What I Eat in A Day: First Video!

Hi everyone! Hope everyone had a lovely weekend. I posted another video on my YouTube channel. This time it is a “What I Eat in a Day” type of video! These seem to be pretty popular.

I was debating whether or not I should do this type of video, but I thought it might be beneficial. While I am a huge advocate of listening to your body, and reminding people that every body is different, a type of guideline could help as well.

I should mention I filmed this late last summer 2015. My eating hasn’t really changed much though.

Experimenting to see where your body is comfortable is the key to achieving balance and harmony with your body cues. This is what my body wanted for the day. Sometimes it goes up, sometimes it goes down. Remember, your body is the same in regards to the fluctuations. It is constantly adjusting, and your metabolism is different than mine or the person next to you.

Alright enough rambling. Here is the video! Enjoy!

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“Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Conclusion

Phew! You made it through my whole entire mini series. Props to you if you read all of them, and all the little details.

Just a reminder, here are the other parts to the series:

Part 1: “Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Intro

Part 2: “Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Day 1

Part 3: “Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Day 2

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I wasn’t originally going to include a conclusion, but the series feels a little incomplete without one. I decided to post this just as a little wrap-up of my thoughts and what I’ve learned from this past weekend.

Lesson #1: Food is not the enemy.

I know this already. In fact, I’m sure a lot of you know this already whether you’re struggling hard or further along into recovery. We know food isn’t the enemy, but our ED tries to tell us otherwise. This is why we have such a hard time with eating certain foods. It’s a mix of ED and what society tells us what’s “healthy” and “unhealthy.” But in reality, everything provides some type of nutrients. Yes, there are more nutrient-dense foods out there than some, but if you practice moderation and listen to your body and your cravings, there is no reason to eliminate any food from your diet because everything serves a purpose.  I mean, unless you have allergies or an intolerance, then it’s a good idea to stay away from some foods.

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Lesson #2: Carbs are good for you.

Carbs is what really kept my energy up for the day. We weren’t only eating all day. We also were walking around and exploring different places, and I needed the fuel to support my activity. Carbs are a fast source and the preferred source of energy for our bodies, so it was important to have a balanced amount of carbs throughout the day. I haven’t been doing too well with that lately, but this weekend just reminded me how important they are! I felt more awake and in the moment than I have for the past couple months.

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Lesson #3: Vegetables and protein bars are not the only food group.

Being on the go a lot, plus being in the midst of a slip-up, made me slowly go back to my orthorexia ways of believing my main source of food should come from vegetables, and then snacks could be protein bars. However, this weekend was a great reminder that there are so many other foods out there to have for snacks and meals!

For example, avocado toast or eggs with toast!

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Paul’s toast from Mazarine Coffee!

I’m definitely going to incorporate more toasts topped with delicious toppings for snacks now. I forgot how good it can be to eat real food over protein bars and straight up vegetables. Plus, they left me feeling more satisfied both physically and mentally.

In fact, I’ve been experiencing a lot of bloating lately, but this weekend, especially on Sunday, my bloating actually went down as I ate. I was in shock, but incredibly happy. I felt so much more energetic, lighter, and I felt like my body was happy for once.

Lesson #4: MODERATION IS KEY!

Gosh this is something I need to really remind myself of. I’ve gotten pretty good with savory foods since I’ve started recovery 2 years ago, but I still struggle with allowing myself to have sweets on my own. I can go out and get sweets with friends, which is still sometimes hard, but when it comes to being alone, I just have a hard time convincing myself to get sweets like ice cream. And then when I do, I go ham on it because I’ve deprived myself of it for so long.

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But, I’m changing things right now. Since I’ve come back from this weekend, I’ve had an Oreo pretty much every night if I’m craving it. I’m going to try this out and see if it helps with my mentality and my cravings. I know a lot of people who do this, such as one of my best friends Michelle. She’s been telling me for years now that this is the way to go, and that sweets aren’t going to kill me if I have a little bit everyday or a little bit every week. And I do believe her because I see people who practice this! But it’s just a matter of really convincing myself and giving in to the facts.

