This woman chronicles her anorexia recovery on Instagram to inspire and help others

In 2012, 20-year-old Amalie Lee became so malnourished from anorexia that she needed to be hospitalized. A year later, she began chronicling her recovery process on Instagram in an effort to spread eating disorder awareness and to support and inspire those who also suffer from eating disorders. She told Cater News:

"I have been documenting it from the start, and it's weird to look back. People follow me because I am real and honest."

The Roehampton University student explained that although she was technically deemed healthy in the spring of 2014, the mental recovery is a much longer process. She said:

"The thought of spending the rest of my life alone, utterly consumed by an illness, eventually became more frightening than the thought of recovery. I educated myself ... I sat with all this knowledge, and I could not just keep it to myself when I knew I had many followers on social media who struggled with what I had been through."

Lee now has more than 60,000 Instagram followers who comment about her bravery and strength every day. Lee used her personal experience to help others and make them feel understood instead of alone. In the caption of one photo, Lee wrote:

"I am damn proud of my physical change as you can see, and I enjoy showing you my progress."

Take a look at some of Lee's Instagram pictures documenting her battle against anorexia over the past year.

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Me during anorexia, and me now, recovered. The girl on the left was an empty shell, and had been so for too long. I pulled away from everybody, even myself. I was an actor, there was no life or sparkle in me, I acted like everything was fine when I was in fact slowly dying, mentally and physically. I was not in touch with reality, I was a paranoid, orthorexic, obsessive-compulsive sceleton that spent my days alone, in my own hole of misery, measuring my self-worth in numbers. I was 18, but I had the health of a 100-year old and body of a 10-year old. That was then. The girl on a right enjoyed a day in the african sun, and later had a large cheesy pizza for dinner, without a worry in the world. My body is happy now, I don't starve it and I don't restrict myself from so-called "unhealthy" foods, because for me, a diet that includes "unhealthy" foods is the healthiest. I am 19 now, soon 20. I've finished school and in a few months I'll move to a new country, all by myself, to study, to live, to develop. How did I do it? By realizing that I am the boss in my own life. It might sound harsh, but if I'd spent the rest of my life in the depths of anorexia that would be because of ME. Getting an eating disorder is not a choice, but recovery is. Yes, it is hard as hell, I felt like giving up so many times, but those feelings are not a reason to quit. Never tell yourself you can't, never start seeing yourself as a fragile victim that is ment to be miserable. Is your current situation making you happy? No? Then change it. Don't waste your life. Your future is in your hands. There is no magic moment where things change themselves, you have to fight for change, every day, no matter what❤️ #realcovery

A post shared by Amalie Lee (@amalielee) on

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That's how I do💋🍩 #girlswithgluten

A post shared by Amalie Lee (@amalielee) on

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In recovery from eating disorders, there is a lot of focus on the physical part. Being ill means looking physically ill; dry skin, hair falling out and a thin and fragile frame. But guess what? Most ED sufferers are actually normal- or overweight. For me, recovery meant going from a body seen as abnormal and unappealing by others and society in general. But for some, recovery may mean letting go of a body seen as "fit" and ideal by society, and instead embrace a higher body fat percentage. A woman might get praised for her six pack, when she is in fact eating 1000 calories a day to maintain a body fat percentage so low that she does not even have her period. Social media rationalize eating disorders at times. It is not healthy to be ripped for fat. It is not healthy to eat restrictive. It is not healthy to obsess over weight and food. But fuck, it is a money maker. Zero calorie noodles, magazines lurking us with headlines that suggests we need to change. And the approval. The likes. But in the end, does it really matter? Back to recovery. Not everybody who recovers will end up on a perfect bmi of X. Mind-blowing fact: you can be healthy without looking like a fitness model, and people who looks like fitness models are not always healthy. I am damn proud of my physical change as you can see, and I enjoy showing you my progress. But always remember that healthy is not a look, and neither is recovery. #realcovery is for everyBODY👊🏼

A post shared by Amalie Lee (@amalielee) on

Watch this video if you've ever felt bad about your body:

For Anyone Who's Ever Felt Bad About Their Body

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