Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

My life at the moment is completely different to how it once was. I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia and depression as well as struggling with self harm and overexercising. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
And since 2012 i have been declared healthy from my eating disorder.

I have been blogging for 7 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I now blog about recovery, my life, veganism and positivity!

If you have any questions leave them in the comment section as i am much quicker at answering there, otherwise you can always send an email:


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Metabolism after an eating disorder

When you have an eating disorder, whether its restrictive, binge eating, purging or only eating certain foods it often leads to a messed up metabolism. A slow one... one that doesnt function properly. Hence why you can bloat, get stomach discomfort and feel blocked up or have a loose stomach (if i put it in that way ;)). 

For some the damage they do to their metabolism during their ED can be permanent, but it all depends on how long you have been sick and what type of damage has been done, as well as HOW you recover. Those who recover only eating safe foods and only eating c.a 1200 calories, then their metabolism will still be slow and wont have repaired properly when they are a healthy weight and recovered. HENCE why i reccommend to eat a LARGE amount during recovery. Its not just some number that has been picked out, but eating a larger amount and keep increasing your calories helps YOU and your body... helps your body to repair and function properly for when you are healthy.

What Is Metabolism?

Your metabolism, experts say, involves a complex network of hormones and enzymes that not only convert food into fuel but also affect how efficiently you burn that fuel.
"The process of metabolism establishes the rate at which we burn our calories and, ultimately, how quickly we gain weight or how easily we lose it," says Robert Yanagisawa, MD, director of the Medically Supervised Weight Management Program at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York.
Of course, not everyone burns calories at the same rate.
Your metabolism is influenced by your age (metabolism naturally slows about 5% per decade after age 40); your sex (men generally burn more calories at rest than women); and proportion of lean body mass (the more muscle you have, the higher your metabolic rate tends to be).
And yes, heredity makes a difference.
"Some people just burn calories at a slower rate than others," says Barrie Wolfe-Radbill, RD, a nutritionist specializing in weight loss at New York University Medical Center.

Metabolism while recovering....

 When you starve yourself and dont eat enough. Then your body almost goes into shut down. Your metabolism decreases significantly because it knows that it is underweight and that it cant keep burning so much energy everyday, or you will just collapse. It goes into starvation mode, where it tries to preserve the organs and any fat which you may have. So whatever you do eat while you're body is in starvation mode, doesnt really get burned for energy... the body just tried to store it. You can be very bloated and tired when your body is in starvation mode and the body doesnt want to let go of any energy at all...  So when you begin recovery - begin eating again, its a shock for the body. It doesnt know why all this food is coming and doesnt know what to do with it, as its gone without food for so long. So you bloat alot and can go up a few kilo in just a week, as it is mainly water and water retention. But over time as your body gets used to get food your metabolism increases and thats why you need to increase your calories to gain weight, because your body adapts to the amount you are eating and no longer gains weight from it. And that continues... where you need to keep increasing your calories, because your metabolism is getting faster.
  Also by eating regular meals that increases your metabolism (as far as i know!)

So with recovery and eating more, your metabolism should also increase. Also, if your body has gotten used to normal and regular meals and you were on a high calorie intake for weight gain then you are LUCKY when you need to maintain as you can still eat lots :) *Thumbs up for food*Also apparently there are some foods that can increase your metabolism.. though if they really help or not, i dont know. And i dont think people should be so obsessed with eating all these 'metabolism boosting foods'.. 


Boosting Your Metabolism 101
A few useful facts about how your metabolism works:
Your metabolism is basically the system of process that convert calories & fat into fuel and controls how efficiently your body uses that fuel.
Your metabolism is made of two processes, anabolism in which your body creates new cells and catabolism in which your body turns fats, carbs and protein into energy that heats and powers your body.
Metabolism is determined mostly by the calories you demand of your body and the calories you give your body although genetics does play a role as well. While you can’t change your genetics there are other more important factors you can change.
For more nutritional information go here:
ps- I did the majority of my research through WebMD, there’s plenty more to know about metabolism, how it works and what studies have been done so if you’d like to know more specifics they’re a great place to start! :)


  1. I know what you mean, Izzy.

    I gained in 2 weeks 6 kilos, meaning 12 pounds.

