Tuesday, July 12, 2011

To an Ana

Hi! I ran across your blog in the "Recently Updated Blogs" site. Don't worry, I don't know anything about you personally and I am not interested in getting to know you. When I was younger, I did get into extreme weight loss-I managed to get down to 118 lbs- for a six foot tall man! I'm much older now, and weigh a lot more but I have recently lost 20 pounds and have kept it off for a year, mostly by watching what and how much I ate. While reading your blog I was struck by a few things:

You're eating the wrong kinds of food. Processed anything, especially carbs, are bad in three ways- they don't give you any nourishment because of the way your body reacts to them. They are worse than saturated fats for weight gain. They don't have any vitamins or trace minerals which cause you to eat more because your body needs those things and craves them. Make sure you eat nuts- they have trace minerals, especially copper and zinc which you must have to live. Don't worry about the fat in them, your body can handle it. What it can't handle is corn oil, soybean oil, margarine and other processed seed oils. Olive oil is good. Butter is good. Obviously don't eat a stick of butter at a time, but use olive oil and butter to make your veggies taste good, stir-fry is your friend!

You're stuck at home. A lot of Ana has to do with control, and it is hard to have any control of your life when you are a teen. Think about how you fit into your family. A few years ago you were a non-threatening child, now you are a young woman, with all the problems and promise that can bring. If your parents are unreasonable with you, they might be afraid of or don't understand the changes in you in the last few years. That should work itself out. Who does the cooking? If the answer is "it comes out of a box" then you need to figure out how to eat better. If there is a co-op nearby you can check that out for ideas on what to eat. If your parents are obese, they aren't eating right and you have a much bigger challenge.

Feel good about your body. Work with it, by eating right (and not too much) and getting exercise and sleep. Talk to yourself, when you have a bad day figure out what went wrong and don't repeat it. If you have a good day, congratulate yourself. Take a multi-vitamin every day. It will help with cravings.
When you get your weight down, live with it for a while. Do it in 5 lb steps holding each step for a month or more. Don't get discouraged - if you hit 130, that's OK, it's not like you are 220! Don't get hung up on boys and what they think. They don't understand the ANA thing at all, they like curves. Laugh and smile. Love yourself (make sure to pleasure your body, too!)

What to watch out for:

You have trouble sleeping.

You have skin or hair problems (not acne but rashes, flaking, peeling, weird stuff).

Your start dragging one foot- VERY DANGEROUS- you are close to death! (When you've gone too far.) I learned about this the hard way from an Ana I used to work with. She is now dead.

Anas can get into trouble when they try to do too much of only one thing. Remember, Ana isn't about how you look, or how much you weigh. It is about control. Proper control is a balance between you, your body, and your world. Neglecting any one of those three things causes an imbalance, one that is hard to correct.

For more about food check this guy out: http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/
He's a little technical, but worth reading to find out about the different types of fat and carbs.

I don't know the answer. You asked for some help, I told you what I think about Ana. You can live without Ana. You can't live with Ana out of control. Here's to you, I hope your quest is a good one with a happy ending.

By Professor Batty



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