Following a Meal Plan

Perhaps you took a step in your eating disorder recovery and obtained a meal plan. However, you may be afraid that you will not be able to follow it. How will you keep from reverting back to your unhealthy food habits? Does the amount of food in your meal plan seem like it’s too much or too little? If so, then what?

Following a meal plan can sometimes be challenging for sure, but the rewards are worth the effort, so why not try all you can to follow it? Be honest with your dietitian or nutritionist so that he or she has the opportunity to give you some helpful tips to try. Remember that he or she is on your side as another member of your support team.

Maybe you are the type of person who would benefit from writing down what you eat. By writing down the food you have consumed, you don’t have to keep going over it in your mind because it is down on paper. On the other hand, you might be the type of person who will focus even more on food by writing down what you eat. Do what works best for you.

If the accountability of your dietitian or nutritionist is not enough for you, consider seeking additional accountability. Perhaps you would benefit from discussing your food choices with a mentor or trusted friend.

Be gentle with yourself. If you have a difficult time following a meal plan, cut yourself some slack, learn from the challenges you face, and try again. Veering off your meal plan does not mean that you have failed. If necessary, discuss with your dietitian or nutritionist breaking down your meal plan goals into smaller steps. Perhaps working into your meal plan in a way or at a pace that’s more comfortable to you will help you to follow it better.

Remember that food is not the enemy. Food is just food. While it serves an important purpose to fuel our bodies, and it’s something we can enjoy, do your best to not give it more meaning than that. Food does not have power, it doesn’t provoke fear, it can’t take anything away from you, and it can’t even control you. Do your best to separate your emotions from food. Again, food is just food.

You can ask God to help you follow your meal plan. Consider inviting Him to your table. Perhaps you can imagine Him sitting with you, speaking reassuring words to you or giving you an understanding look. He isn’t there to judge or criticize, but to offer you support and strength. Maybe you can also find some verses that have special meaning to you that you can meditate on while you eat.

Following a meal plan may be challenging at times, but consider how doing so might help you in your recovery to become a healthier you. Do your best to be kind to your body. Also, remember to be honest with your dietitian or nutritionist regarding how you feel about the meal plan and seek additional accountability if you need it. Be patient with yourself, give food its proper place and nothing more, and allow God to help you follow your meal plan.