Saturday, 16 August 2014

OVERCOMING DISORDERED EATING + STAYING VEGAN ON YOUR PERIOD

Every. Freaking. Month. Momma Nature visits my my house and is all like "Hey, I have something for you, darlin'! It's kinda bloody and painful... but it's totally natural and healthy!" Ugh. Fine. I will deal with it because it means everything is working in there [my body]. This post is about being and staying vegan while on your period (duh, Emily, I got that from the title). But first I will be sharing my own history of body image issues which resulted in me losing my period, and how I got it back - all while being vegan. This is a pretty bulky post compared to my normal ones, but I think every word could prove valuable to you, so please read it all! Let's go.


PART I: BODY IMAGE ISSUES 

When I was younger (13-16), my period wasn't an issue at all. I hardly even noticed it; no cramps, no back pain, super light flow, etc. When I became vegan at 16 years old, it stayed the same. Then I got into raw food when I was about 17 and - here comes the eating disorder phase of my life - I started getting really obsessive and strict about what I ate. I exercised for about an hour every day but thought I could survive on just a few pieces of fruit. I loved how it made me feel at first, but eventually I started becoming weak and getting constant head aches. I remember my mom being worried, my parents saying I had to eat more, going to school with just a sliced mango and strawberries for lunch and wishing I could eat what my friends were having. I became underweight and I stopped getting my period... for eight months. At the time, I was still in my "RAW FOOD IS THE ONLY HEALTHY DIET" mindset so I was happy to say goodbye to the uterus gunk and slight discomfort it's shedding brought every 28 days. Of course, I look back now and wanna slap myself in the face. For girls and women, getting our monthly flow is a sign that our bodies are functioning normally. If your period stops - but not because you're pregnant - it is a serious red alert that something is wrong; usually it means that you do not weigh enough and/or you are not consuming enough calories. At this point, I still wanted to lose weight; I didn't think I was thin enough. Why? Because the bodies I wanted to look like were the photoshopped, perfectly toned ones in magazines and other forms of media. Read this post from Janurary 2012 where I try to hide my guilt about eating a sandwich. Yeah, it got bad.

Here it goes: the typical girl-with-self-esteem-issues-caused-by-society story. But that is exactly what it was. I didn't stop and think for a second that every body is different, and they are ALL EQUALLY beautiful as long as they are healthy. It took me a long time to accept that my ideal and healthy body weight doesn't look like all the women's on TV. I have learned that when I eat the healthiest I can, and live the best I can: my body is a bit curvy! Even though I am eating clean 99% of the time and exercising pretty hard almost every day, I am not particularly lean, I ain't got no thigh gap, and I have cellulite! SO WHAT. I love my body now, because it is the body that living well has given me. As long as you treat yourself right, you should love yourself no matter what you look like. Because at the end of the day the very specific body types we idolize are never intrinsically beautiful; they change with time and culture (a few hundred years ago, this was the epitome of beauty). Even now I sometimes wonder: what am I doing wrong? I eat all the right foods, I work out all the time... but I don't look like her! Then I remember that I am not doing ANYTHING wrong; human bodies simply vary as much as our personalities. Why WOULD every one of us have the same body? No reason, because there's this little thing called genetic variation. If every one of is lived the exact same lifestyle, we'd still all end up with different-looking bodies. It's nature, babe. So live healthy, eat enough (of wholesome, plant foods), get sweaty sometimes, and embrace whatever body that lifestyle gives you, because it's damn sexy. If this were the Renaissance or even the Marilyn Monroe days, the girls on magazine covers now would be trying to stuff their faces with cake to look like the bodies that were put on the pedestal at that time - curvy, busty women who had pasty cellulite on their asses. It would basically be the reverse of what is happening right now. At the end of the day: it's still just people trying to change their natural bodies to look like something they're not, because they think that whatever one type of body the media says is beautiful, is the ONLY one that is. Well that just ain't true. Am I saying that skinny people will always be skinny and "heavier" people people will always be heavier? No.

