Thursday, 20 July 2017

An update + To the Bone review

I thought I would write a post and just update everyone on how I have been going lately. I haven't written a personal post for a long time and although I feel guilty for not posting more often, regular blogging just doesn't feel like the right thing for me anymore. I miss some aspects of blogging and am incredibly grateful for my blog, as I honestly don't think I would have ever recovered without it but in order to move keep moving forward, I felt as though writing about anorexia all the time was keeping me in the past and preventing me from getting on with my life. I love the fact that people from all over the world are still reading my blog though and love hearing from people, who say that my blog is helping them in there own recoveries.

I have just had a month off from university which was great as exams at the end of last semester really took it out of me. I found myself getting incredibly stressed and anxious and I was a real mess for a couple of weeks. I managed to get through them though and was really happy with the results I received, so it all seemed worth it in the end. Just before exams I had been working out everyday and was in the best shape of my life. I had not only got fitter but stronger too. I cut out nearly all exercise whilst I was doing my exams however and am only just starting to get right back into it again. It was nice to have a break though and I am excited to try and get my fitness back to where it was about 2 months ago. The challenge for me will be to also increase my food uptake to make sure I don't lose any weight.

I still find that I lose weight very easily and find it much harder to gain weight. Although I cut out exercise whilst I was studying for my exams, loss of muscle as well as stress lead to me losing about 2 kilograms. This is also why I didn't start exercising again straight after exams as I wanted to regain the weight first, which I have now done. My relationship with food is still really good (the best it has ever been) and my eating disorder no longer interferes with my life. I eat 6 meals a day without fail and although I mainly eat typically healthy foods, I also enjoy eating other foods too like pizza, ice cream and chocolate. I still use some Herbalife products but not as many as I used to (mainly because I could not afford to keep using all of the products I was). I still have a shake when I get up every morning, drink the herbal tea and use the protein powder and a few of the vitamins.

I have started university again this week and spent last weekend in my hometown with my boyfriend. I don't get back to Swansea all that often so when I do it is really nice to see all of my family, especially my little sister and my dad. I don't really have any plans for this weekend but I will most likely spend it trying to stay warm. It has been freezing here lately and although there is no snow where I live, we wake up most mornings to a frost and sometimes the temperature doesn't go above 5 degrees Celsius. I still try and get out for a walk most days though as otherwise I find I start to feel a bit depressed and down if I stay inside all the time, especially when I am in Launceston by myself.

I watched To the Bone the other day and was really disappointed by it (as I think most people were). I was expecting the film to be a really good representation of what Anorexia is truly like as the film was directed by someone who had anorexia and the main actress had also suffered from anorexia however that wasn't the case at all. I had hoped that the film would raise awareness about anorexia and show the world what it was really about however I think if anything, it reinforced the stereotypes that are currently associated with anorexia in our society. I also think it would have been really triggering to anyone with the illness and don't recommend anyone watches it who is currently suffering from anorexia or trying to recover. I was also quite outraged that the main character was asked to lose weight to resemble someone with anorexia as she had actually previously had anorexia and recovered. This is an incredibly dangerous thing to ask any recovered anorexic to do and I hope that it hasn't made that actor relapse.

I better get back to my studying, thanks to all of those people who still read my blog, despite the fact I rarely post anymore. And always remember that if you are suffering from an eating disorder or trying to recover, no matter how impossible it may seem, YOU CAN RECOVER! No matter how difficult it may seem, you are strong enough to fight your illness and do what it takes to recover. I promise you that it is more than worth it in the end, when you get to live the life you truly deserve to live! Stay strong, You've got this! 

