23-year-old Maya Pillay who struggled with anorexia for years before she was finally able to get the help she needed.
At age 19, the UK native began to obsessively exercise and diet in an attempt to lose weight, and it didn’t take long for things to spiral out of control.
Friends began to voice their concerns to Maya, but she insisted that she was just fine, and the conversations seemed to always stop there.
However, her unhealthy habits ended up landing her in a hospital on more than one occasion — and she eventually developed osteoporosis from malnutrition.
Maya finally reached out to her mother and was admitted to a rehabilitation program where she got the help she needed.
But along the way she realized there were still many others like her out there who were struggling with this disease.
While many of her friends had been open about their concerns for her health, none of them really seemed to know how to have an honest conversation with her about eating disorders.
That’s when Maya started a blog to give others insight on exactly what she was dealing with and to help teach others how to approach friends with similar struggles.
But her work was far from done, as she also started the Dragonfly Foundation which helps raise money for charities aimed at eating disorders.
Maya also speaks at schools in hopes of promoting body positivity while also encouraging teens to have open, honest conversations about anorexia.
Research has shown that having support from loved ones is extremely important for people dealing with eating disorders, and hopefully Maya’s work helps family and friends better understand and reach out to those in need.
[Image via Instagram.]