Eating Dis-orders

by Gyl Rae, Teacher, Scotland

I have grown up most of my teenage years and adult life with an eating dis-order. This has not been outwardly obvious to people as in being anorexic, as mainly people commented on how good I looked, how great my body was and how slim I am. I have never physically stuck my fingers down my throat to be sick, nor hidden food to binge eat later, but I did eat in a way that was very obsessive and controlling, and at times worked out how and what to eat and drink in a way that would make me be sick after I ate something I knew wasn’t good for my body.

The reason I had an eating dis-order is because of the lack of self-worth and self-loathing I had for myself. I have come to know that I also eat to not feel all that I do, I eat to fight my sensitivity (awareness). I didn’t and at times still don’t want to feel what’s going on around me, as it means I would have to speak up and be more responsible.

Over the years my body has shared many things I knew and know I shouldn’t be doing. Like being in abusive and un-loving relationships, saying yes to things or people when everything in me was saying no, to not wanting to feel jealousy from others, this is a big one for me. I now know this is all okay to feel as I am learning to respond, observe and not react to what I feel. I now know that what I feel is not wrong and there’s nothing wrong with feeling all that I do. The key is observing it and not absorbing it, to live my truth.

Going back to when I was around 13 years old, I remember eating a bowl of ice cream, normal size, no big deal and running up and down on the stairs afterwards, using it like a step machine to burn off the fat and calories. There was absolutely no intention to love and nourish my body, I was treating it like a machine. A lot of this was influenced by ideals and beliefs in the world and images I saw around me of women in the media, of what a woman’s body should look like to be beautiful or fit in, to be liked and accepted, and hurts I didn’t want to feel. I never felt good enough. Like something was wrong with me.

In my 20’s and 30’s, to other people, on the outside I looked the part, the perfect picture, slim, fit and athletic, eating healthy food, working as a fitness instructor, so really you would think I knew it all. I was training and advising people on health and well-being, yet behind closed doors I was a mess. I ate a so-called good diet, but the truth is, you can still abuse yourself and have an eating dis-order with healthy food. I ate for pure function, not to nourish, love, deeply care for and nurture myself. I didn’t eat to support my body and my being. It wasn’t only what I ate but the way in which I ate, shopped and cooked my food; all from lack of self-worth and self-loathing, not taking the time and care, to lovingly buy, prepare and eat food that nourished me, but rushing and in dis-regard. I also drank alcohol and partied hard, as many people in the fitness industry did at that time, I don’t work in this field anymore so I cannot comment on what it is like now.

For me, any eating dis-order is eating in a way that does not deeply honour, love and support our body’s natural true light and divinity. Eating in any way that does not support us to evolve.

The choice to change

It’s only since attending Universal Medicine presentations, workshops and courses that I have begun to look at my relationship with food.  The choice to change didn’t come from being told what to do, or what to eat by Serge Benhayon. I was presented with truth, a choice: I could listen to, nourish, and honour my body; or I could keep on abusing myself.  This was something very new to me as I had grown up on a diet of deliberately misleading information through books, magazines, the health industry, media etc, with mis-leading information like the pyramid triangle, and we need to drink milk everyday to get strong bones.  I was never truly educated, told the truth, or asked to listen to my body and feel what I needed to eat.

I will be very honest here, even in the past few years I thought I had a very healthy relationship with food and eating, but I was still eating from what and how much I thought I ‘should’ eat based on outside beliefs and comparing myself to other people, so even though, yes, I was eating a healthier diet, and making self-loving steps here, it came from knowledge, a disconnection to my body, not listening to and honouring my body. There is no joy, fun or evolution in knowledge; only in connecting to your body, listening to it, and loving yourself deeply.

Sometimes I eat food which I know doesn’t support my body, but I know it’s not the food that’s the issue. For example, I crave sweet food at times. But, to heal this it’s not about cutting out sweet food, that doesn’t work.  I used to use force myself to try and stop eating a certain type of food, but I’d just end up eating it again. Beating myself up doesn’t work either; it just makes it worse, if you saw someone walking around hitting themselves with a big stick, you’d stop them, or at least see how unloving it is, yet this is what we are energetically doing to ourselves when we give ourselves a hard time. Accepting where I am at, understanding and appreciating myself is key.

