2

votes

Ex Grockette with ED forced to be on standard diet and having issues.

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 27, 2012 at 10:00 AM

Hello

Unfortunately I have an eating disorder. It started as emotional eating ( on standard diet before discovering paleo) I hated the weight gain and droped 15.4 lbs, which ended up being 6.6 lbs underweight.

I heavily think that Paleo is the best way of eating, I regained weight by myself and my immune system was as strong as steel, but because i used it in both bad and good ways, they won't let me follow it anymore.

I'm having issues with chocolate and I can't stop semi-binging on it. Eating chocolate after 5 months on paleo is like taking drugs. I had bad reactions to eaing a bowl of ceral and milk and it threw me off, my body has to get used to more carbs i suppose.

I can't break it. Even though i repeatedly make myself sick in the stomach from all the junk. i just go for it. I feel i'm also in some kind of energy fluctuating cycle.

:'( I'm very upset, I wish to get better but it's going to be a difficult journey. I'm at a healthy weight now but I'm scared the whole emotional then restrictive eating will start again. I am getting help but I wouldn't mind seeing if anyone has any advice here.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 28, 2012
at 12:01 AM

agree. i'm sorry rawdawg, but i had to downvote. EDs are about so much more than gut health. it's mostly an emotional relationship with LIFE. it's not about the food, really. it's about control (for the most part).

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 27, 2012
at 11:59 PM

i understand what you are saying, and i don't agree with the food template that most recovery plans take you through, but part of the recovery process is becoming at peace with eating ANYthing. junk included. you aren't really recovered if you can't be at peace with any food. that's what they are trying to do with the op.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on May 27, 2012
at 10:42 PM

I would say the 80/20 rule is best here. Paleo 80% of the time and not paleo 20% of the time. Have 80% of your diet come from meat, vegetables, fruit, roots, and nuts. The other 20% could be dairy, rice, oats, sprouted grains, desert. That is how I recovered. I ate a lot of beef and potatoes, fruit, and baked root vegetables. My 20% were things like yogurt, ice cream, and oatmeal, and sprouted grain bread.

60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on May 27, 2012
at 10:03 PM

I'm sorry if my comment caused you to become negative. I would rather someone recovering from an ED intake foods that are beneficial, and not just empty calories that will cause more harm to nutrient levels and hormone production. Not to mention foods that she is more likely to binge on and feel guilty about later. Not to mention the peaks and dips in insulin that won't help the way she feels. She is expressing concern for a SAD, so she has no doubt thought about this. I also understand where the family is coming from, and am giving her an option to approach things differently.

65bf1ca7071028018c6d8305d0ddcd76

(3049)

on May 27, 2012
at 08:55 PM

While you may be right, we're putting ourselves at risk to anonymously counsel minors on EDs, supplementing, etc. (the minor fact that came out after you posted your response) while forums are a great place to come for emotional support they cannot replace the relationships with family or those in a medical profession who are hopefully in possession of a complete picture of the situation.

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on May 27, 2012
at 06:11 PM

"I had bad reactions to eaing a bowl of ceral and milk" - that to me is a smoking gun, and this isn't medical advice, it's common sense - if you have a reaction to a specific food, avoid it. How is it okay to consume dairy and grains when there's a clear reaction?

D5d982a898721d3392c85f951d0bf0aa

(2417)

on May 27, 2012
at 05:06 PM

Imagine mom/dad/brother/sister/aunt/uncle sitting at the table, listening to someone recover from an eating disorder tell them why she should be getting her carbs from X and not Y - wouldn't you find that conversation really worrisome? I'm sorry, I think we need to back off and let the PH'ers who've been in her shoes and done the work give more nuanced advice.

D5d982a898721d3392c85f951d0bf0aa

(2417)

on May 27, 2012
at 05:03 PM

I agree with Renee and will repeat: EDs are a serious mental illness. Let her deal with that now. It's plenty. Let's just support the OP. We do NOT have the skills or presence in her life to be giving her medical advice, and undercutting her mental health care provider is doing that.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on May 27, 2012
at 03:33 PM

Word. 80/20 is a great compromise for someone with and/or recovering from an eating disorder.

