Tuesday, 13 March 2018

How to Deal with Weight Gain // Eating Disorder Recovery #5

Hello lovely people,

Welcome to the 5th instalment in my Eating Disorder Recovery series. Today I want to talk about dealing with weight gain in recovery. This is not only applicable to those who have eating disorders that involve weight loss, or indeed solely people who are in eating disorder recovery. We are all subject to social conditioning that leads us to believe that weight loss is inherently good and that weight gain is inherently bad. Furthermore, weight gain is so often seen as a personal failure and a sign of negligence.

When I began my physical recovery, I didn't even think about weight gain, which sounds silly, but it's true. I suppose that I was so preoccupied with the relief (physically, emotionally) that came with eating more that my weight gain came as a complete shock. I thought I could recover without gaining weight. Moreover, I thought I could recover whilst still restricting i.e. whilst still following all the rules of my eating disorder.  I was convinced that I was eating far too much food anyway, so that when I began to gain weight, I didn't even realise that I had been restricting in the first place. That's what happens when you have an ED, you lose all sense of physical hunger, instead your mind is filled with what, when and how you should and shouldn't be eating.

At first, gaining weight felt like everything was spiralling out of control, like all my 'hard work' had gone to waste. However, in actuality, what was happening was that my ED was losing control and I was gaining power. 

You don't have to have an eating disorder to experience negative feelings about weight gain.

I experienced disordered thoughts about weight gain long before I had an eating disorder. We are conditioned to believe that slim bodies are the best bodies, the only bodies that are worthy of love, care and respect. Fear of weight gain stems from this belief and also from the immensely fatphobic Western culture in which we live.

Often, destructive and harmful ideas about our bodies are drilled into us from such a young age that we don't even recognise them when we come across them in our daily lives. The message that is screaming from every tabloid, billboard, television/radio programme, gym, spa, beauty clinic and social media platform is that obtaining the 'perfect' body is an act of self care, self love and self-respect.

I call bullshit. Intentionally manipulating the way that your body looks, with the accompanying belief that your body can be 'improved' upon is nothing short of self-harm. Companies like Weight Watchers and Slimming World promise confidence, health, happiness and crucially, desirability bundled into a neat weight loss plan (sounds pretty similar to the promises of an eating disorder) which instead creates nothing but self-loathing and (most importantly) guaranteed life-long memberships.

From a feminist perspective, there is a huge pressure on women, in particular, to be considered 'desirable'. So much of our culture is viewed through the heterosexual male gaze (including magazines and tabloids aimed at women). From music videos to perfume/car adverts to movies,page three and 'rape' pornography, the objectification of women is pervasive, to say the least. We learn that to be desirable is to be thin, white, able-bodied, cis-gendered and submissive. A culture fixated on both female submissiveness and weight loss is not a coincidence. Naomi Wolf refers to dieting as a 'political sedative' and I couldn't agree more. That's not to say that eating disorders belong to a specific gender - not at all. Eating disorders do not discriminate - they have no race, gender, sexuality, size, weight or level of ability. The point I am trying to make is that systematically speaking, women's appearances are scrutinised to such an extremely high degree that body-fixation and self loathing is the norm.

Perhaps even more disturbing is the fatphobia within the health service and exhibited by health professionals. I have actually been asked by a GP, who was well aware of my ED, if I thought I had gained 'too much' weight during my recovery. I have received similarly fatphobic comments from several other health professionals. It is important to note here that my body is not even considered 'fat' by mainstream standards; I don't have to shop in the plus size section, my BMI is still considered 'healthy'. I do not experience a fraction of the abuse that people with larger bodies do. Also, the fact that BMI is still considered a reliable way of measuring health would be laughable if it wasn't causing so much harm.

Recovering from a weight-loss centred illness into a weight-loss centred culture is a bit of a head-f*ck at the best of times.