I am saying that whatever body a healthy lifestyle provides you with is your ideal weight and shape.

Celebrate it. Work it. Love yo-self. This goes for all humans because you better believe that men have problems with body image that are just as damaging. These days when I think about what beauty and sexiness mean to me, I think about ability and not appearance. I am one of the strongest, fittest girls I know, and I am pretty confident I am stronger than my male partner (we both agree, by the way). I can push my body to do half-marathons, one legged squats, push ups, and whatever else I want - and that is one of the best feelings as well as a major motivation for me to love a healthy lifestyle so much. Being fit - however that may look on your body - is freedom. I've moved past caring about what I LOOK like, now I realize all that matters to me is what I can DO with this gorgeous body.

It took me a fair amount of time (most of a year) to realize that losing my period and feeling weak all the time was not sustainable or good for me. I wasn't happy anymore. Gradually I began incorporating cooked foods like steamed broccoli and tofu back into my diet, WITHOUT feeling guilty about it. And eventually I was eating a normal, whole foods vegan diet again. I had gained back weight, had energy, and felt strong. This when my period returned. Unfortunately, it sucked. It came back more painful than it had ever been, with a heavier flow, cramps, and lots of back pain. I'd have trouble sleeping and I'd get headaches. I thought: "Dang, this must be what everyone else complains about!" I thought I was finally getting a regular period! Maybe not... It stayed pretty painful for about a year but I reflect on that now and realize that it was because that entire time I was in a very stressful relationship. Stress has a major effect on your hormones. When that relationship ended, so did the excessively painful periods. Now my period really IS normal; it lasts about 5-6 days, I can tell when it's coming because my lower back gets sore, the first 2 days I have back pain and crazy emotions, but after that it's smooth rolling, my flow is light and cramps are unusual. I guess you could say I have a healthy period, but it's on the light side, and I like to think this is because I eat clean and vegan. Processed foods like sugar and white flour can really eff up your time o' da month because they screw with your hormones. If you aren't vegan already but your period sucks, I would definitely recommend trying to eat more whole foods and see how that changes things.

I actually see my period now as a time to celebrate my womanhood and primal, fertile self. Many ancient cultures and tribes saw the menstrual cycle as holy and sacred, and when women were bleeding at their time of month, they were given special huts to meditate and reflect in  (WHERE THA HECK DID THAT TRADITION GO, I ASK). I love to research what is going on in my body during this time. It's pretty darn amazing and I think all us ladies should be proud of what we go through 12 times every year. But that's just the feminist in me speaking. If you went through the same lame sex education system I did, you probably have no clue what is goin' down during your period. Also - another feminist outburst - school doesn't teach us girl #$%& about our genitals, and the word "clitoris" in our society can be paralleled to "Voldemort" in the Harry Potter series: people are scared to say it. If you don't know where or what your clit is, PLEASE find out. It's gonna change everything.


PART II: STAYING VEGAN ON YOUR PERIOD

Here's what ya really came for. I am writing this post because when I am on my period every month, I sometimes will crave foods that are not vegan. Usually it's eggs, organ meats or chicken. Ew, right? Please don't hate me or freak out. It should go without saying that I would and will NEVER eat these foods. A meal is never worth murder or abuse. Duh. This why I am vegan. However, I can't deny that I DO get these cravings. I personally don't feel guilty because I understand it's a physical thing, not a reflection of a weak moral compass or anything like that. Clearly my body just wants something that those animal foods have in high quantities, but that doesn't mean plant foods don't also have that "something" my body is craving. Yesterday night, I REALLY wanted a plate of chicken. I thought it meant I needed protein, but eating a package of tofu did not sound appealing at the time. I recalled chicken - and meat in general - is high in iron. I added some Vega powder to my smoothie and ate some iron-rich foods for dinner and the cravings went away. Done.

