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How Effective is Therapy For Overcoming Eating Disorders? (5 Tips, Stories & Examples)

by Hugo

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Eating disorders plague millions, trapping them in a cycle of emotional turmoil and physical decline. However, therapy emerges as a potent ally, offering empathy, support, and practical strategies to foster a positive relationship with food.

We interviewed 12 individuals battling eating disorders, with 5 affirming the significant role therapy played in their recovery. The upcoming real-life stories and empowering tips will illustrate this.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Share your story: Help thousands of people around the world by sharing your own story. We would love to publish your interview and have a positive impact on the world together. Learn more here.

Most recent stories

We’re constantly interviewing people about their journeys. Below are the 3 most recent interviews we’ve published with people who struggled with eating disorders but learned to live with them with the help of therapy.

5 tips from the people we’ve interviewed

Therapy can be a vital tool in overcoming eating disorders. Here are 5 stories illustrating the diverse ways therapy aided others in their recovery journey.

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1. Jade went from restriction to liberation through intuitive eating

Despite her current happiness, Jade faced a long-standing battle with an eating disorder that remained unnoticed until her journey to recovery began.

Jade’s struggle with anorexia started subtly, evolving into a need for control through food restriction. As she matured, societal pressures intensified her condition, leading to extreme dieting practices often praised by others. This perilous cycle brought her to the brink of physical and mental exhaustion.

At 25, Jade discovered the book “Body Positivity Power” by Megan Jayne Crabbe, introducing her to intuitive eating and joyful movement. This marked the onset of her brave journey toward recovery, working closely with specialists to address underlying trauma and dismantle ingrained food rules. Through therapy, Jade regained her physical and mental strength, paving the way for a life filled with newfound confidence and opportunities.

Jade’s story underscores the transformative power of recovery, emphasizing the importance of seeking help and embracing change. Her advice is clear: “Don’t fear change. It’s challenging but utterly worth it. You owe it to yourself to conquer this and experience life anew.”

Here’s a link to Jade’s full interview.

๐Ÿ’ก By the way: Do you find it hard to be happy and in control of your life? It may not be your fault. To help you feel better, we’ve condensed the information of 100’s of articles into a 10-step mental health cheat sheet to help you be more in control. ๐Ÿ‘‡

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2. Lark overcomes an eating disorder through therapy and self-care

Lark has faced depression and anxiety for over two decades. Despite her radiant smile and prosperous career, Lark encounters dark days monthly, a reflection of her ongoing battle with mood disorders that started in university.

Lark’s struggle began 20 years ago, escalating silently until it manifested as an eating disorder. The turning point came when her parents urged her to seek therapy. This intervention, coupled with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and medication, steered her life positively, making days more manageable.

Lark advocates for a robust support system and self-care, emphasizing challenging negative thoughts and setting achievable goals. Books like “Mind Over Mood” have been instrumental in her healing process, offering strategies to manage her mood disorders effectively.

Lark’s journey illustrates that with the right support and resources, navigating the complexities of mood disorders is possible. She encourages individuals to recognize depression signs early and seek proactive help.

Here’s a link to Lark’s full interview.

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3. Julie rediscoveres joy through therapy and exploration

Julie embarked on a self-discovery and healing journey, navigating complex anxiety issues since childhood. Despite her fears centered around food and flying, Julie managed to blend her love for travel with a pursuit of happiness.

Julie’s anxiety began with a fear of illness from food, evolving into restrictive eating patterns and a phobia of flying. These anxieties often manifested physically, with symptoms like increased heart rate and inability to eat. The turning point came after an extreme anxiety episode, leading her to seek professional help.

Through therapy, Julie learned to approach her anxiety with curiosity, preventing symptom escalation. This approach, coupled with the mantra “It’s possible I will be okay”, empowered her to expand her culinary horizons and approach flying with nervous excitement.

Julie’s story showcases the transformative potential of therapy. She encourages individuals to seek help without viewing it as a weakness, fostering a community where experiences and coping strategies can be shared openly.

Here’s a link to Julie’s full interview.

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4. Cherie focuses on body positivity with therapy and support

Cherie transitioned from corporate marketing to therapy, driven by her personal experiences with negative body image and an eating disorder. During her high school years, Cherie struggled with self-esteem and body image issues, escalating into unhealthy eating habits and compulsive exercise routines in college.

Cherie’s recovery began during her study abroad in Oxford, where she embraced therapy and leaned on her support system, including her now-husband. Through therapy and resources like books and podcasts, Cherie dismantled the diet mentality that had held her captive, learning to trust her body and advocate for body diversity and inclusivity.

Cherie encourages others to apply the knowledge and skills acquired during recovery consistently. Her story is a testament to the fact that recovery is possible, leading to a happier and healthier life.

Here’s a link to Cherie’s full interview.

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5. Stephanie blossoms into self-love through mindfulness and therapy

Stephanie shares her transformative journey grappling with eating disorders and self-esteem issues. Growing up, societal standards of beauty fueled her insecurities, leading to a tumultuous relationship with food and her body.

Stephanie’s turning point came when she realized her eating disorder was hindering her ability to live a fulfilling life. This propelled her to seek professional help, embracing therapy and mindfulness practices to reclaim her life.

With her therapist’s guidance, Stephanie began to unravel the beliefs fueling her eating disorder, developing a healthier relationship with food and rediscovering the joy of physical activity without the pressure of weight loss.

Stephanie urges others facing similar challenges to seek professional help and cultivate self-compassion, emphasizing that recovery is a journey, not a destination.

Here’s a link to Stephanie’s full interview.

๐Ÿ’ก By the way: If you want to start feeling better and more productive, I’ve condensed the information of 100’s of our articles into a 10-step mental health cheat sheet here. ๐Ÿ‘‡

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Wrapping up

These stories showcase the resilience of individuals overcoming eating disorders through therapy, mindfulness, and support. I hope their journeys encourage others to embark on paths of healing and self-acceptance, fostering a world where everyone can thrive in their unique beauty and strength.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Share your story: Help thousands of people around the world by sharing your own story. We would love to publish your interview and have a positive impact on the world together. Learn more here.

Hugo Huijer AuthorLinkedIn Logo

Founder of Tracking Happiness, with over 100 interviews and a focus on practical advice, our content extends beyond happiness tracking. Hailing from the Netherlands, I’m a skateboarding enthusiast, marathon runner, and a dedicated data junkie, tracking my happiness for over a decade.

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