However, I want to stress here that it is so, so possible. In fact, despite all the hardships, I am grateful for what my eating disorder taught me (or more specifically, for what eating disorder recovery has taught me). If I had never developed an eating disorder, I would probably still believe all the diet culture, fatphobic, highly profitable bullshit in the world. I would still be gulping back tears in changing rooms and shivering upon hearing the amount of calories in a KitKat. I would still believe that my worth as a human being lies solely in my appearance.

So, how can I deal with weight gain in a healthy way?

The number one thing that helps me when I feel the urge to lose weight is to remember this: I was not happy at a lower weight. Weight loss didn't work. I didn't feel more confident or more loved or more respected. I felt like a shell of myself.

No wonder I feel the urge to diet, to over-exercise, to lose weight in order to feel better about myself. All things considered, it's hardly surprising when weight-loss is being prescribed as the universal cure for everything. It's no wonder that I blame myself, and see myself as the problem - that's what sells. But guess what, I am not the problem and neither are you. Eating disorders do not occur within the vacuum of our personal lives and when we place them within a wider, cultural context, it is not difficult to see why we use eating behaviours as a coping mechanism.

Remember this:

You do not exist to be considered 'desirable' by warped cultural standards or by anyone at all.
You exist to desire - people, places, food, art, music, friendship, nature etc..
Your purpose in life is not, was not and will never be to lose weight.
You are a whole person with so much to give to the world. You are precious - remember that.

What can I do?

1) Diversify your social media feed - fill it with fat bodies, Black bodies, queer bodies, disabled bodies, unedited bodies, Asian bodies, bodies with scars, acne and stretch marks. Begin to undo the internalised fatphobia and desirability conditioning within yourself.

2) Detox your wardrobe - get rid of clothes that no longer fit you. Know that you are beautiful no matter what size(s) you are. You can gain weight and still be absolutely smoking hot - just sayin'.

3) Let yourself grieve your eating disorder - it's OK to miss your eating disorder sometimes and the illusion of control and validation it provided.

4) Create healthy coping mechanisms that make you feel loved, respected and cared for. It could be going to therapy, switching off your phone, lying down in a dark room, ringing a friend, having a bath or something as simple as forgiving yourself and understanding that none of this is your fault (for lots more self-care ideas click here).

5) Keep going -it gets easier, I promise.

And now, for your viewing pleasure: me, wearing clothes/smashing diet culture (and the patriarchy).

Crop Top: Topshop
Cardigan: Fatface
Trousers: TK Maxx

Chelsea Boots: Vintage
Necklace: Oliver Bonas
Velvet Scrunchie: Boots

I hope you have enjoyed this post and that you found it comforting - making peace with your body takes time - be sure to give yourself that time.

Remember to follow this blog on bloglovin and like the Facebook page - you know the drill.

Click here for more eating disorder recovery posts.

Until the next time,

Niamh xxx

Sunday, 4 March 2018

HOW TO: Deal with Periods (incl. Pain, Mood Swings etc.)

Hello lovely people,

Apologies for the lack of posts last week, the snow played havoc with my internet (a fair trade for icicles, snowmen and socially acceptable hermitage, in my opinion).

Today, I would like to talk about *insert dramatic fanfare* PERIODS. Whilst conducting some online research for this post ('cos I'm that kind of gal), I became aware of the immense amount of negativity and disgust surrounding the topic (despite the fact that I used the words 'positive' and 'empowering' in the search box). Articles included some extremely stupid myths and I can only conclude that they were written purely as click-bait.

So, to antidote this wave of fear-mongering and misinformation, I have decided to write a period-related post that is positive and (hopefully) uplifting, including some crucial tips for period pain so stay tuned...