My point is: when you crave non-vegan foods on your period, it is because your body wants whatever those foods are rich in. Usually it's protein, iron, or B vitamins. You know how we all go mad for chocolate when it's that time of month? That is because cocoa is high in iron and magnesium (but also because we want sugar to make us feel better... that is a whole 'nother story though). I always make sure to eat lots of dark - preferably raw - chocolate during this time. Cacao is even higher in iron and magnesium than cocoa. I honestly see it as a health supplement just like taking a vitamin in the morning. I also make sure to have a B-complex regularly. And I eat lots of protein! Beans, tempeh, tofu, Gardein products if I feel like it. If you are craving sweets, eat as much fruit as you want and make or buy dark chocolate, or make any of the raw vegan desserts I have on this blog. If you are craving eggs, dairy, or meat: take a B vitamin, and eat greens, tofu, beans, figs and nuts. Consider buying a nutritional supplement mix like Vega; it provides a terrific amount of iron, protein, B vitamins and so much more. Obviously getting this stuff from whole plant foods is ideal, but I see my period as a special time where supplementing really comes in handy.

That brings me to a very important point: I LISTEN TO MY BODY. I have made the mistake of trying to keep my normal diet while on my period, even though I really don't feel like it. What do I mean by this? My body is like: "Em, you aren't even hungry... just don't eat dinner!" while my brain is like "You gotta eat, girl! You always have a huge dinner bowl of steamed veggies and rice!" I have learned that listening to just my body works best while on my period. The last few cycles when I have been bleeding (including this one), I have had almost no appetite but am endlessly thirsty. So I drink as much water as I want, and have a smoothie for dinner instead of the big, lightly cooked meal I usually enjoy. But it's just as plausible that I could have a massive appetite, so in that case I would devour as much food as I wanted. Keep in mind drinking lots of water is important even if you aren't thirsty. And if you are hungry: eat as much as you want, but make sure to eat healthy food! Don't cram down processed junk but instead make a huge meal of lightly cooked veggies with whole grains, bread or noodles. Or whatever you feel like. If you are craving pizza: by all means, make a pizza! Buy or make a whole wheat or gluten-free crust, then top it off with a healthy vegan sauce and tons of veggies and dairy-free cheese. Seriously, whatever you are craving, there is a healthy vegan version. Just Google whatever it is with "vegan" in front of it. Vegan ice cream is a thing, and it's SOO GOOD. If you aren't hungry: I'd still suggest getting in enough calories to keep a stable metabolism for when your appetite returns. Smoothies, juices or soups are best for this because they don't take a lot of effort to consume.

Well, that wraps this up! Please comment on this post to let me know your thoughts or questions. Much love! Stay fertile, my friends.

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53 comments:

Ysabelle Empiso said...

I can relate to 100% of this post. I may not be as skinny or 'fit' in appearance as I used to be, but I can safely say that I feel a whooole lot healthier and happier now than I did before. Also, raw chocolate ftw.

<3

Anonymous said...

dear emily!
i just want to say: you are my personal super hero!! of course i love your recipes, and i learned so much about staying healthy just reading your beautifully written and entertaining posts! and the more i read, the more i feel inspired by you and your journey.
i have been vegan for some years now, but i am still struggeling with staying healthy and i do have terrible body image issues. reading about your journey really, really makes me so hopeful!! thank you so much for sharing and doing what you do.

concerning cravings: i do know them, of course, although i rarely crave anything but cheeeese... what i would like to ask you: what about... more emotionally motivated cravings? like craving the food your grandma cooked you when you were little? i struggle with these every time i feel stressed or sad about something... and i find them even harder to endure. so if you by any chance know how to cope with them, let me know. ;)

last but not least, i want to give you a big virtual hug from feminist to feminist!! staying healthy has so much to do with knowing and loving your body, and this is where feminism comes into play. i LOVE that you adress that. :)

so, another big thank you from europe!
<3
sara

Amy said...

