I read a Huffington Post article about this and I felt this seriously relates to me and my journey. So I decided I would write to you all about it!
“You deserve to be truly free from food rules, obsession, and body-hate.” Here’s the deal though with eating disorders how can we feel this way?
There is supposed to be a time when eating disorder recovery is easier. When you actually feel like you’re becoming free from your illness. A time when you are not fixated on food and or your body. A time when recovery is more in the back of your mind.
I don’t know at what point this will happen, but I hope for the day!
Here’s where it creeps in and why I have been making sure to avoid as much as I can related to diets, clean eating, the latest eating fads. This doesn’t just relate to me though, many women, men, children, and other eating disorder sufferers deal with these temptations daily.
If I read an article about “clean eating” and “whole foods,” I begin to obsess. Ok, Ok this is more what I used to do, but there is a fear that if I start reading things targeted to these topics over and over then the urge will creep back in and I will go back to that mindset, because then I…
…slowly start reading more articles online, seeing what I could be allergic to, and what is “best” for my body. I spend time finding recipes that are “healthy.” There’s a sense of joy that comes with a shopping cart full of “healthy” foods. Foods that I say I’ll eat. It really overtakes me and becomes my identity.
Why is there a problem with “clean eating” in eating disorder recovery?
Here is a facebook post that makes sense:
“Saying that you’ve recovered from an eating disorder and now you eat “clean” and stay away from processed foods-is like saying you are sober from alcoholism-yet maintain a “healthy” relationship to alcohol by sticking to wine and beer. While “clean eating” may be socially sanctioned-it’s incredibly dangerous for those in eating disorder recovery (and largely unhelpful to the population in general.)”
So clean eating is dangerous for the general population and can lead to disordered eating, but is more dangerous to people with eating disorders.
Eating disorders really are like an abusive partner. There is co-dependency, self-destruction and isolation.
Eating disorders thrive on the rules, rigidity, and a sense of “good” vs. “bad” foods. See why it’s bad to try and “eat clean?” There is also the idea of “unclean foods…” these are the foods people like me feel like we need to avoid. This is so triggering, especially when you have a long-standing genetic pre-disposition for an eating disorder.
So people with eating disorders need to look at food as food. Nothing as clean or unclean. So see the problem? Why it is so dangerous? Eating disorders are secretive. It’s bad when they sneak back up and hit you on the backside.
If you’re struggling with an eating disorder, call the National Eating Disorder Association hotline at 1-800-931-2237.