December 8 2013 Latest news:
Monday, November 4, 2013
The successful recovery from anorexia of a former Thorpe St Andrew School pupil has reached new heights and will soon go on show for the whole nation to see.
Alice Jackson weighed just 7st 10lbs during her first year away from home at Bournemouth University but this week she will bare all to raise awareness of the eating disorder.
The 26-year-old has posed completely naked for a photoshoot for the December edition of Cosmopolitan magazine.
As reported earlier this year, Alice was in the running for an international modelling contract and a fashion shoot with Cosmopolitan magazine.
She had reached the final 10 of the Star in a Bra competition run by lingerie and swimwear retailer Curvy Kate, being chosen from over 700 entrants.
Alice, originally from Brundall, explained: “In March I entered Curvy Kate’s Star in a Bra competition, and although I didn’t win, I became an ambassador for the brand.
“Since then, I’ve worked with them on events that highlight issues surrounding body confidence, and I also volunteer with eating-disorder charities.
“So many women are trying to fit an ideal, but everyone has their natural size. Some of us are meant to be a size eight, and some aren’t – who you are inside is so much more important than a dress size.”
But Alice hasn’t always been as confident about her body after dropping to around 4st under the recommended weight for her height, 5ft 9ins, when her anorexia was at its worst.
One of the worries for Alice was that her father, James, had been diagnosed with cancer – which he has since recovered from.
She came back to Norfolk to take part in a Race For Life fun run, raising funds for Cancer Research UK, and her parents told her how worried they were about her.
Alice continued: “Like lots of women, I put on weight when I started university. I’d been quite slim, but drinking alcopops and cooking for myself meant the pounds gradually crept on.
“My New Year’s resolution after my first term was to go on a diet, and I lost three stone. I felt in control of my body – when in fact I became dangerously underweight.
“I had cut out whole food groups, and all I could think about were calories and exercise. I was exhausted, and knew I had a serious problem, but was so depressed I didn’t care if I died.”
Alice, who studied for her A-levels at the Hewett School, credits a gap year travelling with a friend in Asia as helping her to appreciate her life.
She also sought help from the Somerset and Wessex Eating Disorders Association (SWEDA). Some of the councillors who helped her now run an eating disorder help group called I-Eat, for which she has since gone on to volunteer for to show her appreciation for their help.
Alice added: “I started weekly counselling sessions and weigh-ins, and gradually put on a pound a week. Eventually, I reached a healthy goal weight of 9st 7lbs. And finally, with boobs and a bum, I started feeling comfortable with being a woman.”
The December edition of Cosmopolitan will be published this Thursday.