By Rebecca Drew
THIS BRAVE woman has overcome the anorexia demons that saw her weight plummet to just under SIX STONE over the course of nine months.
Student, Michaela Duddy (19) from Co. Donegal, Ireland, started to use her eating disorder as a way to cope with life’s pressures and she became obsessed with eating as little as possible and exercising as much as she physically could, often for hours a day. At her lowest point, Michaela weighed 5st 13lbs and was a UK size 4 and didn’t have the energy to socialise with her friends.
Now a healthy 8st 13lbs and UK size 8, Michaela’s recovery turning point came as she realised that anorexia was ruining her life and now she is much more relaxed around food and exercise and can enjoy going out with her friends without worry.
“I suffered for around nine months. It stemmed from a place of unhappiness and I used it as a coping mechanism,” said Michaela.
“I couldn’t concentrate. I was drained, cold and constantly obsessing over food and exercise. I also never socialised and drifted from a lot of my friends.
“I was quite obsessed with eating as little as I could and exercising as much as I could. I had no energy for the exercise so it was very dangerous.
“I just realised how bad it was getting and it was ruining my life. I wanted to gain back my life and happiness.”
Michaela now says that she is happy with her body and life but said the hardest part of her journey was ignoring the anorexia voice in her head. She shared her words of advice to others.
“The most difficult part was fighting with the voice inside my head every single day but the more you fight the quieter it gets so it was worth it,” she added.
“My family and friends are all very proud of how far I’ve come and I wouldn’t have been able to do it without their support so I’m very grateful for that.
“I now absolutely love exercise and I do it because I love my body and not as punishment. I fuel my body with good food and I’m not afraid to treat myself either.
“I would tell others suffering with an eating disorder to talk to someone about it.
“Just talking about it is the first step to recovery and to keep fighting after that. There is a life full of happiness ahead of them after recovery. If I can do it anyone can.”
For more information see www.instagram.com/michaeladuddy