Demi Lovato Defends Those With Eating Disorders on Twitter

By Shawn Dwyer 11/18/14

The former Disney star once again took to her Twitter account to rail against public perception of the "isolating" disease.

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A longtime advocate for those battling anorexia and bulimia, and a sufferer of eating disorders herself, singer Demi Lovato went on Twitter to voice her vehement support for those suffering from the debilitating disease.

After describing eating disorders as a "mental illness [that] can be isolating," Lovato praised the Depression and Bipolar Disorder Alliance for helping her through her own struggles before going on her tweeting spree.

"Having an eating disorder doesn't show 'strength.' Strength is when you are able to overcome your demons after being sick and tired for so long," Lovato wrote. "There's a wide misconception that anorexia and/or bulimia is a choice and you often hear people say things like 'why doesn't she just start eating?' Or even 'just stop throwing up.'"

"It's the ignorance and lack of education on mental illnesses that continues to [put] mental health care on the back burner to Congress even though this is an epidemic that is sweeping our nation, and causing more and more tragedy every day," she continued.

In January 2011, Lovato entered rehab to deal with her ongoing depression that led to bulimia, and abusing drugs and alcohol. During treatment, she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and has remained strongly committed to her recovery ever since, even to the point of deciding to live in a sober house for a year.

Of course, Lovato is no stranger to using Twitter to speak out against addiction. Earlier this year, she railed against how Hollywood portrayed drug and alcohol abuse in the wake of Philip Seymour Hoffman's overdose death. She later scorned Lady Gaga for "glamorizing" eating disorders after the pop queen allowed performance artist Millie Brown to vomit on her during a performance at SXSW.

Lovato's latest Twitter spree wasn't directed at anyone in particular, but was not any less passionate. "Eating disorders do not discriminate. Neither does any other mental illness," she wrote. "These are deadly diseases that are taking lives daily...It's time we start taking mental illness as serious as physical illnesses."

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Shawn Dwyer is a writer, editor and content producer living in Los Angeles. You can find him on Linkedin.