Why restricting is a bad idea.

 (Sorry this post isn’t exactly on the lighest or happiest side – but it’s an important topic that I think everyone should be aware of. So once again sorry for the heavy subject matter, I’ll be posting something light and happy again soon 🙂 )

I wanted to share with you all something that happened to me the other day. It was a real eye opener and pretty scary. I’m hoping that it’ll be a sort of warning to you all not to be a dumb as I was.


This happened the day after my latest ED battle. I ended up actually going out for pizza with my friends and not working out that day (3/0 for me vs ED). Overall we had a great time, but lactose intolerance + cheesy pizza = a recipie for disaster. I was up half the night with nausea, stomach cramps and other unpleasentless. Needless to say I felt less then stellar in the morning.

For one, I really had NO appetite whatsoever. I’m really a breakfast person, so this was kinda weird for me. I didn’t have time to “wait till I got hungry” cuz I needed to go to work. So I ate a bowl of oatmeal as usual and was off.

My appetite returned briefly at certain points during the day, but the problem was that I was full after only a few bites of food. I still ate because I knew that’s what I should do, but again it was probably less then what I needed. I figured that after all the food I had yesterday this was probably my body’s way of “balancing it out”. So I wasn’t all that concerned.

I was a bit tired from my lack of sleep the night before, so exercise wasn’t a real priority. I did a light “workout” more to move around a get the blood pumping then anything else. I guess that was a good thing because that’s when my appetite sparked. So a hefty snack was eaten and all was well.


Well not exactly because I was going out later to meet up with a friend. I wasn’t sure what we were going to do – whether coffee or dinner – so I didn’t want to eat before leaving. But I was starving! Finnaly I settled on a tomato and left home.

Everything was ok till I got to the bus stop. I started feeling really weak and nausea’s but I figured that might pass with time. It didn’t. I almost got off the bus at the first stop, but I wanted to wait it out till the end to see if it got better. By the time I reached my stop I felt like I was going to faint/throw up. I barely made it to the bathroom – my legs kept buckling underneath me. I texted my friend that I couldn’t make it 5 minutes before our scheduled meeting time – she was upset to say the least. I wasn’t too worried about that – what I was turning my energies towards was getting home. Thankfully there was a bus that had just arrived heading back –so I hoped on that one.

The 45 minute ride was sheer torture. I was faint and in a LOT of pain. My friends picked me up from the bus stop, which was a life-saver because at that point I could barely keep my head up. I crawled into bed as soon as I got home. Thankfully I had enough clarity of mind to grab a banana and few crispbreads before falling asleep, although I barely had enough strength to chew them.

The next morning I felt much better, and after a good breakfast I was “right as rain” – well almost. I’m not sure what was wrong with me, but I learned that restricting is NEVER a good idea for  us recovering from ED’s. Sure other people can go for days eating only a meal a day (I have a friend who does this) and binge drinking, or  live off of apples and coffee for a week. It doesn’t matter what they do – we simply can’t. Our bodies have tolerated enough abuse as is – we need to be extremely careful of how we treat them.

Every time we move, ever breath we take, every bite of food we are able to eat and digest is a gift – our lives our precious and we need to realize just how fragile they are. This might seem a bit extreme – but it’s the little every day choices that affect us in the long run. This is what I learned from yeasterday’s scare and I hope you can benefit in some way from me sharing this with you as well.




  1. Wow girl, what a tough experience! I am so sorry you had to undergo all of that torture :(( Hope you feel better today! But still I am glad you are looking at it as a way of learning that restricting never works! You are still winning, 3:0 is a great score!!

  2. Thank you for sharing this! I understand the physical pain that lactose intolerance can bring and it is by no means pleasant. I’m glad you really learnt from this ordeal and that you can remind yourself of it in the future.

    ❤ ❤

  3. Oh man I’m so sorry you had to experience that kind of pain! I can only imagine how bad that sucked. 😦
    But on the positive side, it looks like you gleamed some great lessons from it! Hope you feel better today!

  4. Aw man that souds really scary, hope you’re ok now. When you don’t have time to ‘feel hungry’ I uaually jusy grab a banana or something and eat it anyway as your body really DOES need food. Yay for learning though, even if it does take its toll on you, I love what you said about our lives too, it really made me thik 🙂

  5. Honestly? That happens to me as well. I dont know why but i get extremely sick and fatigued if I go to long without food even if its a few hours. Part of me doesnt understand how I use to go all day without eating and feel fine but now if I skip a meal or even a small snack I start seeing spots and get such bad shakes. It’s kind of bothersome because it makes me worries sometimes that ill be in a situation where I cant eat for a long time and ill end up getting sick. So i always try to put a BIG bar in my bag. One with at least 200 calories to help me if something like what you experienced happens.

  6. My body doesn’t tolerate restriction well, either. I seem to need food every few hours, and if I don’t get it, I really start feeling like I’m going to faint. It’s odd because before my ED, I used to be able to go long stretches without having have a meal, but now? Pft. No way. You’re probably right that our bodies have handled enough abuse, and that they’ve become a bit more fragile and finicky as a result. It’s annoying, for sure, but I guess that’s just what we have to deal with since we’re the ones who brought it on ourselves in the first place. Still, it’s not all that bad. It just means we get to enjoy more delicious food – I always make sure to carry something around with me in my purse. I’m kind of terrified of being caught in a situation where I have nothing to eat.

  7. This is a great post. I haven’t restricted in a long time but I remember when I would after starting recovery and for some reason it was just hard all of a sudden when when I was in the depths of my ED I would go 12 hours between each meal and I would be fine. Maybe I just don’t remember right. Restricting certainly isn’t a good idea. Besides, now we get to eat delicious food and such.

  8. I have been experiecoing the negative effects of restiction for wayy to long now. Why does ed let me think that pain in my calves (ie muscles deteriorating) or weakness in my body is a good thing? Thanks for shining some light on the topic! It is so imnportant to properly nourish ourselves, though Im not one to set the best example, I know in my heart its the right thing to do. My body cannot go without food for more than 2 hours without starting to get weird symptoms.

  9. How scary! I’m glad your ok now. I completely agree with your perspetive on our bodies suffering from our past abuse. I, too, can’t imagine going for too long without at least something to eat. I have no idea how people can go without breakfast and lunch and then just have dinner. I physically could never do that and now I don’t want to!!

    Hope you have a good week! Keep fighting and learning!

  10. How scary! You must have been very worried 😦
    I love what you are saying about the whole restricting deal. Food is a gift, and a lot of people take it for granted.
    And I’m lactose intolerant as well, (hence the name lactosefreelizzie lol) and before i completely cut dairy out of my diet, i used to use these lactaid pills that helped my body digest dairy, so if you are interested look them up!! 🙂

  11. This is such a great post to what I’ve been thinking about lately!! I’ve been experiencing that same sick feeling if I’m not eating enough at meals. Like I posted in my last blog post, I’m working on having snacks and find that increasingly I’ll feel weak and nausous if I don’t get enough to eat. It’s frustrating because I would like not to have to rely on food, but it is comforting as well because it means my body needs more calories and I can feed it and take care of it. It is using what I feed it.
    I love your blog because it is always real and at the same time uplifting.

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