Period-having-humans (which for brevity's sake, I will abbreviate to PHH) are awesome - seriously. Coping with the ups and downs of the menstrual cycle can be challenging but we do cope, tremendously, even if, at times, it can be a bit of an emotional roller-coaster. Honouring our mood, whatever state its in and embracing mood fluctuations is the first step to accepting and neutralising the way we feel about our cycle, which will in turn, ease physical discomfort. The way we feel about our bodies will manifest itself physically and I truly believe that changing the attitude we have towards menstruation will bring about positive effects.

Experiencing mood fluctuations isn't a sign of weakness - in fact, it could be interpreted as a necessary release of negativity that has built up over the month that has passed.

Our bodies work tirelessly to keep us healthy. Approximately once a month, our uterus lining breaks down and leaves the body (for us non-pregnant, PHH) and this is known as menstruation or a period. For many of us, our uterus allows us to create a whole entire human inside our bodies. That is pretty incredible, if you ask me. However, I know that this isn't the case for everyone. Irrespective of that fact, the menstrual cycle is a natural, healthy and incredible process that is nothing to be ashamed of. 

Fun fact: The word 'menstruation' actually comes from the Greek menus meaning moon and power (and also men meaning month).

We have cycles, just like the moon, which are on average 29 days long; both are a source of powerful energy (indeed our cycles can and do coincide with the moon, depending on the potency of moon energy in our lives). In order to live harmoniously with our bodies, we need to learn to respect and honour that energy.


For many PHH, menstruation involves some level of physical discomfort. Personally, I experience pretty severe period pains alongside several other physical symptoms. This means that my daily life is disrupted and I am unable to exert as much energy as usual. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Our modern, fast paced lifestyles can be very demanding and it is often a relief to have an excuse to slow down for a while. Furthermore, resting during our periods can be a great way of listening to our bodies (and minds) whilst also honouring our need to rest and recharge. The power of rest can do wonders for our health (mental and physical). Even a simple activity such as going to bed early can provide much needed down time.

On a side note: placing a hot water bottle (wrapped in a cloth or towel) on the lower abdominal area can provide decent pain-relief. This is due to the fact that blood flow increases in response to heat. A hot bath/shower may also provide relief.


Saying that, some light exercise can also be beneficial. I personally find that doing some yoga (a mix of flowing sequences and restorative yin poses), particularly in the days leading up to my period, really helps me to cope with mood swings. Also, once cramps kick in, I find a gentle child's pose can help to stretch my body whilst also providing emotional grounding. Going for a short walk in the fresh air can also provide much needed breathing space.

Releasing negativity

Around the time of menstruation, it is common for negative emotions to bubble to the surface. Punching a pillow, crying, laughing, journalling, scribbling and exercising are all effective ways of releasing negative energy. Soothing emotional distress will also aid in releasing muscle tension and therefore, easing cramps.

Breathing techniques can also help - here's one I find particularly effective:

Lie down on your front (on a bed or the floor) with your hands faced down forming a 'pillow' for your forehead. Begin to notice your breathing, taking deep nasal inhales and exhales. Allow yourself to make your exhales as loud as you want. Bring your attention to your abdomen rising and falling as you breathe, then notice your ribs pressing into the ground, your hips and finally your forehead against your fingers. Repeat this exercise until you feel calmer.


I have found that taking certain supplements has really helped my period pains and mood. I take Evening Primrose Oil (for all things period related), Magnesium (for pain) and B Complex (for mood). Also Jan De Vries Mood Essence helps with the high cortisol levels that can occur alongside PMT. Healing crystals can also be helpful - I find that black moonstone works well.

*Disclaimer - I am not a health professional - these are just my own personal recommendations.

@nievesitarica / via instagram.com
I am aware that periods can be extremely distressing for many people, particularly for trans men and non-binary people due to the fact that periods are primarily seen as inherently 'feminine' and relating to womanhood (which can trigger dysphoria). When it comes to periods, I acknowledge that, as a cis-gendered person, I am in a privileged position. This is an interesting article written from a non-binary person's perspective, if you are looking for further reading around this issue. It offers a valuable insight and makes several important points.