Monday, 15 May 2017

Take the plunge

I know exactly what it feels like to try and gain weight when you are underweight and have an unhealthy anorexic mind. Even if you know you need to gain weight in order to get better, that doesn't mean you actually want to go through the process of weight restoration. These are the sorts of thoughts that I was having for the majority of my recovery (just for the record, they were all untrue)......
'If I get any bigger I will hate myself even more'
'I will never be able to accept my body at a healthy weight'
'If I go back to the size I used to be before I got sick, I will be unhappy again'
'I want to get better, but I wish I didn't have to gain weight to do that'

Despite all of these thoughts, I managed to do what was necessary for me to gain the weight I needed to gain. I honestly don't think would have been able to do it if it wasn't for my blog and my readers, as I wanted to lead by example and show everyone that it was possible to recover from anorexia (even if I didn't entirely believe it was possible myself). Even though I had my doubts about how I would feel when my weight started to increase, I listened to the advice of other bloggers and took the plunge anyway... and I am so glad I did! I could have so easily stayed underweight and anorexic for the rest of my life, due to the immense fear of weight restoration. After all, at the time that seemed like a much easier option then fighting my anorexic thoughts and doing the one thing that I feared the most, which was to gain weight.

So please trust me when I tell you that if you allow yourself to gain weight, your mind will eventually repair and you can be recovered one day. Better still, you can actually like your body and accept it completely. I know that you think it is impossible for you to do this but it really isn't. It is totally possible and with some hard work, you can get to where I am today. It was about 2 years ago I started my blog and my true recovery and since then, my life has been totally transformed. I have gone from a miserable, sick, underweight, lonely and anxious girl to a confident, happy, energetic, strong and empowered young woman. I can honestly say that I now love my life and I also love my body. I am now healthy and energetic enough to live the positive and fulfilled life I truly love and deserve!

And I only have all of this today because I took that plunge, despite the fact that I thought recovery was impossible, despite the fact that gaining weight scared me more than anything else in the world and despite the fact I thought I would hate myself if I gained weight. So please, do what I did and you can have what I now have. And the strength you will gain through facing your fears will make you into an unstoppable person in all aspects of your life. I believe that recovering from anorexia is the hardest thing I will ever have to do and it wasn't until I went through that process of recovery and came out the other side, that I realised my true strength and potential. Now, anytime I am faced with a challenge I remind myself of what I have overcome and I really do believe now, after recovering from my eating disorder, that I can do anything I set my mind to!

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Practicing personal development

A huge part of my recovery has been about learning to believe in myself. In a way, writing my blog was a form of personal development for me in the earlier stages of my recovery as it was through motivating others to start believing in themselves, that I actually started doing it myself. In a way, it was kind of like 'faking it until I made it'. To begin with I didn't truly believe what I was saying, about being able to recover and love myself for who I was. But eventually, after saying it enough times and encouraging others to do it I started to truly believe it myself.

 If you don't believe in yourself, recovery is almost impossible. You need to believe in yourself in order to fight your anorexia and beat it. Otherwise, chances are you will give into the demands of your anorexia and never get better. I truly believe that mindset is the most important thing when it comes to achieving anything at all, whether it be recovery or something else entirely. That is why I practice personal development, every single day.

Although I don't write on my blog so much anymore, I watch lots of motivations videos which I find so inspiring. I wish that I had known about these videos when I was trying to recover, as I think they would have really helped me to develop the mindset I needed to recover. They certainly helped me in my final stages of recovery and are continuing to improve my mindset and help me overcome obstacles and strive to reach my full potential, every single day.

Here are a few links to some motivational videos I like to watch as well as some of my favourite motivational quotes. If you would like to start practicing personal development, just type in 'motivational speech compilation' or 'motivational videos' and thousands come up! Seriously, give it a go. I promise you won't regret it! :) xx

Monday, 20 March 2017

The Long-Term Effect Of Eating Disorders That Nobody Talks About

I found the following article really interesting and thought it may interest some of my readers as well. All of my organs became very weak when I was unwell (particularly my hear) and I often wonder about whether or not those organs have repaired fully yet or not.

This is why I think it so important to continuing nourishing your body, even after you become weight restored as a lot of the damage that you do to your body during starvation may not be reversed even when you are weight restored.

The Long-Term Effect Of Eating Disorders That Nobody Talks About                  

With Healthy Heart Month in full swing, you might be hearing advice everywhere from your family doctor to your favorite newsletter about what to cut out of your diet to keep your heart strong. Ditch the soda! Cut the carbs! Skip the butter! Oh, wait, butter's back in! But maybe olive oil is better?!
While most of us can take this influx of diet advice in stride, those at risk for eating disorders are vulnerable to this deluge of information. In many cases, the eating patterns that eventually precipitated a full-blown eating disorder started with the intention to be healthier and feel better—both physically and emotionally. In a sadly ironic twist, those behaviors have likely contributed to the serious decline in health often associated with eating disorders.

