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3 Physical Effects of Bulimia Which Made Me Look Half Dead!

The physical effects of bulimia can turn your life upside down. Some of them are dangerous, some of them ruin your looks, some of them do both. Today I'm going to talk about the physical effects of bulimia that made me look like I was half dead!

Maybe that's why I've never been a fan of Zombie movies... It reminds me of my bulimic days when I looked like one!

Here are the 3 bulimia side effects that made me look ugly...

1) Mouth Sores From Malnutrition and Stomach Acid

bulimia consequences

I will never forget the size of these sores... Good Lord, they made the common herpies virus shiver in it's shoes! I'm not talking about a little slit... I am talking about massive, festering wounds that were at times the size of a dollar!

These sores were painful... At times they were excruciating!

And to make matters even worse, my bulimia was such a deeply rooted problem that despite these sores, I could not stop bingeing and purging. The feeling of stomach acid rushing past broken flesh is something I am not sure I will ever forget!

As you can imagine, these sores also made me feel far from sexy... They definitely did not make for romantic kissing with my boyfriend! Luckily, he does like zombie movies :P


2) Balding - Yip, it's not just for grannies!

I always knew that one of the physical effects of bulimia was thinning hair - or balding... But I never really put my thinning hair and my bulimia together! This might seem hard to believe... but I first began dabbling with bulimia when I was just 8... And the hair issue got worse, slowly but steadily. So I didn't notice.

I put my terrible hair down to poor genes. I thought I was destined to have frizzy, thin and patchy hair for the rest of my life...

But... Guess what...

Now that I have been recovered for around 6 years, I have thick and healthy hair - with no bald spots! It's freaking awesome :)

It was about 2-3 years into my recovery when I first began getting comments on having nice hair... They came as a total shock - I had never even dreamed that I could have nice hair!


3) Lifeless and pimply skin

As if having mouth sores and patchy hair wasn't enough... Bulimia had to throw lifeless and pimply skin my way...

I remember looking in the mirror and wondering who the hell that person was looking back at me... I felt that with a small amount of makeup I could fit well into a horror movie. I was way too hard on myself - but the truth was that my skin was an honest reflection of my health... Poor. Very poor.

I remember one particular breakout very clearly...

I was 16 years old and about to go overseas on a springboard diving trip. It was the Australian National Champs and I was representing New Zealand. There was always a fair amount of flirting that went on between athletes on these trips, so of course I wanted to look my best...

A few days before I left, I got a terrible breakout of black heads and pimples. I went straight to the shops and bought extra strength Tea Tree ointment to dry them out...

It was recommended to put it on once per day. I put it on every few hours - I am not sure what I was thinking.

The ointment did get rid of my pimples - but it got rid of a lot of skin too... I went to Australia with big black scabs all over my face!!!

Thankfully, now that I have beaten bulimia I very rarely get pimples!


How To Avoid These Physical Effects Of Bulimia

Feeling like you belong in a Zombie movie isn't fun at all. Yes, I can joke about it now - but wind back the clock 6 years and I wanted to hide in the cupboard! Luckily, there are ways that you can avoid - or at least improve the physical effects of bulimia...

Here are the top 4 ways to prevent these nasty physical consequences of bulimia...

1) Take multi vitamins every night - especially if you are not able to hold down nutritious foods.

2) Drink a date, banana and berry smoothie for breakfast... Try your very best to hold it down. This smoothie will not only help to nourish your hair and skin - it will also help to prevent bulimia related heart attacks as it's high in potassium.

3) Bulimia can cause terrible dehydration which dries out your skin - so make sure you carry a bottle of water on you. Sipping on it frequently throughout the day will help to keep you hydrated without making you feel bloated.

4) Of course, kicking the binge and purge cycle is the only way to ensure that you completely put an end to the physical effects of bulimia... Do one thing today that is a step in the right direction. It can be calling a therapist, talking to somebody you trust or joining The Bulimia Recovery Program - which teaches you how to beat bulimia.

Remember - you deserve to live a healthy and happy life - free from not only the physical effects of bulimia - but ALL the ways in which bulimia negatively effects your life!

You can beat bulimia - I promise you can...

Look at me... I thought I was destined to be a bulimia zombie forever... But now I am healthy and happy... you can be the same!



Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community

The Bulimia Recovery Program