Jackie Goldschneider has struggled with an eating disorder for 18 years. The “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star recently got help at a recovery center.
“I think it’s really important to separate food from your feelings,” she says. “I just try and realize that food now is to nourish me. And it’s for celebration and enjoyment and I deserve to eat good food.”
Now as season 12 of the hit reality show returns, the 45-year-old is sharing her advice for others.
Star of “Real Housewives of New Jersey”
You recently went for treatment. What’s different now?
Last year was very, very stressful for me and I ended up losing some more weight and I realized that I still had a very big problem. This year I actually found the center and you’ll see the process of really intense recovery therapy. I also found out that my anorexia was having an effect on my heart.
I think people don’t realize how dangerous eating disorders can be. The past few years, it was very therapeutic for me to talk about it, but I think a lot of people noticed that I still had recovery to do and so I’m happy to be using my platform now to show people really how to get help if they’re struggling.
What advice do you have for young people?
An eating disorder can accelerate very quickly, so if you notice that you’re starting to take on some unhealthy habits, talk to somebody you trust. The Renfrew Center is where I went for help. You can call the National Eating Disorder Association helpline [800-931-2237] and they’ll walk you through how to get help.
What do you know now that you didn’t know you know then?
It is not worth it. Eating disorders rob you of so much enjoyment and so much comfort and they really can kill you. It’s a shame to suffer for so long. I wish I had done this earlier.