It was my worst fear. I recovered from anorexia/bulimia and became morbidly obese. I lost and regained weight in a furious and uncontrollable cycle. I didn’t think I had it in me to try again.
But I couldn’t ignore how my health was deteriorating. My right knee constantly hurt and buckled, making walking difficult. I had osteoarthritis. While my knee couldn’t be fixed, I could slow down the deterioration and stave off knee surgery.
Enter my thoughts of weight loss surgery. Even if I could lose the weight on my own, it would take well over a year. I read that gastric bypass surgery (“GBS”) patients lost most of their excess weight within 6 months. That’s a no brainer, I decided. Keep reading »
Writing about eating disorders feels like an exercise in vulnerability, not because I am ashamed to share my story, but due to the extremely emotional nature of the topic for countless women. In an era of Kate Moss, skinny jeans, and “she’s too skinny!” tabloid fodder, eating disorders run rampant like a cultural epidemic, continuing to fester alongside a never-ending preoccupation with body image. Although the majority of the media narrows the scope of the issue to models and celebrities, eating disorders are actually most prevalent amongst us everyday girls. Simultaneously, the reality of EDs extends beyond the teenage anecdotes of starving ourselves to be popular; these serious diseases have lifetime physical and psychological ramifications and are far more multifarious than extreme dieting. Weight is a sensitive subject to say the least, one I am going to handle diplomatically. The objective of sharing my story is not to be controversial, blame Hollywood, or spark debate on how to confront eating disorders, but to reflect on the complexities of a ghost that has haunted me and so many others for over a decade.
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“Ali Lohan Has A New Face.” “A 17-year-old shouldn’t have a plastic surgeon playing Frankenstein with her face.” “Ali Lohan Gets Crazy Plastic Surgery, No Longer Looks Like A Lohan.” “R.I.P. Ali Lohan‘s old face, 1993-2011.” These are just a few of the headlines and comments being written about Lindsay Lohan’s younger sister Ali, who recently signed a contract with NEXT Model Management. Clearly Ali looks shockingly different in this recent photo (you can see others here) than she did just two years ago (inset). Her lips appear to be a bit fuller, her cheekbones are more pronounced, and her eyes seem wider; the general consensus among writers on the internet is that she’s had drastic plastic surgery. But while I wouldn’t put it past Dina Lohan to give the thumbs up to her 17-year-old putting her face under the scalpel, my first thought upon seeing these photos was, Oh my god, she must have an eating disorder. Keep reading »
You’ve got to wonder, sometimes, what marketing people are thinking when they make decisions like the one Brit company Zazzle made to allow a children’s T-shirt to be sold with the words “Nothing Tastes As Good As Skinny Feels.” When the T first came to light, Zazzle claimed that it was simply “a custom products platform, it enables all users to create their own products that feature their own content. In this way, Zazzle is an outlet for users to express their personal opinions and viewpoints.” In effect, it was simply a platform for users, but not responsible for what users created with its platform. Well, Zazzle’s card has been pulled by Britain’s Advertising Standards Authority, who have deemed the shirts “harmful to children.”
You think, guys? Keep reading »
I was totally digging this doctor on “The Today Show” who talked — okay, ranted — to Ann Curry about the constant pressure on women to be skinny, including during pregnancy. “Mommyrexia” is when pregnant women cut back on eating or add excessive exercise to their regimen because they’re worried about gaining quote-on-quote “too much weight” when there’s a bun in the oven. Clearly this eating disorder is scary and sad for both biological and cultural reasons. And you don’t usually get such sharp, feminist cultural commentary on “Today.”
But then Dr. Nancy Snyderman told us what she really thinks: “I think this is an Upper East Side, white girl, obnoxious problem. It’s irritating to me! We want perfect babies, perfect bodies, perfect lives. I just find the whole thing vulgar.” Ooof. Good job making women with eating disorders feel even more like the problem is them being selfish, not our culture. I am sure that will be really helpful, Dr. Snyderman. [BuzzFeed] Keep reading »