A Different Way of Saying Forbidden

by Meg on December 28, 2011

Hello friends and happy Wednesday Smile 

Way back in October, I spoke about how I find it extremely important and beneficial for myself to take some time to reflect on my current situation and make sure ED isn’t making any rules within my life.

I am no longer obeying ED, but I must admit ED appears now and then. Obviously, ED’s “voice” is much more distant than it was in the past and I am much stronger than I was in the past as well; therefore, obeying or listening to ED’s “voice” is no longer an issue like it was a couple of years ago. Now that I am far along in my recovery, it is much easier to disobey and not listen.

I know right from wrong and know that I do not want ED in my life.

But, like I said I find it helpful to reflect on my current actions and behaviours to make sure ED is not present in any decisions I make.

I recently took some time and reflected and I noticed I no longer have “forbidden” or “fear” foods which is wonderful, but I still do not allow myself to have everything and anything. This realization made me quite frustrated.

Yes, I love to eat healthy – I seriously never crave chips, pop, chocolate bars, jelly beans, gummy bears, and so on, but I did recognize there are some foods that I do shy away from…

In my head, I haven’t labeled these foods that I shy away from as “forbidden” or “fear” foods, but why was I shying away from them?

After a lot of thought and analyzing the reasons behind my actions of shying away from certain foods I realized that ED developed a new way of making me “fear” a food.

No longer am I being told “you can’t have that” like I was in the past, but now I am being told “you aren’t currently having that, so why have it now?”

See the difference? ED is so sneaky…

I have many dark memories of crying to my parents and trying to explain to them that I just “can’t” have a certain food. This was a “fear food” – something I “couldn’t” have. ED made countless fear foods for me that I was forbidden to enjoy.

But now, try to see the difference between the two phrases…
ED is no longer saying I can’t have these certain types of foods, but instead ED is saying “why start now?”

I immediately realized this isn’t normal.

The phrase ED is repeating in my mind should not be there; therefore, I am making a goal to disobey and introduce these foods I have noticed myself shying away from into my diet.

One of these foods is cocoa powder.

cocoa 001

I am not sure why this is one of the foods I have shied away from, but there is no reason for me to.

Cocoa powder contains flavanols, an antioxidant, which may help prevent heart disease, stroke, and cancer according to the American Dietetic Association. The antioxidant found in cocoa powder is able to lower blood pressure and reduce cholesterol. The health benefits of unsweetened cocoa powder are wonderful and even if used moderately, benefits can still be observed.

So why was I shying away from cocoa powder?

Who knows. ED really doesn’t make any sense. That’s how I knew it was ED making me shy away from cocoa powder. If my actions and behaviours don’t make sense it usually always leads to ED as being the root cause.

So, this morning I crushed ED’s stupid rule that made no sense whatsoever and I made a fabulous bowl of oatmeal that I am sure you all will enjoy! Smile

cocoa oats 021

Creamy Cocoa and Cherry Oats (High Protein)

1 serving oats (I used my favourite – steel cut oats)

1/2 cup almond milk

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup egg whites

1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder

1 handful cherries, pitted

Cook oats with milk and water until done. Meanwhile, whip egg whites into foam. When oats are done cooking, fold in egg whites and cocoa powder. Top with cherries and enjoy Smile

This was amazing and I am so happy I finally tried cocoa powder Smile I am sure I will become very adventurous with it now. More new recipes to come? Winking smile I think so Open-mouthed smile

Have you had an ED? What was a fear food of yours?
How do you use cocoa powder?
Have you ever shied away from cocoa powder?


{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

Miranda @ Miranda's Munchies December 28, 2011 at 12:07 PM

Way to go girl! I’m so proud of you :)
Now… I think I need second breakfast to try out this oatmeal!
Or, you know, I could just wait until tomorrow ;)


LightOnMyFeet December 28, 2011 at 12:13 PM

I’m so glad you’ve overcome your fear foods and that you even realized the ED trying to trick you. I love cocoa powder and consume it nearly every day with my oats! Mainly because chocolate gives me tummy aches due to my semi-lactose intolerance because it satisfies that chocolate craving! And who doesn’t want to have chocolate for breakfast!?