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Well, that’s the end of this series! I hope you all enjoyed it, and learned something from it. If you just read it for entertainment, then thank you for listening to my ramblings and my eye-opening moments.

If you’d like and not already, you can follow me @hungrygirl325 on Instagram for more food pics, life updates, and recipes!

You can email me too at hana.brannigan@gmail.com for any questions.

 

 

“Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Day 2

Hey everyone! Welcome to Part 3/Day 2 of my mini series on my recent foodie adventure weekend in SF!

If you missed it, here is Part 1/Intro to the series.

Here is Part 2/Day 1 of the series.

Here is Part 4/Conclusion.

Okay here we go!

Place #1: Mr. Holmes Bakehouse

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This was one of two things my boyfriend, Paul, and I got at Mr. Holmes Bakehouse. We’ve been wanting to go so bad ever since we went to my friend Marissa’s graduation party and of course, like the typical foodies we are, were watching Food Network. We really wanted the cruffin, but we woke up too late and then we were too lazy leaving the hotel. Oops! This donut was not a loss though. In fact, I’m kind of glad we missed the cruffin because this donut was to DIE for! The citrus and tropical flavors of the guava filling paired amazing with the super fluffy and light donut.

Usually this would give me anxiety, but in all honesty, donuts aren’t as high in calories as I thought they were. Yes, maybe that’s a “bad” or wrong way of getting over a fear food, but it is an accomplishment still being able to eat it and accept it rather than blowing it all out of proportion, getting an anxiety attack, making things difficult, and ruining the day already. Still, I recognize that I shouldn’t be okay with eating something just because it’s not as high calories as I believed. It’s something to work on!

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This was the second thing we got from Mr. Homes Bakehouse! It was a shortbread cookie “thing” (I don’t really remember what the guy said), with white chocolate mousse and chocolate fudge on top. I was more scared for this than I was with the donut since it’s more dense for such a small little thing. I did try it though. It was good, but I don’t think I could’ve taken more than a couple bites because it left me pretty thirsty and it was pretty rich. Although I probably could’ve ate a million of the fudge pieces! No guilt after eating this, which is good considering that I was nervous and sugar is still my number 1 fear food!

Place #2: Mazarine Coffee

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Okay, so I’ve seen the famous avocado toast all over Instagram, but I’ve never tried it myself because either I’ve been too lazy to go buy bread and avocado or ED didn’t allow it because bread + fat (even though it’s healthy fat). But something about having it from a cafe didn’t scare me! I was actually really excited to try my first avocado toast.

When they gave me the plate, I froze for a second because there was OIL on it *cue dramatic music*. Oh the horror! At least for my ED. Avocado and oil just seemed unnecessary added calories. However, I still ate it, and it was amazing. I still don’t think the oil was necessary, but that is coming from the real me. I feel like it just didn’t really add any flavor, even though I know they wouldn’t put it on the toast if it didn’t add anything.

There was also cream cheese on the toast, which surprised me.

It felt like something I was so excited for was just giving me a challenge after challenge. But I finished it and it was delicious. I’m so happy I got to try it, and it was an incredibly healthy snack/afternoon meal.

Actually it was from this meal that I was hit with the realization that there are so many other foods out there that aren’t vegetables that would leave me feeling really good inside, give me lots of nutrients, and satisfy me. Who knew this simple piece of toast would impact me so much?

Place #3: Super Duper Burgers

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I feel like burgers are not even a challenge for me anymore. I was seriously looking forward to coming here! Plus I was hungry, so it was perfect we were going to a burger place.

I got the veggie burger. The menu was a little limited, so this was the only thing that really sounded good to me. But I am not complaining! I was greeted with a fully stuffed burger that was dripping, but not overly saturated, with hummus! I also added grilled onions, mustard, and jalapenos because I love my spice! I wasn’t nervous about adding them either.

Burgers used to be a huge fear food. In fact, I’ve never had a burger until junior year of high school, and then the next time I had a burger was senior year of high school. Even then I only had two burgers. The next time I had a  burger was when I started going out with Paul. But we get them so often, that I’ve just conquered burgers now! And I love them. Now I have to go out and get tons of burgers to make up for all the years lost of not having any!