65bf1ca7071028018c6d8305d0ddcd76

(3049)

on May 27, 2012
at 01:41 PM

Ok, since you are a minor and in outpatient treatment I have to ask: where is your ongoing support system in this? You said your meals are not supervised and you have no nutrionist. It would seem that at very least having a 'plan' to gain weight supervised by someone qualified to speak to caloric intake and nutrients is important. Maybe you aren't in a position where you can choose paleo right now, but choosing whole, nutritious non- packaged foods may be easier to explain to your family and psychologist.

E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on May 27, 2012
at 01:11 PM

I guess, that whole mess I wrote is saying that I feel quitting SAD is harder for some people than others, AND some people have way more negative reactions in the beginning than others. Some people quit smoking in a day and feel great. Others take months/years and want to dropkick a puppy every minute they go without a cigarette. Unfortunately, the transition seems harder for you than some. That doesn't say anything about you, though. I'd probably kill a buffalo barehanded for your digestive system, and I don't even know that yours is better than mine--but I guarantee it can't be worse, haha!

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 27, 2012
at 01:10 PM

Are you a minor?

345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on May 27, 2012
at 01:05 PM

OFalls perhaps work with your psychiatrists to works thorugh the 'loss' of paleo and get to a place of 'acceptance' will you start to grab hold of your situation, accept what needs to happen and feel better about doing it. Moods can play a big part in your success so why not face it head on and get through that part. Obviously you will have good days and bad days, so don't worry about what you can't control. Ask your dr.s to help you work through all the emotions of everything, even the diet change. good luck!!

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:58 PM

Im definately listening to my psychologist. I was just wondering if any paleo'ers would have any advice on how to kick cravings, while being on S.A.D, some alternative like a certain fruit? I've got no clue, that's why im here

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:55 PM

sorry i find it a bit hard to understand what you are saying. i'm very tired too. But I agree with withdrawals from S.A.D to paleo. I dreamt of pancakes and chocolate. I'm currently mourning the loss of lovely paleo, even though my eating patterns were ridiclous. I still had a great immune system and better mood. One day i might return to a paleo-esc diet, but in the mean time.. :/

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:48 PM

* and also my family

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:48 PM

my psychologist

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:46 PM

* it's a weight gain plan , we remove snacks later i think and chocolate is encorporated in my desert after dinner or after lun ch but i can't seem to just eat two peices, i just go full fledged :( I'm at a healthy weight now. im literally 1 pound away from my goal . so at this point im scared im going to over do it :(

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:44 PM

and chocolate is encorporated in my desert after dinner or after lunch but i can't seem to just eat two peices, i just go full fledged :(

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:43 PM

* it's a weight gain plan , we remove snacks later i think

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:43 PM

Im in outpatient treatment, yeah it is , 5 meals a day. I'm not being supervised when eating so it's really hard for me, i'm not an adult so it's even harder. I don't have a nutritionist, my psychologist is a specialist in ED's so she is knowledgeable with nutrition as well, she gave me a sort of meal plan but im struggling to follow it

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:41 PM

Im definitely listening to my psychologist. From an nutritional standpoint i was wondering if there was some way i could eat the S.A.D without cutting everything out which i cannot do. People here are very knowledgeable in nutrition so i just assumed someone may be able to help me

Dea5f440698f5488b975ada2f61daa0d

(393)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:29 PM

Who is this "they" in the second paragraph who "won't let me follow it?"

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:22 PM

And her doctor is telling her that Paleo is not an option right now. So should she listen to her psychiatrist or to people on the internet? Telling her to eat Paleo is just not helpful.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:21 PM

i don't think this is an appropriate response at all. EDs are a serious mental illness. Obsessing over grains and leaky gut is exactly what got her here in the first place.

