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 6, 2016

How to stop purging & my tips from personal experience

I have a question for you, and I really hope you can answer. You said you had purging tendencies for a while during anorexia, and I would really like to know how you handled this. I am currently recovering from anorexia, increasing my calories and trying to stick to a healthy “recovering” meal plan. But since I started gaining weight, the well-known fear of losing control sweeps through me, and I get this urge to purge, even after a normal or even a small meal. And when I react to that feeling, it happens quite a few times that day. Do you have any advice on this? Will the urge to purge (even though I’m not binging) go away as I progress towards recovery? How did you handle the purging tendencies? Will I ever be able to eat a normal meal and not think: “get it out get it out”? Do certain foods/tricks/more weight help to stop the purging? Hope to hear from you soon. 

- Purging is a way of dealing with guilt and compensating for eating. So you need to learn to find HEALTHY ways to cope with that guilt you feel about eating. You need to remind yourself that food and eating isnt bad, it is helping you and your body needs it. Think of your friends and family and billions of other people who all eat and let their body digest the food and use it as energy, and they dont gain weight/compensate. So you can do the same thing.
  Purging can become like a habit, a natural thing to do after each meal even if you just ate something small. So the best tip is to just not purge at all.. .ever. Because if you allow yourself once, then you are just compromising and the next time you'll likely do it again. So instead you just have to say no.

I would suggest talking to someone - a family, friend or therapist. But also if someone can be around you during meal times to stop you from purging. You might get angry at them and hate them because you can't purge, but in the long term you will thank them for helping you. Your body needs food and energy and nourishment. 

That panicked and "get the food out of me" feeling will pass eventually. You just need to distract yourself - do things after meals and dont allow yourself to purge (spending time with others/leaving the house are good ways to keep yourself from purging.) Talk about your feelings or draw or write... whatever works best for you. And take each day as it comes.

With food, i would suggest keep eating all types of foods even fear foods. Realise that you can eat cake without purging and you can eat a whole dinner without gaining weight - and you can eat 6 times a day and eat lots and still maintain your weight. By purging your body will be in a state of stress all the time and you can find yourself very bloated/feeling sick/stomach size capacity can change as well as it messing up your metabolism and hunger/fullness feelings and of course in the long term affecting your teeth, esophagus, stomach problems and many other long term consequences. It will only get worse over time, so you have to decide that you want to stop and need to stop.

Find better ways to cope with your feelings and do talk to someone to get help and support!!! You can stop purging, but it takes time and determination and going against the panic/anxiety/guilt/fear and the voice in your head telling you to purge and compensate. Treat your body like a friend... i.e would you tell a friend it was ok for them to purge after a meal? No.... well then why would you allow yourself to do it? Treat your body like your best friend and dont let your mind bully you!


Purging was something i struggled with for several years and had some bad periods where i could purge anywhere from 6-12 times per day and other times it could go 2 whole weeks without purging. Purging was never something i found difficult to do or even something disgusting which then made it harder for me to stop the habit. It even went so far that i have purged at friends houses, public bathrooms, in bushes, forests and buckets in my room. Anything to get rid of the guilt and get rid of the food inside of me.
  There are many health consequences from purging which you can read HERE but i never acknowledged them i didnt think they were true or wouldnt happen to me, but of course i do now face consequences from my years of purging such as getting extreme heart burn very frequently as well as it taking a very long time for food to not come back up on its own - as my body was so used to bringing food back up again so that it would naturally happen.

I thought i would write some tips - from my own personal experience - on how to stop purging.

The first thing: DONT give yourself the opportunity to purge.
If you know that after you eat you will run to the bathroom or run somewhere and purge then DONT. Dont sit alone or run off, instead plan to meet a friend or go for a walk or study or work. Keep yourself preoccupied and busy. Let the feelings past and let your food digest. But the important thing is to keep yourself away from somewhere where you can purge. It is extremely difficult in the beginning and the anxiety, guilt and thoughts begin to tear you apart but it will get easier. You just need to fight against those feelings and thoughts because they WILL pass and you are doing a good thing by not purging.

