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Is anyone else irked out?

I'm sorry if this is inappropriate to post, but the number of young raw vegan kids "recovering" from anorexia on this website has exponentially increased lately - and the questions they ask receive answers that are totally inconsiderate of this fact - like "tipz" on how to lose the most weight through exercise, etc. Coming from the viewpoint of someone who is a fully recovered bulimic (and not totally 100% raw because I still know the dangers of restriction), I just absolutely cringe when I see these kids touting "full recovery" and yet blindly jumping into a raw diet and asking the community, to give them tips on how to talk with their nutritionists, parents, etc. Why on earth would someone be so incredibly dedicated to the raw food lifestyle or veganism without knowing anything about it? because it is a socially acceptable way to restrict. I understand the power in raw foods, but someone just recently recovering from an eating disorder is not going to reap the full benefits of the raw lifestyle because he/she will probably not eat enough calories and fat. The mindset of restriction does not go away in a week or a month, or even a year. So I ask of you, the community, to tread lightly on posts with young kids who are asking questions about restriction and exercise, and who have or have had an eating disorder (easy to see from their profile).

And please don't meet me with negativity, because I am trying to help this play stay away form an *aNa* forum - which is what it feels like sometimes (a member had a link to a video of her stages of anorexia - complete with pictures and weights!). It can be extremely triggering sometimes, and I am honestly considering leaving if this continues to happen :/

Thank you for your time!

Comments

  • I completely understand what you mean. I am a student who is interested in a high raw lifestyle for a better understanding of my body and food from a nutritional chemistry standpoint. This seems to be the only diet that takes into consideration scientific explanation for the REASONS why people have certain symptoms of deficiencies and whatnot. Also the chemistry behind not actually cooking is fascinating. There are plenty of other sources for coping with eating disorders, and using the internet as a shield between yourself and your psychiatrist is probably much more unhealthy and harmful in the long run than chatting face to face and admitting truths to yourself. I don't pretend to be an expert on anything, but I am not here to learn about eating disorders.

  • That's a really good point,a nd one we should be taking seriously...I was worried too when I saw just how easy it was for me to eat very little and then declare, "well, it's all raw, and I'm not hungry because of the powers of raw food!"

    when in reality, it was just me not wanting to eat anymore.....

  • Hello! I can see what you are thinking, I just think that having a place to be open and honest with stuggles what we struggle with is important. E.D's are a hard thing, as I know you know. I think your support and encouragment for healthy eating would be fabulous!

  • ktkt

    at times i have been a little shocked by the dialouge on these forums and thank you for expressing your concerns so well. i have never had an eating disorder but when i read some of the more dogmatic posts about the amount of sugar in a bunch of grapes etc. i start to feel a little discouraged.

  • Completely agree, Brontesaurus. When I returend to this site in early October, after being away for 4 months, I was shocked to see how many (of the apparently newly joined) peole here have started discussing various ED's. I almost felt as if I had joined to some ED's support group.

    Please, don't missunderstand me - I have nothing against discussing various problems openly (in fact, I have my own ED history), it is just that I had never before realised how strong the link, for many, is between ED's and 'going raw' .

  • I have stopped contributing because I did not like the way some of the threads were going. I eat raw because I genuinely enjoy it and love raw 'cooking'. That's why I originally started to come to this site.

  • wow, thank you for all of your comments. I'm glad that I'm not the only one feeling like this.

  • brontesaurus,

    Thank you for your thoughtful post. When I first started eating raw, I remember talking to a close friend of mine about raw food. She has been recovering from an eating disorder for years. Most of her questions had to do with weight control and not health. I quickly stopped bringing it up.

    Never having had an eating disorder, it is really hard to figure out how to help or be supportive. Your experience is so valuable here and we hope that you'll consider sharing your thoughts with some of these new kids.

    We aren't necessarily recommending 100% raw to everyone here on the forum. We are absolutely fine with you posting about your experience and even letting these kids know the dangers you have learned about restriction.

  • Thank you Kandace for bringing up my point of trying this lifestyle. I am not planning to do raw 100%, but I have always looked at eating and exercise as a way to lose weight. I am a 38 year old man who struggles with the extra 20-30 pounds off and on. I usually go on a strict diet and exercise regime before an event or something and lose a bunch of weight and then eat and drink like a pig and 4 months later it is back. Since my last Dr's appt. I discovered that my cholesterol/triglcerides and some other things were in the unhealthy range. I have decided to eat whole foods and not processed crap. I am not giving up meat, but I usually do chicken or turkey and not read meat. I am also planning to incorporate a lot of fish into my diet. However, i have a friend who is doing raw 4 days a week and she suggested I start with one and build up. I too do not want to restrict myself, because that will not work for me. I plan to go to 3 days at least. My point is, I have always been focused on the weight and now I am truly focused on the health and eating well and exercising to feel better and not just look at the numbers on the scale; that will be a bonus.

