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Ana and Mia: My Eating Disorder "Friends"

Ana and Mia: My Eating Disorder "Friends"

If you're searching for information on the internet about eating disorders, you're bound to come across 2 girls' names, Ana and Mia.

I've seen it phrased, "My Life With Ana," "Me and Mia," "PRO-Ana," and sadly, "Mia hates You." No, these aren't real girls' names. Ana is short for Anorexia and Mia is short for Bulimia. These nicknames are a way to personify eating disorders, and to make it easier for people to talk openly about them.

Since it is National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, I thought you should know that there are so many "PRO-Ana" videos out there that sadly promote eating disorders. I found one video of a girl who was sick of it. She recovered from eating disorders herself, and made this video to reveal the true picture of what it means to go through it.

I have a few more things to say on this subject, so

Anorexia and Bulimia are not only about food. Eating disorders become a mechanism to cope with serious emotional problems. They are a way to gain control over your life. People with eating disorders suffer through a constant battle with self-hatred and obsess about food, calories, grams of fat, and their weight.

Their lives become about dieting, binging, purging, and refraining from food all together. It's kind of like a self-punishment for not being perfect.

Fit's Tips: If you or someone you know is suffering from an eating disorder, there are many people and treatment centers available who want to help. Avalon Hills is located in Utah, Fairwinds in Florida, Monte Nido in California, and Renfrew in Pennsylvania. They all offer counseling programs to help people heal their hearts and change their lives.

There are also some great PR0-RECOVERY sites out there. Check out Something Fishy, and the National Eating Disorder Association, they are both excellent resources.

