It’s only human to wish you looked different or could fix something about yourself. But when preoccupation with being thin takes over your eating habits, thoughts, and life, it’s a sign of an eating disorder. When you have anorexia, the desire to lose weight becomes more important than anything else. You may even lose the ability to see yourself as you truly are. Anorexia nervosa can cause severe medical problems and even lead to death. If you have Anorexia, you may believe that being thin is the key to being happy, or that if you can control what you eat, you’ll be able to control your life. But the truth is that happiness, confidence, and self-empowerment come from accepting yourself for who you truly are, and that’s only possible with recovery. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So, here are 10 ways to prevent the eating disorder, Anorexia:
1. Believe in yourself
Choose to value yourself based on your goals, accomplishments, talents and character. Avoid letting the way you feel about your body weight and shape determine the course of your day. And also, become a critical viewer of the media and its messages about self-esteem and body image. Don’t accept that the images you see are the ideals you should try to attain. When you hear a comment of see an image that promotes thinness at all costs, talk back to the television.
2. Stop Emotional Eating
We don’t always eat simply to satisfy hunger. We also turn to food for comfort, stress relief, or as a reward. Unfortunately, emotional eating doesn’t fix emotional problems but in fact leads to eating disorders. It usually makes you feel worse. Learning to recognize your emotional eating triggers is the first step to breaking free from food cravings and compulsive overeating, and changing the habits that have sabotaged your diets in the past.
Sleep is essential for energy, health, productivity, and emotional balance. And most people don’t get nearly enough. The way you feel during your waking hours hinges on how well you sleep at night. Learning about sleep and healthy sleep habits can help you to improve the quality of your life.
4. Be Healthy
The greatest wealth is health, that was said by Virgil – a truly great Greek philosopher. If we want to be the best that we can be, and if we want to have the best lives that we are able to, then we need to be healthy.
5. Eat right
Many people don’t know it, but one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself from these diseases is to eat a healthy diet. But, avoid categorizing foods as ‘good/safe’ vs. ‘bad/dangerous.’ Remember that we all need to eat a balanced variety of foods.
6. Stop Judging
Stop judging others and yourself based on body weight or shape. Turn off the voices in your head that tell you that a person’s body weight is an indicator of their character, personality or value as a person.
7. Get rid of false ideas of weight loss
Get rid of the notion that a particular diet, weight or body size will automatically lead to happiness and fulfillment. Make the choice to challenge the false ideas that thinness and weight loss are great, and that body fat and weight gain are horrible or indicate laziness, worthlessness or immorality.
Exercising regularly is one of the healthiest things you can do for yourself. Being physically active can ease depression, relieve stress and anxiety, enhance self-esteem, and improve your whole outlook on life. Too much of anything is bad, so proper regular exercise helps you stay fit and gets you away from diseases.
9. Help with Eating
Having regular meals is better. Even if you only eat small meals it is beneficial to the body to eat at least three times a day. You should try to be honest (with yourself and other people) about the amount of food you are actually eating. You should reduce the number of times you weigh yourself; try to weigh yourself only once a week. It may be useful to keep an eating diary to write down all the food that you eat.
10. Be aware
Learn everything you can about anorexia nervosa, and other types of eating disorders. Genuine awareness will help you avoid judgmental or mistaken attitudes about food, weight, body shape and eating disorders. Know the symptoms, but if you start to experience some of them, then recognize that you are ill and don’t deny that you have an eating disorder.