I mention the fact that burgers have such a wrongfully negative stigma on them in my last post that you can read.

Place #4: Humphry Slocombe

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This was the last place we went! I love ice cream and I do get it quite often I would say when I’m with Paul, so you would think that it’s not a fear food anymore, but unfortunately it still is. I have my on and off days with them. On my first food adventure with Paul, it wasn’t hard at all even though I was very anxious about it. However, for some reason after that time, I got more and more guilty about having ice cream. Instead of feeling more accomplished after having another cone, and feeling more confident in eating ice cream, ED kind of freaked out on me, and tries to tell me I don’t need it. ED can be weird like that though.

With this cone though, not only did I have this cone and ice cream and not even be tempted to purge afterwards, I also sampled almost all the ice creams that they had at the store. I think it helped that they had such unique flavors, and I convinced myself I wasn’t going to have the opportunity to try these flavors again anytime soon.

Ice cream flavors at this place included flavors such as Mint Chip Pepper (super unique and more a savory ice cream that actually wasn’t that bad), Wine & Cheese (noooooo thank you! But interesting idea), Elvis (omg yes except there was bacon which was a turn off…sorry Paul!), and Secret Breakfast (it had bourbon and it was good, but I could taste the alcohol). I went with the Kumquat Poppy Seed though because it was so refreshing and I love kumquats!

It was the perfect ending to the perfect weekend.

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Part 1/Intro here.

Part 2/Day 1 here.

Part 4/Conclusion here.

“Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Day 1

Welcome to Day 1/Part 2 of my mini series on my SF adventure with Paul. I had a truly eye-opening experience, and that is why I decided to break this into a few parts.

Intro/Part 1 is right here.

Day 2/Part 3 is right here.

And the Conclusion/Part 4 is right here.

Alright let’s get into it!

Place #1: Farm : Table

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I’ve come here before, and it really didn’t give me anxiety. It’s a big piece of toast with homemade mascarpone cheese, and a bunch of fresh fruit topped with crushed pistachios. The ED voice in me was saying the mascarpone and pistachios were too fattening and too calorie-dense, but I realize this is quite ridiculous. When these quick voices come up, I’ve learned to push it out by listing the benefits of each fear food. I can do this pretty well now, but at the beginning of recovery, it definitely took a lot more time to convince myself and be okay. There are hardly any pistachios on it, plus not to mention all the health benefits that come with it. And the mascarpone is ridiculously delicious, and there was a perfect amount. Place #1 down and conquered.

Place #2: Roam Artisan Burgers

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My burger is on the bottom, but I am just incredibly proud of this shot, so I decided to include this picture! Every time I look at this picture, I have to be quite honest, I die because this place was so. Freaking. Good!

When I was deep into my ED, pictures like this would downright disgust me because I could never imagine myself eating it. All I saw was fat and grease and slob. Now that I’m mentally a lot more healthy, and I can think straight, I just want this burger in my hands again right now. Nothing in this burger gave me anxiety except for the cheese. Cheese is still a fear food for me, but I am trying to work on that. When I first started going on food adventures though, an egg in a burger really made me nervous. A patty and an egg just seemed like too much to handle. ED made me believe you could only have 1. I’ve conquered that fear, so now it’s only the cheese that gets to me.

In all honesty, society puts such a bad stigma on burgers, but I don’t see the “bad” in them anymore. Take my burger for example. It has a healthy dose of carbs from the bun. A turkey patty has lots of protein. An egg has healthy fats and also some protein. Then there are the veggies (I don’t think I have to explain that). And lastly, cheese for calcium. And sweet chili sauce for taste, plus I’m sure there are some nutrients in there because of the chili. See? Nothing is “bad” for you. No food is “bad.” They all serve a purpose.

Place #3: Tacolicious

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Okay, not gonna lie, but this place gave me a tad bit of anxiety. The fact that there are 2 tortillas, the authentic way I should mention, gave me the most anxiety because my ED said that there was no point in having 2 tortillas when I could taste the food just fine with 1 tortilla. I ordered 4 and Paul ordered 4 as well.