Last year, I had incredible support from Miranda Benhayon: her support is so simple, deeply understanding and absolute pure love; she is a true inspiration to me. As a result I have come to love myself and my body more, I have a deeper understanding for myself and my body and am far less harsh and regimental with food, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks or eats.

She supported me to see that to truly heal from the sweet food I crave at times, is about me appreciating the sweetness and beauty all around me, and inside of me, and the more I appreciate that, my need for sweet food will naturally drop away. She also helped me to realise that if I have no joy in what I eat, I’ve disconnected from my body; instead it’s about connecting to my body, feeling what it needs, as well as how I approach preparing and cooking my food, doing it lovingly.

It’s really simple; the truth always is…the more I love myself and my body, the more loving I will be with the way I eat.

Read more:

  1. Obesity, food and fasting. 
  2. Before and After – Kylie Jackson on finding her true weight.

504 thoughts on “Eating Dis-orders

  1. ‘if I have no joy in what I eat, I’ve disconnected from my body’ it was awesome for me to read this. I kind of went ….. what 😳, so this shows me that this is something for me to observe and work with as I know I do not have joy in and with what I eat the whole time!

  2. “Accepting where I am at, understanding and appreciating myself is key.” So vital to address the giving ourselves a hard time over anything. Talking to myself like a parent I find helps if I’m in beat-up mode.

  3. When I was younger I definitely had this in the form of anorexia, I would control all the calories I ate as that was the only thing I felt I could control in my life. Reflecting on this it would have been wonderfull if instead of doing this (controlling calories) I was able to express myself in the way that was true to me and have full body confidence in who I was as a young woman. I deeply appreciate how this has now changed where I am able to express myself more and more in a way that is true to me and definitely am far more confident within my body today, and in this appreciation deeply appreciate Universal Medicine and all within Universal Medicine who have supported and reflected a way to truly love myself and others.

  4. In reading this I felt don’t we all (within the world) on some level do this? ‘Eat to fight my sensitivity (awareness)’. Eat in a way where we don’t want to feel what we are feeling or dull our sensitivity, light and awareness even if it is unconsciously. So therefore, if this is the case would it not be the case that most in the world have an eating dis-order? If we just looked at the coffee intake alone we would see this was true.

  5. Gyl there’s a few things you mentioned in this blog that reminded me of my past livingness and food played a huge role. It was the most important thing, it kind of felt like the reward from a hard day at work. I saw it in my father, it needed to be tasty, filling and varied.

    My relationship with food has evolved, but there are still remnants of traditions within my body that goes to the past behaviours. I loved your sharing about appreciating the ‘sweetness and beauty in and around you’.

    I am yet to master truly and fully connecting to my body to that highest degree, where my body says what it needs instead of the other way round. And when this occurs, I know there will be some nurturing recipes coming out of my body, instead of following recipes.

  6. ‘….any eating disorder is eating in a way that does not deeply honour love and support our body’s natural true light.’ In which case most of the world today has an eating disorder. Sitting in a restaurant in the UK recently I observed so many overweight people, and consuming French fries with most meals. I don’t remember this being so obvious even ten years ago.

    1. Sue obesity is rife globally. Fast food in asian countries is ludicrous, where traditionally seeing lean people, has catapulted to fatness in children. Things are being turned upside down. And to accompany this, multi symptomatic conditions, it is spiralling if we don’t take responsibility of our own bodies, instead it is being controlled by billion dollar industries. Sad state of affairs…

  7. So many of us have treated our body ‘ like a machine’, using your words Gyl. Yet so often we treat actual machines, like our cars, with more attentive care than we do our own body, which is with us 24/7. Tending our body with more loving tender care can bring about amazing changes

  8. “She supported me to see that to truly heal from the sweet food I crave at times, is about me appreciating the sweetness and beauty all around me, and inside of me, and the more I appreciate that, my need for sweet food will naturally drop away.” It’s so simple really and yet we make such a big issue out of food and how we feel controlled by it.