Since getting my period back during eating disorder recovery ( I lost it for 2 years), learning to embrace and accept my menstrual cycle has been a challenge. However, by writing this post, I believe  I have taken a step forward in healing my relationship with my period. I'd just like to add here, that it is important not to berate yourself for any food cravings you may experience in relation to your cycle - honour them too.

I hope you have enjoyed this post and that you found the tips useful.

Remember to follow this blog on bloglovin and like the Facebook page.

Click here for a surprise post!

Until the next time,

Niamh xxx

Saturday, 17 February 2018

Changing Rooms, Belly Rolls and Body Acceptance // Eating Disorder Recovery #4

Hello lovely people,

Welcome to the fourth instalment in my Eating Disorder Recovery series (there will be a link at the end in case you missed the other 3). Recently, I had a changing room experience that I want to share with you. I was shopping for new clothes in TK Maxx (they've got some amazing bargains btw) and I picked up two cute printed dresses, in my usual size, to try on in the changing rooms (amongst other things), neither of which fitted. In fact, I couldn't even get them on without ripping the stitching, they were so tight.

And do you what I did?

I cursed myself and my body for growing into its present shape, for my big boobs and squishy tummy. For the acne that decorates my chest, neck, hips and back. For the hair that grows under my arms and on my legs and in between my legs. I cursed it all.

I looked into the mirrors and that's all I saw. I remembered distinctly being in the same situation when I was several sizes smaller (at the peak of my eating disorder), praying that my tummy would shrink to even tinier proportions. Contorting my body into all sorts of shapes, under the harsh changing-room lighting, to try and make it seem appealing to my ED. I remember the groan of hunger in my stomach and thinking of it as nothing but a consolation prize. I remember hearing the latest chart-
topper over the tannoy and having no urge to sing along because every droplet of happiness had been squeezed out of me and in its place was nothing but fear and disgust.

Standing in the changing room a few days ago, remembering that identical moment, I decided that this would not be a repeat of the past.

So I said fuck it, I'm going to take a long hard look in the mirror and say thank you. I am going to thank my body for keeping me alive. For being soft. For being real. For carrying me through every day. For enduring years of restriction and hatred. For being my home even when I want to do nothing but shrink it, change it and punish it. For allowing me to breathe, cry, laugh, write, love, touch, listen, speak, hug and sing. For bleeding every month and surviving it. For being my friend through thick and thin.

Then I sat down, in my mismatching underwear, mid meltdown and took photos. This was not a planned photo-shoot (clearly lol), just a spur of the moment burst of gratitude. I noticed how my belly rolled and creased and thought how bloody amazing and versatile it was. That we can literally fold ourselves like paper and our bodies are able keep our internal organs safe and well.I remembered how this time last year, and the year before that and the year before that, I was cold. But with my newfound softness, the fat around my belly keeps me warm. Newflash - all bellies roll when we sit down, fat bellies, thin bellies - it doesn't matter, and that's OK. You are not expected to have a flat stomach. It is not a prerequisite for feeling good about yourself. You do not have to hide your belly, it's softness or it's boney-ness from anyone or for anyone. You do not have to manipulate your body into the latest fashionable shape and size.


a love letter to my belly: a poem


i’m sorry we’ve not been getting along lately
it’s not you, it’s me
i just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate you
i don’t tell you often enough but you are beautiful
your rounded shape is like knotted wood
your dappled skin a blanket of moss
your soft rolls cascade like a waterfall into a tranquil pond
your stretch marks are stripes of pure golden energy
your gurgling and giggling reminds me of your unquenchable spirit and your belly button is damn adorable

love always (even when I don't show it) xx

It's OK to struggle. Healing is not linear; it is not even sequential. It is OK to be triggered and to have negative thoughts, to even hate your body at times. But understand this: emotions are temporary. Energy cannot be created or destroyed only changed. So change it, slowly, softly, with plenty of tenderness. Next time you're in a changing room and something doesn't fit you, remember that just because that item of clothing is not worthy to hug your glorious form, doesn't mean that there won't be other items that will. And if you are a size 16 plus, and certain shops don't carry your size - THEIR LOSS. If their fashion isn't inclusive, they don't deserve your custom or their clothes on your rockin' body.

