My Body Image Confession

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I have never lied about my past and the fact that I had an eating disorder (twice) that nearly took my life.
I never regret telling people my story because I am proud of how far I have come.

On the outside I look like I have made a shining recovery from Anorexia. I help friends, family and strangers get over their body image discomforts but I do one thing that is holding me back from loving my own body and slowing down the progress of recovery that only a few people know; I call myself fat.

In fact I say” I feel fat” roughly around twenty times per day. At first I thought that this was a good thing, opening up and being honest to people. I felt as though it was some kind of release from within to voice how I felt but what I am actually doing is convincing myself that what I am saying is true. Just like affirmations, but instead of them being life changing and positive these affirmations are self-destructive.

I have given up all of my eating disorder habits but this one has stuck like glue and it’s time to give it up.
Not only is it hurting me, it’s hurting my friends and family. And let’s not forget that when people talk negatively about themselves, the listener begins to feel self-conscious too. This is something I often forget when I’m down in the dumps.

I’ve had to dig deep and figure out why I do this to myself. Why I keep convincing myself that I’m fat when I am nothing but a normal healthy weight.

The answer is the Ego. I actually call my ego Fred so I call tell the difference between my true loving self and not mistake myself for the life sucking voice in my head (Fred I’m talking about you!).
Yes, it may sound silly that I have given my Ego a name but it really works and helps you realise that you are not the loud voice in your head!

I look at woman of all shapes and sizes and say how beautiful they are, but why am I an exception? Simple, I’m not.
My body shape is just as beautiful as everyone else’s, there are no exceptions, no excuses and no denying that this isn’t true.

One thing that helps me is by looking at my Positive Body Image board on Pinterest. By looking at these inspiring images and quotes every morning (or multiple times a day when I need them) helps me feel empowered and inspired about my body.

Have a look at my board or create your own body loving board for when you need that little bit of inspiration too.
So I am making a commitment to drop the “Fat Talk” and I hope you can join me and do the same.

As always I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.
Lisa xx

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Lets Talk Fodmap’s!

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The low Fodmap eating plan is gaining popularity very quickly, and for good reason.
It seems like every second person has IBS or IBS symptoms these days and unfortunately medical practitioners cant “fix” the problem altogether, they can however help give you advice or medication that can help ease the symptoms.

I had IBS every single day for four years before I asked for medical help. I am still embarrassed that I waited that long but research has shown that the majority of sufferers wait a similar amount of time before seeking help.
If your symptoms are occurring for a prolonged period of time, seek medical advice because when your bowels aren’t working correctly, a lot of nutrition can be lost along with a lot of other medical concerns.

I was introduced to the Low Fodmap Diet roughly about one year ago and it has taken up to now to get into a habit of eating this way but I can tell you that this has helped more than anything I have tried in the past.
The thing I struggled with when changing my diet to eating low Fodmap foods was that some healthy “superfoods” I was eating daily was actually causing my body more harm than good. I eat a large amount of plant based meals and I am a huge health lover so when I was told to give up kale, broccoli, MANGOS!, apples ect. I thought this sounded extremely unhealthy at the time.
But I can’t stress enough that everyone’s body is completely different and no one diet is healthy for every individual. Take sesame seeds for example; One of the highest sources of calcium and contains amazing healthy fats to feed to brain and body but at the same time someone can have a life threatening allergic reaction to sesame seeds.

So what are Fodmaps?

The complex version is Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Disaccharides And Polyols which fall under a group of carbohydrates.
Foods that contain these properties can be poorly absorbed in the small intestine which then ferments in the gut and causes bacteria and gas.

Below is an image of some that are safe on a Low Fodmap Diet and foods that you should avoid.

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I highly recommend this diet for IBS suffers, it has helped so many people be able to live comfortably with IBS.
As always I would love to know your thoughts on this eating plan.

Lisa x

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Connect’s The Word

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Hey everyone!

It’s been an embarrassing long time since I have blogged and I sincerely apologise for that!

At the start of January each year I like to reflect what the previous year has brought me.
I list everything as an experience, that way if a negative memory/thought comes to mind I automatically see it as an experience I had that I could learn from rather than a horrible memory.