Awesome inspiring post Emily! I think every woman needs to read this :)!

Millie l Add A Little said...

This is such an insightful post Emily. I can totally relate to everything you said and you are such an inspiration! Just want to say, you go girl! :)

http://youtube.com/addalittlefood

Emily von Euw said...

@Anonymous (Sara) - Yay! Soooo happy to hear that <3 As for comfort food cravings: just make vegan versions ;) Ask yourself what is so good about whatever food you're missing/craving and recreate it with vegan ingredients. And maybe you're missing something about that food.. that doesn't have anything to do with the food! In that case, try to recreate the memory (people, place, etc.) xxx

Sibylle said...

Amen to all of that! I struggled with eating disorders for most of my teens and twenties and have learned not to rigidly prescribe my food. Listening to your body and loving yourself really is the way out. Why is that so dang hard for us? I think it's because we're never taught - it's "eat this", "you must always eat that" everywhere, and not, "sit down and ask your body what it actually WANTS".

Kudos to you for talking about it all so openly!

If I may plug something, I recently published a guest post abut my own journey through eating disorder to body love, here: http://lindaursin.net/30-year-journey-self-love/

Anonymous said...

Enjoyed ur post. Just a thought reading it - why such strict rules. Why not just listen to our bodies, why do we feel the need to label ourselves as vegan or vegetarian. I just thought i would bring this topic up as i think its very important

Anonymous said...

Chocolate.

You need it not only because of iron! The most important is MAGNESIUM!!!!

You will have less pain if you eat MAGNESIUM!!

layla said...

Inspired and inspiring post and informative comments!

Magnesium (chocolate craving) is my nemesis...

Have to mention that I've found using a Mooncup has helped my menstrual cycle immensely; more physically comfortable, easier to manage, cycles are now more regular and flow is lighter and doesn't last as long (compared to when I used commercial towels/tampons). As an athlete I find it much more convenient too. Not to mention it's cheaper, and best of all waaay more eco-friendly!

Would definitely recommend that every woman try out a cup, but especially anyone with problematic menstruation or cycles. Yes, I admittedly am somewhat zealous about them but I don't know anyone who has gone back to towels/tampons after trying it.

Alexandria said...

This is awesome, thanks Em! I had exactly the same experience going onto raw food, that I tried to restrict everything and I would get massive guilt for eating cooked vegetables (fricken weirdooo!). 'Oh yeah I have a carrot for dinner and I'm training for a half marathon, it's totally fine!'. Can totally relate and feel so much better to hear that others have had a similar experience. I am now healthily obsessed with steamed greens :)

S. said...

Such an inspiring and helpful post, Emily! I'm glad you turned around and realized what was best for you :)Congragulations, you seem like a very strong and confident women now!

\ Indigo Lights

Alyson said...

HI Emily, thanks for a super-honest open post. I have cravings in the pre-period period, and then feel hungry in the first few days yet also don't feel much like food. I really enjoyed a womb yoga weekend retreat a couple of years ago (in UK), and we had to do some monthly charting before attending. There's loads of stuff going on during the 27-33 (however long your cycle is) cycle, and eating right during the WHOLE month is important as it can decrease the cravings in teh 'worst' part.

There's quite a resurgence in the UK for 'womb wisdom' and other such stuff, and I would recommend looking up yoga teacher Uma Dinsmore Tuli, and period-woman Alexandra Pope but I'm sure you've got USA equivalents! We also have different energy levels, dreams, patience etc during the monthly cycle which charting can reveal. I have a template with the basic info on the hormonal and other body changes over the 4 weeks if you want!
And luckily vegan raw cacoa was recommended for the pre-menstruation bit!!

Anonymous said...

Sometimes we need to be reminded that our bodies are just fine as is. Thank you. Trying not to get back on the scale this am.

Kari said...