A final note...

I am aware of my privilege as I write this. I am a white, cis-gendered, able-bodied, medium-sized gal. I do not and will not face half the stigma that those with larger bodies, those with darker skin, those with queer bodies, or those with disabled bodies do. I have the privilege of seeing bodies like mine celebrated on social media, in plus size fashion and in the body positive movement. I have the privilege of being able to buy new clothes when I outgrow my old ones. I am privileged. My voice is important but it is not the only one that deserves to be heard.

I hope you have enjoyed this post, sharing it with you has been quite a vulnerable thing for me to do.

Click here for more Eating Disorder Recovery posts!

Remember to like the Facebook page and follow this blog on bloglovin to make sure you never miss out on new posts.

Until the next time,

Niamh xx

Monday, 12 February 2018

Creating a Self Love Mantra (ft. BROWNIES) ♡

Hello lovely people,

Since it's almost Valentine's Day (or more importantly, it's almost Pancake Tuesday..), I thought it would be fun to write a bit about self love. This time of year, it can be hard not to get caught up in the commercial frenzy of teddy bears, chocolates and roses (though I'm totally up for the chocolate part) and end up feeling bereft when unrealistic expectations are left unmet. This can be especially true when we compare our own lives to posts on social media, romantic novels/films and the bombardment of messages from TV ads, magazines and the media.

I want insert a quote here from Rupi Kaur's Milk and Honey that I think is particularly relevant (fyi I want to EAT that book, it's so good)

'Who tricked you into believing that another person was meant to complete you when the most they can do is compliment'

Rereading that quote sends shivers down my spine. Isn't it just brilliant? It is so easy to believe that our lives will not be complete until we find that special someone. To forget that we are whole entire people, a beginning, middle and end, a self preserving, independent thinking bundle of cells. We do not need anybody else to save us, love us or desire us in order to be complete. Love from others is an added bonus but it cannot substitute the love we give ourselves.

This Valentine's Day, I invite you partake in some acts of self-love, whether you are single, in a relationship or otherwise engaged.


Creating your own self love mantra is an fun, nurturing activity which can also be a nice way of practising self care. A self love mantra is a select group of positive affirmations that personally empowers you.

In order to create your mantra pick approx. 4 (or how ever many you like) affirmations that you find comforting and uplifting.

Here's my list of suggestions to get you started:

 ♡ I am powerful                                                                ♡ I deserve love
 ♡ I am strong.                                                                    ♡ I deserve kindness
 ♡ I am perfectly imperfect                                              ♡ I accept myself.
 ♡ I am healing                                                                   ♡ I accept my emotions
 ♡ I am safe                                                                        ♡ I accept my past.
 ♡ I am beautiful                                                                ♡ I forgive myself.
 ♡ I am at peace                                                               ♡ I am grounded.
 ♡ I am magnificent                                                           ♡ I am one with the universe.
 ♡ I am precious                                                                 ♡ I have a voice that deserves to be heard
 ♡ I am sacred                                                  ♡ I am open 
 ♡ I am enough                                                                   ♡ I am loved
 ♡ I am soft
 ♡ I am worthy

Write your mantra down and stick it somewhere you can see it. Write it at the top of every journal entry. Text/Email it to yourself. Repeat it to yourself every morning and evening. Set a positive intention behind the words. Revisit this list and create new mantras for specific events (eg. a job interview or an exam) or chop and change your mantra as required.

It genuinely helps. This is just one way of noticing and softening your inner dialogue and manifesting positive energy. Do you criticise yourself a lot? Blame yourself for things that are out of your control? Hold negative beliefs about your personality or your appearance? Creating a self love mantra can help to challenge destructive thought patterns and create new healthy habits.


