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, June 23, 2015

Seeing your body change (eating disorder recovery)

In recovery and when you are going through the weight gain process your body changes in many different ways,

There is bloating and might even be swelling, you feel yourself getting bigger, almost expanding but that isn't the case You feel bigger than what you actually are because you look down on yourself, but also because you feel and look different to how you have looked the past days/weeks when you have been starving or using other unhealthy mechanisms.

The weight will distribute eventually but it is not something you notice happening, it just sort of happens and the bloating will go away. The extreme bloating doesnt last forever, however everyone bloats at times. Sometimes more than others and some people bloat more than other people it is based on many different things. But if you find a way to eat that suits you and your stomach then the bloating shouldnt be too bad.

In recovery you need to let go of things such as visible bones, thigh gaps and visible abs. Being obsessed with having super skinny legs or visible abs, then it will be harder for you to accept your new body. Your body will change and it might look different to how you want it to look, but give your body time. The way you look in recovery, especially a few weeks into the weight gain is not necessarily how you will look forever. Your appearance changes. And you wont necessarily look the same way you did before your eating disorder because you have changed and grown.

You do need to remember that the way you look is also due to genes and DNA, somethings you cant change. I.e some people have more weight on their top half or their bottom half. For example my fat is mainily stored on my thighs, hips and stomach and very little is on my arms and top half. This is the same for my mum and sister, but also in my family we are generally long and slim so that is a genetic and something i can't change. I.e even if i were to gain 10kg more i would still have the long and 'lean' look, somewhat anyway.
  So things like height, DNA and genes you can't change and you just need to accept them. I.e if you are 5'2 you wont suddenly be 5'9, you need to accept your height and weight and also accept your NATURAL BODY SIZE. Your body has a healthy weight where it is comfortable at and that is what you need to accept.

In recovery you might get things like stretch marks, cellulite and rolls. I know this may cause anxiety and cause you to panic, think that you dont want those things. But they are just part of the human body and nothing to be scared or panic about. They are barely noticable and really they dont make any difference to your body or appearance, you are still you.

It can be advised to not spend too much time infront of the mirror but it isnt helpful to completely  avoid the mirror either. I mean you need to accept your reflection, but most importantly accept yourself. Be happy in your own body. Accept the changes in your body  and being ok with them. Know that they are changes which make you healthier, which are taking you to a healthier body and hopefully a healthier mind set.

Do things which you enjoy and make you happy. Wear comfy clothes, dont spend too much time infront of the mirror. Though it can be good to practise with your self confidence and such in changing rooms, because that is something which can trigger many people. But you cant avoid changing rooms forever, you need to face your triggers otherwise they will always be triggers.

Everyday say something positive about yourself and your appearance. Be kind to yourself and see your positives.
Stop comparing yourself with others and focus on your goal of healthy body and healthy mind.
Dont focus too much on numbers or small details on your body. Instead focusing on living life, on having goals and dreams can help you to accept your body as you realise that your body is your way of living. Your way of getting from place A to place B and that your body isnt everything. Because those stretch marks or stomach rolls, they arent the whole world even if it may feel like it right now. But know that there is more to life than your body or these small things which nobody else notices or cares about.

Changes happen during recovery, but learn to accept them and see them as positive changes. And if you cant see them as positive, atleast learn to accept them and not let them bring you down. You can get through this, and you can get through the changes!!!

Below are some helpful posts:

Body changes in eating disorder recovery
Dont compare your everyday to peoples highlights
Not being the thinnest anymore - how to cope
The physical aspects of anorexia recovery


  1. Great post, as usual. I wanted to chime in on the topic, because for me, there was a real lack of realistic and practical information regarding the changes my body would undergo during weight restoration, and as a result I struggled a LOT and for an unnecessarily long period of time. In fact, this issue was a direct cause of MANY relapses and my inability to commit to full recovery - for YEARS at a time. I wish more thought was given (by health professionals) to describing what to expect during refeeding and weight restoration. Like the fact that your tummy and face will be disproportionately full during this time - but, most importantly, this phase is temporary! And to be honest about the fact that this phase can last for quite some time. Months, even. This is why it can be so discouraging - it can feel as if the weight gain is making you look "chubby", when in reality it is just your body reacting to refeeding and it takes time to level out and redistribute. Particularly if you have been ill for years, this phase can last quite some time. But it DOES end! And the more committed and consistent you are in your efforts, the faster this phase will pass. I stretched it out for YEARS (no joke) because I was freaked out by it, felt fat, and as a result my intake was extremely inconsistent and often in extremes (starving and bin being), which only made things much worse and much longer. If I had been told what to expect, and known that consistent effort plus acceptance of the process would have resulted in a more efficient period of weight gain and redistribution... I could have avoided years of turmoil. As it was, I just felt like a freak, and of course - fat. Even when things settle down, the tummy bloat can continue for quite some time, depending on how consistent your efforts are, the length of time and degree of severity you were sick, and the amount of damage you did to your digestive system. I'm talking years. Even now, years after finally recovering, I find I bloat easier, and more often, and to a greater degree, than most people. I digest things slowly (for example, if I take a Tylenol, it will take around 2-3 hours to get into my system). I did a lot of damage while I'll, and some of the effects can last a lifetime. The difference is, now I don't care about the size of my bloat. It just is what it is, and its not something I think about much. I don't wear tight tops because I know my tummy bloats after every meal and I don't find it comfortable. I don't stare at it in the mirror because its a waste of my time and a negative thing to do. I eat foods that promote healthy digestion. I do yoga with the same intent. I accept that I damaged my health, and do what I can to care for myself in a way that, I hope, will eventually repair all the damage as much as possible. I take probiotics to promote gut health. You get the picture. The main thing, though, really, is what I said about a) accepting my body for what it is and where it's at, and b) forgiving myself for what I did to my body and treating it with love, care, and respect now. If the size of my belly is my biggest physical "problem", well, I'm pretty darn lucky then, aren't I?

    Sorry for any typos, I'm on something with autocorrect :/

    1. This is so true and that's why I want to bring up these things. Try to help those struggling. Because yes, the bloating and such can last month's. .. It did for me and it's tough but you have to keep going. If you relapse it just makes things worse. So thank you for your comment and writing your side/story, I am sure it will help others :) and like you say... If the size of your stomach is your only problem then you are lucky. But of course,the problem is your head,not your stomach!

    2. Thanks for talking about these things. It makes it easier for me to fully stick with recovery and accept my body. I've stopped freaking out so much just because my belly seems to swell like a frightened pufferfish after most meals. It's been like that off and on for months, and I don't know when it'll end. I now understand it doesn't make me a freak.

      It helped to realize that trying to squeeze into my old clothes was messing me up. Had to get basically a new wardrobe, and now I feel great in my outfits.