Join The Conversation
liquid2 liquid2 9 years
Yes! I too respect your dedication that week! But I have to say, most people living and fighting anorexia and bulimia know just what it all entails. But as much as anyone who hasn’t actually experienced an eating disorder would like to think, it is not always a choice. Anyone can toss a few fingers down their throat once or twice and say they’ve been there! Or fast for a few days and say done that I feel ya hun! But unless you have fought the fight endured the pain save your opinion for yourself! unless you plan to actually help someone instead of just judging. I am a recovered anoretic three times relapsed this is no picnic! And trust me your little videos don’t help anyone! Sorry if I’ve come off rude, but this disease needs understanding and care to recover from you are not going to scare someone straight. Maybe read a book or three on the psyche of and ED and then try again to help us!
phatE phatE 10 years
another thing... i think it's ironic that for one week out of the year people recognize that this is an issue, then the rest of the time, you see posts about how to have a celebs body, nicole richie, liv tyler looking "healthy" and curvy as a size 2-4, etc.. i respect your dedication to this issue this week, but maybe you should focus on health and wholeness the rest of the time, instead of diet and weightloss.
phatE phatE 10 years
i struggled with both anorexia and bulimia for 7 years and this is an excellent video. eating disorders aren't glamerous or trendy. when you get throne into the pit of it, it's a living hell. i hope girls see this and realize that it's really NOT worth it.
yogini yogini 10 years
Thank you for posting this. Good for this young woman who has the courage to show the dark side of eating disorders.
MichelleHope MichelleHope 10 years
There are people out there on the web dedicated to helping people recover from eating disorders. I recovered from 14 years of bulimia with the help of a very expensive professional coach. Now I share everything I learned in recovery and the 2 years since for free on my site: These illnesses are not about food; recovery is not about food. These are spiritual illnesses with a spiritual solution. With love, Michelle Hope
amandaaa amandaaa 10 years
This is great. I have been dealing with an eating disorder for the past two's very tough. No one knows how it feels to be anorexic (in my case) and what goes through their mind when they refuse to eat, or what they think when they see themselves or ANYONE else. It's a totally different mind frame and it totally changes the personality. I kept a Xanga journal and recorded everything I ate and exercised, including pictures of thin women. These pictures were called "thinspiration." I've read just about every documentary, biography, novel, ETC. on anorexica/bulimia. I've wrote many papers and stories about my own experience. I'd love to write a book about it. Because of my problem, I chose to go into dietetics as a major and future career. Check these out. I've had them saved in my computer (I didn't write them. They're from Xangas.): 6 Biggest Misconceptions about E.D.s Note: I had to get this off my chest because the "haters" that have been harassing anas/mias on Featured (ie. I_heart_ana_mia) are incredibly uneducated, irrational and closed minded. Plus, they can't even spell or defend an argument.It seems like a lot of the people who do make such comments are often in middle school and underclassmen and call themselves "liberal". They wouldn't know what liberal meant if it fell on their puny brains even though I am a moderate. Don't liberal ideals often entail open-mindedness? I suggest they take Poli Sci and Psych 101... 1.) It's for attention- why do they think it's for attention when it is really because we can't deal with ourselves, and its not because we can't deal with other people? Any good old fashion textbook that says Psychology and Behavior would fucking say that. 2.) It's for a boy- its certainly a good motivator, but real ana/mias don't do it for other people. We do it for ourselves because it's like giving in to what people tell you what they want you to do. 3.) You want to be ana/mia- People who want to be...are just posing. You do or you don't. It's genetic and biological. There's certainly predispositions due to your environment, but you can't just be "it" if you want to be "it" suddenly. 4.) You're selfish...if so, why are we so willing to let ourselves die a slow death. People who make comments like that are the selfish ones who are further inducing any vulnerable person deeper into an E.D. 5.) You turn people Ana/Mia- well, look at number three. Some people are more vulnerable than others...its gradual and no one can wish to have or get if because YOU CANT FUCKING GET IT OVER NIGHT! Keyword here: predisposition. Duh. 6.) If you really had a problem, you wouldn't be on Xanga- look at every newpaper/media coverage on this so called "underground pro-ana" movement. Thanks to the internet, Anas and Mias don't have to suffer alone and feel depressed. Now less anas are depressed because there are people who are in our shoes that we can actually talk to and have a support network. In fact, most ana-mias turn to blogrings and postings because of the high amount of support that is received. You don't get this support in real life...its like homosexuality 50 years ago and everyone was in the closet (no political motive implied..). Ana pep talk So you are craving food right now, huh? WHAT do you think you are doing?! Don't you dare go anywhere near food! Don't touch it, don't even think about eating it. What do you want to do, become a fat cow?! I am your best friend, and if you eat, you are failing me and letting me down. If you eat, it shows what little self-control you have. That pain in your stomach right now, that is me, and that is your fat melting away. When you feel empty, it means you are empty of your sins. Summer is coming up. You want to be able to walk around at the beach in booty shorts and a bikini top, don't you? You want to be able to walk around in a bikini with your flat, firm little stomach and your toned little thighs. You want to be able to run your hand over your stomach and feel your ribs. You want to go to the mall and see that skimpy little outfit and know you would look damn good in it. You made a commitment to me. I am your life and obsession. Don't break what we have. I will give you everything you want, but you have to give me what I want. And I want you