I normally admire your recipes without commenting, but wanted to thank you for this post as I think it is really important - not just for vegan or high raw eaters, but for all women out there. We are not all one size, and were never meant to be! Healthy eating is about being healthy, not obsessive or rule-bound.

Managing cravings when vegan does get easier when you think about what you might be running low on, so thanks for your ideas there too :)

laverdeconnection said...

Hi Emily,
Thank you for this beautiful post! It resonates with me on so many levels. I've been through this kind of stuff, too (meaning eating disorder, body image issues, "unhealthy" cravings,...).
I often notice that I'm about to get my period because I crave (among other things)whipped cream (the cow's milk kind). I once even got to the point that I bought some (organic, at least)and ate some of it, but I didn't like the taste anymore. That was also good to learn, that I simply don't like the taste of animal-based foods anymore. So whenever I get these type of cravings I have the same tactic as you, I try to find out what it is that my body is craving on the nutritional level and it also helps to remind myself, that I don't like that cow's cream anyway. ;-)
well, enough blabla. Thank you for being so open and honest about this topic!
much love,
Judith

Christina said...

Thank you so much for this. I am fighting my way out of a decade-long eating disorder, and this was so great to read.

hippymomelizabeth said...

I started having food issues when I was 8 im 34, thats why im a veghead, your period you talk about will change when you decide to procreate and make a little baby em. you wont see it as a bloody mess youll see it as the sign your little daughter is on her way and new journeys and energy...Hippymom

Eeva said...

Dear Emily, thank you so much for this post. I love your blog and have been following it for ages, but have never commented before. This post, however, was of special importance for me and I really had to thank you for sharing it.
I have always had very irregular menstruation cycle (except the times when I have used hormonal contraception). Just very lately I have realised that it might mean that there's something "wrong" in my body and have been doing lots of research on how I could help my cycle be more regular in natural ways. So this post was very interesting reading for me and gave me new ideas on how to listen to my body. Thank you!
I would love to read more posts on similar topics. I really enjoy your style of writing and you are a very inspiring person for me! Big hugs from Finland!
Eeva

Judith said...

Hi Emily,
What a great and personal post! I agree that every woman should read this. I'm on my 'moon-cycle' right now as well (that somehow makes it sound more magical, with glitter and chocolate and carob, mmmmm) and have been having carob-cravings. So I'm making my own 'carob-paste'. You gotta cherish yourself a little extra at this time of the month :)

And those models and actrices: they eat a whole lot less and work out a whole lot more than most of us. Add photoshop, and a lot of professional make-me-look-good-and-thin-people, et voila! Thinking this helps me when I look at myself and feel a little insecure. <3

Anonymous said...

dear emily,
I guess if you study the ancient inca civilization of south america, people were healthier before than in our century and it's wonderful that these inca knew that wild plants have strong effects on sexual functions of our body!!!

Here are some tips that every women should know that our earth is full of treasures:
You know that the maca root normalizes the menstrual cycle of the woman. India women also have their plant too : Ashwagandha, plant that boosts libido and prevent painful menstruation. I'll stop for now because it will require an entire blog to discuss about the beauty of the mechanical of the woman body.

Ashley Chew said...

This site has awesome raw chocolate designed just for your moon time. It has crampbark in it which is what I take for my cramps(& I get major cramps). It also has
Pink Rose Petals, Vitex Berries, Valerian, & Maca.

Side note crampbark & diva cup are the BEST things that ever happened to my moon time.

Anonymous said...

Dear Emily,

I have never left a comment on your blog even though I enjoy many of your recipes and believe that you brought me a lot closer to raw foods. The reason I feel like leaving a comment now, is that I have such a similar story! I also became vegan when I was 17 years old and I thought that I would survive with normal breakfast, only very small portions of fruits and veg in school, a cooked vegan lunch and of course no dinner. I was very underweight for a couple of months and always thought I have to become thinner and thinner and also lost my period for at least 5 months or something - and I only then started to change my diet back into a more balanced vegan diet with more carbs.
I am very glad that I realized that it was completely mad and bad for my body and I am slowly starting to get more and more information about a healthy vegan and mainly raw diet- thanks to you!

