For the Love of Peanut Butter | Teen Ink

For the Love of Peanut Butter MAG

November 13, 2010
By Anonymous

I love peanut butter.

I have loved it since I was a preschooler munching “ants on a log” during snack time, and I cannot fathom having a peanut allergy. However, when I was 15, even mentioning my favorite childhood food made my heart beat with fear. Why? I had anorexia nervosa.

When people hear the term eating disorder, they usually assume those who suffer from it can recover simply by eating normally again, but it's not that simple. Anorexia is a psychological disorder; shoving cupcakes down someone's throat does not heal the mental component of the disease.

It is a slow and difficult process, especially because victims have a warped perspective of both their bodies and food. I was 78 pounds at one point; despite my ghastly skeletal appearance, I thought I was perfect. I was convinced donuts and pizza were pure evil.

When I turned 16, I suddenly wanted to recover. It's impossible for me to explain why or how it happened, but I knew I could not deprive myself any longer. The next few months were the most difficult of my life; I would have a gigantic argument with myself at every meal.

“Eat the egg yolk.”

“No! That's 50 calories!”

“Eat it, eat it, eat it!”

Eventually, it was time to face my number-one fear food: peanut butter.

Because I still obsessed with how healthy foods were, I decided I would only consume natural peanut butter made without hydrogenated oils. That was easy enough. The next step was opening the jar and actually eating it.

I sliced an apple, took out a spoon, and slowly unscrewed the lid. I started panicking. What if I consumed more than one serving? I carefully scooped out just one tablespoon – 100 calories.

For the next month, although I was no longer counting calories, whenever I was craving peanut butter I ensured that my metal tablespoon was with me. If I couldn't find it, I would eat something else. Then one day that tablespoon had a run-in with the garbage disposal, and I finally realized that in order to overcome my eating disorder once and for all, I had to eat peanut butter without measuring it.

I grabbed the jar from the fridge and unscrewed the lid, took out a knife, and smeared it onto my whole wheat toast. Was it two tablespoons? Was it 1.36? I didn't care. I popped the bread into my mouth.


If I can overcome this disease, so can the millions of people who are suffering from eating disorders. It just needs to be attempted one step at a time because everyone is stronger than they realize.

The author's comments:
You are beautiful. Don't let others, or even yourself, tell you otherwise.

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This article has 9 comments.

on Jul. 21 2012 at 7:56 pm
MckennaS PLATINUM, Port St Lucie, Florida
21 articles 0 photos 55 comments

Favorite Quote:
Well, I’m well.
Well, I mean I’m in hell.
Well, I still have my health
At least that’s what they tell me
If wellness is this, what in hell’s name is sickness?"

I'm glad you were able to face that fear food of yours. Peanut butter is a fear food of mine, though I know I (not my eating disorder) finds it delicious. Kudos for you for finding the motivation to recover

on Jul. 8 2011 at 6:29 pm
ohheyyyelli SILVER, Woonsocket, Rhode Island
5 articles 3 photos 178 comments

First off, you are a really talented writer!

Secondly, I have ednos, and I can relate to this so much. I did reach a point of "recovery", but I always relapse. I don't think I will ever be free of my ED forever though. I hope you are still in recovery and can leave this all behind you and live a happy&healthy life. 

Kimmy_Krak said...
on Mar. 5 2011 at 9:02 am
Kimmy_Krak, Macomb, Michigan
0 articles 21 photos 49 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it"

In the magazine a drawing of mine was shown with this piece and it really resonated with me because i went through an eating disorder myself and even though it has been close to four years, it's still a struggle. be strong

on Mar. 2 2011 at 1:28 pm
BrainsANDBeauty PLATINUM, Donnellson, Iowa
29 articles 3 photos 52 comments

Favorite Quote:
I knew that guy when he was a caterpillar, you know, before he 'came out'

This was definitely informative, and I am so glad I got to read this in the magazine.  So empowering.  Congratulations!

on Feb. 14 2011 at 2:09 pm
HannahBanana23 BRONZE, Eatonville, Washington
2 articles 0 photos 35 comments

Favorite Quote:
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life
Winston Churchill

Wow that takes guts to overcome an eating disorder. I could not fathom how it would be like to have an eating disorder. Im glad your eating peanut butter again. :)

Duckie430 said...
on Feb. 13 2011 at 4:52 pm
Duckie430, Riverside, Rhode Island
0 articles 0 photos 228 comments

Favorite Quote:
“The secret to life is being who you are and being happy with who you are.”
"Whatever does not kill you only makes you stronger."

this piece really touched me, i have an eating disorder myself so i know how hard this must have been to go through, & also to write about. congrats on getting published, i absolutely loved this.

on Feb. 11 2011 at 11:32 pm
littletipoftheshoelace GOLD, San Diego, California
15 articles 1 photo 14 comments

Favorite Quote:
Create like a god, work like a slave.

OMG this was amazing!!! and super congrats on overcoming this, it mustve been horrid!!! mad props 2 u, keep writing and fighting!!!

on Feb. 4 2011 at 11:51 am
SoulxFinder BRONZE, Cobourg, Other
3 articles 0 photos 15 comments

Favorite Quote:
The death of a beautiful woman, is unquestionably the most poetical topic in the world. - Edgar Allan Poe

Congratulations! That is a huge thing to overcome. 

SuperChunky said...
on Feb. 3 2011 at 7:26 am
WOW!  And congrats!  It took courage!