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Recovering From Anorexia - Meal Plan?

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I am currently suffering from anorexia. I haven't had it for long, I only really started to restrict in January. Since the middle of January, I have lost 13 pounds. I am now 5'7'' 115 lb. and not happy with my weight. I am averaging 300-700 calories a day and I am starting a day program for recovery tomorrow.

 I was wondering if any other recovering/recovered anorexics would mind sharing their meal plans when they first started to recover? I don't want to gain weight and the thought of adding calories terrifies me.

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yeah, i'll share mine! i was eating close to nothing so my nutritionist started me off realllllllly slow. she said it was about 800 calories which is a starvation diet so i don't recomend staying on this. just use it to help you get used to eating again for a few days.

Breakfast- 1 Nourishe (Yogurt Smoothie) or Ensure

AM Snack: Luna Bar

Lunch: 1/2 a sandwich with veggies and tofurkey (in 3 days add one cup of soup)

PM Snack: 10 peanut butter pretzels & 6-8 oz juice

Dinner: 1/2 cup pasta, rice, beans, or potato. 1/2 cup cooked veggies. --or--- 1 slice bread with a boca burger w/ 1/2 cup cooked veggies.

In 3 days add an evening snack: 1 yogurt

I'm now doing so much better and having about 1700-2200 calories daily. =] seriously, believe me when i say gaining weight is hard. when i was in treatment, i had to have 4000+ calories daily either through eating or tube feedings (no fun) to gain 2-3 lbs a week. it seriously takes so much to actually gain weight. when your body is so starved it burns up everything you give it. i know you probably don't believe that, i didn't, but don't be scared to eat. trust in your body and listen to what it needs.

Hey, i just wanted 2 butt in im tryin to overcome anorexia 2 which sounds so weird 2 say cus i do actually love food i just have such a problem with letting myself eat it. im 5'4 n weight 92kg which is the lowest EVER even tho ive been trying 2 eat normal like my family,so breackfast lunch and dinner adding back luxuries like butter and biscuits and basically a nice range of foods again even indian takeways!!Ha i used 2 weigh myself everynite and let that number decide basically what i should eat the next day so if id gone up abit one night i'd freak out and be so depressed because this was when i was still in like diet mode eating as little as possible and exercising like a madwoman! so for the scales 2 b up abit ib b mortified that id b gaining weight even tho id exercised and ate nothing nice that day!

 so anyway like i said in the last 2 weeks i bin eating i would say what i want when i want trying 2 enjoy foods again (okay exersicing still a little but defo eating 2 reward that) trying to understand my own bodies messages of hunger and fullness not the scales. so i had know idea what my weight had been doing till i saw my therapist wednesday. i was anxios as hell because i didnt knw how much heavier i would be from pub carvery's and indian takeaways. it turns out i lost more weight, im so confused im not sure how much i should be eating and how easy the weight will go back out like i think im so scared of putting it back on really even though i dnt like what i see anymore and i knw the damages im doing 2 myself but is it really really true that i need 2 b consuming like hell loads more calories 2 actually put it on, or will it start coming back like as soon as i up my daily intake by somuch as 200 calories? god i dont think this message makes much sense u knw?

i really am so baffled, so anxious and stressed all the time i h8 it i just wish i knew what 2 eat and when 2 eat and grrraaaarr!! xx

hello, my names Tori, im 16 and have has anorexia for a couple of months now,

im very lucky thought, they caught me at the very start and have bin trying to help me ever since. its only the last few days i have actually realised what i now look like and what this horrible thing is doing to me.

i dont want to be like this any more, and im trying so hard.

its easy enough to just say whats your meal plan an get a reply like breakfast snack lunh snack tea snack.

i know that looks sounds and is absolutly terrifing and the thing inside will just reasurre you that eating that will not help and that you cant,

so the best thing to is is take it very slow...

im not finished yet but i will write later..

As soon as I got into treatment, I was started on a meal plan like this:


Breakfast: 1/2 English muffin with 1 tbsp butter, 8 oz skim milk, 1/2 banana, 1 hard-boiled egg (yes, white AND yolk)

Snack: fruit or 4 oz juice

Lunch: 3 oz chicken breast, 8 oz skim milk, 1/2 c. rice, 1/2 c. broccoli w/1 tbsp butter, 1 c. grapes

Snack: fruit or 4 oz juice

Dinner: 4 oz fish, 8 oz skim milk, 1 slice of bread w/1 tbsp. butter, 1/2 c. cooked squash, 1 c. pineapple

Snack: fruit or 4 oz juice


Basically just one item from each food group at each meal and then a piece of fruit for snacks. We never talked calories, just exchanges.