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5 Answers

8
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on May 27, 2012
at 03:26 PM

You need to push your doctor to screen for lactose and fructose intolerance, as well as celiac disease. It's unacceptable that this is not done, especially considering that mal-absorption of these is tied to mental health issues. Once you have a real diagnosis you are more likely to get foods that won't upset your stomach. Also I did paleo for a long time and eventually switched to a more "normal" diet and there are tons of foods that aren't paleo that don't upset my stomach like rice. I think rice is also the least likely to induce cravings.

Also, an ED is more likely to make you sick than non-paleo foods. If you go back to paleo, I highly recommend doing only 80% of your diet paleo and learning to love some very paleo curves.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on May 27, 2012
at 03:33 PM

Word. 80/20 is a great compromise for someone with and/or recovering from an eating disorder.

3
F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:20 PM

Hi OFalls, are you on a meal plan for weight gain? Are you in treatment? I did a 3-month outpatient (i.e. day) treatment that I found extremely helpful for regaining weight without binging and for dealing with the underlying issues. Yes, it wasn't a Paleo diet, but when you have 3 meals and 3 snacks of a set quantity, and given a set time to finish them, and eating them with other people in a supervised setting, binging becomes pretty much impossible. Also because you are feeding yourself every 2-3 hours, the urge to binge is greatly reduced.

Even if you cannot get this kind of treatment, I hope you are working with a nutritionist who can set up a meal plan for you to follow. The first time I was diagnosed with anorexia, I was just told to like, gain weight back, with no meal plan to follow. So it was months of binging, erratic eating, erratic weight gain, and a lot of agony. Second time around I had a consistent meal plan and supervision and didn't binge once, and gained the weight back slowly and steadily.

If you have a nutritionist, you could ask her to incorporate chocolate as one of your desserts after lunch, perhaps, a couple of days a week. So instead of seeing it as a prohibited food, you see it as just part of your diet, along with the other foods you are eating.

I could write for ages about the trickiness of dealing with an ED in a world where "recovery" means eating SAD, but I won't here. I think Paleo may be an option for you in the future, but I agree it doesn't seem appropriate right now. And that's okay.

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:46 PM

* it's a weight gain plan , we remove snacks later i think and chocolate is encorporated in my desert after dinner or after lun ch but i can't seem to just eat two peices, i just go full fledged :( I'm at a healthy weight now. im literally 1 pound away from my goal . so at this point im scared im going to over do it :(

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:44 PM

and chocolate is encorporated in my desert after dinner or after lunch but i can't seem to just eat two peices, i just go full fledged :(

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:43 PM

* it's a weight gain plan , we remove snacks later i think

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:43 PM

Im in outpatient treatment, yeah it is , 5 meals a day. I'm not being supervised when eating so it's really hard for me, i'm not an adult so it's even harder. I don't have a nutritionist, my psychologist is a specialist in ED's so she is knowledgeable with nutrition as well, she gave me a sort of meal plan but im struggling to follow it

2
E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:46 PM

Before going paleo, I dropped from 185 (fairly muscular) to 140 in the hospital with a resting heart rate of 144 bmp. A panic attack. After that, I was recommended to see specialists and psychiatrists out the ass ('scuse my language). Going paleo saved my life in terms of the panic attacks and anxiety/depression. However! Here's what I've noticed that's the elephant in the paleo room (which is even more alarming because it's in a room full of omnivores with nothing else to eat...).

A friend of mine worked as a nurse in a detox center. He told me countless stories of the horrors of people going through withdrawals. People seeing snakes, their skin melting off--very gruesome and graphic stuff! Did they get better? Only when someone tied them to a bed and forced them into withdrawal. No one can/will do that with diets, but I know the effects are the same. Everyone touts the paleo/primal/whatever it's called diet as a panacea, but they forget that the SAD diet is hard to break for a reason: the same people making drugs are making much of that "food" (Hell, their overseeing agency is called the FDA--and yes, I know the FDA doesn't personally create some of that stuff, but c'mon Peter Griffin voice). The SAD diet isn't meant to be broken easily. So while, I hope that you go back to paleo at some point (I don't see how your doctors could argue keeping to fresh fruits and veggies and lean cuts of meat/poultry/fish even with adding grains and such back in).