Holy Heck these brownies are good. As someone who eats a gluten free diet (because gluten makes me ill not because i'm trying to lose weight), I am used to pretty much all carbohydrates tasting like cardboard so eating brownies that actually tasted like brownies was pretty mouthgasmic.

You've done your self love mantra, you've stepped outside of your comfort zone, now let's bake some chocolately goodness.

What you'll need:

150g of decent chocolate (I like dark, but you can use whatever you want, I won't judge)
100g of gluten free plain flour (I used Dove Farm's mix, you can probably substitute this for standard, gluten-containing flour...I'm sure it'll work) 
3 eggs (go free range, if possible)
100g of butter
200g of sugar
1 tsp of baking powder

How to make them:

  • Preheat the oven to Gas 4/180 °C and stick on your favourite playlist to get you in the brownie baking mood
  • Gently melt the butter and chocolate in a saucepan - try not to burn the mixture, keep stirring it on a low heat and you should be fine 
  • Mix the dry ingredients together
  • Beat the eggs into the dry ingredients
  • Stir in the melted chocolate and butter mixture SLOWLY to avoid creating too many air bubbles
  • Pour the mixture into a well greased tin and bake for 20-25 mins on the middle shelf in the oven
  • While waiting for your brownies to bake, lick the spoon and the bowl clean, dance around the kitchen and try to forget about the impending mountain of washing/tidying up
  • Lastly, let your brownies cool for a while in the tin before cutting into squares (or dinosaurs if you're feeling fancy) and serve. However if you do eat them out of the tin, I ain't gonna judge you.

I hope you have enjoyed this post, let me know if you make the brownies - you can thank me later!

Remember to follow this blog on bloglovin and like the Facebook page to keep up to date with new blog posts.

Click here for more self care posts!

Until the next time,

Niamh xxx

Friday, 2 February 2018

All things FOOD // Eating Disorder Recovery #3

Hello lovely people,

This post is the 3rd instalment in my Eating Disorder Recovery series. Today, I want to tackle a fairly tricky subject - FOOD.

Obviously food/eating is hard to talk about in eating disorder recovery, especially without it being triggering. When you have an eating disorder, food isn't food as you know it. Food is elevated to God-like status . It is given the power to 'reward' and 'punish'. It is labelled as 'good 'bad' 'healthy' 'unhealthy' 'guilt free' 'indulgent' etc. Food is given a moral compass that in reality, doesn't exist, even though this idea is actively promoted by the media (more on this here). And with that moral compass comes a whole bunch of emotions. Disordered eating habits are then used to numb these emotions, to regain a sense of control.

For example...

I would always purge before important events, special occasions, or any time when I wanted to feel good about myself and gain a temporary boost of confidence. Hunger and thinness became synonymous with 'having my shit together' (even though I really didn't have my shit together). For a short time after purging, I felt invincible, like I could take on the world. It's a kind of high that's hard to explain, especially when you're hurting so much underneath; a light-headed, paper-thin fantasy. Soon enough, I would crash back down to earth and my emotions would flood back into consciousness - guilt, shame and self-disgust. Then, to antidote my strict regime, I would 'lose control' with food, by binging. Even during a binge, my thoughts were restrictive, torturing me over every morsel that passed my lips. My binges had rules, just like my purges, certain foods I couldn't binge on because they were too 'bad', how long the binge would last for; I would even start planning my next purge as soon as the binge began.

Honestly, I don't know how that sounds to someone who hasn't had an eating disorder. Does it sound crazy? It should do, it is crazy. To me, it sounds exhausting and familiar and sad. To me, it makes perfect sense and at the same time no sense at all. After all, it was my brain that constructed this plan and my brain that remembers it all, so of course it makes sense to me. However, it was also my brain that put a stop to it, that absorbed new information about the world and rejected that seemingly never-ending cycle of self-loathing.