to stay away from food. Go have some water. Go drink some tea or coffee. Or better yet- go to the gym, fattie! Don't show me what little self-control you have. Don't defy me. You know that if you go eat right now, you will end up on your knees puking it all up until you see blood and water and your stomach is aching. You will regret eating as soon as those calories and that fat slip past your tonsils and down into your body to add that extra roll on your stomach. You are going to get cellulite. You are going to look like the typical fat soccer mom. I can give you so much- I can give you a great body. Show me your control and I will show you a flat stomach. Show me you love me and can keep me a secret and stay away from food and I'll give you those shaped little thighs. Show me you can run until you drop and I will give you a cute ass. You love me. If you eat now and throw away what you are working for, I will hate you. And you know you will hate yourself. You have a meal plan, you have goals and dreams. Don't throw that all away now. Don't give up what you really want for something you want now. Don't eat, fatty. You are still no supermodel like Kate Moss. Don't fail me. Don't eat. If ANYONE has questions about eating disorders, PLEASE ASK ME I'd love to talk about it! Don't hesitate :)
serena serena 10 years
Thanks for posting this. I know a few women who have eating disorders and they won't admit it. It's very sad how our culture promotes this - Posh Spice is so "glamorous" - I think she looks sickly. I do feel like the standards for women are getting thinner and tininer. And I really wish the trend "skinny jeans" would go awaay - in it's own way even the fashions in todays society promote eating disorders.
ChanelLover ChanelLover 10 years
Thanks for posting the video. I always try to voice my opinions about eating disorders because it's upsetting. And sad that there are girls promoting it out there... pro-ana, mia, etc... it's just sad.
sugar_bear sugar_bear 10 years
Thanks for posting this Popsugar & Fitsugar. The reality of eating disorders is devastating. And sadly, the girls/women may be "thin", but much of the time, depression is what drives it.
grl-in-the-world grl-in-the-world 10 years
It's really depressing that there are pro-eating disorder sites out there for girls to look at. Those poor girls are so sick (in body and mind) and they're just encouraging each other to die faster. There are so many wonderful things in life that you miss out on when you are fixated on food and intent on destroying your body.
likenicole11 likenicole11 10 years
Yeah except a lot of the girls actually like the photos she posted that were the reality. I don't like the video but whatever.
muchacha muchacha 10 years
Thanks for posting this..
kscincotta kscincotta 10 years
I think that's a really effective video. I'm glad that message is out there, although it's surely drowning in all the pro-ana crap. Thanks for pimping this one, Fit.
Beaner Beaner 10 years
I know. It's just so sad. Models are getting so skinny, and young girls look up to them, they think it's the norm. It's our job to be positive and active role models in young girls' lives. We need to show them how to be healthy and take care of themselves so they'll be happy, self-confident, and strong individuals.
redsox26 redsox26 10 years
like what modernage said, there are groups for it on Myspace and Xanga. Ive looked at one on Xanga and the girl posted pictures of herself and kept an online diary of what she ate for the day. People would leave her comments saying "keep it up!." Its sad
modernage modernage 10 years
I couldn't watch the whole video. I just can't. You can go to and find millions of girls "pro anorexia" and find stuff like this: 40 Reasons To Starve Today You will be FAT if you eat today. Just put it off one more day. You don't NEED food. Fat people can't fit everywhere. Guys will be able to pick you without struggling. You'll be able to run faster w/out all that extra weight holding you back. People will remember you as the 'beautiful thin one.' If someone has to describe you, they'll say, 'oh, she weighs like 100, 110 lbs.' Guys will want to get to know you, not laugh at you and walk away. Starving is an example of excellent willpower. You will be able to see your beautiful, beautiful bones. Bones are clean and pure. Fat is dirty & hangs on your bones like a parasite. If you eat, you'll look like those disgusting, fat, ghetto & trailer-trash hookers on Jerry Springer. The models that everyone claim are beautiful, the spitting image of perfection, are any of them fat? NO. Too many people in America are obese. People who eat are selfish and unrealistic. Only fat people are attracted to fat people. Do you want pigs to like you because you are one of them? Anyone can have 'inner beauty,' but few can earn real beauty, inside as well as out. You'll be able to move as quietly & skillfully as a spider. Only thin people are graceful. If you slap a fat person, you can see a shockwave ripple over their skin. That's disgusting. Do you want people to say, 'For god's sake get off of me, you're crushing me; I can't breathe!' or 'You are soo light.' ? Underweight, a.k.a. perfect body. Ballerina? Or beanbag? I want to be light enough so a helium balloon could lift me & carry me to the clouds. I want to walk in the snow & leave no footprints. Starve off the parts you don't need. They're ugly and drag you down. Nothing can't be fixed with hunger and weightloss. Saying 'No, thanks,' to food is saying 'Yes, please,' to THIN! Fat people are so huge, people see through them & it's like they don't exist. The only time people notice a fat person is when they get in the way of that beautiful thin girl walking by. Have you ever seen a person NOT notice a walking skeleton? Nothing tastes as good as thin feels. Is food more important than happiness in life? Your appearance to others? When you start to get dizzy & weak, you're almost there. Hunger is your friend & it won't betray you like food. Food is mean and sneaky. It tricks you into eating it & it works on you from the inside out, making you fat, bloated, ugly, and unhappy. Think of anorexia as your secret weapon. If you can name one reasonto be fat, I will name a million 2 be skinny. I'll name them even if you can't find a reason to be fat. Thin people look good in ANY kind of clothes. OH and if you don't waste money on can spend it on clothes. all the more reason to forget stuffing your face. =(.
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