  • Brooks.. if you are thinking that white meat & fish are lower in cholesterol then I suggest you watch this food documentary>>>

    Namaste Love ?

  • Terra, Thank you for the link. I will definately watch it. We are often fooled by thinking certain things are better than others. This is just a hard pill to swallow, since I do like meat, but my reality is, I may need to get rid of it mostly, if not all together. It is scary. Thank you so much. I will let you know what I think of the documentary.

  • Brontesaurus, I really want to thank you for bringing this up. I've also noticed this "trend" and I appreciate your thoughts on using caution when dispensing advice. I definitely agree with you that the number of members with EDs seems to be increasing. It's hard to know how to manage/respond to that...I'm interested in offering support and encouragement for a healthy lifestyle, but I don't know if that's what they want.

    I sure hope this isn't the only place they are coming for information and help. I mean, someone shouldn't even go vegetarian without doing some reading first, let alone raw vegan. That said, I think there are people without EDs who are guilty of the same lack of forethought before jumping in.

  • Thanks for bringing this up, too.

    BUT as for this statement, "and not totally 100% raw because I still know the dangers of restriction," many of us who have been 100% raw would tell you there's no restriction involved at all with the high-fruit lifestyle. Just plenty of food! :)

  • Is this the video you were talking about by any chance, Brontesaurus?

    I understand that you're talking to the full online community on goneraw.com, but it seems you are specifically addressing me or maybe people like me. I have been using this site for a few months and have looked at many forums, and I see no other "kids" on it but me. That could easily be proven wrong; it's just what I've witnessed.

    Maybe I should wait for further clarification on that, but if I am "part of the problem," I would like to address every statement you made. My friend saw this post and knew exactly who you were talking about: me.

    "a number of young raw vegan kids" - how many? and how many say they have eating disorders? Then, the biggest question of all is how many people on here are supporting eating disorder thinking.

    I have seen posts on this site about people worried about weight, calories, etc, but none posted by any teenager or 20-year-old.

    I have been in recovery from anorexia for almost a year and a half, and i don't understand how you or anyone in this community is in the position to question somebody's recovery based on forum posts.

    "blindly" jumping into a raw diet? This sounds more like an assumption to me that a fact. I doubt anyone has posted, "I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT RAW VEGANISM, BUT I'M GOING TO TRY IT ANYWAY!"

    What furthers my evidence of why you are referring partly if not mostly to me is that I have made forum posts on how to talk with my parents and nutritionist. I guess you're interpreting it that I'm trying to figure out a way to sneakily restrict.

    I don't know WHY people would become raw vegans or vegans without knowing anything about it. Maybe you assume that because I am young, I am also dumb. Or maybe just personally you feel it would be too radical to be a raw vegan. That's only a personal account though, and I feel your statement could be translated into: "People who are raw vegans and previously suffered from an ED don't know the possible effects of restricting."

    I completely disagree with your statement, "it's a socially acceptable way to restrict." The times I actually have restricted, it was much more socially acceptable. People talk about weights all the time. Most people said to me when I switched from veganism to raw veganism that they would never do that and isn't that unhealthy, you may lose a lot of weight, normal concerns. Yet when I was underweight, no comments were made about my diet outside of my house and doctors' offices because I would eat "normal" stuff, just they couldn't see that it was less. I am surely getting enough fat and calories.

    You're right that the ED mindset doesn't go away immediately and takes a ton of time and devotion to recover, at least initially. I can proudly say that I am fully recovered. I HAVE reaped the benefits of raw veganism. It's 10x better than just veganism. I have had literally no e.d. thoughts. I have accepted my body. I have made videos about accepting my body. It's just such a spiritual thing. I told my mom when she was freaking out that I started this that if I felt I was relapsing in any way shape or form, then it wasn't worth it. I did do my research before I started this diet.

    "a member had a link to a video of her stages of anorexia - complete with pictures and weights!" --- as you can see with the above link, I believe that you are addressing me, not solely perhaps though. That video has thousands of views, hundreds of comments, and I get dozens of messages a week. Not one person has complained to me and said it was triggering. It's actually very inspirational. It wasn't meant for thinspiration, and I'm terribly upset if some people have used it or seen it as that. :(

    I'm sorry if I triggered you in any way, and I only posted my video on there to show that there is hope. I am in the greatest state mentally, physically, and spiritually. better than ever before.

  • A lot of people who have had eating disorders seem to gravitate toward raw, but personally I think this is because:

    A) They have been much more involved in the food they eat. Many of them have nutritionists and learn about what they consume, and raw veganism is just the most logical diet choice for anyone who questions what they eat.

    B) It doesn't require the amount of restriction, uncertainty and obsession that eating garbage in moderation requires, therefore it supports a healthier mental state and a feel-good attitude about food.

    I haven't really seen much to be concerned about from people recovering/recovered from eating disorders- only positive things. But of course, I haven't read what you've read.

