The portrayal of Princess Diana in the Netflix series The Crown has raised many questions about bulimia and how it actually affects people

While there are many assumptions made about bulimia and eating disorders in general; many of them have been turned on their heads by revelations of the late princesses struggles.

READ MORE: Mixed reactions to never-before-seen pics of Princess Diana out & about with friends

People with eating disorders don’t always look sick

Although an eating disorder is an illness linked to mental health and has some physical effects, people with eating disorders don’t look a specific way and like Diana, some look in good health.
According to General Practioner Dr Linda, eating disorders are about your relationship with food and the effect of that relationship on your weight is a byproduct.

“Many people have eating disorders and don’t even know it because they don’t look how they think people with eating disorders do,” she says.

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Princess Diana’s former butler claims he ‘enabled’ her bulimia

Eating for comfort is not healthy

Binge eating is more common than we think, we sometimes call if comfort eating or breaking from a diet, but continuing to eat after you’re full is never healthy.
“We sometimes take a ‘cheat day’ too far trying to fit in as many of the foods we love as possible, thanks to TV culture we can also cry over a tub of ice-cream and eat the whole thing for comfort… there are many names for binge eating that make it sound less unhealthy than it actually is,” says Dr Linda.

Although we do not consider these habits an eating disorder, Dr Linda says these habits show an unhealthy relationship with food seeing it as either a comfort (which it should not) or being so deprived through the week that your cheat day actually turns into a day od binge eating which is worse for your health than allowing yourself reasonable treats throughout the week.

READ MORE: How to control comfort eating

Purging isn’t normal

Without even thinking, many people bring up there food after overindulging. This is called purging.

People suffering from bulimia purge to rid themselves of the food they’ve eaten to minimise the effects it has on their weight.
Whether purging is done to ease the discomfort of overeating or the consequences it may have on your waistline, the health implications are the same.


Needing to purge after eating means you are not eating for the right reasons or you can’t stop eating when you should.

While All4Women endeavours to ensure health articles are based on scientific research, health articles should not be considered as a replacement for professional medical advice. Should you have concerns related to this content, it is advised that you discuss them with your personal healthcare provider.