Hopefully the program you are in will set you on a meal plan and if not I would ask. Everyones needs are different and since you are eating so little they will probably start slow and work up. Many need 3000-4000 calories to recover. I am doing it now op but have done it ip and dp. The support and guidance will really help you I think but it still takes a lot of work by you but it is possible.


Im so glad that I found this powerful great community...

Huuuuh, Im anorexic too, I had some attempt to overcome this horrible desease, with no results...but now I really decided... just to know, reading your posts gave me a lot of power, and Im convinced that I can.

Tomorrow I”ll go to my nutritionist, and hope that she gives me a recovery meal plan as yours... I really need Your help, please pleeease!

Most of the times I was in treatment, I got up to a 4,750 calorie meal plan.  So I'll just post an example of a 4000 calorie meal plan:

breakfast:  large bagel (350 calories) with 2 TB peanut butter (190) and 1 TB grape jelly (50) with 1 apple (80) and 6 oz dannon vanilla yogurt (150) = 820 calories

Lunch:  Turkey sandwich--2 slices ww bread (180), 4 oz turkey (120) with 2 TB mayonnaise (200) with baby carrots (40) dipped in hummus (50) and 12 oz whole milk (225) mixed with 1 packet Carnation instant breakfast (130) = 945 calories

Snack:  1/4 cup raisins (130) with 1/4 cup almonds (170) and 1 Ensure Plus (350) = 650 calories

Dinner:  1.5 cups pasta (300) with 1/4 cup pesto (300) and 3 oz grilled chicken (150) and veggies stir-fried in lots of oil (150) = 900 calories

Snack:  Milkshake--1 cup whole milk (150), 1/2 c haagen-dazs ice cream (300), 1 banana (100), 2 TB peanut butter (190) = 740 calories

Total:  4,055 calories 

I am a recovering anorexic and I was looking at your meal plan and it sounds very intense! How were you able to keep up with it? How much weight did you gain weekly?

Ugh, I remember that -.-

Talk about making a crappy feeling situation even worse for me, I didn't even get to enjoy the food I was eating because it was so freaking BORING, and when ever I tried to mix it up like most any other person would, it would take too much effort to try working everything in since they were so percise. (With the whole meal plan and exchange thing)

That is why this time (I have had a major back lash, aka, went back even farther than before....) I plan on trying to recover myself, since at least now I know what I need etc. But at least I will give myself some leeway on how to get it.

I was able to keep up with that because I had no choice...I was in the hospital.  If I didn't eat, they would shove a tube up my nose.  And my metabolism sped up dramatically, so I was only gaining 1-2 pounds a week with absolutely no exercise (I was either sitting, eating or sleeping).

Please help me! I`ve just started my second (I hope the last) recovery...with an another psychologist... so started from today, i have to gain 1 kg (2,2 lb) within 2 weeks...otherwise I have to not leave my room, doing any exercises, I`ll do it! Now, the problem is that I have no idea what it means to gain 1 kg in 2 weeks...what should I eat? I would like to eat healthy (with about 1500 kcal\day), but i have no idea that with this kind of food will I gain in weight enough?(Tuesday Im going to my nutritionist, i hope she can give me some ideas)

Please give me advice how can I start? With a  normal, healthy plan can I gain in weight enough?

Thank yooou!

I see a few problems with this situation.  I can definately relate, as I have relapsed from anorexia more than 7 times.

1.  I don't think you should be punished for not making weight.  Caveat:  you must be doing everything you're supposed to (following meal plan, etc).  If you are doing everything youre supposed to and you don't "make weight" it's not your fault.  You can't control how your body reacts.  Often, people with eating disorders, when refeeding, have an incredibly fast metabolism, usually needing 3000-5000 calories a day to gain 1-2 pounds a week.  Which brings me to my second point...

2.  You can not gain weight on 1500 calories.  Eat dense foods (like nuts, full-fat dairy products, nut butters).  Look at the Weight Gainers:  What did you eat? thread for great advice and inspiration.  

3.  Maybe I misunderstood you, but it sounded like you are exercising right now.  You definately need to stop, or at least get a doctors approval.  You could easily break bones (if you have osteopenia or osteoporosis).  Also, the burning calories will slow weight gain.

I have to go, but I'm sure others will give you great advice!  Good luck!

You have already gave me great advices...

