23 Feb

The scoop on eating disorders and a source for support

Did you know that and an estimated 11 million people struggle with some form of an eating disorder? Of that 11 million, 20-30% are male. On top of that, eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. An estimated 6% lose their battle with an eating disorder and treatment (if sought) can be very expensive.

Many people are isolating themselves and are in a great deal of pain, while the rest of us can enjoy a gourmet meal and feel fantastic afterwards. Eating disorders don’t make a lot of sense to people unfamiliar with the disease. I have heard frustrated friends or family say “Just Eat!!”. It’s not that easy. It’s a disease about control, there is often associated depression, distorted body image, fear and anxiety. Food is merely the controlling substance. Just like alcohol, drugs or sex; diet, exercise and other means of purging are often used as a means to escape reality and numb painful feelings.

One of my passions is to help create awareness for this serious mental illness. I am fully recovered from anorexia and bulimia and presently live a healthy and rewarding life. Things happen for a reason and I believe it is one of my purposes to touch the lives of others affected by this disease.

I have shared my story at various Chicagoland High Schools, Purdue’s college campus, Linden Oaks treatment facility and local Junior High Schools and would be moved for the opportunity to share my journey to recovery at your event, school, campus or seminar (please email for availability).

Below is an excerpt on hope from my story of recovery.

“….Know that there is a better life for you to live. As someone who has literally been low enough to have my face around a toilet bowl at a family Holiday party, I have been through it. There have been times in my life when I thought, “what is the point”? The point is to not give up, look up and ask for help. No matter what your struggles are in life, trust me, you are not alone and you are worth it.

Support is available. I now know healthy ways to deal with the stress and changes that life brings. Life isn’t always easy and it will never be perfect, but once you learn to love yourself for who you were made to be, you will develop a strong sense of self. Your life and your relationships will be much fuller and you will find purpose. Just remember you or your loved one is not alone. Click here for a longer version of my recovery story.

Know anyone that needs immediate support?

A great way to get support for yourself or a family member is through ANAD. They are a national, non for profit organization in which I support. ANAD’s purpose is to create awareness and offer support to families and individuals struggling with an eating disorder. There are online chat forums and resource lines where one can call in for confidential support and much more.

 Donate to ANAD and help make a difference today!

Sources:

1. ANAD

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