Eating disorders are more than just a psychiatric illness.

In fact, eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any psychiatric illness (or behavioral health disorder). So not only do they lead to a host of social, mental, and physical problems, but they actually put someone at increased risk for other health problems. Cardiovascular complications are one of the biggest risks for those struggling with eating disorders. The heart is made of muscle and basically functions as a pump that moves blood first to the lungs to pick up oxygen and then out to the extremities to bring oxygen and nutrients throughout the whole body. Our hearts are clearly key to our ability to live and function normally, and eating disorders put strain on the heart in a number of ways.

1. Weaker heart muscles

First, when one does not take in enough food to support our level of activity, the heart rate slows down as the body tries to conserve energy. Also, blood pressure will drop due to dehydration or because the muscles of the heart weaken. When blood pressure is low, it's harder for other organs—like the kidneys, the brain, or the liver—to receive the nutrients and oxygen that the heart usually pumps in their direction.
People with low-weight eating disorders actually lose cardiac muscle mass. All muscles of the body are subject to wasting away if we aren't nourishing them. Heart muscle is no exception. Underweight patients may develop mitral valve prolapse due to shrunken heart muscle cells, or they can develop heart failure due to a weakened heart that can't pump well.

2. Shifts in the heart's chemical environment

A second concern is the development of abnormal heart rhythms, which happens frequently when someone is suffering from bulimia nervosa. The behaviors of binge eating and purging (which can involve not just vomiting but also laxative and diuretic use), can lead to dehydration and dangerous shifts in electrolytes in the body. When the chemical environment of the heart is abnormal, the heart is at risk for arrhythmias, which can cause heart palpitations, fainting, and even death.

3. Cardiac disturbances

And thirdly, there are a host of cardiac rhythm disturbances that are directly caused by weight loss and malnutrition. These are undoubtedly causal in the heightened risk for sudden death seen in people with anorexia nervosa.
Despite these very serious cardiac concerns, many people with eating disorders are reluctant to get help. The disorders themselves are marked by a brain-based type of denial that can make even seeing that there's a problem very difficult. As a clinician, I find that sometimes the presence of these heart issues can help someone see just how high the risk to their health really is.

Healing your body from an eating disorder

But even those who begin the process of recovery have to be very cautious about their heart health. For someone who has been eating very little, starting to eat more can cause its own dangerous shifts in electrolytes called refeeding syndrome, which again puts the person at risk for cardiac complications. Thus, some patients will need to be very closely monitored by a medical team during this process.
The heartening news is that most of physical complications of eating disorders are reversible with good nutrition. Once the body and mind are recovered and a knowledgeable support team is in place, the person has a great chance of living a long, healthy life.

If you've suffered from an eating disorder, keep the following in mind:
  1. Take any cardiac event very seriously. If you experience any chest pain, are getting dizzy when you stand, have a fainting episode, or notice your heart rhythm seems off, get to a medical provider as soon as you can.
  2. Enlist the support of others. We know that eating disorders thrive in isolation, and recovery thrives in community with others you care about. Let someone close to you know that you're worried about your health.
  3. Know that recovery is always possible. Even people who lived with an eating disorder for a very long time can expect a full and lasting recovery. It's not easy and can't be accomplished alone, but EVERYONE suffering from an eating disorder can be helped.
The recently deceased George Michael once said, "You'll never find peace of mind until you listen to your heart." Listen carefully to the messages your heart is sending you. And with the right treatment, you can find peace from the burden of eating disorders.
For additional information about the Eating Recovery Center, call 877-789-5758, email, or visit to speak with a master's-level clinician.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Weight gain is not negotiable if you want to recover

In order to recover from a restrictive eating disorder, you WILL NEED to gain weight (especially if you are currently underweight). As much as we would like this to be untrue, if you are not willing to gain weight, you will not recover as this just shows how unhealthy your mindset is. It is only when you challenge and overcome this type of unhealthy mindset, that you will be able to continue making recovery progress and actually make a full recovery. As well as needing to reach and possibly exceed a healthy weight in order to recover mentally, you need to do this is order to recover physically too. Whilst starving yourself, your body weakens and stops functioning as it should in order to conserve energy. Your energy reserves run dangerously low and all of your internal organs and bones are at risk of severe damage also. The following article explains the toll that anorexia or other restrictive eating disorders have on your body due to starvation. 


