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, February 22, 2017

Enjoying food again

Hey Izzy! I've really appreciated all of your uplifting posts lately, they're very encouraging as I'm in a tough stage of recovery and trying to motivate myself to push through. I have a quick question. When did you start to actually enjoy eating again? It seems you really enjoy cooking and eating now, was it like that throughout your recovery or did it come later? I have made a lot of progress in terms of eating enough calories, spacing my meals throughout the day, eating a wide variety of foods, and eating all my "challenge" foods (had some Mac and cheese yesterday!). But I still find little pleasure in eating. Instead, I view it as a chore that I just have to do to be healthy. So, do you have any tips on how to make eating pleasureable again? What worked for you? Thanks

Hello, first off you have made amazing progress which you should be very proud of :) And even if you may still be struggling you have come a long way, and you can get through this as well.

Food is something i love and it does make me happy, however its not always like that. Sometimes i get bored of eating, especially if i just have the same foods at home. And at times cooking and eating just seem like a "get it over with" and then i rely on meal prep so that i have food ready to just eat. For the majority of the time food does make me happy - i like finding new foods, new recipes, new flavours, new combinations. I love eating and knowing i am nourishing my body but also love eating chocolate and cake and dessert because that is delicious as well. It has definitely not always been this way though.

In recovery i ate because i had to, because it was on my meal plan. And i longed for the day when i knew i didnt have to eat according to a meal plan or thought i could eat less calories. I also found it very strange to think that people just sat down and ate when they were hungry - as i still didnt have any hunger feelings, i was just constantly full and never really wanted to eat. I did enjoy food, but not in the same way i enjoy it now. Ii enjoyed food in a sort of obsessed way where food was numbers and i enjoyed feeding others as well, but i didnt enjoy food that was high fat or high carb... i enjoyed food only if it was low calorie or if i knew what was in it. There was still alot of fear and anxiety involved with food.

Then later on when i had faced fear foods, ate balanced and intuitively i enjoyed food alot and loved eating. It was part of my life, not my whole life... just like it is now as well. However i feel like i enjoy food more now when im vegan because there are more flavours, more vegetables, more colours, more creativity. I get inspired by different accounts online and i love finding the new vegan products that are being sold. Of course with that said, food is something i enjoy alot... i enjoy buying food, i enjoy making food (somedays), and i enjoy eating food (mostly), but food is still just part of my life and only 5-10% of my day is spent eating or making or thinking about food.

What are my tips on enjoying food?

Its easier to enjoy food when you are actually hungry, but if you have a meal plan to follow then stick with that.

Eating with other people is a good way to make food more enjoyable again. Or maybe go to restaurants or cafes and try food there, try somthing new and different. Go to a dessert cafe and order 3 or 4 different cakes and try them all, just for the sake of it? 

Go to the food store and try something you wouldnt think of trying? Or maybe have a food theme for the week. Maybe one week eat lots of thai food, another week make indien food, the next week try chinese food etc 

Add oil, butter, cream... it can make a whole lot of difference in taste wise. For example, potatoes in the oven with no oil or salt are ok... but once you add oil and seasoning its like a whole new thing! 

Add seasoning and flavourings to your food.

Try plant based food... it often gets you to be more creative and when food looks good or smells good it can often taste better.


Try to not see food as a chore or something you need to just get over with. Its easy then to begin skipping meals or just not eating as you dont see the point of it. 

Its hard to give tips on how to make food enjoyable again or how to enjoy food, as its a mental thing. But its also so easy for food to become an obsession and that isnt good either. But trying varying food, new foods, eating with others.. Maybe eat 3 big meals instead of 6 small (for example?), or try making smoothies or oat cookies instead of oatmeal, or make mashed potatoes instead of boiled potatoes. Maybe meal prep so that you have food ready? Vary food... or maybe just eat your all time favourite foods for a while?

Of course sometimes food is just boring and a chore, i think it happens to most people where they just eat because they have to. But it shouldnt be that way forever, food is something that is delicious and should be enjoyed. A balance with food, i.e it shouldnt control or take over your life where food is your only happiness in life, but it shouldnt be a "force feed/chore" thing either. 



If anyone else has any tips/advice please comment below. All i know is that when i went through a phase where food was boring i just kept eating and eventually when life felt more balanced, when i was less stressed and when i felt happier, food also became more delicious again. So if you are depressed or stressed or just unbalanced then that can affect eating as well.


3 comments:

  1. Thank you!! I think you are right about having to follow a meal plan and eat when your not hungry while you're still weight restoring. Hopefully I'll enjoy food more when my hunger cues are normal again, but I just have to push through right now. Also that is a good point about stress, I didn't really think about that. I'm writing my senior thesis for university and studying for the medical school entrance exam, so I've been pretty stressed. I sometimes see eating as something to just rush through so I can keep studying.

    Thanks for all the tips on enjoying food again, they are really helpful! Especially eating with friends. I eat all my meals alone now so I'll try scheduling some meals with friends because it helps your overall mood to be more social! And your so right about the importance of balance. Food should have a place in my life I enjoy, just like any other thing, but of course shouldn't be the only thing I enjoy doing! Have a great day!

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  2. I get bored sometimes with food and then I know its time to vary what I`m eating otherwise my appetite goes completely and I feel as though I can`t be bothered with food - a slippery slope. Trying something new or cooking something a different way works for me. Just preparing vegetables in a different way rings the changes too. Its so easy to get stuck with the same foods week in week out with little variation but changes are good! And I always find I am more motivated where food is concerned when I am going to try something a bit different.

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    Replies
    1. Im the same, just a little bit of variation makes a difference and can make eating and food more appetizing again!!

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