These kind of articles are great, because I think a lot of people can relate to them! Keep on doing the amazing things that you do - what you said in this article gave me even more confidence about being a bit curvy :D

Dominique said...

Very inspiring post, thank you. I think you're right about your body being beautiful the way it is if you treat it well, but the hard part is doing just that. I find myself too fat but it's so hard to resist temptation, and (vegan) sugary/fatty foods are unfortunately much more tempting than vegetables to me... How do you resist temptation?

On a side note, you might find this woman's perspective on body image inspiring (NSFW, she posts naked pictures of herself, but lots of beautiful text posts too): http://www.baretobush.com/

Anonymous said...

Love this post. I would just like to add that thyroid issues can also be a factor on both your period and weight. I've never had any major body image issues, but I have had trouble gaining, or even maintaining weight, even though I eat all the time. I just recently put together that I essentially have all the symptoms of hyperthyroidism (it can cause irregular periods too). My doctor never put it together or mentioned anything about thyroid disorders. So I agree you definitely have to listen to your body and do some research if you think something is wrong.

Megan C said...

Emily, thank you for sharing yourself with us. Its a big thing and I appreciate it a lot. I can identify with a lot of your experiences, as I am going through a very long 'no-period', low weight/body image time myself. It is so encouraging to me how you have overcome these things and that you're happy in yourself. I truely believe we our all on a journey and to be happy with the way you were designed to be is a remarkable thing. I am trying to listen to my body but it is a very hard thing to do after ignoring it for so long. This is a good reminder to do just that... and that cravings are normal (I feel so bad craving animal products) and totally manageable. Yay plants and keep doing what you're doing. God bless!

SupermassiveBlackOwl said...

This was a really fascinating read. I can pinpoint my ovulation to these kinds of cravings - there is this one day where I really really crave meat. Even I find it disgusting most of the time and wouldn't want to eat it from a rational point of view.
But I never thought about who else might have this kinds of problems too and how to deal with it in a better way than trying to fight the cravings with willpower alone. Which is really hard when you are building new habits, but are still used to the old ones too.

So thanks for this article. :D
(And sorry for my probably bad english.)

June Baby said...

This is a great post! I love the pictures you used, it is such a refreshing thing to see on a blog! <3

Emily von Euw said...

@Dominique - I don't really get cravings for processed foods because A) I have lost my appetite for them in general... my taste buds have evolved past thinking they taste good. I really prefer whole foods almost all the time. B) I eat enough! The only times I crave stuff that I don't normally eat (like I might think fried food smells good or something) is when I am hungry! As soon as I get a huge smoothie in me, the cravings go away. For me it just means I need to get in more calories that day - in the form of whole foods always! :D xx

Dominique said...

Thanks for the tips, Emily! :)

Anonymous said...

I love the fact that you are so honest about your cravings. I can really relate to that.

Love your site

xx

quincy Leah said...

This could not have come at a more perfect time. I too have struggled from period loss among other things as a result from uber rigidity surrounding food/exercise. And I can relate so much on that question of "what am I doing wrong?"
It's so easy to forget that stressing about perfect health can be even more damaging than the "unhealthy" behaviors themselves.
Thank god for all the body positivity that's resulted from the feminist movement! And thank you, thank you for this post.

Anonymous said...

wow this really helps, i am 16 right now, lost my period on march and i am underweight. Like you i thought raw vegan ist the healthiest diet ever but my body tells me something completly different.
Then I tried incoorporating fish and dairy again to gain weight, but i felt even more worse.
You really helped me a lot with this post and i hope that i will gain weight again and hopefully have my period back.

xx

screwdestiny said...

