Body issues can start at a young age, and yet while they may be talked about, they aren't talked about enough and they aren't taken as seriously as they should be. Everyone has something they don't like about themselves, whether it's their nose or cheekbones, the color of their eyes, how tall or short they are. Some people only see what they don't like, and sometimes it can make them sick. According to the Mayo Clinic's definition of anorexia, it is an intense fear of gaining weight. Those with anorexia restrict the amount of food they eat, control calorie intake by vomiting after eating, and misuse laxatives, diets aids, diuretics, enemas, or excessively exercise. Anorexia is linked to emotional problems and the unhealthy way one deals with them. For people with anorexia, self worth is determined by how thin you are.
Rachael Farrokh was diagnosed with anorexia nervosa over ten years ago. By April of 2015 she had reached a weight of 40 lbs. and hospitals refused to take her in for treatment because she did not meet their weight minimum. She suffered through blood transfusions, blood clots, edema, and heart, liver, and kidney failure.
Medical treatment for the physical and psychological effects of anorexia are two very different matters, meaning Rachael needed a facility best suited to her needs. Unfortunately, these facilities are hard to come by and are usually expensive. Rachael wanted to get better but didn't have the funding, so she reached out with a YouTube video asking for help.
“My name’s Rachael. I need your help. In order for us to get there — and I’m not one to ever ask for help — I need your help. We need your help. Otherwise, I don’t have a shot, and I’m ready to get better. So please, if there’s anything you can do to save my life, please click this link that you’ll see and do anything you can. Anything will help.” KTLA5
Her husband and her started a GoFundMe page, raising almost $200,000. She was able to get a team to help her with her recovery at home until she was able to travel to a treatment facility in Portugal.
Rachael has been receiving treatment at a facility in Portugal, where she has begun to gain weight and her spirits continue to lift. In a Facebook post she said she knows she still has work to do and that her journey isn't close to being finished, but she won't be letting anything slow her down.
"I'm excited about life, because what was a glimmer of hope 3 months ago has turned into a certainty to live. I regained the clarity and strength of my mind. My goal in this recovery process is to create awareness and education in order to help others battling this disease." CNN