Recovering from an eating disorder, whether it be bulimia, anorexia, or binge eating, can be difficult. After undergoing a bulimia treatment program in Westport or any other place in the U.S., it’s difficult to go back to doing even the simplest things such as eating at a restaurant for fear that you might fall into a relapse.

But eventually, you will have to eat at a restaurant one day. It wouldn’t be right for you to stay cooped up in your own home whenever eating a meal is involved. Your friends and family members will eventually ask you to go out. It would be rude not to join them, not to mention detrimental to your socializing skills.

To enjoy eating at a restaurant once more while you’re recovering from an eating disorder, here are a few tips that you might want to try out:

Choose a restaurant appropriate for you

When someone invites you to eat out, like a friend or a sister, try asking them if you could choose the restaurant. This way, you can do some research and find a restaurant that serves nutritious food. Eating only nutritious food is one of the prerequisites to a successful recovery for a person with an eating disorder. It’s important that if you are going to eat outside, you should find a dining place that serves the food you need.

Try to be resourceful

healthy packed lunch with juice

But there will be times when you won’t be able to avoid a greasy diner, especially if your friends have been hankering for a fat, juicy burger. What you can do is that before you headfout to that place, stuff your bag with snacks that are good for you. Feast on them while your friends are chomping down on their hamburgers.

In fact, it’s good practice for people recovering from an eating disorder to pack snacks in their knapsacks or shoulder bags just in case they can’t find a restaurant or grocery store that has the food they need.

Also, remind your friends about your condition—remember that what you have is nothing to be embarrassed about—so that they’ll have the foresight not to check out every fast-food restaurant on a whim while you’re with them. If you remind your friends consistently that you need to eat nutritious food, they’ll think twice about taking you to the nearest Burger King or McDonald’s.

If you’re dining with your family or friends at a diner or any restaurant that serves mostly greasy and salty food, search their menu, and you might find a salad or two. Even these kinds of establishments have something nutritious to serve their patrons. You just have to really look for them.

Don’t be too hard on yourself

Finally, go easy on yourself, and try not to worry too much if you are eating at a restaurant and there are no salads, chicken, or fish in sight. You can eat whatever they are serving as long as you eat more of the nutritious snacks you have in your bag.

Recovering from an eating disorder is hard. Many times, you’ll feel that you’re slipping into a relapse. Just remember what you’ve learned in your treatment program. Remember what they taught you to do if you feel a relapse coming. Let that be your guide to getting back on track.