What happens exactly? Here's a look at what anorexia does to the human body.

The first victim of anorexia is often the bones. The disease usually develops in adolescence -- right at the time when young people are supposed to be putting down the critical bone mass that will sustain them through adulthood.

"There's a narrow window of time to accrue bone mass to last a lifetime," says Diane Mickley, MD, co-president of the National Eating Disorders Association and the founder and director of the Wilkins Center for Eating Disorders in Greenwich, Conn. "You're supposed to be pouring in bone, and you're losing it instead." Such bone loss can set in as soon as six months after anorexic behavior begins, and is one of the most irreversible complications of the disease.

But the most life-threatening damage is usually the havoc wreaked on the heart. As the body loses muscle mass, it loses heart muscle at a preferential rate -- so the heart gets smaller and weaker. "It gets worse at increasing your circulation in response to exercise, and your pulse and your blood pressure get lower," says Mickley. "The cardiac tolls are acute and significant, and set in quickly." Heart damage, which ultimately killed singer Karen Carpenter, is the most common reason for hospitalization in most people with anorexia.

Although the heart and the bones often take the brunt of the damage, anorexia is a multisystem disease. Virtually no part of the body escapes its effects. About half of all anorexics have low white-blood-cell counts, and about a third are anemic. Both conditions can lower the immune system's resistance to disease, leaving a person vulnerable to infections.
Anorexia Damage Starts Early

Even before a person with anorexia starts to look "too thin," these medical consequences have begun Many young women who begin eating a severely restricted diet stop menstruating well before serious weight loss sets in. Since so many people with anorexia are teenage girls and young women, this can have long-term consequences on their ability to bear children.

Gaining weight will allow your body to function more optimally again and to reverse most of, if not all of the damage you inflicted on it whilst your were starving yourself. Even if you manage to partially recover mentally so that you can live like a relatively normal person, if you are still underweight your body will not be able to function properly. The chances of you conceiving a baby are reduced if ever you want to become a mum and you are more likely suffer from illnesses or infections as your immune system will not be as strong as somebody who is a healthy weight. Also if you are underweight, this indicates that you are still not eating enough  (as otherwise your body would return to a healthy weight) which suggests you are probably missing out on particular nutrients and minerals that your body requires. This puts you at risk of things like Anemia (due to lack of iron) and osteoporosis (due to lack of calcium).

In my experience, I was not able to make any real recovery progress until I gained a significant amount of weight. The hard thing about gaining this weight is that you need to do it when your anorexic thoughts are still incredibly strong and overpowering. It isn't until you get closer and closer to a healthy weight that these thoughts begin to fade and are replaced with healthier'and more normal thoughts. There is no real secrets or techniques to making these thoughts go away. As hard as it is, you just have to push through them and remember that by fighting these thoughts you ARE getting closer to having the life you want and deserve. I suggest trying to stay busy so that you have other things to focus on and just have faith that if you continue fighting your anorexic thoughts, in time they will fade. And how do you gain weight? You basically just do the complete opposite of everything your anorexia tells you to do. You limit or stop your physical activity, you eat more then you ever have in your life and you stop doing all of those destructive things that you have done in the past.

I remember some nights my thoughts would be so strong (in regards to the fear of and actually gaining weight) that I just had to go to bed and cry myself to sleep. But I never gave into my anorexia and always just woke up the following day and ate everything on my meal plan, limited my exercise and went against everything my anorexia told me to do. I knew that I couldn't give into my anorexia by listening to its demands as this would be like giving it ammunition it needed to beat me. Once I gave into my anorexia once, I knew it would be so easy to continue giving into it and this would not allow my thought processes to change. So I stuck to my guns and consistently beat my anorexia and that is how I got to where I am today. So no matter how hard it may seem, just remember that it is possible and you can do it. No matter how loudly your anorexia screams at you and how bad it makes you feel, it cant actually hurt you. That pain is just temporary. And by enduring that pain now, you will be able to have a lifetime of happiness in the future.

