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Hits Radio presenter Gemma Atkinson, 35, has spoken out about how it “breaks” to see so many people who are suffering and recovering from eating disorders reach out to her on Instagram. The Emmerdale favourite hopes her daughter Mia – who she shares with Strictly Come Dancing pro Gorka Marquez – has a positive relationship with her body and food when she is older.
It breaks me.
It comes after Gemma shared a video of herself feeding Mia with her 1.4 million followers earlier today.
Alongside the short video, the Hollyoaks star began to write: “A question I’m ALWAYS asked about Mia is my hopes for her future, and honestly my main hope is that she’s happy and her relationship with food & her body is positive.
“I get a lot of DMs from people who are suffering from or recovering from eating disorders & it breaks me to think a person suffers from mental torture around food they need to survive & thrive.”
The soap actress went on to discuss how she is grateful she was brought up to enjoy her food when growing up.
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Gemma continued: “Growing up I had to have vegetables with my meals, there were no fizzy drinks in the house (which I’m now SO grateful for) but on a Friday as a family, we’d have a big chippy tea & stop for sweets or chocolate on the way home and eat them as we pleased over the weekend.
“As an adult, I understand why my mum chose to do that. She wanted mine & my sister’s health to be at the forefront of growing up but not deprive us of things we enjoy. It’s stuck with me too. I still have a weekly chippy or a pizza, my drink of choice is always water because dad used to tell me lions drink water & what kid doesn’t want to be as strong as a lion?!” she explained.
“We don’t have sweets in the cupboards at home. I only have them if I’m out at the cinema for example or get them in for special occasions of course! There weren’t any “good or bad” foods for us. It was just about the quantity of certain foods we ate. Veggies every day, sweets not every day.”
The TV star proceeded to talk about her “goals” with Mia, as she added: “Mia loves food and I’ll never deprive her of anything. My goal is to make mealtimes a family enjoyable time. Not a counting calories / fear of too many carbs / jumping on the scales after time which so many people do.”
Gemma, who currently presents Hits Radio, then encouraged her followers to seek help if they are suffering.
The mother-of-one divulged: “I hope anyone suffering with eating disorders gets the help they need and realises their worth.
“I don’t reply to the DMs asking my advice because truly I don’t know enough about it & I’d hate to give anyone the wrong advice or say the wrong thing. I see them though and some of you are so young,” she stated.
“Please speak about how you feel. Or chose an account on here to follow that helps you. Unfollow anyone who makes you feel anything negative about yourself. You’re more than just a body. More than just a target weight. You’re human. And you deserve health & happiness.”
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Once Gemma shared her message online, many fans waded in to express their thoughts on her statement.
One wrote to the actress: “Such a brilliant and important message!
“Balance and inclusion, not restriction.”
Another penned: “Once again Gemma nothing but sound advice. Well said.”
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A third person commented: “Well said. I was brought up to sit at the table. Mum cooked food every day.
“We might not have liked it all but we sat there and ate it or got nothing. Sitting trying to eat sprouts for hours was my pet hate and still is 50 years down the line.”
Gemma and Gorka welcomed their daughter Mia together in July last year.
The couple started dating after meeting on Strictly in 2017.
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