Overweight & Bulimic - Advice?

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IlliniGirl86's picture
Overweight & Bulimic - Advice?

I'm looking for any insight from people who are overweight (actually overweight) that was caused by Bulimia. I gained 30 lbs (!!) this past year and I'm worried that doing SE will cause even more weight gain. (I've been Bulimic for 11 years, so this is nothing new.) I have never been underweight. In fact, only one period in my life have I been normal weight - and that was when I wasn't b/p! Any insight from anyone?

cmdp's picture
Hi. Im in the same situation

Hi. Im in the same situation as you. I am about 35 lbs overweight and have trouble finding out how to incorporate SE while also wanting to/needing to loose weight. And the over weight is a fact because 10 years ago as a 20 year old before my eating disorder I was about 40 lbs less..
I know weight shouldnt be the first focus in recovery but how can you make small steps in the right direction towards healthy eating habits when you also have a weight issue? I think if I was my normal weight I would be much more willing to accept a full calorie diet but right now my weight issue is also causing me to binge eat more. I would love to be able to make a plan with small steps in the right direction just dont know where to start.
I have once been a nutrionist who gave me a 1200 calorie plan. Would that be a good start to SE? Right now my eating habits are more very restrictive /eating as little and healthy as possible cutting meals to then suddenly end up binge eating. I am not so bulimic - more a binge eater. So the purging is not my biggest problem.
Any good tips?

Thanks and take care out there :)

IlliniGirl86's picture
Yeah I'm struggling. I've

Yeah I'm struggling. I've always been a healthy eater. In fact, when I binge, I only binge on healthy food (but i still gained all the weight). My scary foods consist of nuts and dried fruits. Without b/p, I get around 1100 calories a day but I'm STARVING the entire time. I do work out every day and burn around 500 cal. I'm going to try to up my calories to 1500. I don't think it's feasable for me to eat 2000 to be honest. What I'm trying to do is maybe add one thing (small) every other day...well, maybe every few days. I ordered some protein power so I'm going to be adding that into my diet as soon as it arrives. This is pure trial and error for me. I'm only on day 6 (which seems like forever) but I was getting super discouraged for no reason the first few days. I have to keep reminding myself that this is a SLOW recovery and just the fact that i haven't b/p in 6 days is super awesome for me.

Teensy88's picture
Omg dried fruit and nuts

Omg dried fruit and nuts right? That's totally my vice too :)
I'm in recovery and probably 20 pounds overweight.
Bulimia took me to my highest weight ever... So it's worth trying to recover... We know this doesn't work, that it doesn't make sense, and that it's no good for us!

Hope you're both having a good day in recovery :)


Teensy88's picture
Bulimia doesn't work, doesn't

Bulimia doesn't work, doesn't make sense*****
Sorry they way I wrote that didn't make sense!


rebeccabot's picture
Just jumping on here to say

Just jumping on here to say that I was overweight when I started recovery and have gained no weight. You can't be afraid of the weight gain as hard as it is to accept. You won't be on the program eating 1200 calories a day. Leg go and put yourself fully through the program. Being healthy is WAY better than skinny feels. x

luckymom2four's picture
I was extremely over-weight

I was extremely over-weight about2 years ago, and lost over 100 pounds on a diet that I would now never reccommend to anyone. I had never had bulimic behaviors prior to that, but when I reached my "goal" weight and thought about adding in more foods and calories, I panicked. Something snapped and I was so incredibly fearful of gaining any weight back, and found that if I purged, I could maintain my weight even when I ate "bad" foods that were not a part of the diet. What I realize now, is that I wasn't really on some fancy diet, but just starvation in disguise. Anyway, that is how and when I developed bulimia. This went on for months and months before I sought help. In the course of that time, I DID gain some weight back (about 25 pounds). So, now I am wanting to recover AND lose this last 25 pounds. I totally understand where you are coming from in feeling that I would be more ready to do structured eating and focus on recovery if those 25 pounds were not haunting me. I mean, I know I will gain some weight with recovery, but why on earth would I want to do that when I am already overweight? I wish I had some great insight, but I don't. I so sorry, it I am right there in the same boat as you, and desperate to hear better answers! Hang in there!


Sunflower880's picture
I too put on weight when I

I too put on weight when I became a bulimic. Like Robin, it began when I had lost a lot of weight and began to panic about gaining any back. So I started to purge, as a result I put on 30lbs in about 6 months. There were other factors involved but the bulimia was the biggest. The biggest lie of bulimia is that you lose weight, you don't! I'm really looking forward to eating because I'm hungry not because I'm stressed or anything else.

DollFaceMJ's picture
I am on day 6 of my recovery.

I am on day 6 of my recovery. Like all of you, I have struggled with my weight and have never been underweight. I had always been very overweight and then I lost 150lbs and developed bulimia toward the end of my journey. I have come so far in my weight loss, it's hard for me to accept the gain that will inevitably come with recovery and already has. The thought of it is what constantly drives me to want to purge even after the smallest meals. I am trying so hard. I have come too far to be brought down by this. We all have.

maxine88's picture
Since becoming bulimic I have

Since becoming bulimic I have gained back 5kg of the 10kg I lost during my 'healthy eating lifestyle change'.. I have the same feelings as a few of you.. fearful of gaining MORE weight and feeling WORSE about yourself. @luckymomof4 your words and experiences are so similar to mine.