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These were my 4! I had 2 chicken ones, 1 fish one, and 1 butternut squash/leek/pumpkin seed/fontina cheese one. I ate the last 2, all doubled-up tortillas and all, and then I had a bite of the other 2 because I was actually getting pretty full. When I started eating, it wasn’t as hard as I anticipated. They were super good tacos too!

Sometimes when I’m super anxious about a food, I don’t taste the goodness of it because the ED is so loud. I think I could have enjoyed these tacos just a little bit more due to the slight anxiety that I was experiencing, but they were still delicious. I ate some chips too, which I wasn’t “planning” on eating, but they sounded so good with salsa!

We were going to go get ice cream, but the place we went to was closed due to the rain unfortunately. It was raining so hard and getting kind of late, so we ended up not going out for dessert, but we did snack back at the hotel. That was the end of day 1!

Again, the Intro/Part 1 can be found right here. Day 2/Part 3 is here. Conclusion/Part 4 here.

 

 

“Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Intro

Hey guys! I wanted to update you all on where I stand with recovery right now. I mentioned in a previous post that I was struggling. Some things happened with school, and it seemed like the bad news kept coming one after another. This took a toll on me, and I reverted to what I used to give me temporary comfort: ED.

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It makes sense. I am much stronger than I used to be, but slip-ups are common (I refuse to call this a relapse), and this was a very difficult situation to be in. I beat myself up for it at first, but now instead of wasting my time giving myself a pity-party, and toying with giving into ED, I’m trying to take action yet also learning to be gracious to myself. It’s a difficult balance to achieve, but I feel like I’m doing better than I was these past couple months.

This past weekend, I spent another wonderful weekend with my boyfriend, Paul, in SF. If you guys know our Instagrams, you know that we love to go out and try new foods all over California whenever we’re able to see each other. Of course, having an eating disorder does make this difficult at times. I wrote an article about it if you want to read it here.

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This weekend though, I realized what it truly meant to be balanced again in terms of food. With this slip-up, I’ve noticed the orthorexia crept back into my head, and convinced me vegetables was the main substance I needed, and if I had anything else, it must still be “healthy.”

However, this past weekend, I was reminded of what it truly meant to be healthy. I  remembered that this meant not restricting yourself from foods that you enjoy, truly being in the moment with good company and good food, savoring delicious meals, treating yourself to sweets just because, and not constantly worrying about going to the gym to exercise.

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I decided to break this post into 3 more parts (4 parts in total) to really touch on what I was feeling with each meal. I know that when I was just starting my recovery journey, I was in desperate search for detailed descriptions of how people could possibly eat out and not feel guilty, or tips on how to lessen the guilt. I hope these in-depth descriptions of how I dealt with going out to 7 places in 1 weekend helps others as much as I believe it would have helped me!

Part 2: “Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Day 1

Part 3: “Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Day 2

Part 4: “Slip-Up” Update: A Foodie Adventure in San Francisco, Conclusion

 

My problem with “relapse”

I was talking to a friend from my past group therapy, and she asked me how I was doing. I disclosed to her that I was having a slight “relapse,” but once the word came out of my mouth, it felt strange and just downright nasty to say.

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“Relapse” is very common in recovery journeys, even when you think you are doing really well. It is almost inevitable that you will slip multiple times, times that we most commonly call a relapse, but those are the times that you become stronger and you learn the most about yourself and your triggers. With each “relapse” too, they tend to get farther and farther apart, IF you challenge the voices. If you don’t do anything about it, then of course it’s going to be harder for you to dig yourself out of the relapse ditch.

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Now, with that said, I have come to the realization that the word “relapse” is such a negative word. Pardon me if I’m being a little more blunt with this post, but I feel like when you say to yourself that you’re in a relapse, it sets you up for failure. To me, it just sounds like an excuse to go easy on your ED voice, and allow yourself to engage in old behaviors again. This is why I like the phrase “slip-up” better.