I experienced many things in 2013 that makes me smile such as; love ( My partner and I got a puppy!), trying new foods, going to new cafes and restaurants, meeting new people, learning, reading new books ect..
I have also had experiences that weren’t pleasant at times but I now can smile about these moments and memories because I know I have learnt from the lessons that were thrown at me.

Another exercise I do each year is to think of a word that I’ll use throughout the year to help me keep focus on my goals. This year I have chosen the word “connect”.
The reason I have chosen this word is because I feel as though my mind and body aren’t connected as much as what I would like them to be.

I’m a highly stressed person and if you are anything like me you would know just how important it is to take a minimum on five minutes out of your day to meditate so your mind calms and your breathing can return back to a normal relaxed state.
In 2013 I stopped doing this regularly and my recovery and health suffered because of it. I now know I can’t use the excuse “I’m too busy!” because lets be honest with ourselves, five minutes isn’t really that long.

Meditating is a great way to turn the ego’s power off and gives your inner self a voice.
Your inner voice will give you all the answers you need, you just need to be patient and willing to listen.
(Patience is something I also desperately need to work on, but let’s not get into that one now)

Sometimes I get frustrated (this is where my impatience comes in fine form) when I meditate and my inner self can’t be heard straight away, but I have learnt that the voice becomes stronger and you begin to feel your intuition and your heart telling you what to do with time and patience, and when you feel that feeling, that my friends is what I call connection!

This year the blog will help gives you tools, insight, recipes, self-assurance, self confidence and health tips that will help every wellness warrior continue on their path to an abundance of health and happiness.

Lisa x

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Taking Back Control

The Help

 

Recently I have been doing more self work. It is time to jump back on my beautiful journey of finding serenity and peace within me.

I have been focussing on understanding my actions and thoughts on a deeper level.

Most thoughts and actions happen without you even being aware, so being mindful of every action and thought is something that is challenging but it has helped me understand why I do certain things.

I recently caught myself feeding into my old demon (ED) while I was at work.

I was filling in for someone and I was trying hard to do my best, but unfortunately I made a mistake and a few employees were a little frustrated.

I’m working on being the girl who brushes it off and says “Ha! Would you look at that, a mistake, better luck next time” but I’m not their yet so my ego got excited and jumped in.

My ego made me feel ashamed, fat, stupid and embarrassed and all I wanted to do at that moment was to go to the gym and lose some weight.

That’s when I caught myself.

I turned to my ED because I felt a rush of emotions and felt I was out of control.

I believe that many people turn to their ED when they are in tough situations because when you start to lose control, you feel like your body is the only thing that you can control.

Every limiting belief that you tell yourself came from someone else pushing that thought onto you.

Most of these thoughts happen when you’re a child because that’s when you are open to trust and believe people.

Let me give you an example.

Let’s call the person in the story “X”.

When I was about seven years old, I told someone I loved very much that I wanted to be a vet. The person laughed and said “hunny, you will never be able to be a vet! You need to get an extremely high mark in the High School Certificate and you simply haven’t got the brains to do it.

Now saying that to a seven year old is undoubtedly harsh but X grew up in a very harsh environment from a small child. X grew up seeing black and white. There is no such thing as dreams or beating around the bush.

So while X had the intention on helping me by saying your best off not setting your standards so high because I don’t want you being hurt if you don’t get the mark you want, I was left to feel stupid.

It was only one conversation.

It was well over a decade ago.

I have been told on countless occasions to get over it. But that is where the limiting belief first started.

Knowing where that belief came from doesn’t mean that I feel anger towards that person but it gives me the opportunity to realise and understand why I keep telling myself that belief as if it were an affirmation so I am then able to let it go.

It may take you a while to think back to where certain beliefs came from but it is only when you find the source you are then able to release it.

I was listening to Coach on Call on Hay House Radio last week and Cheryl Richardson said she was recently talking to a psychiatrist who specialises in children and said that it only takes one sentence to change a child’s path for the rest of their life.