It is hard not to idolise your eating disorder and think of your ED memories as 'the glory days'. I catch myself doing that sometimes. Remember who was in charge when those memories were created - your ED. The way I look at it; when you are feeling vulnerable, you ED presents you with an social media style super-cut of memories - filtered, edited and twisted into something that it's not. Granted, in some ways, it was easier to just go along with your eating disorder and all its crazy ideas. BUT, you've listened to those ideas time and time again and tried to make them work..but they didn't. They left you unhappier and unhealthier than before. So not matter how great those memories seem, remember all that is missing from the story - all the tears and heartache and empty stomachs. Remember too that it's not your fault that things ended up that way.

At this point, I want to make something quite clear: there is a very small part of my brain, the ED part of my brain, that doesn't get much of a say in my life any more. Nevertheless, during times of stress, I still have disordered thoughts, and sometimes even disordered behaviours and that's OK. It is the part of my brain that has yet to heal. It may never heal completely and that's OK too. At a basic level, eating disorders are coping mechanisms and my eating disorder happens to be my brain's default coping mechanism. So, sometimes I need to manually go and change it to a healthy coping mechanism - it doesn't happen automatically. Saying that, with practice, it will become second nature to you, like brushing your teeth.

By far the most important thing to remember during this whole process is to forgive yourself. Forgive your brain and all its craziness. Despite what you may think, it is doing its best even though it doesn't always get it right. 

Food Diaries

When I began recovery, something that was recommended to me was keeping a 'food diary' where I would note down what I ate and how I felt before, during and after. For me, personally, this was an incredibly stressful activity. It felt like even more rules were being added to my life and even more opportunities to remind myself of my food 'failings'. Also, I started watching 'Food Diaries' on YouTube, which, even at the time I knew was self-harm in itself. Please please PLEASE do not watch these. Do not get sucked into food comparison and food perfection ideals. Trust me when I say 99% of these people are either hungry or lying. Also every person is going to eat different amounts of different types of food and that is 100% fine and normal. This will fluctuate throughout the day, week, month, year etc. People are not going to film the day that they stayed at home and ate a packet of biscuits for lunch. The same goes for 'Workout Routine' videos. Stay AWAY at all costs.

Going Vegan in Recovery?

AH this is a hard thing to talk about for me because I was vegan during a lot of my eating disorder. I personally believe that it is important to lift all restrictions on food until you have healed enough to make decisions around food that aren't going to trigger ED behaviours. I would love to be vegetarian, for purely ethical reasons but I know, deep down that I'm not ready for that and I am not willing to become a martyr and sacrifice my health. This is just my personal opinion - it might be very different for others. However, I would advise that you exercise extreme caution around any kind of changes to your diet. Find out what is safe and healthy (and by that, I mean mentally healthy) for you and do it.

Fear Food Exercise

Make sure that you are feeling emotionally 
stable before attempting this exercise

Pick one food that your ED had labelled 'bad' or 'unhealthy'
 or that you are afraid or reluctant to eat

Take note of the kind of thoughts that emerge 
when you think about this food

They might be something like:

'I can't eat this food'

'I don't deserve to eat this food'

'This food will make me fat'

Now, reverse them.

What would be the opposite of those thoughts?

It might be something like this:

'I can eat this food'

'I deserve to eat this food'

'I feel vulnerable when I eat this food,
but this food will not do anything bad to me'

Say these new thoughts out loud before 
eating your food of choice.

This is not a quick-fix solution but the 
more you challenge your thoughts,
 the easier that eating will become.

From twitter account @whwucadv

I hope you have enjoyed this post, let me know what topics you would like me to write about next.

Remember to follow this blog on bloglovin and like the Facebook page to keep up to date with new posts.

Find the rest of my eating disorder recovery series here!

Until the next time,

Niamh xxx
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