Once someone has established that they may have an eating disorder or a a pattern of disordered eating, they must seek support to help them towards recovery.

They must want to change – ‘Motivation to Change’ (see below) helps to identify what motivation to change is and how, with a lot of determination and hard work, they can regain management over their illness and look forward to a better future.

Assessments may be a very scary thing for some people, but don’t worry ‘Points to Consider for Your Assessment’ (see below) may help you to focus and prepare for that.

To identify the people/organisations you think are best suited to your needs check out ‘Patient Log’ (see below) and start to keep a record of who, what, where and when.

  • It is vital you know who you are seeing, what is their role?
  • What date did you see them, was your appointment cancelled and why?
  • What are they working towards? What are your aims and goals?
  • What was the outcome of your session?
  • Were there any issues you feel may have been overlooked?

WRITE IT DOWN! – it is simple, will take just a few minutes but may save you hours if you need to recall some of the information regarding your treatment at a later date.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket thinking this ‘one’ thing will make you better keep options open as you seek support.

Link in with other charity specific for eating disorders.

Is recovery possible? Yes it most certainly is, but can take anything from 2 to 7 years.

Do people ever get better? – YES they do!

Realistically what would RECOVERY look like to you?

  • Gain management over their illness
  • Take steps to be socially interactive
  • Integrate with the family
  • Start to eat meals with people
  • Challenge and conquer their fears
  • Change body checking behaviours or cease weighing several times a day
  • Actively seek employment
  • Plan a meal and go shopping
  • Improve nutrition
  • Set an action plan in place
  • Set small achievable goals and feel proud when you have achieved them.

The list is as long as you wish to make it!

Well done you are taking positive steps towards living your life once again.

Eating Disorders can never be taken for granted and there may be peaks and troughs in your recovery plan.

But remember if you have a ‘wobble’ that most certainly does not make an ‘earthquake’! Draw the line, get back on track and don’t beat yourself up!

Be proud of who you are!


Our pathways in life will take us down many roads

Some on the motorway – in the fast lane

Some tootling gently on the county roads

Some roundabouts where we go round in circles

Some cul-de-sacs where we come to a dead end and

Some take us no-where and we are temporarily lost

But whatever route we take it is our ‘Journey of Life’

Learn from the journey and your wrong turns

But most of all remember without those wrong turns we will never try a new route

– Marg Oaten MBE – March 2012

Instead of thinking too much about foods being ‘good’ or ‘bad’, let us think more about a balance of needed nutrients, about getting the healthier nutrients the body needs, and the other things to be left to have in moderation. Of course, there are foods that are not so good for us, like refined sugars, and saturated fats. This does not mean you cannot indulge in a pastry now and then or some sweets… balance and moderation are key. You can also live healthily without these foods. The choice is yours on that one.

Think of food as a type of maintenance medicine and a strengthening medicine. Getting the right nutrients gives you energy and health to accomplish what you need, and to your better ability. Nutritional deficiency can affect mood and brain function, and can make you tired and lose focus.

Here are the six main groups of nutrients, of which we need all six in order to be healthy:

  • Protein
  • Carbohydrates
  • Fats
  • Minerals
  • Vitamins
  • Water

Sometimes in literature, we see a seventh added – fibre. Getting enough fruit and vegetables and complex carbohydrates should meet fibre requirements.

Fats are divided into monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and trans fats. Trans fats are not good for us and so need to be eaten in moderation. Mono and polyunsaturated fats are essential nutrients and must not be avoided – we need some fat for healthy functioning, and fat is not the enemy! It is about focusing on the healthy mono and polyunsaturated fat over the trans fats. Trans fats are found in things like pastries and commercially friend foods. Trans fats can cause clogging of the arteries if you eat too much of it. Look out for the term ‘hydrogenated vegetable oil’, as this is the source of trans fats.

The average adult needs between 2000 and 2500 calories a day. We need around 1200 just to maintain organs and baseline functioning without any walking, moving, studying and so on. The brain alone needs around 500 calories a day to maintain itself. Make sure you don’t go more than a few hours without food (unless sleeping). Some people are OK on three meals a day, some are better with 5-6 smaller meals, or three meals and two snacks. Don’t skip meals.

Here is a succinct write – up of foods in the six main groups, how much we need, and why we need them: healthyeating.sfgate.com

Using this information and these guidelines, you should be able to create meals that are balanced, or at least get all food groups in a day.

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