I know that gaining weight as slowly as possible seems like the best way to gain weight to someone with anorexia but from my own experience I do not think this is the best thing to do. To be honest, gaining weight incredibly slowly just draws out the painful process of weight restoration and means that you are just inflicting extra suffrage on yourself. I was gaining about 500-700g per week when I was actively recovering and I found that this was a good rate to do it at. I feel it was a good rate of weight gain as I could adjust to my physical changes without relapsing while still keeping a good momentum. Gaining weight at this rate also made it obvious to me whenever I needed to increase my calories (due to my weight gain stopping). If I was gaining less then this per week, I think I would have been more likely to just brush off failure to gain weight in any particular week which would have stopped me from moving towards my goal of complete weight restoration and recovery. 

I believe that gaining weight is not the only thing you need to do in order to recover, in fact it is only the beginning. But it is one of the first essential things for you to do before you can make any other type of real recovery progress. So I highly encourage you to start doing it as soon as possible. As you do manage to gain weight, your body will start functioning properly again and you will also start thinking more clearly too. And I know it probably feels like accepting your body at a higher weight is impossible but I promise you its not. I am currently about 15 kg heavier than my lowest weight (which I couldn't bare to leave at the time) and I love my body more now then I ever have before!  The truth is you will never feel ready to start gaining weight so you just need to make the decision and start. I promise you it will be worth it!

Monday, 27 February 2017

Home to Swansea

After not being home to see my family since christmas, I really enjoyed travelling home to Swansea for the weekend with my boyfriend. Things have not been great for my family over the last few months and even though the issues are still ongoing, it was still nice to go home and see everyone. Now that I have my own life in Launceston, it would be so easy to just completely distance myself from my family and all their problems back in Swansea but that wouldnt be fair on my little sister and dad. I love them so much and want to be there for them to help them through any difficulties they may face. So my boyfriend and I started the 1.5 hour drive to Swansea when he finished work on Friday afternoon and we arrived at my family home at about 6:30pm. Unfortunately my dad was away for the weekend but it was still great to see my sister. My sister Amy has been my best friend for as long as I can remember and despite the 6 year age gap between us, we get along incredibely well. 

On Saturday morning my mum and I went for a walk on our farm and had a very close encounter with a 6 foot long tiger snake. By the time we saw the snake, we were only a single step away from it and it obviously felt threatened by us as it reared its head and striked at us. Luckily we both jumped back at that exact moment so the snakes head (and fangs) just missed us. If the snake had tried to bite us a second time it would have bitten one of us for sure as we were simply too close and couldnt get away. Thank goodness it decided to slither off instead leaving us full if adrenalin but unharmed. We then drove into Swansea to visit my nan before meeting my herbalife coach Phoebe for lunch. I had my all time favourite meal (which I hadnt had for ages) caeser salad and it was so yummy! We then visited my other nan and went out for tea with my mum. For tea I had Spaghetti bolognaise with a side of vegetables which was ok but not as nice as lunch. I loooove pasta but prefer tomato or chicken based pastas, rather then mince. I still ate it all though, to everyone elses surprise as it was huuuuge! 

I took my mum home after tea but then went back into town with my boyfriend Nathan. I wasnt drinking alcohol like I usually do when we go out in Swansea as I had to drive home but my boyfriend was and we had heaps of fun playing 8 ball (pool). We also chatted with my uncle, aunt and cousin for an hour or two which was really nice. When we got home that night my brother Luke was there so it was really nice to see him. The following morning nathan, Amy and I headed into Swansea with two of our puppies to go for a nice walk on the beach. We had running races on the beach and just enjoyed the sunshine and scenery. We started the drive back to Launceston at about 2pm and were back home by about 4. Overall it was a really nice weekend and I am looking forward to heading back to Swansea one weekend soon, but when my dad is home so we can spend some time with him too.