    1. This was so good for me to read again today. My sweet tooth craving returned a while again, so I need to look for the sweetness in and around me. Simple yes. Easy, less so I feel.

  9. There is a natural order to everything but we humans have introduced dis-order to everything, literally every-thing that we do, say and produce is in disorder. We have been bamboozled into thinking that something must be messy, ugly or unsightly to be in dis-order but that’s not true. We humans have produced many, many things that we consider to be harmonious and beautiful that go against the natural grain of the Universe.

  10. Thank you for sharing your experience Gyl, and for highlighting that we are very sensitive beings. How many of us have been told that we are too sensitive and to get over ourselves and toughen up which actually I have discovered is the complete opposite to what we should do.
    We contract to try and protect ourselves –  but this is an illusion because the ill energy still flows through us. If we were to stay open and read everything (being aware) then the energy passes through us as there is nothing for it to grab hold of and stay in our bodies. But if we contract (or react) then the ill energy gets stuck in our body and can cause damage if left undealt with.

  11. I used to do things like this ‘Going back to when I was around 13 years old, I remember eating a bowl of ice cream, normal size, no big deal and running up and down on the stairs afterwards, using it like a step machine to burn off the fat and calories.’ And there was a point in my life when I had anorexia and was very controlling with my food, this was because I did not feel in control of my life so felt the only thing I could control was my food. I also know that growing up the magazines I was reading and seeing were not supporting me to just accept and appreciate me for who I was. It was constant comparing with girls on the telly, or magazines and me thinking I was not pretty enough, slim enough, tall enough etc. To this day our magazines are still like this only along with social media everything is currently much worse. The ONLY magazine I know that truly supports women is the Women in Livingness Magazine https://www.wilmagazine.com. So far as I am aware there is still not one or much for supporting girls.

  12. This reminds me of the spectrum of abuse, we can think we are not being abusive if the obvious and extreme forms of abuse are not present like violence, which can stop us from seeing the abuse we still live in and truly feeling the quality behind our actions (to self and others), and returning to love. It’s the same with food, if we don’t have a diagnosed eating disorder (extreme forms like bulimia or anorexia) we may not think we have an issue with food, but we may still completely lack true care, nurturing and love for ourselves around eating, and not eat to truly nourish our body and honour what it’s asking for. Everything that Serge Benhayon presents raises standards, it’s not about criticising ourselves but understanding there is more love on offer in every part of life.

    1. When we fail to have love as our marker for truth it is easy to settle for something as ok if we view the world through ideals and beliefs – i.e. it is not ok to beat someone up but to snap at someone or shout at them is ok because we are feeling frustrated and we feel justified in our reactions etc. When we have love as our constant terminal any ill behaviour that does not stem from this quality is easily exposed.

  13. Thank you for highlighting the killer effect of self doubt, self doubt is insidious it literally grows and takes over thats why we need to make appreciation part of our daily ritual. Self appreciation is the antidote to such a poison.

  14. Here are great observations to realise how much thought goes into food.. what ingredients do we need? is something on offer? how simple or complicated shall I cook? Feeling what the body wants to eat at any given time is a totally different process where thinking is not involved.

    1. If we understood this the road to healing from eating disorders would be much easier. It’s absolutely important to get the body on track but unless the underlying emotional causes are dealt with there can be no true healing.

  15. Gill this is a very important blog because it gives very practical examples of how the early stages of dis-ordered eating can be spotted and brought back into balance. Taking time to take note and bring a focus to how we choose what to eat, how we make it and then allowing space to enjoy eating it means we are not in the momentum of our day whereby we eat without actually clocking that we have eaten or the impact it has on and in our body.

    1. That is true Gill. In the past my diet would have been based around how I wanted to look and what I had to do to achieve that look, i.e have a very restricted diet and over exercise. The need for the look overrode the need to be healthy.

    2. Most of our industries, most of our institutions, most of our hobbies, most of our pictures about life, most of our beliefs and most of our behaviours are built on ignoring our bodies and hence we have the rather chaotic and pain filled life that most of us currently do. Quite simply life is as it is as a result of ignoring our bodies.

