04 January 2017

Celebrities and Eating Disorders

An eating disorder is classed as a mental health problem and is something that affects many people across the UK. The constant pressure by the media to be thin is the main drive behind the obsession with the calorie counting and excessive exercising that grips many young individuals. Comparing themselves to the stick-thin models that constantly appear on television and social media is something that so many do on a daily basis. With magazines and fitness guru’s trying to entice people with their newest ‘life-changing’ diet, this can also affect those who feel they have to be thin to fit in with how society expects them to look. One woman who was seriously affected by an eating disorder is Hilaria Baldwin, who was seriously underweight and was feeling the effects of this taking its toll on her health and wellbeing.

Obstacles to Overcome

Thirty-two-year-old yoga instructor Hilaria Baldwin, wife of actor Alex Baldwin, has bravely spoken out about her struggle with the eating disorder anorexia as well as Alec’s health issues in her new book, The Living Clearly Method. The couple has been married since 2012 and have three young children together; three-year-old Carmen, eighteen-month-old Rafael and four-month-old Leonardo. In her book, she details the obstacles that she and her husband had to overcome to get to where they are today.

Different and Darker Dynamic

Speaking of the time she spent at New York University, Hilaria wrote: “Without realising it, I started drifting away from the playful connection to movement I’d enjoyed as a young child and into a different and darker kind of dynamic: pushing my body to its limits and commanding it to perform through pain or fatigue. A long-simmering struggle with anorexia and bulimia began to hold me firmly in its grip. By the time I was 20 years old, my 5 foot 3 frame was at least 20lbs under a healthy weight. My nails were brittle, my hair was falling out, my period was MIA [missing in action], and my energy had tanked.”

Bad Habits

After suffering a hip injury in 2009, Hilaria said she started enjoying food again and began her road to recovery during the twelve-month period she was unable to work because of the injury. In her book, she also spoke about how Alec struggled with his own body image. Hilaria mentioned that when they had first got together as a couple, she refused to comment on his eating habits because of a feeling of having no right to when she had battled an eating disorder previously herself.

“After years of eating out, eating late, and eating too much, he’d fallen into some bad habits without realising it. His sugar intake was far too high, not just due to sweet foods and white carbs, but to pasta, sauces with hidden sugars, and snacks. I quietly watched what he ate, only mentally jotting down my secret wishlist of what I’d tell him if he asked,” she wrote.

However, the pair managed to overcome the issue when doctors warned Alec that he could face a diabetes diagnosis; this was the motivation required, and now they both exercise and eat healthily together.

Celebrities and Eating Disorders

Celebrities could be more prone to developing an eating disorder due to the fact that they are constantly in the spotlight. Gaining a couple of pounds can be a nightmare for them as it is instantly picked up and plastered all over print and social media, which then generates a lot of negative comments. This in turn can drive the individual towards an eating disorder to ‘combat’ their weight gain. Imagine seeing a picture of yourself on the front page of a tabloid or social media page that is highlighting to everyone that you have put on a bit of weight. This can be seriously damaging and hurtful to the person and, in many cases, he or she will do everything possible to fit in with how the media pressures them into looking.

Help and Support with Eating Disorders

It is not just celebrities who feel the need to be thin or to control the amount of food they are consuming, though. If you or a loved one is suffering from an eating disorder and do not know how to overcome this, then contact us here at UKAT. We specialise in assisting those battling all types of eating disorders and addictions, and we want nothing more than for them to successfully beat their illnesses and go on to live a healthy, happy life afterwards. Our staff are welcoming, and all have experience with various addictions and disorders. If you need more information, then please do not hesitate to get in touch with us today.

Source: Hilaria Baldwin opens up about eating disorder in new book (Daily Mail)

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