"I used to genuinely believe recovery from an eating disorder wasn't real," Demi Lovato shared

By Ally Mauch
December 26, 2020 03:15 PM

Demi Lovato is celebrating her body and helping her fans do the same.

The 27-year-old singer opened up about her eating disorder recovery in a candid post on Instagram Friday. Her lengthy caption came alongside a series of photos Lovato took in which she highlighted her stretch marks with gold glitter.

“I used to genuinely believe recovery from an eating disorder wasn’t real. That everyone was faking or secretly relapsing behind closed doors. ‘Surely she throws up here and there’, ‘she can’t POSSIBLY accept her cellulite’... those we’re just a few of the things that I used to tell myself growing up,” she began.

The “Sorry, Not Sorry” artist continued, “I’m so grateful that I can honestly say for the first time in my life - my dietitian looked at me and said ‘This is what eating disorder recovery looks like.’ In honor of my gratitude for the place I’m in today, this was a lil shoot I did by myself in quarantine this summer when I wanted to celebrate my stretch marks instead of being ashamed of them.”

“I started wearing actual glitter paint on my stretch marks to celebrate my body and all of it’s features (whether society views them as good OR bad) My stretch marks aren’t going away so might as well throw a lil glitter on em’ amiright? 😝✨,” she added.

Lovato then went on to share some words of encouragement with any of her fans who are going through the same things as she has.

“Also let this be a reminder to anyone who doesn’t think it’s possible: IT ACTUALLY IS 😱😱😩😩☺️☺️ YOU CAN DO IT. I BELIEVE IN YOU,” she wrote. “This year was tough.. be gentle on yourself if you slip up and remember to get right back on track because you’re WORTH THE MIRACLE OF RECOVERY 💖I LOVE YOU ✨.”

Lovato has long been open about her eating disorder struggles and how those struggles were part of what triggered her 2018 drug overdose. In March, she appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and spoke about feeling “controlled” by her team during her eating disorder recovery.

Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato
| Credit: Angelo Kritikos / @angelokritikos

“I lived a life for the past six years that I felt like wasn’t my own,” she said. “Because I struggled really hard with an eating disorder, yes, and that was my primary problem and then it turned into other things, but my life, I just felt was — I hate to use this word, but I felt like it was controlled by so many people around me.”

Lovato went on to share that her sugar intake was tightly monitored and “for many years” she didn’t have a birthday cake, eating watermelon cake with “fat-free whipped cream” on her birthday instead.

“I think at some point it becomes dangerous to try to control someone’s food when they’re in recovery from an eating disorder,” she said.

RELATED VIDEO: Demi Lovato Discusses Mental Health and Admits She's a 'Little Embarrassed' by Her Past 'Mistakes'

The star shared that her eating disorder “got worse and worse” and that she “asked for help and I didn’t receive the help that I needed …. So I was stuck in this unhappy position and here I am sober and I’m thinking to myself, ‘I’m six years sober but I’m miserable. I’m even more miserable than I was when I was drinking. Why am I sober?’”

At the time, Lovato told host Ellen DeGeneres that she reached out to her team but “felt completely abandoned” and began drinking again. Within three months of that, an overdose landed her in the hospital.

“Ultimately, I made the decisions that got me to where I am today, it was my actions that put me in the position that I’m in,” Lovato concluded. “I think it’s important that I sit here on this stage and tell you at home, or you in the audience, or you right here that if you do go through this, you yourself can get through it, you can get to the other side … As long as you take the responsibility, you can move past it and learn to love yourself the way you deserve to be loved.”

If you or someone you know is battling an eating disorder, please contact the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) at 1-800-931-2237 or go to