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Obsessed about weight loss and body image

I have been obsessed with my figure, weight and image for quite a while now...

Question

I have been obsessed with my figure, weight and image for quite a while now.

I have never been excessively over or under weight, but food and mealtimes consume my every thought.

I'm scared that I'm fat, will get fatter, and that others think I'm fat. I constantly want to look in a mirror so I know what others see when they look at me.

I'm on a calorie-controlled diet and have begun to exercise three times a week.

It's only recently that I've begun to realise how imprisoned I am in my quest for the perfect figure. I used to relish the idea of another diet.

My ex-boyfriend dumped me for a thinner girl, and now I want to lose more weight. I don't think I have an eating disorder yet, but I'm scared I will have soon.

I want to enjoy eating food again instead of feeling guilty about it. In the past I have tried vomiting (and got angry when I couldn't) and starving myself.

This is the only time I saw drastic weight loss.

I haven't told anyone else how I feel. I think my mum feels I am going through 'a phase'.

I would appreciate your advice or even a list of people who specialise more in this field.

Answer

Thank you for taking the time to write down your thoughts and express your concerns about food and dieting.

Your self-esteem was clearly badly dented when your boyfriend left you for someone who happened to have a slimmer figure. This has caused you to become over critical of yourself.

How does one define the 'perfect figure'?

The media images that we see as consumers do not match those we see in everyday life.

Most importantly, you should learn to be comfortable with yourself as you are and have fun.

Your present body mass index (BMI) of around 23.5 is within the healthy range. There's no harm in controlling calories and exercising regularly providing that it is done sensibly.

Your family doctor should be able to listen to your concerns and refer you to a counsellor.

They could offer you time to explore your feelings and come to terms with what has happened.

In time you will come to appreciate that you, the person, are more than just a body image.

Source: Netdoctor, 8 October 2017, http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/ask-the-expert/a4062/obsessed-about-weight-loss-and-body-image/

 

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