BUT: my thoughts are this. Whatever I'm doing right now (bulimia, as I haven't been able to commit to the plan 100% yet) is NOT WORKING. I am miserable, socially isolated, and unhappy with my body. Bulimia clearly isn't helping me. So I may as well try something new.

Maybe we need to restructure our goals to be not weight-loss right now, but to develop a healthy relationship with food. Perhaps weight loss is an achievable goal in the future, but not today. And that is OK :-)

Angel333's picture
Reading all of the above

Reading all of the above comments just confirms to everyone out there - BULIMIA CAUSES WEIGHT GAIN!!!
So if you are doing it to lose weight then u r doing the completely wrong thing!
I am always at my heaviest weight when my bulimia comes back into play again. The lowest I ever weighed was longest period without a binge/purge episode!
Unfortunately even though I know this I'm still finding the vicious cycle almost impossible to break free of.

'We are each of us angels with only one wing, so we can only fly by embracing each other'

shirley_z's picture
I gained 20 pounds and any

I gained 20 pounds and any attempt to lose weight is futile.
I can totally relate to you my dear.
But there is no way out of it unless we cure our disease first.
So...Structural Eating is the only solution...
You can try planning some healthier food in the main meals first, so you won't feel too guilty eating them.
Don't give up. :)

Love myself.

sisiromy's picture
I have put on 35 kg with

I have put on 35 kg with bulimia( =90 pounds?), I went from normal weight to obese, all that with bulimia (and purging!!!). Structured eating is the only thing that has stabilised my weight. I am now fat, but i'm not getting fatter which is a first for over 10 years and a huge relief.
I too would love to lose some weight, because I have medical problems related to my weight (sleep apnea), and even though sometimes I think of going on a diet, usually I don't because I think of all the stuff bulimia has made me lose : huge weight gain, medical studies down the drain, self-harm scars all over my arms, a decade of despair and sorrow. I'm only starting to see the end of the tunnel now, now that I'm obese.
Ask yourself : is weight worth the sorrow of bulimia? has bulimia made me slimmer or fatter?
You say yourself that bulimia has made you put on weight, so to be quite honest you don't risk very much trying structured eating.
Instead of dieting, I think that for my weight gain I am going to try to eat slower and more consciously, because i tend to woolf down my meals and have huge helpings; my goal is to normalise my eating habits, but no dieting. To each diet there is an equal (devastating) binge.
I hope this helps.... and I hope my English is ok as I don't live in an English-speaking country.
Take care of yourself.

Angel333's picture
Always at my heaviest when

Always at my heaviest when I'm B/Ping!

'We are each of us angels with only one wing, so we can only fly by embracing each other'

beachykeen's picture
Since starting recovery a

Since starting recovery a year ago I've actually lost weight. I was about 30lb heavier than what is recommended for my height and now I'm only about 10lbs heavier. Let your body heal!! I know it feels impossible to not focus on weight loss. That's what got us here in the first place. But, honestly, I've had more success at getting fitter by not trying to manipulate, force and fight with my body. I don't count calories. I've been making an effort to eat when I'm hungry and stop when I'm full. I'm only now just starting to incorporate trigger foods in VERY controlled situations. Ironically, when I was marathon training I didn't lose anything, just maintained. Now that I'm not exercising nearly as much, people at work keep commenting that I look slimmer (it's kind of weird and awkward actually).
I can't say I'm completely recovered. I still weigh myself more than I should. I still get excited when the number goes down and upset when the number goes up. I still hope and long to be leaner. BUT I'm really making an effort to not manipulate my body. I eat 4 full meals a day. Sometimes I still overeat. About once a month I still binge (that's still a work in progress). I'm exercising 4x a week when convenient and only for about an hour, if that. It's the most normal I've EVER been...and my body is starting to cooperate. Or maybe I"m finally cooperating with my body.

Anyway, my point is IF you are overweight, try to focus on purely recovering and your body might recover along with you.
Hope everyone has a great day

pembekavanoz's picture
I actually gained about 8

I actually gained about 8 kilograms in the past 4 months, just before joining bulimiahelp, and I think that we actually want to recover, really, so we don't intend to purge after eating lots and lots of food so it causes extreme weight gain. I really think that once you start to eat like 6 times a day and really eat what you crave in small portions, your body will be grateful. Just believe in yourself really. <3

sanjogkaur's picture
I agree with so many things

I agree with so many things that people have said in this forum!

I'm also my heaviest when I'm B/P. I eat so much more food with bulimia...when I do structured eating, calories go down to maybe half of what i eat when I b/p.

Also, B/P drains my energy and makes me feel extremely bloated. When I eat 6 times a day I eat less, I feel more energy, and I feel much calmer...my body and mind know they will get some food in just a few hours so my anxiety levels go down and I can enjoy life instead of worrying or rather obsessing about food.

I would recommend EVERYONE to try SE! Sometimes I forget, and go back to my bulimic behaviors...but the truth is, SE is like a solution brought from heaven...for my health, my weight, my mood, my vitality... :)

keep up everyone!


feetlikeadeer's picture
my experience with SE is that

my experience with SE is that if you follow it properly (regular meals, enough calories), if you have extra weight to lose it does drop. I personally am about 130 pounds overweight right now and when I followed SE to a T, I lost almost 15 pounds in 6 weeks.

I am looking forward to getting back on track after a brief love affair with the idea of dieting the weight off. it never works, I should have known better.

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