About punishment... its normal, that if we will see that Im not gaining while Im eating well, so I can not gain in weight as I should, the period will be changed. But Im going to be measured daily, so if I really can not gain (even in 5-6 days), it will be clear that I need more time, the control will be my own family (first of all), so they arent some dictators:)

2. I had read before that you can not gain with 1500-1600 kcal...but it does not seem logical for me... that a person who ate 500-600 kcal/day, is starting to eat for ex 1500 kcal, how its possible not to gain? Probably, youre right, but im so curious how is it possible...

3. Yeah, it was a little misunderstanding, sorry... no, im not exercising, i like to walk, thats all:)

And you? Had u been succed?Im so curious about your story...very short, as mood, time as you have...

Thanks a lot!

If you are currently eating 500 calories a day you should increase to around 1500 and then every few days increase your calories  by 300-500 calories, depending on how your body is reacting.  This is the risk of refeeding syndrome, which can be lethal.  Make sure you are being monitored by a doctor and are getting regular blood tests.  

You may gain on 1500 initially, but it's probably just water weight.  THen, as your metabolism rapidly speeds up, you'll need significantly more calories.  

My story?  I've had anorexia since I was 8...I'm almost 16 now.  I've never fully recovered.  I also suffer from major depression, and struggle with self injury.  I've been hospitalized 11 times, and had 7 suicide attempts.  I've been on more than 25 meds and nothing has helped me.  I've been to countless doctors and nutritionists, even tried the Maudsley method.  I just got out of the hospital in late April, and things are going downhill.  But hopefully things will turn around...

I wish you the best in this battle.  

Anorexic at 8 years old?! oh, god... but what is happening? and your parents?oh god... its incredible... you have serious psychological problems unable overcome or... what made you relapsing so many times?

Depression, anxiety, and ambivalence about whether or not to recover is why I think I've relpased so many times.  Eating disordes, depression, anxiety and bipolar run in my family.  Some of my relatives have even committed suicide, and my dad had anorexia in high school.

Oh, Im soo sorry...I understand...first I”ve read your posts, but I would have never thought that you are only 16... Thank you for helping me... I would like to speak with you are amazing!

orsibabba, I had to go straight up to 2100 first to even gain 1lb which i didnt think was possible either lol. Plus i was maybe eating 300 a day or less and working out like mad! Im on 2300 so far, working up so i shall post my meal plan for you tomorrow since it's late here.

It would be great!

Thank you, teck!

What was your initial weight? My problem is that Im drinking a lot during the day (3-4 l liquid- tea with no sugar with lemon) and I feel always weight varies a lot during the day, and from a day to another depending on how much am I drinking (for ex yesterday morning I was 42, today morning 41,5)...So how can I measure my weight?my initial weight?


My lowest was 84lbs and am now about 92.  I used to drink loads but now I don't drink enough tbh for all the food.  DON'T weigh yourself everyday. Thats why it is not an accurate reading. Only do it at once a week. The scales are never accurate anyway I don't think.  Here's what I eat normally:

Am: Fortisip (suppliment) 300

Breakfast: 23g oats, 150ml soya milk, 10g raisins/craisins or dried fruit, medium banana, 25g blueberries, 16g of nuts/nut butter/pb   (375)

Snack:  150ml fat free yoghurt (90), 100 cals of fruit/dried fruit like a peach and 2 dried figs, or 1/2 a mango and 18g raisins etc  (190/200)

Lunch: 2 sliced med bread/ ww pita/ english muffin (150), 100g chicken breast meat/ham (120), 20g houmous/30g avocado/2 tsp canola oil (50), lettuce tomato and 1/2 pepper (20), 62g beetroot (30), about (370)

Snack: tub of Fage 0% greek yoghurt (80), 23g cereal (80), 50g carrot and a dried fig/100g carrot/ 10g  raisins and some carrot or apple etc (40) (200)

Dinner: 120g turkey steak/100g venison/ tin tuna (120), Mixed veg pack from the supermarket (35), another fat (50), 100g sweet potato baked/ 25g pasta or buckwheat etc (100), plus some spinach/onions or some other veggie (15) (315)

Snack: Fage 0%/ 150ml fat free greek yoghurt (80), 8g of some nuts/nut butter/seeds (50), 1/2 a larabar/eat natural bar (some kind of bar anyway) (100-120) about (230)

pm: Fortisip (300)

Calories about 2300

So this gives me ratios of about 55% carbs, 20% fats, 25% protein and I am still upping the fat perentage towards like 25-30%.  I only eat low fat or fat free yoghurt cos I can't stomach the full fat dairys, eugh. I am still gaining on this at the mo, but it won't be long til i'm up to 2500 my dietitian said.  Hope this helps a little as I know it is hard to make meal plans etc :)

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