Picking apart food

The last few weeks I find myself picking apart any food that I eat and making it into the tiniest pieces I suppose in hopes that it will last longer...
My meal replacement bar i've been picking apart for an hour for lunch, its almost dinner and im still eating it and picking it apart....what the heck is this new obsession? Has anyone else ever done this?

i used to do that too so dont worry its not just you. the other day for breakfast i had a granola bar and i crumbled it into tini pieces and looking back i only had half cause it looked like it was so much.

i hope u are feeling better

hmmmm i might have done this... possibly...i think it might be part of the obssessiveness of ED....

has anyone ever heard of chewing and spitting?? i used to do that quite a bit....

i heard that is also ED...another form...

wishing you the best


I think thats called Pica when you chew and spit. Ive never done that before though.

This behavior is part of the obsessive ‘rituals’ that often accompany an eating disorder. There are some who believe that this is an effort to make the food last longer, because you are allowing yourself such a small amount. I did this also, and I think that had a lot to do with it. Your body is starving, and your mind is trying to ‘fix’ that in any way possible.
PICA is a craving for a certain non-food substance. Sometimes it includes chalk, plaster, clay, odd things like that. It has nothing to do with chewing/spitting, if that is what you thought.

Take care…Jan :heart:

hon, i hate to admit it, but i am the queen of small bites. i also can not bite into anything, so cutting or tearing my food into tiny bites is necessary. if you can find a way to stop it, i highly recommend it. i draw unwanted attention to myself and have been that *trick pony* for over 20 years. most people in my life are rather immune to it by now, but every once in a while i will be humiliated by this act.
here's to getting weird obsessions out of our lives!
cheers, hon.

well hell, i've sadly participated in c/s also..... stay away from it!!!!!!!

Okay, so i'm not alone with this one....stonemala, why the heck do we do this?

I kinda do this, but I organize my food.. eat it in groups. First all carrots, broccoli, then peas. I tried to break up my Minestrone soup at Olive Garden a few weeks ago, and the process was so complex, that I gave up and only ate about 1/4 of the soup. :( Idk why we do this. I guess I could say that it makes eating more "safe" for me.

tearing the food apart into the tiniest pieces is something that you are encouraged not to do in inpatient treatment or if you go to an outpatient clinic for meals. the reason is that most girls pick the food apart like that to do it for a few reasons:
burn more calories while eating so not to gain as much.
takes longer to eat, some do it in hopes they don't have to finish a meal or can throw some away.
makes them feel in control of the food. (not sure how that worked)
there are a few other reasons but i can't remember them right now.


I do the same thing, glad to hear other people do too (not glad other people struggle, just glad I'm not nuts!). I think I do it because it takes longer to eat and I guess it makes me feel like I'm eating more.

I do that all the time. I do it bc I think if I pick at it then it will last me all day thus restricting calories but at least eating something. At least thats what I tell myself. I'm now facing the consequences in a different way. My 23 year old daughter, who is petite like me, has started doing the same thing. I hate that I passed this on to her. I'm hoping she can break free of it before it becomes a way of life for her too.

Hmm, it does seem to be rather common then, im sitting here eating breakfast (meal replacement bar and grapes) as we speak and im peeling the skin off the grapes, no idea why, and picking apart the bar into a million pieces :s

It's super common Lilac. Don't do it!!

As a person with anorexia I've heard the "don't do that"' or "just eat" all the time. Not really helpful as if we could do that we would all be normal eaters. It's like telling an alcoholic "don't drink that vodka". No offense, just that it isn't that easy. Even it you are aware of it, and let's face it, anyone with an ed knows tons about food, nutrition, tricks and ways of trying to avoid detection., it doesn't help while you are still in the ED. So picking at your food is not ideal....but it's better than eating absolutely nothing. Good luck:)

You’re right, I’ve heard those things a lot too. It’s certainly not an easy thing and I didn’t mean to make it sound that way, I just think it’s ‘easier’ if you can be really aggressive in the beginning before the habit becomes strongly entrenched. I’m sorry if I offended anyone.

At the beginning of this year, I remember chewing and spitting an entire box of chocolates - I didn't swallow one chocolate. I went on to do the same with a choc ice. I do it occasionally now but it's very rare.

I have never cut my food into tiny pieces but if I need to use a spoon, I always opt for a tea spoon so that it lasts longer. I hadn't even realised that I did that until now!!! Right, big spoon's coming back into my life!!!