Restriction in Eating Disorder Recovery

I’ve recently been thinking about restriction…

We could be eating thousands more calories a day & to the world look like we are doing incredibly.
However, we might still be restricting.
Restriction can lie in every decision.

ED is sneaky & tries to negotiate.
We need to pick up on & address the negotiations.
You don’t negotiate with terrorists – you don’t negotiate with ED!!

So, where might restriction still lie?
– Making the decision to have a fear food e.g. sandwich or choc bar but selecting the type of that fear food on energy values NOT on what the real you wants!
– Wanting to eat more after a meal but not responding… Instead you wait until the next meal ‘time’.
– Eat more but compensate for it… e.g. have a bigger sandwich at lunch but then choose not to have the crisps you usually have or reduce intake later.
– Use a meal plan but what you want to eat is more or different to the plan so you don’t have it!
– Have a minimal daily intake of food but see this as a maximum.
– Food rules eg. can only eat one type of carb at a meal, bread only x times a day.
– Use diet foods e.g. diet ice cream (!), yoghurts etc : We are not on diets!!
– Eat much more but still be scared of smaller details – avoid butter on bread / milk in coffee.
– Eat more calories but avoid fats, carbs, sugars…
– Stick to safe foods!
– Feel hunger (physical or mental) but judge it as inappropriate so don’t eat when it hits.
– Compensating for eating.
– Weighing foods – to ensure you are having ‘enough’ when deep down know it is to ensure it is not ‘too much’!
– Base intake on rate of weight gain & cutting back if feel gaining ‘too fast’.
– Eating more but not what you WANT to eat – not following cravings…
– Saving calories to allow self to eat more later or tomorrow!

ALL this matters.
We might be eating LOADS more but if we are still using restriction it reinforces to our brain that we can eat ‘too much’ or that numbers matter.

This restriction might not make a difference to if we weight restore or not but they keep the ED mindset strong.

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