    3. Yep and if we are not choosing love then why not? It makes more common sense to choose love than to not. To not choose love we are fighting with ourselves creating a struggle, stress and exhaustion.

  16. I reckon one of the main reasons why people find it so hard to change their diets even when they know what is healthy and what is not is because we don’t deal with the underlying issues leading to the food choices in the first place, as you describe here so well Gyl – the eating disorder comes from a dis-order within.

  17. Eating what our body needs and not what we crave – that is truly healthy eating and that’s a difference that people will notice.

  18. ‘…me appreciating the sweetness and beauty all around me, and inside of me, and the more I appreciate that, my need for sweet food will naturally drop away.’ Perhaps this is a clear answer for the whole of humanity’s craving and need for sugar!

    1. That’s quite fascinating to consider Rachel, that not feeling enough in ourselves can make us crave for a sweetness on the outside. And could it also be that sometimes we do feel so sensitive inside and can’t cope with the world as it is, that we also desire sweet food to not feel that?

      1. Gosh, I do recognise that one. When I feel sensitive to the outside world and go into reaction the 1st thing I want to do is to eat; and in the moment, I eat what I know my body will react to. In this there is a sense of not caring because the reaction feels stronger in the moment than applying common sense.

  19. I had an upset stomach recently and am aware that it’s a message to look at what my body doesn’t like that I have eaten. Our diet needs constant refinement for what the body needs, not what the head tells us we think we want to eat.

    1. I am sure you would have noticed that the body wanted a break from complex food whilst it rebalanced itself. I find that when I am sick my body calls for light soups that keep me hydrated but do not put added pressure on an already traumatised system.

  20. Our ill ease with ourselves can manifest in behaviours which provide a temporary relief and yet the tension of this ill ease will tend to surface over and over again unless we connect and honour ourselves more.

    1. Humanity is a sea of restlessness. Our restlessness as individuals combines with the restlessness of others to form a global restless community. Our natural way is one of settlement, settled in the lived knowledge of who we know ourselves to be. We’re currently a long way from that.

  21. We need food to eat, but why have so many foods in the supermarket aisles that serve no real nutritional value – the candy and biscuit aisles, the soft drink aisles, the alcohol aisles and the list goes on…If you really think about it, 60-70% of the foods in a supermarket could be eliminated easily and this would only benefit people from a health perspective. Does this not show us all that we have an epidemic case of food disorders happening globally?

  22. Eating dis-orders do not need to be of the obvious kind – for it is really that simple that if we eat what the body wants not, or eat amounts that the body wants not, then we are exhibiting the first signs of an eating disorder. So really it is about the degree to which we allow this disorder to take over with the more ‘extreme’ cases being honest in their call out for help and knowing that something is out of balance.

  23. Why do we treat our bodies like a present, that is all dressed up and pretty on the outside that distracts from what is inside.

  24. Having denied myself many foods because I thought it was the correct thing to do I am gradually experimenting with them again to see what my body tells me. Giving up foods from my head was definitely an error.

    1. Ditto, Doug…when we have a history of being ‘good’, or doing what we think is the ‘right’ thing, we get in a pickle because we have been led by our thoughts. It is great to go back to the beginning and find with discernment and confirmation from the body which foods support us and build from there.

  25. This is great to talk about; ‘I now know that what I feel is not wrong and there’s nothing wrong with feeling all that I do.’ So often we don’t share our vulnerability and sensitivities. By talking about and being honest about how we truly feel we allow others the freedom to do the same.

  26. A dis-order is like a non-order, chaos reigns in the body until it returns to its natural state of being love. We are so much more than a dis-order, it’s time to go there and take a look at who we are.

  27. Another great opportunity to develop our respect for and the way we listen to and honour our bodies. When I eat in relationship with my body there is a clarity, vitality and simplicity to life that is very beautiful.

    1. There sure is Esther and is a great point to raise as we can have the ‘best’ so called diet but if it does not truly nourish the body and is not what the body needs then it is actually doing more harm than good. Their is no perfect or right diet rather one which constantly evolves and changes with us and so is very individual.

