1

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Adderall, Paleo, and Intuitive eating... HELP!

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created December 03, 2011 at 10:53 PM

Hi everyone. To make a long story as short as possible, i started eating Paleo in January of 2011. After years and years of battling bulimia and anorexia athletica (exercising obsessively to purge calories) I have finally started to do better. I have been having alot of issues with the compulsion that comes with bulimia, and was put on adderall in November 11. While this has had a great effect on my bulimic behavior, I am having a lot of trouble eating.

Before the adderall I had been doing a kind of programmed paleo diet, where I would eat set portions of protein, fats, etc at set times thruout the day to ensure correct nutrition (still a part of the eating disorder..) I havent really been making too much progress, and my CrossFit coach said to start intuitive eating. The first week or two was really hard for me, I had a really hard time identifying when I was hungry and mostly what I was hungry for. After that I started to really feel in tune with my body, and so FREE from the programmed calculated eating. As soon as I started taking adderall i lost my appetite all together. The intuitive eating is basiclly impossible because with the medication i dont know if I'm hungry or what Im hungry for.. let alone how much of it my body needs. Because of this I have started to regain old behaviors like waking up in the middle of the night and raiding the fridge, and feeling crappy.

Has anyone had experience with intuitive eating and adderall? I am finally making some ground with my ED and I am afraid to give up the adderall until I am doing a little bit better for an extended period.. I just dont know what my body wants to eat or how ot listen to it and Im afraid Im doing more damage than good.

618fc5298c4a96b817c4918c795a875f

(1217)

on April 19, 2013
at 10:04 PM

Until your body is rid of adderall, I wouldn't consider long periods of not eating an authentic "fast". Adderall is a very effective appetite suppressant, you say yourself that you have no desire to eat as a result of it. From what I understand, the intermittent fasting encouraged on PH is fueled by being fat adapted and THAT is what makes one able to go long stretches without food. Fasting while on adderall seems like a big "cheat" to me.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on December 04, 2011
at 04:35 AM

Your reply makes me a bit nervous, Samantha Lynn. I know fasting is big in Paleo circles, I'm just not sure someone with a history of eating disorders should go that route, at least until you have a lot of recovery time under your belt. Just seems like an easy slip into anorexia. Or it could increase the risk of a bulimia-style binge once you break the fast. To me, intuitive eating means includes eating when I'm hungry (but not starved) and stopping when I'm full (but not stuffed). But that's just my 0.02 - perhaps fasting works better for you than me.

9005074c1a03663bec946d5f23e89241

on December 04, 2011
at 04:18 AM

I think that is the best idea. I have done the programmed eating today, and I definitely felt better. Thank you!

9005074c1a03663bec946d5f23e89241

on December 04, 2011
at 04:17 AM

Thank you so much. Once I started Paleo I was so surprised at how beneficial the fasting was in resetting my body. I never thought I could make it that long without eating, and after my first grusome, angry, lightheaded 18 hour fast, it was like something clicked and I realized that it wasnt as hard as I thought it would be, and that my body was ok with not eating. It's like some sort of inner peace that comes from the knowledge that you WILL eat again, it may just be awhile =) Thanks again

9005074c1a03663bec946d5f23e89241

on December 04, 2011
at 04:12 AM

Thank you! I definitely always stick with the good and paleo foods, it was just kind of exciting for once to let my body choose for itself you know? As soon as I get a little farther into the recovery, I definitely plan on weening off of the adderall. Thank you!

B6114a1980b1481fb18206064f3f4a4f

(3924)

on December 04, 2011
at 03:45 AM

Congratulations on your progress. I know its not easy. I agree with Claire. It might be best to go back on your program and eat what you know is good for you with the intention of getting off the Adderall as soon as possible. Maybe it will help to also think of intuitive eating as something to look forward to that you know you can do when you stop the medicine?

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2 Answers

3
Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on December 03, 2011
at 11:14 PM

I can't say I have specific experience of Adderall, but I'd say you have to choose how you are going to proceed with recovering from your ED and then wait until you feel more secure in your progress before worrying about the rest of it. Keep track of your eating decisions and how you feel afterwards and try and shift the balance towards positive choices. You may not know what your body needs, but you know what it doesn't need, so don't let confusion allow you to fall back on old habits. Be aware of what you're doing. Take pictures of everything you eat if that's convenient. But most of all don't worry so long as you're making progress some way or other, however gradual. People have put their bodies through a lot and survived - the road to thriving is always one step at a time.

As an aside, since I got into fasting I've lost a lot of obsession about eating - I know that my body will function perfectly well for quite a long time without eating anything, so I just work on building good habits and trust my body to take care of itself.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on December 04, 2011
at 04:35 AM

Your reply makes me a bit nervous, Samantha Lynn. I know fasting is big in Paleo circles, I'm just not sure someone with a history of eating disorders should go that route, at least until you have a lot of recovery time under your belt. Just seems like an easy slip into anorexia. Or it could increase the risk of a bulimia-style binge once you break the fast. To me, intuitive eating means includes eating when I'm hungry (but not starved) and stopping when I'm full (but not stuffed). But that's just my 0.02 - perhaps fasting works better for you than me.

9005074c1a03663bec946d5f23e89241

on December 04, 2011
at 04:17 AM

Thank you so much. Once I started Paleo I was so surprised at how beneficial the fasting was in resetting my body. I never thought I could make it that long without eating, and after my first grusome, angry, lightheaded 18 hour fast, it was like something clicked and I realized that it wasnt as hard as I thought it would be, and that my body was ok with not eating. It's like some sort of inner peace that comes from the knowledge that you WILL eat again, it may just be awhile =) Thanks again

618fc5298c4a96b817c4918c795a875f

(1217)

on April 19, 2013
at 10:04 PM

Until your body is rid of adderall, I wouldn't consider long periods of not eating an authentic "fast". Adderall is a very effective appetite suppressant, you say yourself that you have no desire to eat as a result of it. From what I understand, the intermittent fasting encouraged on PH is fueled by being fat adapted and THAT is what makes one able to go long stretches without food. Fasting while on adderall seems like a big "cheat" to me.

2
23f0d6fca2d3d6a24c408f4ffbe341f4

on December 04, 2011
at 01:09 AM

Adderall is a stimulant that can suppress your appetite. I have no desire to eat when I've taken it either. In order to eat on Adderall, I have to plan what/when I'm going to eat and basically force myself to eat it. I suggest you do the same. I would suggest you try your hardest to get off the Adderall since it's an amphetamine also, but definitely work with your doctor on that.

Instead of focusing on eating intuitively, why not just eat foods you know are good? You can't go wrong with lots of fresh, lean cuts of meat and green leafy vegetables. And if your intuition is dysfunctional because of the Adderall, it's probably best to eat foods that you KNOW are good for you.

9005074c1a03663bec946d5f23e89241

on December 04, 2011
at 04:12 AM

Thank you! I definitely always stick with the good and paleo foods, it was just kind of exciting for once to let my body choose for itself you know? As soon as I get a little farther into the recovery, I definitely plan on weening off of the adderall. Thank you!

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