wants me to feed it vs. the way I THINK I should eat. In my mind the ideal eating plan would include a whole lot more veggies and about 3-4 meals a day. But I’ve learned that by listening to my cravings I’m a whole lot better off, then when I try to push myself into some ideal eating scheme that my mind has made up (my formerly disordered mind, I need to remember).
Speaking of healthy fats, here are my recently discovered loves:
And my latest invention (this stuff is AMAZING)
I ate a few tablespoons out of the jar as I was making it, and it was really hard to stop :P. I need to make another batch soon, because I am QUICKLY running out. There’s no way to describe it aside from : creamy, sweet and delicious (and those words totally don’t do it justice.) Seriously – if you like banana’s and almonds, make it now.
(And if you want to know how it’s made, it’s simply 2-3 tbsp raw almond butter, cinnamon to taste, 1/2 a very ripe banana all blended up together. Simply amazing!)
I am so happy to finally be making peace with my body. It feels good to know that I am doing the “right thing” by nourishing it in this way. It was scary at first – and still is from time to time, but I am learning just to accept and not compare myself to other people. Everyone is unique and has different needs. So stop trying to do what’s good for someone else and do what’s best for you. I promise you you’ll feel a whole lot better because of it!
What is something unique about your body/the way it functions?
Do you have intolerances/allergies to any foods?