Who would think a young woman studying nursing who comes from a family that loves to eat, would nearly die because of her battle with an eating disorder?
Marina Abdel Malak’s Recipe for Recovery, I Battled and Overcame an Eating Disorder, and You Can, Too! is an inner look at what goes on in the mind of a starving anorexic that will help readers understand why recovery is so difficult. This isn’t a sugar-coated memoir of Marina’s everyday battles with food.
Written in a light-hearted way, using plenty of food-based puns, Recipe for Recovery is honest and sincere. Marina addresses eating disorder (ED) issues not normally discussed, such as why a person struggling with ED can be extremely resistant to treatment, why ED patients are in denial, refuse to eat, and are afraid of gaining weight. She guides through what it is truly like to struggle and recover from ED, and offers guidance on how to cope with these various challenges. Marina’s book acknowledges that recovering from EDs is more than just eating– it is about learning to eat despite negative thoughts and feelings, accepting weight gain as part of the journey to health, and coping with life’s experiences without reverting back to the eating disorder.
How prevalent are EDs? While most sufferers are women, men are affected too. About one in 30 women in Canada will suffer from one or both forms—anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa—in her lifetime. EDs are also the leading cause of death out of all psychiatric illnesses, and thus, early identification and treatment are essential. Marina says EDs do not discriminate–a patient may have ED regardless of age, gender, and culture. In fact, Marina’s experience in which she began to internalize negative feelings about her weight at the age of seven is in line with recent research that shows EDs may be targeting younger children than was previously believed.
Recipe for Recovery will help caregivers, friends, and professionals learn why ED is so difficult to overcome, how to provide support, stay sane during the journey, and understand recovery is possible.