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Emelle shares her anorexia agony to help others.

SHE had the courage to tell her story to the world in the hope others would not have to go through the agony she endured.

Anorexia sufferer Emelle Lewis was so distraught with her body image she faced the grim possibility of death as her body was reduced to little more than a skeleton.

But the 22-year-old from Mirfield eventually decided she didn't want her life story to end that way, and made a miraculous transformation to the point she has even taken up weight training.

The former University of Huddersfield student plummeted to just five stone in the grip of the deadly disease after six years of being tormented by her body image.

She said she felt "fat and ugly" and spiralled into an unhealthy obsession with food, eating only Weetabix, rice cakes and salad, telling friends she was vegan to avoid certain foods. She dressed herself in children's clothes and ended up in hospital seven times with her family fearing the worst.

But after realising she didn't want to die, Emelle began to follow accounts on Instagram for other women who have overcome eating disorders.

She began lifting weights in the gym and now eats healthily, sharing her journey with hundreds of online followers.

Emelle said: "I remember lying in bed one day feeling like I was really dying and realising I had achieved nothing in my life and this is not the way my story was meant to end. I always found it hard to fit in, and when all my friends were getting boyfriends but I didn't I began to think it was because I was fat and ugly.

"When I was ill I didn't believe there was anything really wrong with me. I genuinely believed I could maintain that weight and still live a fairly normal life. I didn't want to get rid of my eating disorder.

"I refused to comply with treatment and was convinced that everyone was against me, lying to me and trying to ruin my life."

Emelle has been in recovery since May, 2016. She now trains in the gym in the evenings, eats a balanced diet with lots of protein and is a personal trainer at Total Fitness in Wakefield.

She said: "Now, I still have bad days towards my body image, but most days I am proud of what I have achieved and proud of my body. I love watching myself gradually improving at the gym and getting stronger, knowing that I have done this all on my own.

"Overcoming this illness has now made me such a strong person mentally I see the world through different eyes. I am thankful for every day I'm alive and I try to be as positive as I can in any situation. I feel like I can achieve anything now. Since I've told my story I've had messages from several girls, saying reading my story has led them to feel more positive about themselves."

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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:May 16, 2018
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