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Five Strategies to ENJOY Food Again

Five Strategies to ENJOY Food Again

  What was your favorite meal when you were a kid? Mine was my Nonna’s cooking, especially her gnocchi. I’ve blogged about her food before. I used to spend time in the kitchen, helping her create to gnocchi and adding ingredients to her sauce. Now, I’m able to recreate her gnocchi on my own. I enjoy every bite. And I’m pretty sure it will always hold special memories for me.  Most of us have these memories. When we’re younger, we just enjoy food a whole ton. We love trying new flavors, we love eating it. Most of all, we love playing with it. As we get older, many of us lose touch with this enjoyment. I think this has to do with diet culture and how we start to label foods as “good” and “bad.” If you’re struggling with an eating disorder or chronic dieting, this enjoyment is often completely lost. Resulting in food becoming scary and the eating disorder thoughts remove all joy and pleasure surrounding food.  But, it doesn’t have to be lost. One of my hopes is to support my clients in being able to enjoy food again. Which sounds really terrifying to some clients and sounds exciting to others. Food is supposed to be enjoyed! It’s the very substance that keeps us alive and we are allowed to give ourselves permission to unconditionally enjoy and eat it.  When you feel ready, here are some tips on learning how to find pleasure in eating. PS Some of these might seem quite challenging depending on where you are in recovery. If this doesn’t seem doable right now,...
Fall Transitions: Tips for Eating Disorder Recovery

Fall Transitions: Tips for Eating Disorder Recovery

A general rule of thumb: no one should end the fall season without having a PSL (pumpkin spice latte) from Starbucks 😉 Or coffee place of your choice because TBH there’s probably better PSL’s out there. Anyway! Happy fall! I’m incredibly #basic in the sense that fall is absolutely my favorite season. Again, I love PSL’s, boots, sweaters, the changing leaves, the weather. With all the excitement that fall holds, it also holds many changes. Changes like: going back to school, possibly leaving home, going to a different school, changing jobs or learning to adjust with kids not in the house. With all of these differences in routine, eating disorder behaviors can often be triggered during these times, so it can be a good season to explore new strategies for your recovery. In this blog, I thought it would be a good place to discuss: Tips for Transitions   1. Make a list of “red/yellow light” signs and “green light” signs with your therapist or dietitian.     For instance, I do this with many of my clients who are transitioning from high school to college, since it will be the first time they’re more consistently away from home.   “Red light” or “yellow light” signs are behaviors the indicate the ED voice/urges might be getting a bit stronger. For example, skipping meals/snacks, prioritizing exercise over other things, or a decrease in variety of foods.   “Green light” signs are indicative that you’re engaging in behaviors to promote recovery. Like: seeing your therapist and dietitian weekly, challenging fear foods, and eating regularly throughout the day (or following your meal...
REBEL Dieting at Cookouts

REBEL Dieting at Cookouts

How to Eat Healthy at Cookouts Here at Empowered Eating we often get a lot of questions and requests for tips surrounding navigating food during the holiday season around November and December, but what about the summer holidays? As REBEL’s we want you to enjoy these times and enjoy food at the same time. Often the summer holidays come in the form of cookouts, camping and BBQ feasts which can come with some challenges. Here are some tips when enjoying the 4th of July, Memorial Day, graduation parties, Father’s Day, and Labor Day. 1. What time do the festivities begin? Many times it is not as typical meal times such as late afternoon or early evening. I suggest eating breakfast lunch and snacks as you typically would as if it were just a regular day. This way when the feast begins you haven’t saved up your hunger and enter starving. This situation may end up in eating quickly and beyond fullness. 2. Survey the scene. Is it buffet style on a long table? Is it a sit down meal with appetizers? Whatever the case take a plate and put on there your favorites skip over things you have all the time or don’t particularly care for. Keep balance in mind by picking at least one protein, vegetable, fruit, and grain or starch. Proteins: Typically at cookouts you will find hotdogs, hamburgers, ribs, or chicken. If you love multiple options can you split with someone so you can get a taste of everything? Burgers and hotdogs do not have to be bun-less, unless you don’t like buns! Vegetable: There is...
Eating after oral surgery: wisdom teeth, tonsillectomy during eating disorder recovery

Eating after oral surgery: wisdom teeth, tonsillectomy during eating disorder recovery

Oral Surgery Nutrition Tips from a Registered Dietitian Rebecca Bitzer, MS, RD, LD, CEDRD Oral surgery, such as having your wisdom teeth removed, can be an uncomfortable, and often painful, experience. After surgery, it is extremely important to continue eating and drinking to allow for proper healing and weight maintenance. Though the surgery site may be painful or tender, there are a variety of soft or liquid foods that can provide adequate nutrition (and that taste good too!). Below, you can find tips to remember during recovery, a list of easy-to-eat foods, and several delicious, nutrient-dense recipes to try! Recovery Tips: Guidelines after surgery can vary depending on your procedure as well as your specific surgeon. However, here are a few post-surgery recommendations from the Mayo Clinic: Drink lots of water Avoid alcoholic, caffeinated, carbonated and hot beverages in the first 24 hours Don’t drink with a straw for at least a week, as it can dislodge the blood clot from the socket Eat only soft foods for the first 24 hours Add semi-soft foods as tolerated Avoid hard, chewy, hot or spicy foods that might get stuck or cause irritation Easy-to-Eat Foods Following Oral Surgery: Soups (cream of vegetable, lentil, minestrone, split pea, chicken noodle) Juices (cranberry, apple, grape) Yogurt (soft or frozen), cottage cheese, soft cheeses (mozzarella, brie) Pudding/custard Soft fruits (banana, papaya, berries, canned peaches or pears, apple sauce) Ice cream and milkshakes Fresh cooked vegetables Fruit smoothies/protein shakes Oatmeal/cream of wheat Eggs (scrambled, soft boiled, egg salad) Mashed potatoes or cauliflower Rice, risotto, polenta Tofu Pasta (plain or with sauce) Fish (soft white fish, sole,...
High School Student’s Poetry Inspires Eating Disorder Recovery

High School Student’s Poetry Inspires Eating Disorder Recovery

Poetry to Support Eating Disorder Recovery Have you ever tried poetry to help you express your feelings? The time in which a person is in the midst of eating disorder recovery can be one of great emotion and creativity. One of our clients and ED warriors wrote this inspiring poem about her experience. It is definitely worth a read!   “After you eat sweets,  your mouth gets a sour taste,  as if to remind you that  nothing lasts forever. Nobody tells you  that one day you will  forget. They only tell you  about the sob stories: the people who didn’t get better.  They don’t tell you  about the people that do. I promise that one day you will  wake up, roll out of bed and eat breakfast. I promise that one day you will  read this and think, how sad. I’m glad this doesn’t apply to me. And then look up at the sky, after buying candy from a drugstore and realize: It’s a bit warmer  than I would have guessed.” If you or someone you love is seeking recovery from an eating disorder, please contact Empowered Eating here or call 240-670-4675.    Note: This blog was edited and re-posted from June 20,...
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