What to Eat: Hypothalamic Amenorrhea Treatment & Recovery

Figuring out what to eat when you decide to head down the path to recovery, from Hypothalamic Amenorrhea, can be quite confusing and overwhelming. There isn’t a whole lot of research done or knowledge in the medical field when it comes to treating HA, so I would like to share with you what worked for me {nutritionally}. The information below is an outline of my experiences; please make sure you do what feels right for you and your body as you move through your own journey…

The Big Picture

Generally speaking, I would tell anyone that’s going through HA recovery to eat mostly “whole foods” but not to limit or restrict any categories or types of foods {unless of course you have an allergy}. And since it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start, I’m going to break it down into categories to make it easier for you to stock your pantry & fridge! Let’s get started…

Carbohydrates

1

Carbs tend to get a bad wrap in the diet world, but they truly are essential for proper hormone balance as well as metabolism function. Below are the carbs I suggest:

  • Sweet & Regular Potatoes
  • Whole Grain Bread, Pasta & Wraps
  • Basmati, Jasmine or Brown Rice
  • Whole Grain or Gluten Free Flour for baked goods {Cup4Cup is a great one!}
  • Sprouted Grain or Gluten Free Bread
  • Beans
  • Corn Tortillas, Crackers & Chips

Protein

2

I’ve found it’s important to go with the best quality protein you can afford. So much of it is treated with hormones these days, so I would suggest to aim for all naturalpasture-raised, organic, free-range, wild caught when possible…the Farmer’s Market in your area is a great place to find the high quality stuff!

  • Full Fat Dairy
  • Whole Eggs
  • Beef, Poultry, Pork, Fish & Seafood
  • Lunch meat, Bacon, Cold Cuts {Applegate is decent brand that’s fairly easy to find}

Fats

4

This was honestly the funnest part for me to include once I started on my path to recovery. For SO many years I limited the amount of fat I ate, but it truly is VITAL to sustaining a healthy body, regulating hormones and providing the building blocks for a healthy pregnancy. Below are some of my favorites:

  • Nut butters of all kinds {I LOVE Justin’s Almond Butter}
  • Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil
  • Avocados
  • Raw Nuts
  • Coconut Butter {Nikki’s Coconut Butter is AMAZING!}
  • Shredded Coconut

Fruits & Veggies

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This section is really a free for all! I recommend trying new to you fruits & veggies to keep things exciting, but really the most important part is to eat a variety of colors so you get the most vitamins & nutrients.

Treats

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I definitely think it’s SO important to include a fair amount of treats as you’re working your way through recovery. It truly helped me get over the feeling of guilt I used to feel when I “splurged” and truly enjoy the foods I ate. I still tried to eat “quality” treats, but definitely didn’t deny myself when it came to gatherings with family & friends. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Dark chocolate
  • Whole milk ice cream
  • Homemade cookies & brownies
  • Hazelnut spread on graham crackers, sprinkled with shredded coconut

I hope these suggestions help! It truly is a matter of listening to your body, finding what foods work for you and eating enough. I would recommend to aim for 2500-3000 calories a day {but don’t restrict if you feel you need more}, fill your plate with 1/3 carbs, 1/3 protein, 1/3 veggies/fruit and 2-4 tbsp of fat {but don’t stress if you don’t get it “perfect” every time!}.

Also try to eat a meal/snack every 2-3 hours to keep your hormones balanced. If you’re not hungry that often, you can stretch it out to 4 hours, but I really wouldn’t go much further than that!

XOXO,

~P

P.S. If you’re still feeling a little stressed about your nutrition during recovery, make sure to get your copy of The 28 Day Meal Plan to help you through!