Halfway through this eating disorder week, and it has taken me a few days to come to terms with posting the following. Maybe because of denial, maybe because of embarrassment, but as I read up more on eating disorders and with my life beginning to change in a big way in the next few months, I thought I would bite the bullet.
From the ages of 13 to 15, I was bulimic. Not constantly, but on and off, I went through phases. It wasn’t until my mum, on two occasions, basically yelled at me so much that it scared me to do it again in case of getting in trouble. However, I moved to London for uni when I was 18, and then intermittently I was bulimic there. But I would always shock myself back into reality and purge a few times and then jump back on the health bandwagon.
Alongside being bulimic, I was also a binge eater, and I still am to this day. I can go from one extreme of being super healthy all week and then going to the other extreme of eating everything and anything at home, whether it is junk or a bag of almonds to a whole pack of rice crackers… anything that basically gives me that ‘high’. What eating awareness week has made me do, is address my issue. To address that I do have an eating disorder. I am very much an all or nothing character, so may be it is the case that those cheat meals I am allowing myself to have are just one opening step to a turmoil of excessive eating. Unfortunately, I can’t recommend anything in particular for a bulimic. I got over it myself, yes I had support from my best friend who wiped away my tears, but I didn’t seek professional help, which is maybe why at the age of 25 I have now resorted to being a binge eater. Therefore, I recommend that anyone seeks some professional support in some way.
After doing some research, I have found some helpful tips on binge eaters from various websites.
- Listening to your body: A little island in Japan called Okinawa have the most number of centurions living there. Based on their diet and philosophies, I found that their phrase of ‘Hara hachi bun me’ advice to use and repeat before eating a meal, meaning, only eat to 80% full.
- Fighting boredom: when you find as if your bored, do something else. Whether that is calling someone or going for a walk or an another activity. Distract your mind.
- Accept your feelings and emotions: accept the emotions you are having, the more you avoid it, the stronger those emotions will feel. Also accept the emotions and try and explain why you are feeling them. A good piece of advice from helpguide.org is that is that ’emotions are like clouds, they will pass’.
- Take back control of your cravings: accept the urge and ride it out. If you feel the urge to purge or binge eat, then DELAY DELAY DELAY. Try to hold off for one minute, if that succeeds, then hold off for five minutes.
- Enforce healthy habits: for me, this has never been an issue for me. I am more than happy and capable to eat healthily, but it is the excessive amount of food I eat and lack of self control. For me it is a mental lack of self control that I need to gain control of again.
These are just a few things that I have read that I have found helpful for me. On top of this, I have read that keeping a food journal and diary along with my emotions could be helpful. So I am going to start trying to implement this.
I am determined to make progress with my body and be consistent. And that is it. CONSISTENCY. It is so key and something that is becoming more and more apparent the more I flick through instagram or read blogs. The consistency to stay on track, to not give in to purges, to stick with my calorie deficit, to stay on top of my exercise.
Like I said previously, this is just some advice I have found, I am no expert in mental health or eating disorders nor a doctor. I can only advice that if you are relating to symptoms similar to me, that you do seek help from your GP or a doctor.
Please feel free to ask me any questions! We all have to support one another!
Lots of love
Liv ❤ xxx