Wait 1-2 hours before going to the bathroom after a meal
For me when i was recovering even if i had choosen to not purge and was mentally trying to fight off the voice in my head if i went to the bathroom even to wash my hands it was like my ED took over and suddenly i would be purging even if i had tried not to. It was just because i could... so keep yourself away from temptation and avoid going to the bathroom or putting yourself in a situation where you 'could' purge. Its better to be as far away from a place you can purge after a meal as you can!

Read about the consequences of purging.
You can read HERE
If you find out the future consequences and what purging does to your body (as well as the fact that when you purge you only really get rid of 50% of the contents, you cant purge everything... so you may feel empty, but you are still absorbing energy - this is mainly important to think about if you are someone who both binges and purges.)

Talk to someone and get support.
If someone knows what you are doing they can keep an eye on you and keep you from purging. I have argued with my mum countless times because i was going to the bathroom to purge after a meal but she would stand in the way and not let me in. I despised her at the time but she was trying to help me and was doing her best. So confide in someone close to you, it is the first step towards recovery. But also it can make you realise what you are doing is wrong and by having someone there to help you through the tough times and keep you from purging then it can be easier to stop.

Stop 'cold turkey' (I.e all at once)
Some things it is better to slowly cut down and decrease but when it comes to purging you need to stop all together. Not just purge 3 times a day instead of 6 or purge atleast once a day/week. It is something you need to stop all at once, that you decide to not purge and then there is no... 'i can purge after dinner or, it's ok if i purge now because i havent purged earlier'. You need to keep yourself away from situations where you can purge and to find ways to cope with the anxiety and guilt. Because those feelings will pass but if you still purge sometimes, then it is much harder to get rid of the habit and problem.

Make a list of goals and rewards for going purge free
Set up small rewards or goals after going say 1 week without purging, then by going a whole month without purging and 3 months without purging. Do or buy something nice which will motivate and encourage you to keep going and your eventual goal.... lose track of the days you go without purging.

Decide to stop purging.
You need to 100% decide to stop. For your own health and because it is a pretty nasty habit. If you are only on the edges of recovery that isnt good enough and the temptation to purge will definitely become too much. So instead you need to know and decide that you want to stop and try your hardest to do that. Even if you slip up, you will know that you want to get rid of the habit and change and the slip up will just motvate you even more to get rid of the habit!

These are just some of the things i found helpful when i was trying to get rid of my purging habits - if you have any that help YOU then comment below :)

Below are some helpful posts:

1 comment:

  1. I found this post very interesting. Although I don`t purge now I did once right at the start of my ED whereby I used purging to loose weight. I was purging several times a day - whatever I ate really and I did manage to loose weight this way. I told myself I would stop when I got to my "target" weight.
    But when I got to that weight, I couldn't stop. It was as though I had developed a natural automatic reflex to purge and get rid of any food that I had eaten as soon as I had had it. It got to happening several times a day, every day, even if I had only eaten something like a salad.
    Of course my weight continued to drop and I was rapidly loosing control. I remember purging even after Christmas dinner, after a special birthday meal and felt incredibly guilty because I just couldn't stop myself. It was an awful time and although I got initial relief after doing it, I hated myself for it.
    What stopped me in the end was my own body. I found I just couldn't be sick any more - I was physically unable to be sick. Whether my reflex muscles/stomach muscles had got damage I don`t know but till this day I still find it near on impossible to be sick even when I am ill.
    So what I want to say to anyone who is thinking about doing this, or has just begun doing it - don`t. It wrecks your body, damages your teeth and plays havoc with your digestive system. Not to mention the mental anguish you go through. There are far far better ways of dealing with food issues than this so please don`t do it, it really isn't worth it.
    I wish I had never started doing it. If someone had told me of all the problems it would cause years later I would have been horrified. But no on knew so no one did.
    Treat yourself better than this, don`t go down that slippery slope.