8 Million People In The US Suffer From Eating Disorders

12 May

Just a nicely done collage I found with StumbleUpon.

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Stay Focused During Recovery – Some Tips

10 May

Sometimes on our way to a new life free from the eating disorder we get distracted and forget to stay focused. During the recovery process we have to stick with our way and our goal. I used a few strategies to stay focused on what was important to me and I would like to share them with you. These are also great possibilities to just take your mind off things if you feel you need a break. Try it!

Recovery jewelry

Either buy a nice piece of jewelry or even make one yourself. It’s not hard to create bracelets or necklaces and it doesn’t cost a fortune. You may even find out that it’s a very satisfying hobby and that you would like to continue with it when you’ve tried it once. Whatever you do, it should be a piece of jewelry that symbolizes recovery to you and that reminds you of your commitment to healthiness anytime you wear or hold it. (To make your own jewelry try the tips from eHow and About!)

Recovery collage

Take some nice pictures of yourself and collect some stuff from newspapers or magazines (try not to use beauty magazines). Paste it all on a card stock and add some words or small drawings if you like. Create a collage that’s inspiring for you and that motivates you to keep moving ahead. When you’re done you should put it on a place where it’s clearly visible to you, like the opposite wall of your desk or bed. This way you can get automatically reminded of it whenever you look up.

Recovery journal

Just like I am using this blog to put down my thoughts, write down everything that inspires you, everything you’re grateful for and that keeps you going ahead. Very important: Also write down what you have achieved! Like when you ate your lunch without feeling guilty, when there was a day you didn’t binge or when you threw away your laxatives. This way your journal becomes a source of support anytime you have a tough time. Just take it out and read through it – you will feel better afterwards.

Sticky notes

It is a rather unknown fact, but yes, there are other sticky notes than the boring yellow ones! Just cast a glance at some office supply stores around the corner. There are cute heart-shaped ones, ones with funny caricatures, pictures and sayings on them and many more … When you’ve found some start to write positive things on them. Spread them around your room – anywhere you are reminded of them on a daily basis. Put them inside your drawers and cupboards, inside your wallet, into books … if you don’t know what to write just take a glance at our inspirational quotes section, maybe you’ll find some nice sayings there you can identify with.

Do you have any other ideas and strategies? Please share them with us in a comment!

Oh and here’s some fun. I’m sure you’ve heard of the sticky notes experiment:

Quote of the day – Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

9 May

“People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine
 when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their
 true beauty is revealed only if there is a light 
from within.”
 Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
~

A message to the fashion leaders

9 May

I hate it when people sit around complaining about beauty magazines. Because half of them is regularly reading them and the other half will never actually do anything to change other peoples mind. Fortunately there are people like those from Nedic – the National Eating Disorder Center in Canada. They actually did something! And even something creative!

Just look what they’ve sent to a whole bunch of fashion leaders and marketers all over the world that are promoting an impossibly thin look. (Oh and the third one is located in the heart of downtown Toronto. :))

1. Thanks for nothing

Thanks

Thanks for making me such a successful anorexic.

Your ads and fashion spreads are an inspiration to many girls a women. We look at your ultra thin models and think – if I’m skinny, I’ll be perfect just like her. This sort of intense media pressure to be thin helps drive 27 % of teenage girl in Canada to fast, binge and purge, and over half of all Canadian women to diet. We don’t mean to preach or point fingers. All we ask is that you think before you cast and that you consider inspiring us with a look that is beautiful and attainable. We urge you to visit the website below to make a difference.

2. Payback

I’m a size negative 8.

Please try this on to experience how your ads make us feel.

Being bombarded by images featuring ultra thin models makes women feel fat. To the point where over half of us diet regularly. And 27 % of teenage girls fast, binge and purge. We understand your desire to cast aspirational models, but who aspires to an eating disorder? Resist the cliché. Pledge your intent to inspire us with a look that’s both beautiful and attainable at nedic.ca/pledge.

3. Trash bin

Shed your weight problems here.

The Nedic people are also doing a petition you can find on their website. Please visit them at nedic.ca and sign it! You’ll also find some mythbusting and plenty of interesting facts there.

Oh, and videos are fun 😉

Quote of the day – Wolfgang von Goethe

8 May

“Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough;
we must do.”
 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
~

Regular hospital or anorexia treatment center?

