Loose Women panelist Nadia Sawalha has opened up for the first time about her secret battle with food

Nadia Sawalha opened up about how she’s battled with binge eating since a child and how she goes to Overeaters Anonymous on Loose Women. 

Nadia spoke about her heartbreaking battle with food telling fellow panellists; Coleen Nolan, June Sarpong and Janet Street Porter saying…

‘For years from a child I was a compulsive eater. I have that language now – I know I’m a compulsive eater and I use binge eating to suppress my emotion.’

‘I’m a very happy person, had a very happy childhood. I love my life but I also had a long period of my life where my eating was out of control. Not in the way that somebody might just overeat and be a bit greedy. I ate to shut up things that I didn’t want to feel or low self esteem.

‘I grew up with incredibly low self esteem about my body. I used to cry about how hideous I thought I was. I always used to do this thing where I’d overeat. And when I say overeat – where somebody would come in feel a bit down and have a couple of slices of toast. I’d have the whole loaf.’

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Nadia said: ‘I discovered what I was doing wasn’t the norm. The way that I was eating wasn’t that I was greedy or ugly or whatever, it was just that I was using food to shut myself up.

‘So I started going to Overeaters Anonymous. Do you know how many times I have been on this show and wanted to say that I go to Overeaters Anonymous.’

‘It’s such an amazing thing. It is a fellowship. You don’t have to have a single penny. You can look on the website today, you can go to a meeting and you don’t have to pay. And you can do that every day for the rest of your life.’

‘I’m a cook, I write about food but I’m a very different person now. Food is there to nourish me and my family I love to cook and love to eat but I no longer eat to shut up my feelings and I know there might be so many people watching today who might have finished that packet of biscuits and not even know it but that was my thing.

Talking about her lowest points Nadia said:

‘I would cook my family an amazing meal and not eat it. Because I’d be hiding somewhere else eating something that wasn’t good for me.’

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‘I would have to scrape things in the rubbish and pour washing up liquid over it so I couldn’t [eat it].’

Coleen said: ‘In how many years I’ve known you, I’ve not known any of this.’

WOW. You are one brave lady Nadia! Good for you for opening up to help others!

Lydia Southern/ @lydiasouthern