Will I Get Fat When I Stop Restricting? | Eating Disorder Recovery

Question about recovery: “Hi Elisa – I have a weird question but it’s something I can’t stop thinking about. OK, so I know we should stop restricting and exercising, which I’m trying to do. But I don’t want to get fat, and I know you say that our bodies will normalize, but what about all of the obese people in the world! I doubt the majority of them had eating disorders so if we just eat normally and don’t exercise (like all the overweight people) won’t be become like them?”

Article about Set Point Weight: https://followtheintuition.com/diets-do-not-work-set-point-weight-works/

Why “Calories In Calories Out” Theory Fails: https://followtheintuition.com/calories-in-calories-out/

4 thoughts on “Will I Get Fat When I Stop Restricting? | Eating Disorder Recovery”

  1. I’m normal weight and come from a 20 year history of initially anorexic and then bulimia and then sort of recovery but constant dieting allowing myself anything from 1500-1900kcal with occasional pretty small binges. I’ve just started intuitive eating and Im aware I’m eating more than usual.. i feel so big. I know i shouldn’t need to ask this as you’ve written it a million times but my anxiety is driving me to. Will this settle? Will I always be this big or bigger?. I’ve not weighed myself but the idea of gaining more than 2-3lbs let alone 10-15lb feels soooo awful. I don’t want to be stuck being fat forever. Sorry I know everyone asks you this.

    1. Hi:) the fact is that you need to simply eat and let go of restriction, this is 100% sure. otherwise, you will live in prison all your life, stuck in your own restrictive mindset – it’s NOT helping you to maintain your weight healthfully, it WILL only mess up your body further on, it will slow down your metabolism, increase hunger, obsession. yes, your weight will settle in your set point, whatever the number will be, where you can eat what you want, however much you want, and just feel normal again, but you need to let go of control and trust your body!

      1. Good day,

        Thank you for this reply. Does it matter what I eat or will the body naturally maintain its set point despite food choices? Does the body naturally know what the set point is and how do I know what my set point is? Does bloating and fat gain really stop despite what your eating and how long does it take the body to normalize? Also what is normal eating?

        1. you will be a normal eater after recovery – eating when hungry, stopping when full (no more bingeing or overeating until sick), and since all foods will be allowed and you have recovered from the diet mindset (“good-bad food” mindset etc) people generally gravitate towards eating all kinds of foods, meaning, your diet will be way more in “balance” (compared to maybe in recovery when we do want more high calorie and ultra-processed foods because you have been so deprived physically and mentally) so this means yes your body will be able to maintain its set point while eating all kinds of foods.

          Under the “blog” tab on my website you can search for keywords like “set point” and you will find many posts I have written, hope it helps.

          And yes the bloating and fat gain will eventually stop, as I said earlier, in full recovery you WILL be a normal eater again, plus the body functions like digestion, metabolism, hormones, etc will work normally again.

          And Ellyn Satter has a great explanation of “normal eating” you can see here (scroll down): https://www.ellynsatterinstitute.org/how-to-eat/adult-eating-and-weight/

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