8 May

I have been to several eating disorder treatment centers and hospitals so far and experienced in many cases that anorexia is often misunderstood, not only by the majority of the population, but also by lots of therapists and physicians. If you’re thinking about undergoing treatment you should avoid going into a regular hospital. I don’t say that the hearts of the hospital workers aren’t in the right place. But these regular clinics often make some fatal mistakes that hinder anorexics from developing a positive and healthy self esteem.

Most of them tend to put way too much emphasis on weight gain. I mean, weight gain is certainly necessary and one of the most important steps that need to be taken, especially if the anorexia is at an advanced level. But some of those hospitals even go so far as to take away privileges or even punish the patients if they don’t reach the weight requirements they have set up. As I said, weight gain is an important part of recovering, but it needs to be in the hands of someone with experience in working with anorexics, because it has to be handled delicately.

During the first few weeks when I started to eat properly again (I was at 77 pounds at this time) I even continued to lose weight! I was eating like a horse for 4 weeks but was still losing weight (7 pounds to be precise), although I hadn’t thrown up once during these 4 weeks. And this is not uncommonly, many anorexics experience this when they’re starting to eat normally again after a long starving period. This is because you’re body is so longing for calories that it burns everything incoming right away. So that’s a natural reaction of my body – and I get punished for it? Ridiculous. I even remember a girl being “expelled” from the hospital just because she was half a pound beneath her set limit. They seem to forget that the stress of being obsessed with weight was the thing that got us to treatment in the first place!

The problem is that many regular hospitals either ignore or misunderstand the unique mindset of the anorexic and treat the disorder more like a behavioural problem than like a mental disorder. Therefore you should always choose an eating disorder treatment center with specially trained staff and years of experience in anorexia treatment.

If you need help finding a decent facility for your treatment feel free to get in contact with me!

Restaurant Offering Free Food To Skinny Models

7 May

This actually happened about three years ago, but still I think it was a nice gesture. Other restaurants should take a page from that book.  I’m talking about Bumpkin restaurant in Notting Hill, a restaurant  very popular with fashionistas, models and celebrities. They decided to offer free food to skinny models with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of  less than 18, who have come under attack for promoting a stick-thin body image. They are offering the opportunity to gorge on scallops, fish pies, king prawns or lamb burgers.

Here’s what Dariush Nejad, Bumpkin general manager, has said in a statement:

“If I could recommend a dish to a size zero model, it would be a charter pie containing leeks, chicken and bacon; it’s enough to keep you warm and energised all day,”

Ok, we all agree that this is a great thing to do from Bumpkin, but I mean, even if more restaurants offered this, I don’t think any of the models would take the chance and accept the offer. I’m not sure how it worked for Bumpkin, but just imagine a skinny model, entering the restaurant, getting weighted to see how low her Body Mass Index is and whether she really qualifies for a free sandwich, and choosing a nice meal to enjoy. That sounds somewhat unlikely.

However, I think it’s actually more about the gesture – setting a sign to tell those rakes “Hey, we don’t want you to starve yourself to look that way, it’s not worth it!”. What do you think? Does it make any sense at all to offer something like this?

Quote of the day – Hanoch McCarty

7 May

“Refuse to accept the many reasons why it can’t be done and
 ask if there are
 any reasons it can be done.”
 Hanoch McCarty
~

Can parents prevent obesity?

6 May

I am fully aware that in many cases the parents are not to blame for the eating disorders of their children. But still, what defines healthy eating for them defines healthy eating for their children. Cooking and eating with and for our kids in a right, healthy way can not only prevent suffering, but also save lives!

Our society tends to become more and more weight conscious with intent to grab the peoples attention for “what is a healthy lifestyle”. But here exactly lies the rub. The more weight conscious we are, the more overweight become our children. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that parents don’t care, I know that. But the harder they are trying to prevent obesity, the more bad eating habits occur. That means there seems to be an inverse correlation between overweight children and all the dieting, fat-free food and meal substitutes. It is statistically proven that dieting kids are more likely to develop obesity!

Although in many cases obesity may be genetically based, there is still a great deal parents can do to prevent it. Our society seems to have forgotten what healthy eating means – and this exactly is the key. We need to re-learn healthy eating habits along with a healthy exercise lifestyle and pass this on to your kids. When did we forget that all?

Quote of the day – Lao-Tse

6 May

“Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking
 creates profundity. Kindness in giving creates love.”
 Lao-Tse
~