National Eating Disorders Association

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What to eat

Hey :) I'm 14 and I've been dealing with anorexia for about a year. My problem is that I keep binging. I just want to eat like a normal person. I hate the feeling when I just can't stop and purging after doesn't help me feel better. Can anybody help me and give me advice on how to eat healthy without felling the need to starve or binge and purge??
Stay strong

Getting help

Hi! I'm so glad you came on here to discuss what is going on and I'm sorry to hear you are struggling. Have you told anyone what is going on? I know it may seem like eating mindfully is something we should just be able to 'do', but that's not always the case. True recovery comes with the help of a treatment team - primary care doctor to make sure everything is healthy in your body, therapist to discuss the issue of the ED and then maybe a support group as well so you know you aren't alone. The thing about EDs is that even when we feel 'normal', that is just a cycle of the ED that will eventually dissipate unless we get professional help.

Do you feel you can tell a parent, friend or a trusted adult what is going on? If you are having trouble with telling someone (I know it can be scary but you can do it!!), this may help:

And here is a link to help you find treatment in your area:

We are here to help you navigate through this process!

so glad you're here


Thanks for reaching out here on NEDA! It's great that you are looking for help - it is definitely out there and you are taking the right steps. I agree with eghall that talking to someone you trust, a family member or friend, can be a good starting place to build up a support network. Speaking with your doctor or a therapist will also help you regain a healthy balance to make sure you are getting the right nutrients you need. "Normal" eating can be different for everyone, so talking to a professional will help you figure out what's right for you specifically.

Here is some info on the basics of treatment:
And here's some info on developing positive body image:

Remember, it IS possible to break the cycle of an ED - it's often hard and will take determination and persistence, but there are many resources out there that can help you! You're not alone.

Hope this helps!

Not Binging!

Hey there, you know what? Your situation pretty much mirrors what was going on with me just about a month ago! And I'm proud you decided to get help too. You know what? You're not binging, hun. You say you're anorexic? You know what? You're "binging" because your body is all like, "Hey! I'm starvin ova here!" If you give in even a little, it'll say, "Oh man, food! Hooray!" For a long time, I thought this was binging too. But it's only "binging" when your body doesn't need the energy. YOURS, I'm sure, does. This is "reactive eating", not "binging." Your body is just so hungry, it's trying to recover everything it's lost and become healthy again. Your organs are probably weak, your good bacteria is being lost, you're becoming weak and frail. Your body is just trying to combat that, because it don't want that! Anyway, who does??? I'm sure your friends and family are worried sick! How do you think I felt when my mom said she cried herself to sleep every night trying to figure out what to do to help me. Your body won't say, "Gee, when will I ever get food again?" It's gonna eat and say, "URP! I'm full!" Starving isn't "normal". Anorexia isn't normal. It isn't healthy. I'm still working it out myself.... I sometimes feel like, "Oh man, I ate SO much..." But my body needs the energy, as does yours. You just have to realize this is something EVERY anorexic recoverer goes through. Reactive eating is NORMAL, in this point in time. I sometimes feel better when I try to eat nutrient-dense foods. I like knowing I got all my protein and fiber and vitamins and whatnot. If that makes you feel better, do that! You have the righteous priveledge to indulge in anything AND everything and not feel an ounce of guilt, my friend! We're all rooting for you to get better :) If you have any more questions, please feel free to ask!

Recovery is possible

I agree with you, Hedgehogbeatles8... when we starve for so long and finally re-feed, it feels like binging. Sometimes our minds take a while to catch up to our actions. So while you aren't really binging, our minds aren't yet convinced. When we starve ourselves, our bodies start to shut down from lack of nutrition and vitamins. It's important that our bodies have those for basic life. Have you had a chance to talk to anyone yet? You CAN do this!!

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