Lovely post with some great tips. The tips about dealing with cravings while on your period didn't really apply to me because I haven't had mine for six years (Mirena), but I'm sure they're extremely useful to most women. I also really enjoyed the part about loving the body you get when you're being really healthy. It's such a simple thing, one we should all intuitively know, but in today's society if we don't all look a certain way, even while being really healthy, it can still be hard to accept. I'm glad that you have accepted it and are teaching others to do so.

Katie @ Produce On Parade said...

What a great post, Emily. It still seems so taboo to talk about menstration but it's something that I think a lot of women could benefit from discussing (and men too!) It's a very important empowering tool, I feel. This was a very appropriately timed post for me, so thanks for such an honest and open discussion. I think it took a lot of courage and it's such a wonderful resource and support!

Lauren @ Beautiful Plant-Based Life said...

Can't thank you enough for this post! I am currently experiencing my first period as a beginner vegan. Dark chocolate is helping. ;-) Thanks for the reminder to listen to our bodies! I'm intrigued by vega powder. Where else do you use it besides smoothies?

Stef said...

GREAT post! I love your self-love, your candid sharing, your genuine respect for your body (and its innate wisdom), and your willingness to LISTEN to that body wisdom. Very well-done, lady; very well-done. And yes, vegan ice cream rocks! And whatever non-vegan food there is, it can be "veganized" - and is usually even better. :)

Naoko said...

Hi Emily,
I've been following your blog for a long time but have never commented before. This post meant so much to me that I just had to say THANK YOU!

I have had trouble accepting my femininity, and when I lost my regular period through extreme restriction, I can't say I wasn't secretly happy.

Now I am regaining my health, but admittedly I sometimes have trouble accepting the healthy version of me. I am learning to love my strong body and looking forward to reconnecting with my femininity through my healthy sacred cycle. And YAY to listening to your body! I feel certain there's so much our bodies could teach us if we just learned to listen.

I really love this post. Thank you so much for sharing!

Nirel said...

YESSSS I am so happy you wrote this. Body image bullshit can be such a bummer when you know you have been eating well and exercising! Feeling strong and in-tune with your body is the best. And sustaining that feeling by accepting your damn sexy self as you are when you fuel your body with whole, plant-based food and regularly work up a sweat...ultimately can lead only to health & happiness. (:

I also love the idea of taking the time during my period to embrace my fertility and love my body (despite my occasional cramps and crankiness). That's why, as per usual, I avoid taking pain-relieving medication for cramps unless I really feel like I'm dying... I think that ends up just fuzzing the communication between your body and yourself, and you can never really tell what you want.

Anyway, thanks for continuing to be the wonderful and amazing and inspiring human that you are.

Much love xx

Anonymous said...

For those non-vegans out there who may be scared of the cravings you (Emily) is experiencing or may think that therefore vegan is not sustainable for you, I just wanted to say that in my 15 years a vegan not ONCE I have craved non-vegan foods, during my period or otherwise. I find the smell of cooked bacon somewhat appealing year round, but that is just the smell: I have no desire for the food in itself at all.

Actually, another thing that apsiring vegans may be afraid of: generic cravings or desires... people say that being vegan is hard because you have to restrain yourself from so many things. Not at all true: once you make the moral firm decision those foods are not for you, you will never even consider them as a calorie or pleasure source again. OR at least this is how it has worked for me.

Barbara Jungi said...
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Barbara Jungi said...
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Beth Rowley said...

This is so great! Also seriously resonates with me and my life. Thank you for your wonderful sharing!

Luna Serenity said...

I just wanted to let you know- your blog has been an absolute safe haven for me. I'm recovering from a very serious case of bulimia and extremely restrictive tenancies. I remember I would fast and try to purge... Air. Or water. I knew I needed to change when I purged up blood and I was extremely addicted to laxatives. It hasn't been easy, at all. In about 7 weeks into recovery, and I've had major bumps along the way. I've gained 8 pounds, and I'm having a hard time with it, because I was never really underweight. I was lean, but never "too thin" or thin enough for anyone to worry. Reading this has given me a lot of hope. I can't thank you enough for your blog and blogs like yours which can provide me with the healthy, hearty food porn I need to push myself to eat and try something new.
Rock on!! xoxo

s said...

