"I would like to have a discussion about eating disorders, if I may," reads the first in a series of tweets by former Citizen TV anchor Joey Muthengi that reveal a startling dark side of broadcast stardom.
In the thread she shared on the morning of Sunday, August 9, the former 10 Over 10 host revealed that she would deliberately starve herself to maintain her skinny figure on TV.
She further disclosed that the obsession with being skinny started way back in school where skinny girls were considered the most attractive.
"I was looking back at some photos of myself in what you may consider my 'prime time' years and I honestly couldn't recognise myself.Holy Dave and his sister Joey Muthengi hard at work, the two siblings started the Muthengi Foundation back in 2014.
"I went to Caucasian schools for a majority of my teen/high school/college life and being thin was the in thing. If you couldn't show a bit of your hip bones and flat tummy, then go to the gym," she stated.
She further disclosed that when she got to high school, she would induce vomiting just to get rid of calories resulting to an eating disorder known as Bulimia.
"In high school I would eat all the food and throw up in the bathroom later. What they don't tell you about bulimia is that you end up consuming more calories that way.
"I got it under control for a few years after, then somehow I landed on TV. Then I stopped eating at all. I looked great in those dresses they gave me, but underneath I was suffering," she candidly added.
So dire was the situation that at some point, her mother was uncomfortable with her job after she walked into her kitchen with her sweatpants falling off.
"I felt so much pressure to maintain this image that I just stopped eating. Girls in the hallway would ask me..."My God Joey how do you stay so thin?" And I would just laugh and keep it moving.
"The job had stressed me to the point of me losing myself. Someone had sent me this pic of what I looked like before and thats when I decided to put my health first," she added.
Before her departure from the Kilimani-based station in 2018, Muthengi had hosted two shows including Day Break (formerly Power Breakfast) and 10 Over 10.
What is Bulimia?
Bulimia is a potentially life-threatening eating disorder where people can consume large quantities of then trying to compensate for that overeating by vomiting, taking laxatives or diuretics, fasting, or exercising excessively.
The disease presents behavioural signs including constantly checking one's body weight and comparing with others, eating large amounts of food, hoarding food and mood swings.
Effects of Bulimia
The disease presents serious effects including Cardiac complications, dehydration, Loss of potassium, and sodium from the body as well as ulcers, and pancreatitis.
Therapy is, however, recommended as part of the treatment for bulimia.Willis Raburu and former 10 Over 10 show host Joey Muthengi.
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