I guess what all the rambling is trying to say is, you went paleo and probably had an extremely strong reaction to all the withdrawals, and somewhere, unfortunately (and my heart goes out to you) the psychological reaction became stronger than your physical one. But! You will be okay. I have a personal gripe against psychiatrists (I think psychologists are much more efficient at helping you through problems since they can't write you off with a prescription pad), so I can't offer any advice there. What I wonder though...do you think you could adopt a WAPF or primal diet or lacto-paleo and essentially try and include a paleo-esque diet without the restrictions?

Sorry for rambling, my insomnia is definitely not paleo-friendly.

Hang in there!

Jon

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:55 PM

sorry i find it a bit hard to understand what you are saying. i'm very tired too. But I agree with withdrawals from S.A.D to paleo. I dreamt of pancakes and chocolate. I'm currently mourning the loss of lovely paleo, even though my eating patterns were ridiclous. I still had a great immune system and better mood. One day i might return to a paleo-esc diet, but in the mean time.. :/

345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on May 27, 2012
at 01:05 PM

OFalls perhaps work with your psychiatrists to works thorugh the 'loss' of paleo and get to a place of 'acceptance' will you start to grab hold of your situation, accept what needs to happen and feel better about doing it. Moods can play a big part in your success so why not face it head on and get through that part. Obviously you will have good days and bad days, so don't worry about what you can't control. Ask your dr.s to help you work through all the emotions of everything, even the diet change. good luck!!

E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on May 27, 2012
at 01:11 PM

I guess, that whole mess I wrote is saying that I feel quitting SAD is harder for some people than others, AND some people have way more negative reactions in the beginning than others. Some people quit smoking in a day and feel great. Others take months/years and want to dropkick a puppy every minute they go without a cigarette. Unfortunately, the transition seems harder for you than some. That doesn't say anything about you, though. I'd probably kill a buffalo barehanded for your digestive system, and I don't even know that yours is better than mine--but I guarantee it can't be worse, haha!

1
60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on May 27, 2012
at 04:43 PM

Have you tried approaching your family with the Paleo diet from a health standpoint? If you're trying to gain weight and deal with your issues, then a healthy diet is definitely more beneficial than one with a bunch of junk. Where are your vitamins and minerals come from? Muscle building proteins? Try to show them that paleo is based on getting everything your body needs from food. I get that they're trying to make you unafraid of the junk and calories to help eliminate your food issues, but try doing that with coconut butter or bacon or avocado. Something that also gives your body what it needs to balance your hormones.

60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on May 27, 2012
at 10:03 PM

I'm sorry if my comment caused you to become negative. I would rather someone recovering from an ED intake foods that are beneficial, and not just empty calories that will cause more harm to nutrient levels and hormone production. Not to mention foods that she is more likely to binge on and feel guilty about later. Not to mention the peaks and dips in insulin that won't help the way she feels. She is expressing concern for a SAD, so she has no doubt thought about this. I also understand where the family is coming from, and am giving her an option to approach things differently.

D5d982a898721d3392c85f951d0bf0aa

(2417)

on May 27, 2012
at 05:06 PM

Imagine mom/dad/brother/sister/aunt/uncle sitting at the table, listening to someone recover from an eating disorder tell them why she should be getting her carbs from X and not Y - wouldn't you find that conversation really worrisome? I'm sorry, I think we need to back off and let the PH'ers who've been in her shoes and done the work give more nuanced advice.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on May 27, 2012
at 10:42 PM

I would say the 80/20 rule is best here. Paleo 80% of the time and not paleo 20% of the time. Have 80% of your diet come from meat, vegetables, fruit, roots, and nuts. The other 20% could be dairy, rice, oats, sprouted grains, desert. That is how I recovered. I ate a lot of beef and potatoes, fruit, and baked root vegetables. My 20% were things like yogurt, ice cream, and oatmeal, and sprouted grain bread.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 27, 2012
at 11:59 PM

i understand what you are saying, and i don't agree with the food template that most recovery plans take you through, but part of the recovery process is becoming at peace with eating ANYthing. junk included. you aren't really recovered if you can't be at peace with any food. that's what they are trying to do with the op.

