I have been working closely with a few clients lately who are working with Ali Eberhardt, the eating disorder dietician that I so highly recommend. One of the themes that keeps coming up is the importance of starting small. When you struggle with anorexia and/or bulimia, sometimes adding certain foods into your diet can be really overwhelming and triggering, causing you to slip back into restrictive behaviors even more than usual. Typically the foods I hear this about the most are fats and carbohydrates. What both Ali and I support if you are struggling with a certain food group is to start small and work in manageable changes that you can be consistent with. If you put a lot of pressure on yourself to go from 0-100 overnight you will give up before you have even started. Instead, focus on making sustainable changes that you gradually increase. While Ali is the expert on this, below are a few ideas that may feel manageable to add to your diet if you are struggling with fats or carbohydrates:
Sweet Potato: you don’t have to cook the whole thing but start by adding in some of this vegetable to any of your main dishes or have it on its own.
Quinoa: this is great on its own but adding a ¼ cup to the top of a salad adds great texture without making it feel like the primary ingredient is a carbohydrate. Bonus: it’s high in protein!
Popcorn: This snack is light and easy. Ali typically recommends anywhere from 1-2 cups as a snack in order for it to count as a serving of grains.
Olives: Try adding these to a salad or to have on their own.
Cheese: Crumble a bit of feta or aged parmesan on top of your salad or purchase the baby bell rounds and see if you can add one into your daily routine
Avocado: Again this is great on top of salad. If avocados make you anxious take ¼ of one and mash it up with tomatoes, cilantro, lime etc and turn it into a guacamole. Use celery instead of tortilla chips. If it is used as a dip some find, when mixed with other vegetables, it doesn’t seem quite as heavy.
What are some carbohydrates and fats that you enjoy or find easier to add to your meals? Write them in the comment section below.