Felicia (Natural + Balanced) December 28, 2011 at 12:47 PM

what an excellent post meg. you really should write more like this and because you can reach out to so many girls struggling.
i JUST had some raw cocoa powder in my post workout shake, i always love to add it in there for its benefits. great source of magnesium, lifts the mood, and lots of antioxidants :)


GOtheXtraMile December 28, 2011 at 12:49 PM

I’m so glad to hear that you are crushing your ED into the ground ;D You are so awesome girl!!! These oats look deelish.


StoriesAndSweetPotatoes December 28, 2011 at 1:11 PM

Cocoa powder and baking chocolate are some of my safe ED foods. You are right that ED makes no sense, because it’s not actually about the food. Sweetened chocolate is a fear food of mine because I still shy away from sugar. But I don’t crave it, I don’t even like sweet things, but I can still tell it’s ED that doesn’t want me to eat sugar.
Enjoy that cocoa powder. It’s a superfood! :D


Sable@SquatLikeALady December 28, 2011 at 1:37 PM

Good for you Meg!!! :) I can definitely relate to this. I am quite a few years removed from my ED but I do remember a period during recovery in which I experienced something very similar to this — and I’m so glad you caught it early!!


Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 3:12 PM

It’s nice to know you can relate :) thanks for sharing <3


abznoats December 28, 2011 at 2:18 PM

Great post girl! I don’t use cocoa powder very often mainly because I just don’t think about it! When I struggled with disordered eating, I didn’t really have any fear foods but I was a hardcore calorie counter. For example, if I wanted some ice cream I would restrict all day to save calories so I could have that treat later.


Life's a Bowl December 28, 2011 at 2:32 PM

My biggest “fear” or “forbidden” food after my ED was peanut butter because it used to be my trigger food and I’d eat spoonful after spoonful. After taking time to incorporate it back into my diet, I no longer crave it or eat it in huge proportions… It took me a while [years?] for me to totally erase my view of “bad vs. good” foods and listen to what I truly want, you’re right it doesn’t make sense, but it takes over your mentality [not cool]… Life is so much more fun and beautiful when you, not the ED, is in control!


Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 3:13 PM



Emma December 28, 2011 at 3:08 PM

I love putting cocoa in my oats, and definitely don’t do it often enough! Yummmayy


lovetotrain December 28, 2011 at 3:30 PM

yummmyyy i love coco powder! i use it in baked oatmeals… baked zucchini and coco powder goes SO well!! your breakfast looks delish!!


Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 3:53 PM

oooooo thanks for the suggestion :D


nicole December 28, 2011 at 3:37 PM

i really enjoyed reading this post. it’s written to a different tune that your normal happy golucky entries (which i love, by the way, so don’t misconstrue this statement) . . .

but it’s nice to see that everyone, even those who are happy about food and love its experience do, indeed, experience thoughts with which they’re not happy.

for me? managing my diet to a T is wonderful, and i don’t experience a first qualm about “excluding” certain foods and food groups. but for you? this doesn’t make you happy, example, cocoa powder. so i’m elated to see your adventure into experiencing these foods which you want to “not not include.” i don’t say fear because, as you’ve stated, it’s not a fear.

good on you! great post! remember that everyone is an individual, and it’s okay to eat differently so long as you’re nourishing your body and living happily. and those are thoughts directly from the brain of this exbulimic. :)



Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 3:52 PM

thanks love :D Yes, everyone does eat differently. And I think that is VERY important for some people to realize…..


Alexandra December 28, 2011 at 4:20 PM

Yay!! I’m beyond happy for you girl, way to kick the ED voice to the curb and enjoy such a tasty meal!


Julia (http://girlswithastethoscope.blogspot.com) December 28, 2011 at 4:24 PM

I am so proud of you girl, it seems like you have come a very long way and kudos to you for overcoming your “fear food.” I bet it tasted absolutely wonderful! haha It’s great to see you being able to overcome those voices in your head.

