Meal Plan for Eating Disorder Recovery

Breakfast  
Thick sourdough bread slathered in real butter and strawberry preserves. Whole milk blended up with protein powder and almond butter. This is my Monday morning breakfast. This meal plan follows the diet from the keto pure diet | stylish magazine.

Wait a minute, gluten-filled bread? Real butter and whole milk? Blasphemy! This is a gluten –free and dairy-free blog, right?

That time has passed. I am welcoming in all the foods. No restrictions.

I have battled an eating disorder for ten years. Evidence of that is written all over this blog. My eating disorder is why I started  cooking, I knew i want to get better and last fall I recommitted to weekly therapy sessions with an ED (eating disorder) specialist, and I began to cook. I described Sparkle Kitchen in our first meeting the fog began to lift. My special protocols and elimination diets were blatantly feeding my disease.  


Snack  
Cheddar cubes and raw carrots. 10am snack.

My therapist recommends using the following guideline to avoid any ED triggers:

Breakfast
Snack
Lunch
Snack
Dinner
Snack

I was intermittent fasting when I met my current therapist. And I was spiraling into daily panic attacks and binging to calm myself. It wasn’t pretty. Any type of restrictive diet sets my eating disorder in motion so the daily meal guide above allows me to feel safe; safety in knowing that another meal is in sight and I don’t have to compensate for eating more or less.


Lunch
Salmon sushi with a mixed greens salad.

Sometimes food isn’t the solution.  I believed eating the most nourishing foods would cure my ailments. All the pain and discomfort of a leaky gut would resolve itself if I just followed the right diet.

Diet can help if you know what your body needs. But I didn’t know, I was merely guessing.  

I enlisted the help of a nutritional biochemist to run a full panel of testing. The results were more or less expected. Minor case of leaky gut, no gluten sensitivity, a bit of candida overgrowth, very low zinc levels and my thyroid T3 and T4 hormones were in the functionally low range.

Three years of sardines, organ meats, coconut oil, seaweed and bone broth and I still had these issues.

The nutritional biochemist suggested a series of supplements over a three-month period. No custom diet. I eat anything and everything.

My therapist explained how denying certain foods can put your body in shock when it does encounter a “forbidden” treat. Whether this is founded in science I’m uncertain, but I can definitely attest to the placebo effect. Sugar is/was my trigger food and every time I indulged I would feel awful, full blown sugar hangover. Ninety percent of that is/was guilt. Guilt of putting a “no” food into my body and the possibility of it impacting my weight.


Snack
Plain yogurt and banana. Or chocolate chips stirred into crunchy peanut butter.


Dinner
Sautéed bok choy, chicken burger.

I spent a week in the hospital in college. The result was misdiagnosed Crohn’s disease.

I’d suffered from severe abdominal pain since both my parents remarried at age ten. At the time, no one thought to correlate the two and I traveled from doctor to doctor for years with no accurate diagnosis.

Stress wreaks havoc on our bodies, taking shape in a myriad of ailments. Mine rooted in my bowels.  I didn’t have the necessary tools to process my stress as a child so my body responded the only way it knew how, stomach pain. While I suppressed the emotional pains of my life, my abdomen did the screaming instead.


Snack
Glass of milk and a bit of dark chocolate.

Improv comedy has the “Yes, and…” rule of thumb that I’ve incorporated into my eating philosophy.  I say “yes” to all the foods. And add a scoop of ice cream to my slice of pie.

Pork Tenderloin, Pan-fried Parsnips & Shaved Brussels Sprouts

Pork Tenderloin, Pan-fried Parsnips & Shaved Brussels Sprouts
Makes 4 servings.

1, 1-lb pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut crosswise into 12 medallions
6 parsnips, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup brussels sprouts, finely shaved
1 cup red cabbage sauerkraut
2 tablespoons lard or olive oil, divided 
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Sprinkle each pork medallion with a bit of salt.

    • Heat 1 tablespoon lard/oil over medium heat in pot cooker Place the medallions you prepared in the restaurant prep table into in a single layer. Cook on each side for 20-30  minutes or to your desired doneness. I prefer mine a bit rare. Remove frompot and allow to stand for five minutes.

 

    • Heat the remaining lard/oil over medium heat in the samepot cooker. Add the parsnips to the bottom of the pan in a single layer. Sprinkle on a bit of salt. Cook for 10 minute, then flip and cook on the other side for another minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

 

    • To shave the brussels sprouts, slice each thinly and then separate into wispy pieces with your fingers. Keep these raw.

 

  • I like to arrange this dish in specific layers. First lay a few parsnips on the plate, then add the brussels sprouts, 3 pork medallions and top with sauerkraut.

Enjoy!

Pork Tenderloin, Pan-fried Parsnips & Shaved Brussels Sprouts

Bhuna Chicken with Romanesco

Bhuna Chicken with Romanesco
Inspired by Anjum Anand’s Rich Lamb Bhuna
Makes 6 servings.

2 lbs of chicken breast or thighs, skinless & boneless cut into 1” pieces
1 lb of romanesco, chopped into 1” pieces
6 medium onions, thinly sliced
2 cups sweet potato, chopped into 1” pieces
2 ½ cups of fresh or canned whole tomatoes, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
2” piece of ginger, roughly chopped
3 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons full-fat coconut milk
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 ½ teaspoon salt, divided
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 bay leaves
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped for topping, divided

  • Process the tomatoes, ginger and garlic together in a food processor until smooth. Set aside.
  • Combine the garam masala, chili powder, coriander, cumin, turmeric, pepper, and cloves in a small bowl. Set aside.
  • In a large pot, sauté the onions in the olive oil over medium heat for 3 minutes. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon of salt over the onions.
  • Stir in the sweet potatoes and romanesco, sprinkle the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt over the vegetables and allow to cook a couple of minutes.
  • Then add the chicken and tomato-ginger-garlic mixture to the pot. Pour in the spices, coconut milk, bay leaves and 1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro. Gently stir to combine.
  • Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a gentle boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and cover. Allow to cook for 15 minutes. Stir every five minutes to prevent ingredients from sticking.
  • Remove bay leaves before serving.
  • Serve over rice and sprinkle with fresh cilantro.

Enjoy!

Bhuna Chicken with RomanescoBhuna Chicken with Romanesco