    I am so bloated I almost feel like I want to give up.

    I am afraid I will NEVER stop gaining.


    1. Its hard to give you advice as i dont know what stage in recovery you are, how much you are eating, hwo your body is behaving etc
      Remember if you are only just beginning recovery or going through an extreme hunger period then the weight gain isnt abnormal, and it could just be water as well. Though if you keep gaining 3kg a week, then talk to a doctor or dietician if you havent already.

  2. Hi Izzy,
    Sadly I am one of the stupid people who gained mainly on safe foods probably eating 1,500 - 1,800 (Some days more but very occasionally :( ) and am now weight restored with a reasonably slow metabollism :( it has upset me so so so much and I just want to be able to eat more but am scared to gain more. Do you have any advice? I would really really appreciate it. xx

    1. The best thing would be to slowly increase your calories. It takes months to years to repair your metabolism, to get it working faster and being able to eat a somewhat normal amount. Add c.a 50-100kcal more a few days a week and then after a few weeks add another 50-100 a few days a week. Something like that... it helps the body adapt. Though im no expert on this

  3. Izzy, you know you said that the damage you do to your metabolism during your ED might be permanent...does that mean, that there is nothing you can do about it if this is the case, and that it is going to saty that way forever and ever? I am really worried that this might have happened to me and that is the reason why I constantly feel bloated, have no appetite, and my body seems so out of proportion - please please give me some advice. x

    1. It can be the case if it has been years of going up and down in weight, of yo-yo diets. Or going from restrictive to normal eating and back again. Where the body has been stressed for a very long time (years).
      However in recovery the body acts in different ways and when you are bloated it can lead to lack of appetite. And the bloating can happen for many different reasons. I wouldnt worry too much about it, with feeling out of proportion that is normal aswell. You feel like it all goes to your belly and not to your arms or legs or something like that... but that should fix itsself soon.

  4. Hi, Im now weight restored from anorexia, but recently had a relapse and lsot 5 kl, i have been eating a simialr amount but to scared to increase above about 1750, could u please recommend if i should go straight up to like 2000 a day or slowly increase- i get super scared ill jsut gain all at once, and i dont want to gain anymore but eurgh.


  5. Hello, my name is Lauren and I'm still actively anorexic. My only question is "how did you find the motivation to stop starving yourself? I mean that's the golden question. How did you motivate yourself to stop? I eat between zero and 1,000 Calories/day. I am deeply into my eating disorder. It's my best friend and lover. How can I motivate myself to start eating again?

  6. Hi Lauren. I'm trying to recover from anorexia right now and I ask myself that question every day. It's so freaking hard to find the strength to eat when your mind tells you not to. One of the biggest things that has helped me is researching and knowing what I'm doing to my body every time I starve myself. Anorexia is the number one psychiatric killer. I don't want to die. I want to be skinny, not dead. I don't know about you, but for me anorexia is about control. I find that by making myself a plan the night before of exactly what I'm going to eat the next day (at least 1400 calories), setting rules limiting my exercise (no more than 1 hour per day, only 5 days a week max), and following those rules I can maintain that control without harming myself. I've also started an instagram account chronicling my recovery and have found an ED recovery family online that helps me find the strength to eat and supports me when I don't believe in myself. A community rallying around you and for you can help quiet the voices in your head. Anorexia isn't your friend. It's that nasty girl in middle school who's nice to your face and spreads horrible rumors behind your back. But we're all here for you!

    Good luck!!!

  7. Hi I'm kind of in recovery but I'm only eating about 700-1000 calories a day and doing quite a lot of excercise some days will this mean my metabolism is going to b real slow or not Idrk n I hav no one else to talk to too!

    1. Hi! I'm not Amalie, but I can tell you right now that 700-1000 calories is NOT a recovery amount. I am currently in the recovery process, and in the beginning I was eating 1400 calories and thinking that would help me (secret: it didn't). Desperate to recover my brain and metabolism, I stumbled across the website that I have listed with my name. It really works! Check out three methods.

  8. Hi, i'm still actively anorexic and i really really do not want to permanently mess up my metabolism or my organs.... but i know that with 1200 calories daily i will not be as skinny as i aim to be. Although i want to have healthy organs, i still want to be very skinny. I am 5'6 and i want to weigh a max of 110 because thats the weight that gives me my confidence and i don't want to compromise that.... what should i do to help my organs and my metabolism so that i don't have to compromise my body?

