Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

My life at the moment is completely different to how it once was. I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia and depression as well as struggling with self harm and overexercising. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
And since 2012 i have been declared healthy from my eating disorder.

I have been blogging for 7 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I now blog about recovery, my life, veganism and positivity!

If you have any questions leave them in the comment section as i am much quicker at answering there, otherwise you can always send an email: lifewithoutanorexia@hotmail.com

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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

How to gain weight on a vegan/vegetarian diet

Many think that a vegan(or plant based.. veganism is the actual lifestyle and not just the diet.) or vegetarian diet is just salad and pasta and potatoes, and many think that plant based diet is the way to weightloss, but that is not the case. You can still gain weight on a plant based diet even if it does mean that you do need to consume more volume than if you were to eat all types of food.

In recovery i had no choice over what i had to eat. I was forced to eat red meat 1-2 times a day everyday even if i didnt even like it, and there were times where i just refused to eat the meat because i did not think it tasted good, and also my mother and sister are pescetarians so they eat fish but no animal meat. I think it was a good thing that i had no choice in a way, as it made me overcome my food fears... i had to eat cheese and sauces and egg yolk that scared me. I had to drink milk, eat salmon and eat chicken with skin and consume full fat products... it helped me overcome my fear foods. If i had been allowed to just eat a vegetarian diet then i would have just eaten salads and tofu because that was what was safe to me... i wouldnt even have been able to consume nuts, avocado, pasta, oatmeal etc because those things were all too scary and high calorie for me. So by forcing me to eat all types of food in recovery it was helpful, and then when i was recovered i could start making food choices over what i liked and disliked rather than just making food choices based on my safe foods and fear foods.

I do recommend an all round intake in recovery from an eating disorder, but if you do decide to gain weight and recover on a plant based diet then know that there is more than salad and vegetables to try to gain weight on. (Also.. be honest with yourself!! Know why you eat the way you do and whether plant based is due to the eating disorder or due to ethical reasons. That is the first thing you need to do!) Also NOTE: I do NOT recommend a raw food diet in recovery, there is absaloultly no way you could get the right amount of calories or even macronutrients into you by just following a raw food diet. That is far too restrictive, in the future if you find that works for you... then sure, but during weight gain and recovery dont eat just raw food, it would be far too much work on your stomach and the bloating you get just from actual recovery would be 10 times worse from all the fiber of raw food. You would just cause yourself alot of discomfort and pain, when there is already enough of that just trying to eat normal portions and get your stomach and digestive system working again.

Below are some tips on how to gain weight while eating plant based which might be helpful for you. But as mentioned, i think a bit of everything should be eaten in recovery... some meals might be plant based, others you might have fish, dairy and egg, others you eat a pasta salad and others you eat cheese sandwiches and chocolate etc etc


Tips:

Lots of healthy fats!! Plant based food contains alot of fiber and grains which can be hard to digest and the fiber fills you up alot, so instead eat fats so that you dont have to eat such huge amounts.

Avocado, nuts, nut butters, seeds, coconut and coconut oil and full fat coconut milk (you can make coconut cream - Google the recipe)

Make home made nutella (with hazelnuts, cacao and coconut oil!) and top oatmeal, soy yoghurt, bread with it.. or just eat the nutella with banana or fruit.

Lots of bread, oatmeal, crisp bread, pasta, bulgur, quinoa, rice.

Lots of dried fruit.

Make home made flapjacks, raw food bars, raw food cakes, raw food balls.

Make home made nut and date cookies.

Make smoothies or milkshakes with oatmeal, banana, soy milk (or other type of milk), nut butter and some whipped coconut milk!

Make oatmeal pancakes or waffles.

Mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes with coconut oil and guacamole on the side as well!

Sweet potatoe pancakes with nut butter (dont be afraid to eat like 100g nut butter a day or 100g nuts per day!  Though nuts have alot of fiber so can cause stomach pain and bloating as well as nuts arent 100% absorbed/digested, so maybe opt for seeds!)

Oatmeal made with coconut oil and topped with plenty of toppings (i.e dates, banana, nuts, jam etc)

Make your own granola and eat plenty of that!

Drink some type of plant based milk with your meals - or juice!! ;)

Chocolate covered nuts or dates.

Make banana ice cream - though this can be very filling. But try to use 3-8 bananas and then top it with granola, nuts, nut butters, chocolate sauce etc

Pasta with sauce!!!

These are just some tips, there are so many other tips and suggestions such as vegan burgers with avocado and home made sauce, or buy a pizza base and top with tomatoe sauce and lots of tofu, or falafels with home made sauce and guacomole wrapped in wraps, or soup with a base of full fat coconut milk and then add whatever you want in there and eat some sandwiches with that etc

You CAN gain weight eating a plant based diet, but then you do have to be prepared for the fact that there might be extra bloating due to all the fiber and also aim to eat alot of hihgh fat and high calorie food rather than just vegetables and fruit.

I hope this helps anyone who eats plant based due to certain reasons! But remember - be honest with yourself and dont avoid meat/dairy/eggs etc just because you are scared of it, there has to be better reasons than that.












7 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. haha nej ok, såg att de fanns mjölk preotin (whey)... har inte riktigt koll på ingredienserna, men man kan göra eget iaf :) Jag antar om någon faktiskt är vegan och gör de för etiska skäll så har dem bra koll på vad som är veganskt och inte... jag har inte så bra koll på det.

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  2. Fibre in itself doesn't cause bloating and pain. It may cause discomfort if one eats a diet high in protein and fat which are hard to digest and so when the fibre helps with the digestion and "pushes it through" it may be uncomfortable. Also fibre is important in preventing heart disease :) all natural foods are full of it for a reason :)

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    Replies
    1. Of course fiber is important and needed though alot of it causes a fullness feeling (depending on what type of fiber anyway). In recovery and when needing a high energy intake it can be good to focus on food that doent fill you up quickly but not alot of calories for example it's better to eat a plate of pasta than just a plate of brocolli when it comes to weight gain anyway.

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    2. Yes I agree with you, fat is an "easier" source of calories especially when you fear eating larger volumes of food. Hope you have a good night!

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  3. I like the idea of making a soup based with coconut milk - have you made this before? All the soups I used to buy I can no longer have due to the ingrediants and my intolerances so I`m interested in making my own, any tips/recipes?
    Thankyou for posting this, it was really informative because although I`m not vegan or vegetarian I am dairy free at the moment (intolerances) so the ideas you mention were really helpful :)

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    Replies
    1. I just use a fullfat coconut milk and use that as the base and then add either tomatoe in a can or some broth :) But i am sure there are recipes which will give you a better outcome than just " a bit of this and a bit of that" haha. I think its delicious and adds more energy to soup which usually doesnt contain so much energy.

      How is it going with your intolerances? Are you coping better now or is it still tough?

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