James McVey from The Vamps has described how he struggled with his body image after coming out the I’m A Celebrity jungle.
McVey was a contestant in the 2018 series of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, but he said he came out of the show the thinnest he has ever been.
He told talkRADIO’s Eamonn Holmes: “I knew I had problems with my eating several years ago but coming out of the jungle I realised I still had issues that I had not addressed properly.
“I could see that I looked really skinny but I also had a six-pack again. I was trying my best to hold onto that physique after the jungle.”
The Vamps guitarist said he had previously struggled with an eating disorder when he started the band.
“From that moment, I was off on tour for years at a time,” he said.
“There were not many things in my life that I was able to control and I think without recognising it, I used food as that outlet.”
McVey said that social media had made his eating disorder worse as he followed a number of bodybuilding accounts.
“I thought that in order to be popular or accepted I needed to look a certain way,” he said.
“I starved myself and eating peculiar diets and those things hand-in-hand let to me being in quite a peculiar mind-set.
“It was weird what I was doing but I had gone so far down this way that I could not find a way out.”
Psychotherapist Lucy Beresford told Eamonn that people with eating disorders often use food as a way of maintaining control.
“For some people, controlling the intake of food becomes the way of managing your emotions because it is something very physical that they can do when their emotions swirling are not something they can control,” he said.
“You have to become very alert for the way you use food as a coping strategy.”