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With recovery, it’s all about changing your mindset from a negative thought to a positive thought. This is something I’ve learned in therapy. For example, instead of saying, “my legs are so big,” change your thinking to, “I’m so grateful that my legs have the strength to carry me around.” This is why I’ve changed my thinking from, “I’m in a relapse,” to, “I’m merely in a slip-up, and I can get myself out of this.”

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Not saying that everyone is like this. But do a reality check on yourself and your progress if you’ve claimed to be in a relapse. Are you making excuses for yourself so that you can continue your ED behaviors? Are you engaging in them in full force? Are you brushing off the fact that your behaviors have come back? I know I was doing this for a while. I was saying to myself that it was okay, because I know my triggers and I know what to do when I am tempted to engage. But I didn’t actually implement any of those tools that I know and learned to use.

Next time you decide to call your slip-up a relapse, consider why you’re calling it a relapse. I mentioned in my last post that I was in a relapse, but now I just think of it as a slip-up. Getting out of slip-up seems more feasible now. I can do it, and so can you.

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The Struggles Are Indeed REAL.

This is a post I’ve been meaning to write, but either the timing didn’t work out, I’ve been really tired, or I just lacked the words to just start this blog piece. But today, the sense of urgency to post this is more prominent, and I finally feel the courage. So here it goes.

I am in the midst of a relapse.

Wow. That feels surreal to actually write that.

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There are many, many factors that contribute to the relapse. Mostly school issues and stress that I won’t dive into in detail since that it a whole different story in itself. But the stress because of it all has definitely taken a toll on my emotional well being, and it’s been difficult to not take it out on old behaviors.

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Luckily, I’ve caught myself early enough. I know the signs and I know how to differentiate the Ed voices from my own actual voice, which helps a tremendous amount when having to reevaluate my day-to-day decisions. However, I have to admit that doesn’t mean that I always listen to myself. There are days where I give in, or I don’t feel strong enough to push back.

I was really beating myself up for this. There is a constant war in my head of feeling guilty for following Ed behaviors, but also guilty feelings when I don’t follow Ed behaviors. It’s a tricky game.

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Even though yes, I should be giving myself some tough love to keep myself on track, I should also give myself some relaxation. I have the tendency to always want to live up to my expectations, and then exceed them. I expect too much of myself in every aspect of my life, and it’s easy to get carried away. When I’m not met with the success I imagine in my head, I can get frustrated with myself, and then take it out on harmful behaviors. Even with recovery. It goes back to that mental battle. It’s a truly confusing and vicious cycle.

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That’s why I’m finally posting this piece. I’ve told a few close friends, but I’ve kept it on the more private side since I was still trying to wrap my head around being in the middle of a relapse. Announcing it publicly though is like a way of keeping myself accountable, but also realizing that I have to really respect my body and mind too. I need to realize it’s not black-and-white, all-or-nothing, and to try not to go from one extreme to the other, and then “compensating,” and blahblahblah. It’s important to find that balance again, and to start treating myself with the love and care my body deserves.

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I’m going to work on not being so hard on myself when I “mess up,” for lack of a better phrase, when it comes to recovery. But I also am working on realizing I need to get back on track before things get way out of hand. I’m already taking steps, like meeting with professionals.

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I don’t doubt my skills when it comes to getting out of this relapse. I definitely won’t go back to as bad as I was before, but I can’t make promises on how fast or slow this process will go. I’m living each day hour-by-hour (which is actually a good sign since at my lowest days, I would have to take it second-by-second), and making sure I’m taking note of my mood and feelings.

I don’t want to worry anyone, and a part of me feels guilty for succumbing, and letting you guys down, or letting my followers down on Instagram. But I wanted to be honest, and want to be real with you guys. Sometimes difficult things in life happen, and you find yourself resorting to old behaviors, and you don’t realize it until it until you’re in the middle of it. And you know, sometimes it’s okay as long as you can pick yourself up, and take active steps to fix the destructive behaviors. I know it’ll get better. I have the tools, the resources, and the support. I won’t let myself slip deeper.