  28. The season of eating disorders is at our doorstep and we are preparing to throw open the door and invite excess everything, to join us at the table in the guise of Christmas.

  29. This is brilliant because food is never the disorder, the dis-order comes from an aspect of how we are choosing to live our life and then how we eat is a result of that, hence we need to address life not the food issue.

    1. Very true and well said. As soon as we simply focus on the food as the issue, we completely miss out on the bigger picture. We can think we eliminate the food but if we do not change the way we are living, we either find we are eating it again or have substituted it for something else.

  30. There are thousands of pictures, ideals and beliefs around food, diets and eating in general. What is true for one body is not necessarily supportive for another – which is why its so important for each one of us to connect with our bodies and to honour what we feel they are asking of us, whether that be food, rest, exercise etc.

    1. The endless things we can eat all have the same ending when they leave the body. What would life be like if there was only one food we put in our body that had everything the body needed? What could we do with all of that time saved that revolves around food? Just because we eat something doesn’t mean the body needs or can use it!

  31. It’s very common for us to eat to dull our sensitivity but what I am finding is that it’s not working as it used to and it has gotten easier to feel the reason why instead of just going for the food or distraction.

    1. Julie I actually think that that goes for humanity as a whole, that it’s getting harder and harder to bury the truth of what we’re all feeling. Hence the forces that work around the clock to keep us from feeling the truth are having to ramp things up like never before in order for us to keep indulging in the distractions that keep truth at bay. Life is getting super-sized in order to keep us from stumbling on the simple truth that we are the united consciousness of God and never ever have we not been. And never ever shall we not be.

  32. Food is big business and I see this as a reflection of our obsession and dependence on it. Even when we are not eating we are thinking about it, and yes I agree that the only way I have found to bring this into balance in my life, is to deepen the care and love I bring to my relationship with and respect for my body.

  33. “She also helped me to realise that if I have no joy in what I eat, I’ve disconnected from my body;” Another great point. Everything we do connected with the food we eat plays a part, from how we shop or grow our food to preparation, cooking and finally consuming it. What quality are we in?

  34. “She supported me to see that to truly heal from the sweet food I crave at times, is about me appreciating the sweetness and beauty all around me, and inside of me, and the more I appreciate that, my need for sweet food will naturally drop away.” This is something for me to focus on just now as my sweet tooth has returned with a vengeance.

  35. When we start to look more deeply at the relationships we have with food, and discover that we do not truly honour our bodies when it comes to what we choose to put in to them in terms of food and drink, could it be that we come to realise that there are many of us who have some sort of eating disorder?

  36. ‘There was absolutely no intention to love and nourish my body, I was treating it like a machine.’ I can so relate to what you share Gyl. This has to be a truth for almost all of us at some point in our lives. The disregard we choose is so normal that we don’t even see it, until we are on the floor and can’t ignore it any longer.

  37. It does amaze me when we see the foods we eat and what is and is not an eating disorder, very rarely does someone look at the question of what does the body truly feel to eat? If we did, things would be very different, for example take the staple diet in 2018 – what would people in 1920 think, or in 2039?

    1. Yes looking at photos from back then, there was not a trace of obesity in sight. I don’t know what the diabetic statistics were, but feel sure they must have been lower than they are now. We are what we eat.

  38. It is interesting to ponder those areas of life where we can over focus and control, often it seems to have one place in life which we appear to manage can counter the sense of chaos and lack of control in others. In the end it is just a bandaid and does not deal with the ill-ease below.

    1. Jenny I think that goes for most of us, strong in one area and weak in others. And we all like to be known and identified by our strong points, who wants to tout their weaknesses? But if we can address the things that we’re not naturally strong in then the whole kit and kaboodle gets lifted as a result. And because we’re not getting constantly dragged down by our weaknesses, what we’re able to achieve and where we’re able to evolve to expands way more than was previously possible. So the tip is to turn in and have an honest look at where we’re struggling and then to address it with loving care and attention and not an ounce of perfectionism or criticism.

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