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  • Writer's pictureAllison Mankowski

Welcome to the LevelUp Nutrition Cookbook!

Recovering from an eating disorder is not easy. Seeking help in the first place can be one of the toughest barriers to overcome, and once you’re there some of the necessary changes (for example meal changes or increasing intake frequency) doesn’t make it any easier. That is what this book is for. We’ve compiled a handful of meals (snacks included too) that can be incorporated at any point of recovery.


Some recipes in the book might feel more daunting, so we suggest taking a look through and flagging the ones that look like the easiest to try. If you are with family, friends, or others that you feel comfortable asking to help prepare meals, this could be a great support network to call on when attempting some of these recipes.


To break it down into simple terms, when you look at a plate, you should have four food groups represented: carbohydrates, lean protein, fruit or vegetable, and fat. Many of these recipes incorporate all of these groups, but if there are times you just need something to eat immediately or don’t want to do the mental work of following a new recipe, reminding yourself to check your plate or snack choices for these groups can be helpful.


Depending on where you are in the recovery process, you may or may not have heard of intuitive eating. This concept is the idea that you are attuned to your body’s needs, cravings, and fullness, and are comfortable responding in a way that fulfills your body’s requests. These levels of being in-tune usually come as a milestone of full recovery, and if reading this makes you think “I can not even fathom what that might look like” or “That sounds terrifying” or “There’s no way that’s possible”, that’s okay! We’re going to start at step one -- making sure you’re fueling your body's daily operating needs and starting to challenge some scary food groups or meals. Know that almost every recipe contains notes for if a meal is too easy or too much of a challenge. If a core goal of recovery is food flexibility, we want to begin practicing that in how we prepare and adapt our meals based on our comfort levels.


GENERAL NOTES:

  • All recipes are modifiable

  • The measurements suggested are just that – suggestions. Feel free to adapt based on taste preferences, etc.

  • The listed challenge points and ways to adapt recipes to better fit where you are in recovery are subjective and might not work for everybody. Please contact your treatment team for more adaptations to make the recipes work best for you

  • Be kind to yourself. Some recipes are going to be easier and others are going to be harder. It is not a race to see how quickly you can make or try every recipe in this book.

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