This really shows you the innocence children have and their willingness to trust and believe in you.

Although this gives an opportunity to create limiting beliefs, it also gives an opportunity to fill them up with love, humbleness and positive self esteem. And I believe now is the time to feed your own inner child with an abundance of love and respect.

As always, I would love to hear your thoughts on this in the comments below.

Be kind to yourself,

Lisa xx

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Fight For It!

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A couple of months ago I wrote a blog about how I got my period back. I still smile about how ridiculously happy I was that I finally got my period back after all the years I neglected my health to serve a deadly disease.

I was stoked because that meant my body was getting healthy again. I was delighted that I did it naturally. I was thankful that it meant my body will now be receiving more nutrients out of my foods like calcium. But to be honest with you, I was probably more excited about the fact that I wouldn’t have to put on any more weight. I was at the minimum of a healthy weight range for MY body.

My partner would argue with me saying that I still had two more kg’s to put on for the sake of if I were to lose weight due to illness.

I knew what he was saying was correct as many health professionals have said it before and also just out of common sense but I felt I had reached this huge step and I didn’t want anything to rain on my parade just yet.

The next day I got servery sick. Yep, totally blame everyone who argued with me.
I got a horrible stomach bug that lead to gastro. I was literally forcing down cracker and vegemite and any foods I could stomach so I wouldn’t lose weight. I know that when I become underweight my inner demon (ED) becomes stronger so I was determined to not give in.

Anyways, regardless of my efforts I lost the weight I put on.
I had to work hard to gain it back but it took a solid 2 months.

So I started a battle with myself to gain the extra two kg’s. I fought for my health, my happiness and myself worth.
Fight
Everyone has the right to be healthy and happy. Every single person is worthy of love and acceptance.
Read that paragraph again: Everyone has the right to be healthy and happy. Every single person is worthy of love and acceptance.
For some reason I was limiting myself all of this.

I am proud to recognise now that two kg’s isn’t just weight that goes onto my thighs. Its 2 kg’s that protects me. It’s a TINY bit more of me to love and accept. It’s really not such a big freakin deal when you put your self worth first and choose to make your health your absolute number one priority.
I’m not going to lie and say that it was an easy choice to accept: to go above my minimum healthy weight for my body. For someone who has suffered from an eating disorder for most of their life that would be very rare. But it is a choice I have made. (One point for me and a kick in the ass for the ED.)

I want to really get through to you today that you have a choice in anything in life. You may not choose to become a victim of an inner demon like an eating disorder but you certainly have a choice to fight and get your health and happiness back.

Every time you look at yourself and you make a harsh comment, fight back and correct yourself by saying that you choose to see love in everything you look at.

It’s not an easy battle to fight every minute of the day but it’s certainly worth it.

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“Ironing” Out The Vegan Assumptions

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Hi Lovelies!

As you may have noticed, I have had a HUGE break from blogging.

Unfortunately I have had a couple of health problems and I had to put recovery as my number one priority. Therefore blogging was put on hold.

People assume that my health concerns happen to many vegans. Actually I have heard many people stop eating a vegan diet because of these health issues.

Today I want to put all of those “typical vegan” assumptions to an end and if you have come across the same health issues as me, I want to reassure you that you don’t have to change or question your vegan diet and lifestyle.

Let’s cut to the chase, after a few months of feeling dizzy, stupidly fatigued, daily headaches, nose bleeds and bruising easily than usual I was diagnosed with anaemia and very low protein levels.

A lot of people commented about my vegan lifestyle being the culprit of my health concerns and some people were really surprised considering my passion towards health and nutrition.

To be 100% honest with you, I wasn’t surprised when I was diagnosed. I knew what it was when I had all the symptoms but I just kept putting off going to the doctors because I thought I didn’t have time to go. I didn’t put my health as my number one priority.

So some say all I need to do is ditch the vegan diet. To that I say bull crap!
That’s the lazy way. That also doesn’t guarantee that I won’t become anaemic again.
When I was younger and forced to eat meat I was diagnosed anaemia. The time that I had the highest iron levels were when I first became vegan!