You are fricken amazing! I wish i knew you in person cause you would be such a lovely friend to have!
The world needs more honest, and open people like you!

You are the bees knees and are defiantly my favourite girl on the net.

xxxxx

LOVE ship

Mishanne said...

Hi Emily!
I just rediscovered your blog and stumbled across this gem. While I can't relate to the part about restricting eating (although I believe I do have disordered eating on the other end of the scale, and most recently find myself bingeing a lot) I'm sure your words send a powerful message to those affected by such a disorder.
I'd also like to ask, are the images of you? Because they are bangin'! Such a hottie!
Mishanne x

Emily von Euw said...

@Mishanne - hha thank you X a billion and yes, the pics are of me, my partner took them while we were drinking smoothies :3

Kristina said...

<3 Girl you so honest. Body stuff isn't easy to discuss. Because ew lady bits. I drink tons and tons of water and still bloat like a whale. But hey, it could always suck more. I used to get crippling cramps that made me miss work, but I fixed my diet and got on birth control...holy crap. Much as I prefer to not take pills if I can avoid it, they really do help.

One quick note on amenorrhea (your period stopping): it can sometimes happen to athletes, especially runners and swimmers, when they do intense training for several months. Just check with ya' doctor!

Julia Schertzer said...

Thank you so much for this post, Emily. Last year I struggled with disordered eating and I, too, felt weak and tired all the time. Isn't it crazy how I don't think there is a single woman who can say "In my entire life I have always felt happy with my body and the way that I occupy space in this world".

Speretoiu Iuliana said...

I read your post and i recognised myself in there.i lost my period after going raw,i went back to vegan but i still dont have it:( i am trying with parlsley and dill juice but is not always working,i can have it one month and the next 3,4 again is gone.

Kathy Szczesniak said...

Perfect timing for this post! Just finished "Shark Week" (loved that reference by the way!!) and had some serious cravings. I will definitely be referring to this post next month when cravings attack!

V Mateo said...

"Also - another feminist outburst - school doesn't teach us girl #$%& about our genitals, and the word "clitoris" in our society can be paralleled to "Voldemort" in the Harry Potter series: people are scared to say it." I literally DIED, lol. But it's so true though. I've always had the worst, nightmarish cramps growing up accompanied by a whole lotta evil symptoms (nausea; resulting in endless vomiting, lower back pain, restless feet, diarrhea, bloats, etc) and always thought of it as "normal" since all women in my mom's side of the family get it this way. However, it all started to change (for the better) a few months ago. Some of the symptoms disappeared intermittently and cramps completely disappeared but I would still feel completely uneasy and anxious and would always end up running home (still do. Strangely, I can't be around too many people). I normally get odiously moody/sensitive and crave all things sweet(like now) especially dark chocolate, which I love. I've been eating really healthy and moderately since the end of last year and that has helped me tremendously. I also discovered (not so long ago) the magic in pineapple and carrot juice(or ginger/lemon with either fruit) before/during your period which is glorious! I always feel better and feel no pain whatsoever (except, well, lower back pains and restless feet but I hardly complain now).

Anonymous said...

hi emily, i am currently experiencing the loss of period because i had an ED as well, yet i am eating a lot more now, yet it's not coming back, yet... i wanted to know, how much time did it take you for the periods to come back? or maybe am i too impatient to be healthy again, haha?

Sincerely,

Emily von Euw said...

@Anonymous - It also has to do with weight, so if you've lost a lot of weight, it will have to be gained back before your period returns. That's what happened with me. Email me at emilyvoneuw at gmail dot com if you wanna talk more about this :)

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