health

"A different kind of before and after." Model shares the truth behind her changing body.

This post mentions themes of eating disorders which some readers may find triggering. Please call the Butterfly Foundationon 1800 33 4673 or Lifeline on 13 11 14 if you or someone you know needs assistance.

Sydney model Kate Wasley has shared her previous struggles with disordered eating in an emotional Instagram post.

The 24-year-old shared a “different kind of before and after”, with a photo of herself a few years ago and now.

“Before anyone jumps and tells me I was healthier on the left, here’s why I wasn’t and here is why I firmly believe that health comes in all shapes and sizes,” she wrote.

 

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A post shared by Kate Wasley (@katewas_) on

Kate, who has modelled for Sports Illustrated, described how she went from “heavier” in high school, to barely subsisting on chewing gum, to finding a way to treat her body with kindness.

She said at age 17 a number of “little comments” began to make her feel as if she needed to change her shape.

“So one day after a teacher told me in front of all my friends that I ‘probably wasn’t as fit as I could be’ and the same teacher on a different occasion telling me I was a ‘good wind block’ for my cold friend, I decided it was time for a change,” she said.

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“I was sick of people… making me feel like sh*t about my weight.”

Believing she needed to overhaul her then-diet of pizza and iced coffee, she starved herself.

“I started dieting HARD,” she said, explaining she went on a “detox” that involved eating very little and “disgusting juice” with every meal.

 

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Lil date with lil Tahls ????????

A post shared by Kate Wasley (@katewas_) on

The Good American model also tried every “high protein, protein only, no carb, detox, juice cleanse” diet out there and exercised “until it hurt”.

While Kate didn’t say if she’d been diagnosed with an eating disorder, what she describes is disordered eating.

She said she did get smaller, but that it was at the cost of her happiness, social life and wellbeing.

“I lost energy, motivation, I was tired and irritable all the time.”

“I stopped seeing my friends because I was scared of eating/not eating in public.”

“I refused to go out and have fun and drink with my friends because it seemed the skinnier I got, the more self-conscious I got.”

Kate said when took a trip to Europe and refused to eat any pasta in Italy, she realised she “basically wasn’t enjoying my life at all because I hated myself”.

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A post shared by Kate Wasley (@katewas_) on

That, for Kate, was the moment she realised she needed to make some changes to her life.

She began eating a “healthy and balanced diet” and relaxed her exercise regime.

“I’m much happier now that I’ve accepted my body,” she said, adding that she’s still “on a journey”.

“I still have my days when I stress about my flaws and that’s okay because I’m human.”

She also called out the way diet and weight loss products and programs are “constantly shoved down your throat”.

Her advice to her followers on achieving a healthy lifestyle was simple: “Live your life, make healthy choices, enjoy your friends and family, try new food, screw what people think, eat the pasta if you want to and be kind to yourself.”

Kate received almost exclusively love from followers who were praising her honesty and deeming her a great role model for young women.

Her story is reminiscent of body positivity campaigner Taryn Brumfitt’s. In 2013, Taryn posted a before and after image that quickly went viral and gave her the platform to create body acceptance documentary Embrace.

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Taryn Brumfitt's before and after. Image via Embrace.

In the post, Taryn described how while she was toned and fit as a body-builder on the left, she was miserable and not spending enough time doing things that made her happy, like spending time with her kids - which changed when she relaxed her eating and exercise regimen to the place she was on the right.

Here's what Taryn thinks of the photo now: 

If you or a loved one is experiencing an eating disorder, Mamamia urges you to contact The Butterfly Foundation on 1800 33 4673. You can also call Lifeline on 13 11 14, or the Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800. If you or a loved one is in immediate danger, call 000.

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