This is the type of snake we ran into 

My gorgeous sister and myself

My boyfriend nathan and me

Nathan, cassie the puppy and me

Friday, 17 February 2017

What I eat in a day

I thought it would be a good idea to share with you all what I eat on a typical day now that I am recovered. I don't eat exactly the same amount of calories every day but I know about what I eat and I never eat any less then 2200 calories. I eat relatively healithily, not because I am scared of typically unhealthy foods, but because I enjoy healthy foods as well as nourishing my body. I find I feel much more energetic and happy when I eat nutrient rich foods so thats why I chose to eat them most of the time. I thought I would share with you what I haveveaten over the last 3 days, so that you can get a good idea of what I usually eat :)

Meal 1: 1 large bowl of raspberry oats (equivalent to 2 typical portions) made with half a cup of soy milk, 1 cup if water and 1 scoop of protein powder

Meal 2: 1 vanilla and banana shake made with 1 banana, 250mL soy milk, 2 scoops of herbalife vanilla sport f1 shake mix and 8 ice cubes

Meal 3: 3 rice cakes topped with tomato and cheese, 3 rice cakes topped with egg (1 boiled egg mixed with mayo), 1 apple, 1 strawberry Chobani greek yoghurt

Meal 4: 1 herbalife protein bar and 1 banana

Meal 5: went out for dinner and ordered chicken schnitzel with gravy and vegetables

Meal 6: 1 yoplait forme yoghurt and 1 peach


Meal 1: 1 large bowl of oats (equivalent to 2 typical portions) made with half a cup of soy milk, 1 cup if water and 1 scoop of protein powder with 1 diced pear

Meal 2: 1 herbalife chocolate shake made with 1 scoop of dutch chocolate f1, 1 scoop if creamy vanilla sport f1 and 300mL almond milk

Meal 3: vegetable lasagna and salad (lettuce leaf mix, diced beetroot, cherry tomatoes, fetta cheese, olive oil)

Meal 4: 1 tub of chobani plain greek yoghurt mixed with 1 scoop of herbalife chocolate rebuild and blueberries (picture below)

Meal 5: 3 scrambled eggs cooked with 1 diced tomato and 60g of feta cheese with vegetables (baby broccoli, beans, pumpkin and carrot)

Meal 6: herbalife protein bar, watermelon and salt and vinegar rice wheels

Meal 1: 1 chocolate and banana shake made with 1 banana, 250mL soy milk, 2 scoops of herbalife f1 dutch chocolate shake mix and 8 ice cubes

Meal 2: 1 large bowl of oats (equivalent to 2 typical portions) made with half a cup of soy milk, 1 cup if milk and 1 scoop of protein powder

Meal 3: 3 rice cakes topped with tomato and cheese, 3 rice cakes topped with egg (1 boiled egg mixed with mayo), 1 yoplait forme berry yoghurt, watermelon and 2 pieces of herbalife chocolate

Meal 4: 1 small packet of salted popcorn, 1 protein  bar and grapes

Meal 5: honey soy chicken stirfry with hokkien noodles and vegetables (broccoli, carrot, beans)

Meal 6: Herbalife mug cake made with 2 scoops of chocolate f1 mix, 1 scoop of protein powder, 1 egg and 1/4 cup of milk microwaved and topped with greek yoghurt

Throughout the day I also snack on little things spontaeously like herbalife chocolate, grapes, rice cakes etc as I am walking through the kitchen (i.e. I have eaten 14 pieces of herbalife chocolate (which is actually higher calorie then normal chocolate) over the last 4 days. I drink atleast 2.5 litres of water per day which I add herbalife products to like Aloe, herbal tea, active fibre complex, hydrate or drive. I also take quite a few supplements as part of my nutrition program (i.e. 3 multivitamins, 3 cell-U-loss, 2 joint support, 1 chitosan fibre, 1 probiotic, 2 NRG's).

I currently have the best relationship with food I have ever had and I couldnt be happier. I no longer take anti anxiety medication and just feel so wonderful everyday, knowing that I am fueling my body with delicious and nutricious foods. In order to recover, you need to have a good relationship with food and you must be able to trust your body to tell you what it needs. Food is not something you should ever be scaredbof, it is simple fuel for your body and something that should be enjoyed. If you have any questions about my intake, feel free to leave a comment below.