Amalie isn’t your normal food blogger. Where most people snap pics of juicy burgers, ramen bowls and cheese plates, Amalie shares photos of Nutella-covered pancakes, bowls of candy and ice-cream sundaes.
That’s because the 20-year-old is trying to gain weight — not lose it — as she documents her recovery as an anorexic.
“I just wanted to disappear. My eating disorder was never about looking like a model, it was a way to cope. 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. But I had lost control, and the obsessive need for control controlled me in every way.”
During her outpatient therapy, Amalie was able to overcome refeeding syndrome, which can sometimes prove fatal. Her metabolism increased so much that she suffered night sweats and extreme hunger pains.
“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,” says the stunning blonde, who had to consume 3,000 calories daily, while sedentary, just to gain a pound a week.
“There wasn’t a magic moment where I had a recovery revelation, it was many small things at once that made me choose recovery,” says Amalie, who has chosen not to disclose her lowest weight, because it could act as a trigger to others with the disease.
“I didn’t like seeing the people around me worried. Everyday activities became hard, and I ended up isolating myself. The thought of spending the rest of my life alone, utterly consumed by an illness, eventually became more frightening than the thought of recovery.”
Evidence of Amalie’s battle with the disease still lingers on her Instagram account, which she began more than two years ago, before starting her recovery. Since then, she’s posted photos of her progress, such as fitting into jeans that were once too baggy for her fragile frame and side-by-side pics of her body “before” and “after” recovery.
“My weight-gain process. Half a year between top left and down right. Reposting this to remind those of you that are in recovery that YES, the uneven weight gain WILL even out. The bloating WILL calm down,” she writes to her nearly 50,000 followers.
Amalie also posts photos of her meals, which include avocado toast for breakfast, candy and chocolate bars for snacks, and fruit platters for dinner.
“Luckily I got good treatment. I learned a lot, both from my treatment personnel and from studying the topic. Weight-wise, by the spring of 2014 I was declared well, though it takes longer to recover mentally. I have been normal weight ever since without any major relapses,” says Amalie, who is currently studying psychology at Roehampton University in London.
As for her unintended Instagram fame?
“My followers are amazing, and I see them as friends. I have been documenting it from the start, and it’s weird to look back. People follow me because I am real and honest.”