  9. Hi, I'm 17 years old and I went through anorexia.
    In June I "achieved" my loWest weight: 32,5 kg for 164 cm.
    I started recovery in July. At first I ate about 1400 calories and I gained 3 kg; but in August, when I went to holiday, I walked a lot to burn calories and I lost almost 2kg. Then I started to eat from 1700 to 2000 calories and I gained weight.
    When I saw that I was almost at the weight I wanted but my weight wasn'the slowing down, I started to eat less.
    Now I eat from 1000 to 1300 calories and I'must maintaining my weight (43 kg). It's not much I know, but that's the problem! What can I do to boost my metabolism? Will I ever come back to my old metabolism? I know I am still underweight but I feel good and I honestly don'the want to gain weight...

  10. Hi there,
    I am 20 years old and I went through anorexia for a couple of years. I started my recovery process in October of 2015. I ate a lot in my first few months of recovery. Over the course of 6 months I had gained 40 pounds. But now it seems as though my body is still holding on to extra weight. I am a few pounds over what I want to be right now and I eat really well and exercise regular. It just seems as though nothing changes and I just want to get my body to the point were I am toned and at about 130 pounds which is about 7 pounds I need to lose. I feel that my metabolism is still slow and not wanting to give anything up since it is used to be starved. But that hasn't been the situation for over a year now. If you have any tips I could use that would be amazing.

  11. Hello!
    I've been suffering with anorexia for about 2 years now. Last year was my worst point where I was eating about 700 calories per day. When I started going to therapy they put me on a meal plan with 1600 calories. I gained around 10 pounds and just stopped. I kept eating 1600 calories (They were all made of safe foods) and I was technically at a healthy weight. I thought I would be ok if I continued eating was time to focus on my mental health now. But lately, I have been slipping. For about 3 weeks I have been eating less (only about 150-250 cal less) but I have also been exercising. I'm really worried I've wrecked my metabolism. I don't want to gain any more weight because I'm healthy now but I don't know how much to eat in order to maintain my current weight. Any advice?

  12. Honestly, Walden Behavioral Care saved my life. Sure I cried and complained when they forced me to eat fear foods and I did put on a few pounds, but they allowed me to realize that I was killing myself. That anorexia is not the only route to happiness and life is worth living. Eating all those calories actually helped me overcome my fear of eating. Plus I met so many people who were going through the same struggles, people I could confide in. Getting proffessional help and letting people know is the best thing any one struggling can do. Even if the thought of it scares you, or starving/purging sounds like a better option. Because I'm the end, it's truthfully the difference between life or death.
    I finally love who I am and I feel loved by others.
    Gaining weight is part of the process. Gaining weight is healthy. Food is just food. None of this even matters. People are going to love you for who you are as an individual. And if they don't. Let the haters hate. The people who really love you will appreciate you for who you are.
    We are constantly thrown sickly ideals at us by the media, but none of it even matters.
    You are all already beautiful. You guys just need to find and accept that beauty within you.

    Life is short. You have to enjoy it while it lasts. Don't waste it away counting calories. Throw away the scale (It's meaningless and triggering).
    Occupy yourself with something that involves positive energy. Treat yourself once an awhile. Because eating a donut is okay. Having 2000 + calories a day is completely normal. And so is enjoying life to the fullest.
    Sometimes getting help is just what an individual needs to weave out some of those disfigured thoughts.
    I wish you all the best of luck. You all have the power to change your lives, even if it seems like all hope is lost. And I know from experience, that with some acceptance and devotion, each of you can kill your ED too.

  13. Hey. My case is not really bad since my BMI is 17 something and the normal is 18.5 which makes me mildly underweight and i dont really want to gain anymore weight but to maintain it .So i was hoping that you would give me some advice how to start eating more without gaining . Also i might not feel hungry but when i have something small i feel satisfied for a minute and then get really hungry. What do you thing about my case.

  14. hey im a 13 year old girl 5'2 and weight 78 recovering from anorexia but i dont know how many calories should i eat a day to rise my metabolism and gain weight