  • I think there are many things we can all learn from this topic. I myself, have never had an eating disorder. I would agree that it does seem that there are alot of recovering E.D. people on here. But from what i've seen, I was not worried because they all were coming from healthy standpoints. Anytime someone says something like 'how do i lose the most weight' it's a red flag to everyone, because we want everyone to be happy healthy and loved. I think it was good to bring up the topic so that for anyone's mind that it was on, the topic has been discussed, and we can accept it. I am glad vegankid that you took the time to write the post you did. I think it is an awesome & amazing story that could really inspire so many other girls that are still struggling. Of course there would be danger for any recovering girls, but as alexa said, and i totally agree, if you're even eating just enough calories, then it supports a healthy state of mind, and attitude, which helps a person to RELAX, so they feel good about themselves, feel like they look good, and don't feel like they need to "perfect" themselves. Then they'll eat more because they'll be in their more natural state. I don't know what anyone else thinks, but to me there's an intuition, that needs addressing in our society. Maybe it is that E.D. girls know deep in their gut, that SAD food is wrong. it's all wrong. it sits so wrong emotionally, physically, spiritually in their bodies, that the dis-ease results. When they can adapt and start to eat a raw vegan diet even 100% then they can be natural, feel good, and it feels right. To me this makes perfect sense.

    Thanks to everyone for speaking your mind openly about the topic.

  • Vegan kid- Just remember, you are supported here, ok? Thank you for your well thought out post, and for your video and wanting to share with us your struggle and triumph! I think you are fabulous!

    Luxdivon-I do agree with you on the whole cooked SAD food being wrong, and I believe that it did contribute to my E.D, But these things are generaly intertwine with emotional/spiritual/mental things as well. I also agree with you that it is great that everyone gets how they feel out in the open.

    I just really think that it is really important to support and love everyone that is suffering and recovering. Possitivity breeds possitivity, right?

  • vegankid- I referred to you only in the sentence about your video. The other sentences are referring to other members. I in no way intend to question your recovery. I am incredibly biased in that I have struggled in the past with an eating disorder and recovered, and so I am very narrow in viewing others' recovery - mine including deleting all photos of myself at a low weight, etc. --and maybe that is why I judged you based off of your video. Like I previously mentioned, I don't know your background and how you found the raw lifestyle - those comments were in response to other posts. These other posts asked for links and information on how to convince their parents/nutritionists to 'let' them eat solely raw food, or to restrict (yes, restrict, because they are narrowing their options from SAD food to raw foods). I viewed that as odd because I would think that if one were interested in the raw lifestyle/diet, then one should already have some books, facts on the raw diet and the ways in which one can receive enough vitamins, nutrients, protein, etc. That then propelled my next thought to - well, if they hadn't previously read any of these sources, then maybe they aren't eating raw foods for the very benefit of live foods. Moreover, I used the example of veganism/vegetarianism as a socially acceptable way to restrict because of an article I read exactly on that. Maybe your restriction of SAD foods was accepted because it went unnoticed, however, in cases where one's food intake is watched, or rather noticed (when eating around family, friends) turning to vegetarianism is a more socially acceptable reason for eating less or eating differently than simply doing that for restrictive purposes. Finally, I'm really glad that the raw lifestyle has really enlivened your spiritual life, and I hope that more people can benefit from the raw lifestyle like you say you have. I wish you all the best on your continued recovery!

    Luxdivon- eating disorders are not solely centered around food, rather they are situated in social contexts. I can't speak for others, but my eating disorder was the result of a lack of communication and ability to make my own decisions aka lack of control, as well as a mother who suffered from an eating disorder (which created a really awful view of food and eating patterns). If I had learned about the benefits of food and the importance of eating a certain way (not over indulgent, including all food groups, limiting processed foods), I might have turned out differently. I don't know though : /

  • Maybe we can all move some of these disscutions to my new web site, which is focused on eating disorder recovery. It might be better than posting so much on this site, which is supposed to be about raw foods. My site is www.edtakedown.ning.com. I created it to be a safe place for interaction. To get and recive help, and that way we are not taking up so much space here? I hope that I can offer some support. Thanks guys.

  • I can see where your going with this. I do have posted a few topics in my early days that were trying to get me information to become more informed. One thing I have learned on these forms is to never take anyone's opinion and to do what is right for your body. Something that is right for someone else may not be right for you.

    as a teenager, I know all about the pressures of eating. I know for a period where I underate but still ate things like 100 calorie packs people never commented, but as vegankid said it is just more socially acceptable that way. Now I dont go around and openly advertise that I am a raw vegan, because frankly as a teenage vegan that is weird enough (especially in my neighborhood!)

    The thing I like about raw foods is that it is giving me the freedom to discover healthy foods, that are good for me. I am creating a healthy relationship with food for the first time in my life.

    Just my two cents :)

    http://lilearthmuffin.wordpress.com/

  • vegankid, you rock! I admire your story and efforts.

    alexa, ITA!

    Grace

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