Woman documents her recovery from anorexia on Instagram with empowering pictures of her body and meals

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Amy Lewis

Amalie Lee was diagnosed with anorexia in 2013, and is now trying to help other sufferers by documenting her incredible recovery on Instagram.

The Roehampton University student, who is originally from Norway, says she first started suffering from an eating disorder in 2012, but went without any treatment, support or diagnosis for entire year.

It was a year that saw her body weight drop dramatically, as depression she suffered in her mid- teens turned into an obsession with regulating what she ate.

“I just wanted to disappear. My eating disorder was never about looking like a model, it was a way to cope,” she tells MailOnline.

“I made bizarre rules for myself about what I allowed myself to eat, when, where - even what spoon to use. These rules made me feel safe and in control.”

“I reached a point where my BMI was dropping dangerously low, and if I kept on refusing recovery I would soon end up in a hospital bed.”

Though Lee was lucky enough to avoid being hospitalised, she did require vital outpatient treatment involving therapy sessions, regular weigh-ins and check-ups from a doctor.

The struggle to climb back up to a healthy body weight saw her at one point having to consume 3000 calories daily whilst staying sedentary, to gain 0.5 kg per week.

As her recovery progressed, Lee decided to try and use her experience to help others.

She set up an Instagram account where she posts selfies with empowering captions along with images of the food she eats and enjoys, plus a Tumblr page which offers help and advice.

“I want to use this as an opportunity to say something important; You don't have to look like me to have an eating disorder,” Lee writes on one Instagram post.

“An eating disorder comes in all shapes and sizes. Some, like me, become very underweight by their eating disorder (though I was a normal-weight sufferer for some time too) whilst others are normal-weight or overweight, at times morbidly obese. We also have binge eating disorder, bulimia, orthorexia and ednos (eating disorder not otherwise specified) and many subclinical and atypical cases.”

“I felt like my case was not taken seriously until I was very underweight, and that is not OK! It is a mental illness with physical side effects, and everybody deserves help.”

The Instagram images follow Lee’s recovery from both a physical and mental perspective, as she shares images of her body weight increase along with how she’s feeling.

Though spring 2014 saw her hit a weight that was considered healthy for the first time since 2012, she says that the mental recovery takes much longer.

“I am damn proud of my physical change as you can see, and I enjoy showing you my progress,” writes Lee beneath another image. “But always remember that healthy is not a look, and neither is recovery.”

You can follow Amalie Lee's journey on Instagram. For more help and advice with eating disorders please visit

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Amy Lewis

Amy Lewis is a freelance writer and editor, a lover of strong tea, equally strong eyebrows, a collector of facial oils and a cat meme enthusiast. She covers everything from beauty and fashion to feminism and travel.

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