Binge eaters know their trigger foods.

Alcoholics know their drink of choice. 

Adulterers know those people they should stay away from.

And a recovered anorexic knows that she probably shouldn’t count calories.

Now to clump all of those behaviors together might seem ridiculous to some.  Ruining a marriage isn’t the same as binging on a bag of Flame Hot Doritos.  No.

Except let’s look a little further.

Both behaviors are toxic.  Both are clear indicators of a lack of SELF CONTROL.  Both are considered sin.  And both are absolutely avoidable.

(Did I step on any toes yet?)

I’m not really here to talk about sin or the psychology of toxic behaviors.  I want to talk about COUNTING CALORIES and what that looks like for someone who has dealt with an eating disorder.  If you’re a long-time reader, you’ve heard my story before.  For years, I counted every single thing that I put into my body.  A cup of cereal.  A serving of broccoli.  Even down to a stick of (sugarfree) gum.  Ending the day and knowing that I was under 300 calories gave me a sense of control and a sense of purpose.  To this day, I can tell you the calorie count for almost any food you put before me.  It’s just engrained in my head.  After years of counting and looking at nutrition labels, I know those numbers.


For some recovered people, getting back into counting calories might be perfectly fine.  Yet even as I type that sentence out, I have a hard time believing it fully.  Once you’ve taken a perfectly healthy (and sometimes very necessary) step of analyzing what goes into your body to a UNHEALTHY, scary place, I find it reckless to go back there.  But to each his own.  I know that, for me, worrying about food and calories and dieting only leads to discontentment.  Watch the vlog to hear more.

So how do I make sure I’m getting enough calories?  How would I go about losing weight if I needed to?

That post is in the works.  Smile  Check back this week!

QUESTION:  Do you count calories?  Do you find it helpful or dangerous territory?


Join the Conversation


Your email address will not be published.

  1. I absolutely love your blog. Do you ever train clients remotely? I live in upstate SC but would love to hear more about your clean eating challenges, or would you be willing to send work-outs to me? Thanks!

  2. I love love love this so much and your perspective. I fall into this mindset sometimes, too…oh this doesn’t look right, oh I don’t like how that body part looks today, maybe I should food log again…but since stepping away from it, I truly feel more in tune with the food that I eat and the choices that I make and no LESS in control of that not logging. I feel as though if I went back to it now, it would be a mentally stressful situation and I would fixate too much. You’re so fantastic, I loved your words and really needed to read this and SEE you today :) xo

    1. EXACTLY what my sister said. LOVE your words, LOVE your perspective, LOVE your soul my friend!!

  3. Love this, Linds! Esp. the part about unfollowing people who encourage you to go back to something that’s not good for you. Drinking (responsibly) is not a sin, but if you’re a recovering alcoholic, it might not be good to spend all your time with winemakers and bartenders and your unemployed neighbor who spends all his time making moonshine.

  4. I could not agree with you more. Counting calories is what got me in trouble in the first place, and it is such a slippery slope that it’s just not worth it. I’ve slipped a few times when I’ve tried to lose weight in the past, and downloaded apps tracking my food and calorie intake, but I always ended up deleting them within a week or so when I realized how much inputting that info took away from my family meals, since I was obsessive about it. The Lord has really blessed me in opening my eyes in times like that, and in wiping those calorie counting thoughts out of my head before I can even go there. That’s a place I never want to go again. And I’m so thankful for people like you who are on the same side ;). Xoxo

  5. As someone else who has suffered from anorexia, I find this topic fascinating. I too, like you, can recite calorie counts- even on food I’ve never tried before. It’s crazy how much storage space that all takes up in my head, and I wish I didn’t even know what calories were. Thankfully I am in a much better place now. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this!!

  6. I find that I like to count calories – mostly as a way to make healthier choices. When I am training hard it is easy to reach for sugar so tracking helps keep me focused on healthier choices.