-1
96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:10 PM

You're probably craving something in it such as the copper, or magnesium. So, a good step would be to switch to dark chocolate, say 85%, then 90%. It's not really a bad thing to consume once in a while. If you're doing milk chocolate, then you're getting a lot more sugar and dairy than the beneficial portions of the chocolate.

Of course, if you've gone off paleo, you've reset your gut to healthy, non-leaky. Introducing dairy and grains back into the diet started fresh attacks on your gut, creating new damage, so you certainly did get reactions to that. Both dairy and grains can be addictive, and it's a hard cycle to break.

I'm not sure why anyone would voluntarily go back to causing this kind of damage to themselves and returning to a SAD. A good first step would be going back to basics - remove all the SAD food out of your house, whenever you crave it, remember the inevitable pain and damage it causes.

If what you're addicted to is sugar, and that could be the reason for the chocolate cravings, if you're doing milk chocolate, you can temporarily try to go with something like stevia, a little bit of L-Glutamine, ALA (or RLA) and using coconut oil/ghee to cut cravings. You'll still get an insulin spike from stevia, and if you're not getting any calories with it, you may go hypoglycemic, but if you only use a little bit, it can be a crutch.

But the first thing is to get rid of is the grains and anything else that might contribute to leaky gut, then sugar. You're probably looking at about a month or so to heal and get back to healthy. Concentrate on fermented foods (kombucha, kraut, kefir, etc.), bone broths, meat, veggies, safe starches such as sweet potatos, yams, rice, carrots, etc. to heal your gut.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:22 PM

And her doctor is telling her that Paleo is not an option right now. So should she listen to her psychiatrist or to people on the internet? Telling her to eat Paleo is just not helpful.

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:58 PM

Im definately listening to my psychologist. I was just wondering if any paleo'ers would have any advice on how to kick cravings, while being on S.A.D, some alternative like a certain fruit? I've got no clue, that's why im here

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:21 PM

i don't think this is an appropriate response at all. EDs are a serious mental illness. Obsessing over grains and leaky gut is exactly what got her here in the first place.

A87c5338a8bbf6c8e92eeb86984b7cc5

(30)

on May 27, 2012
at 12:41 PM

Im definitely listening to my psychologist. From an nutritional standpoint i was wondering if there was some way i could eat the S.A.D without cutting everything out which i cannot do. People here are very knowledgeable in nutrition so i just assumed someone may be able to help me

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on May 27, 2012
at 06:11 PM

"I had bad reactions to eaing a bowl of ceral and milk" - that to me is a smoking gun, and this isn't medical advice, it's common sense - if you have a reaction to a specific food, avoid it. How is it okay to consume dairy and grains when there's a clear reaction?

65bf1ca7071028018c6d8305d0ddcd76

(3049)

on May 27, 2012
at 08:55 PM

While you may be right, we're putting ourselves at risk to anonymously counsel minors on EDs, supplementing, etc. (the minor fact that came out after you posted your response) while forums are a great place to come for emotional support they cannot replace the relationships with family or those in a medical profession who are hopefully in possession of a complete picture of the situation.

D5d982a898721d3392c85f951d0bf0aa

(2417)

on May 27, 2012
at 05:03 PM

I agree with Renee and will repeat: EDs are a serious mental illness. Let her deal with that now. It's plenty. Let's just support the OP. We do NOT have the skills or presence in her life to be giving her medical advice, and undercutting her mental health care provider is doing that.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 28, 2012
at 12:01 AM

agree. i'm sorry rawdawg, but i had to downvote. EDs are about so much more than gut health. it's mostly an emotional relationship with LIFE. it's not about the food, really. it's about control (for the most part).

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