I became ill because I simply used my busy schedule as an excuse and also my lack of organisation skills for prepping food for the week.

Along with being busy I changed my exercise routine which also required a change in the nutrients I needed.
I began lifting heavy weights again (YAY for weights!). The past few months I have loved the feeling of getting back into weight lifting and seeing my body become stronger. Having said that, I wasn’t seeing fantastic results even though I was dedicated because I didn’t change my diet to suit my new routine. I wasn’t replacing enough of the iron that I was using from my training and I wasn’t repairing my muscles properly with the protein it needed.

So to say that all vegans are prone to being anaemic and being protein deficient would be a decent lie.
Anyone is capable of having defiencies if they don’t look at their own individual health needs that fits their body and lifestyle.

It can take around 3-4 months to fully recover from having anaemia and although I am nearly two months in, I already feel a lot better.

I hardly ever get dizzy anymore and I am seeing great results in my strength.
After months of not wanting to go on protein powders because I don’t like eating preseritives and anything that isn’t natural, I finally came across a protein powder that I am happy with.

It’s made from pea protein, coco and Stevia. THAT’S IT! It’s extremely clean with only 3 ingredients and comes with 23.3g of protein per serve!
I have been buying it from Bulk Nutrients for those interested to check it out, though be sure to see if they can post out of Australia as I am not 100% sure on that one.

As for iron, I have been loved up with spirulina and for now I am also on an iron supplement.
My health and welling is my focus before anything else these days and it feels great to have that type of respect for myself and my body.

As always I’d love to hear your feedback and also if anyone has had a similar concern.

Be kind to yourself,
Lisa xx

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Why You Cant Neglect Your Inner Wellbeing

Hey lovelies!

First of all I want to shout out a huge THANK YOU to everyone who showed their support through my last post.

You have no idea how much your comments and kind words mean to me.

Lately I have been a little extremely slack on my blog posts, and today’s post will shed light as to why I haven’t been as frequent as what I would like to be.

One of the things I am currently working on is getting shit done.

Let me explain…

I am a fantastic procrastinator. When there is something that I know needs to be done but I don’t want to do it, I simply put it off.

Apart from the issue that some things never get done, the real problem is that I get so much anxiety about the tasks not getting done. I then create multiple problems within that one task which could have been rectified before any other problems could occur if I didn’t put it off in the first place!

When I’m stressed about certain tasks and issues I tend to change my focus away from it and head towards something much worse; body image.

It’s extremely common for people who suffer/suffered from an eating disorder to slip into unhealthy habits when times are tough.

Usually when you are in a stressful situation, you don’t have much control over it. By listening to ED’s voice and becoming strict with your diet makes you feel like you have at least some control within your life.

It’s important to know that it’s the eating disorder that gives you the false idea that controlling what you eat will help control other areas within your life.

For the past couple of months I have focused a lot more time and effort into my physical health, and haven’t spent enough time on my inner wellbeing.

Don’t get me wrong, I am extremely proud that I have finally reached my goal weight and got my period (you can read about it here) but I found that neglecting the inner health, there is now a build up of emotional work to catch up on so I don’t fall back into ED’s habits.

I am a huge believer that your inner wellbeing is the most important factor when it comes to over-all health. Too often people think that disease and illness come from external factors, but I truly believe that your mind is the biggest influence.

When I write on The Raw Serenity, I feel as though I am brought back to reality. I focus on how I am feeling and what is authentic to me. I tend to respect and listen to what my body is telling me and appreciate everything it has done for me. That is what The Raw Serenity it all about.

If you are a regular reader, you would be aware that at the end of last year I quite all drama in my life.

Only happy and positive people and experiences were welcome in my life. By manifesting this desire I now have a very positive network of friends that help keep negative thoughts at bay but I also find that when I need an instant hit of positivity I go straight to my Pinterest boards.

I find by just looking at my boards that I have created helps bring me back to reality and stops the negativity. I also find some pictures of animals impossible not to laugh at!

My next post is a delicious salad I recently created. It is packed full of flavours, textures and superfoods to support your mind and body.

Be kind to yourself,

Lisa

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