I’m Ryan Sheldon, and I’m in recovery from binge eating disorder (BED). Before being diagnosed in 2015, I truly believed eating disorders were a “female” thing, and I’d never even heard of BED. Turns out more than 10 million men suffer from eating disorders, and BED is the most common eating disorder of all.
In my early twenties, after trying all kinds of diets, and even starving myself my freshman year in college, to lose weight—I started thinking about food all the time. I woke up thinking about food. I’d obsessively plan out what I would eat that day, and the next. I started going for fast food between meals, sometimes hitting two different drive-throughs to get exactly what I was craving.
Finally being diagnosed with BED was a relief—knowing the thing I was suffering with was real and that I wasn’t alone gave me a sense of hope that I wanted to spread around. So I went public with my disorder, starting up a blog and Instagram account to share my story and hopefully help other men with eating disorders feel less alone.
When I’m not at work at an adtech company in Los Angeles, I’m writing or speaking as an advocate for men with eating disorders. These days you might also find me in New York, doing a photo shoot for my new side hustle as a brawn male model.
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Please share this post with friends and family in the Los Angeles area. We're all affected by mental health and addiction issues, and the more we can support each other, the easier it will be for people to seek help. This Is My Brave is proof that Storytelling Saves Lives.