My fear food is def any type of peanut butter. I still cannot get over this fear but one day I hope to be able to. I am finally able to eat almonds without feeling guilty. Baby steps, right? lol


Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 4:38 PM

YES baby steps :) I am very comfortable with nut butters now, but was unable to have them a couple of years ago


Tara December 28, 2011 at 4:42 PM

I can definitely relate to this, and maybe understand where your fear of cocoa powder came from (I used to be wary of eating it too!). I was just finishing off my breakfast as I read your post but I wish I had read it 10 minutes earlier so I could have added some cocoa powder to my oats! Sounds like a great idea :)


Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 4:45 PM

awwwwwwww Tara I miss youuuuuuu thanks girl


Cheryl Madliger December 28, 2011 at 6:32 PM

Great insight! And coincidence: I’m drinking a decaf coffee with a mix of cocoa and a little bit of soy milk that I “steamed” (aka microwaved for 30 seconds) and added.

I used to be terrified of granola bars and I think that I had my biggest ED IS AN IDIOT realization after I started eating them. Now they’re pretty regular for me (I’m even getting sick of them — snack ideas, perhaps?), and I don’t even understand why I was afraid!

Progress :)


Meg (A Dash of Meg) December 28, 2011 at 6:40 PM



Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin December 28, 2011 at 7:45 PM

Awesome post girl! And yay for overcoming that sneaky ED voice. :D It’s funny how even when we’re recovered, that voice still has a way of rearing its ugly head…

I love cocoa powder and for some reason I never feared it. I definitely feared actual chocolate though because it contained so much fat and sugar. I’m glad I got over THAT. I love my chocolate now. :D My favourite way to use cocoa powder is to mix it with cottage cheese and vanilla Greek yogurt, and then top it with Enjoy Life Double Chocolate Crunch granola. Sooo good!


Kate @ Chasing It December 28, 2011 at 9:50 PM

Wow, ED is a SNEAKY little thing! I never really thought of it this way before, but this is exactly like what goes on in my own head sometimes! It’s never “you can’t have that”…it’s more like “oh you don’t like that” or “it’s not worth it” (worth what?!? yeah…). ED tries to convince me that a certain food just won’t taste as good as I think it will. I truly don’t ever really want candy, chips, or soda, but it tells me that about things I do (or used to) like – especially pasta dishes…not only is there nothing wrong with pasta but its a traditional family food! Man if ED were a real person he’d be super boring and wouldn’t have any friends.

And cocoa oats are amazing!! I love your addition of cherries…one of my favorite flavor combos! :-D


Emily December 29, 2011 at 12:47 AM

Yay! Good for you, girl.
It’s so inspiring that you’re able to truly take a step back and evaluate everything. You have come SUCH a long way.
And I’m loving this recipe. <3


Lyn @ FueledBySalad December 29, 2011 at 1:54 AM

I recently incorporated cocoa powder into my diet too! And, like you, it was in the form of oats. :) Delicious. I agree in that I genuinely do not crave ‘forbidden’ foods, but to know that the disordered thoughts are affecting what I eat is kinda (REALLY!) scary.

I’m so glad to hear that you’re putting away those voices and branching out. Stay strong! :D


Kasey @powercakes.blogspot.com December 29, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Such a great post girlfriend! I’ve found mysel to shy away from certain “fear foods” before and never really knew why, but now I try and embrace the foods that some people are afraid to eat. For example, we talked about coconut oil before- at one point I was eating 3 TB a day before my last competition and i honestly think it helped me feel better & I obviously didn’t gain weight! So I had a big spoonful in my oats this morning :-) mmm. It’s great you conquered your food fear and put cocoa powder in your oats! I LOVE cocoa powder & I think I use it every day! ;-) have a great Thursday love!!


Stefanie @TheNewHealthy December 29, 2011 at 1:32 PM

That’s seriously awesome that you overcame that fear food Meg! Step by step you’re conquering your ED and I love your honesty about it all. <3


Kait January 4, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Thanks for this post— it helpls so much to know that others deal with the same issues I do. Diagnosed w/ an ED 8 years ago, dealing with fear foods is still a fight. My fear/forbidden foods are: anything I don’t know the ingredients to/ how it was prepared and pizza. If I know the accurate calorie information then I am able to overcome a lot of ED thoughts(except for the one that questions the accuracy of nutritional information!) . This whole process is very frustrating, but I believe as long as we work towards a happy, healthy, and BALANCED lifestyle, we WILL get there!


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