Guide to Normalizing Food for Patients and Families

Energy
Dense
Food
Guidance
Chart

Nutrient dense foods are crucial and beneficial in eating disorder recovery and in the process of eating in general so that the body is able to receive all the necessary vitamins and minerals for optimal functioning. Energy dense foods allow for a smaller amount of foods with more energy provided in the quantity of foods. Fruits and vegetables should be consumed last in the eating process because getting in the main food groups (carbohydrates, proteins, fats) first will allow for more appropriate nourishment. Below are some ideas on how to incorporate more quality food additions without needing to increase the quantity of foods.

CARBOHYDRATES / STARCHES / GRAINS

FOOD

USES

OATMEAL

MIX INTO COOKIES, MUFFINS, OR BREAD. USE AS A BREAKFAST ITEM

RICE

(WHITE OR BROWN)

SIDE DISH FOR MEALS OR ADD TO SOUPS

BREAD

(WHOLE WHEAT, MULTI-GRAIN, WHITE)

USED AS A SIDE FOR MEALS OR ADD TO SOUPS AND CASSEROLES

PANKCAKES

(5+ INCHES IN DIAMETER) – MADE WITH EITHER WHOLE WHEAT OR WHITE FLOWER

EAT FOR BREAKFAST AND TOP WITH OTHER ITEMS SUCH AS MAPLE SYRUP, WHOLE MILK YOGURT, AND BUTTER

WAFFLES

(4+ INCH SQUARES) – MADE WITH WHOLE WHAT OR WHITE FLOUR

USE WITH TOPPINGS AT BREAKFAST OR COULD USE TO MAKE A BREAKFAST SANDWICH WITH EGGS

MEAT AND PROTEIN

FOOD

USES

Nuts (heaping handful)

Almonds, Peanuts, Cashews, Pistachios, Walnuts Macadamia, and Pecans

Use in baked goods, sprinkle on yogurt and cereal, trailmix, salads, and stir-fry.

Nut and Seed Butter

(Peanut, almond, cashew and sunflower)

Use as a dip for fruits or vegetables, spread on crackers or toast, stir into hot cereals. Some brands of sunflower seed butter are nut free.

Eggs (with yolk)

Use as a breakfast food, add to baked goods, and when hard boiled can be eaten as a snack or made into egg salad.

Hummus or other bean dip

Use as a dip for vegetables or a sandwich spread.

DAIRY

FOOD

USES

Cheese (NON low fat)

 Cheddar, Swiss, Provolone, Muenster, Colby, Goat Cheese, Mozzarella and Feta

Use as toppings for sandwiches and soups, melt

into casseroles, sprinkle on vegetables, and a

snack.

Heavy Whipping Cream

Use as some of the liquid in hot cereal, add to milkshakes, and smoothies.

Whole Milk Yogurt

Use as a snack, dip with fruit, or mixed into a smoothie.

Cream Cheese

Spread on bagels or toast, and use in dips and sauces.

Sour Cream

(Do not use reduced fat or fat free)

Top on potatoes, use in dips, and mix into casseroles or soups.

Whole Milk (Do not use reduced milk or skim milk)

Use as a beverage and in many recipes.

HEALTHY FATS AND SWEETENERS

FOOD

USES

Oils

(canola, safflower, olive, or coconut)

Use in salad dressings, toss with pasta or cooked vegetables, and in baked goods.

Butter

(dairy, soy, or coconut based butters)

Spread on toast and bread, melt onto vegetables

and pasta, and use in baking recipes.

Pure Maple Syrup

Use on pancakes or waffles, use to flavor hot cereal, yogurt, or smoothies.

Honey

Use to sweeten milkshakes or smoothies, mix into hot cereal, and use as a dip.

Canned Coconut Milk

(Do not use the light version)

Add to sauces, soups, hot cereal, and

smoothies/shakes.

FRUITS AND VEGETABLES

FOOD

USES

Sweet Potato

Use in soups, casseroles, baked goods, and make

homemade sweet potato fries.

Peas

Mix with rice, pasta, soups, and casseroles.

Avocado

Slice on sandwiches and salads, mash as a dip for chips and vegetables.

Banana

Eat as a snack, mash to put in baked goods, blend into a smoothie or milkshake, and use as a topping for cold or hot cereal.

Dried Fruits

cranberries, raisins, cherries, blueberries, apricots

Use in trail mix, mix with yogurt, top a salad, add to cereal, or as a snack.