The Price You Pay When You Trash Your Body


For about a decade, I trashed my body. I entertained disordered eating habits. I polluted my body with drugs and alcohol. I lived off little to no sleep. I pushed myself way too hard in order to ‘succeed’. I thought Starbucks’ skinny caramel lattes were healthy and an acceptable meal substitute. I lived off pain killers every day for almost a year when I was a dancer at the Moulin Rouge. I was nursing a torn hammy, which I pushed through for 12 shows a week doing Can Can kicks and jump splits (ouch!). I quickly opted for antibiotics whenever I had a sniffle. I took cortisol tablets and creams whenever my eczema would rear its ugly head. And I burnt the candle at both ends many, many times until my body conked out.

That was in 2010. But, even today, I am still paying the price. I am undoing years and years of damage.

Today, I have trabecular oedema in my right hip from dancing and pushing through that torn hammy. This causes lower back pain and pretty much puts my whole body out of whack. I wake up in pain pretty much every day. I am twenty-seven years old and I wake up in pain… Seriously!

I am not saying all this to get sympathy. I am sharing this with you simply to show you the repercussions of how I treated my body when I was younger. When you put things into perspective, this is nothing compared to what some people are going through. People are dying. Others have serious illnesses and diseases.

I want to share this with you because I don’t want you to trash your beautiful body and pay the price later. I see too many beautiful women self-sabotaging, letting their Mean Girl win, and feeling like total crap along the way.

But we have to stop.

I am so grateful for everything I have been through because it has led me to where I am today. I am on the mend. However, my body is still paying the price. Here's what I've learned from my journey:

  • Treat your body like a temple.
  • Honour it.
  • Cherish it.
  • Fuel it.
  • And nourish the heck out of it.

We all know what our bodies need in order to thrive. So, do it, my dear friend. Do whatever it takes in order for you to feel 100%. Don’t push your self-care to the bottom of your “to do” list.

It’s time to make self-care your number one priority so that you can show up in life as the best version of you.  Here’s a list of some of the things I do most days in order to nourish my temple:

  • I eat organic foods.
  • I meditate twice a day and do some gentle yoga in the morning.
  • dry body brush every morning.
  • I get to bed by 9 p.m. and get eight hours of sleep every night.
  • I drink loads of filtered water and herbal teas throughout the day.
  • I lather my body in coconut oil and only use organic products on my body.
  • I hardly ever wear makeup and don’t use perfume.
  • I have plants in my office and around my home to filter the air.
  • I have three large Himalayan salt lamps around my home and office.
  • I drink a glass of bone broth each day.
  • I make sure I connect with Mother Nature every day.
  • I do something for myself each day, whether it’s reading in the bath, swimming in the ocean, or walking in nature.

This list might seem quite long. But, I don’t even think twice about it now. These habits have become so embedded that it’s just like brushing my teeth. I never have to think about self-care; I just do it.

The above list is what works for me. Now, I want to hear what lights you up, my darling. Share with me in the comments below what you do each day to nourish your sweet temple. Share your tips and secrets to inspire our beautiful tribe.

Before I go, together I want us to make a public declaration here to stop trashing our bodies. Let’s honour these beautiful temples we were given. If you're in — if this rings true — share with me in the comments below how you plan to nourish your body.

Thank you for all the love you pour into the comments; you not only inspire the heck out of me, but everyone in our beautiful community. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Comments (29)

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    • Ellie
      May 5, 2014

      HI Melissa,
      I've recently found you out and other health/wellness sisters to encourage transformation and healthy changes in my life and choices i make.

      I have recently made the switch to organic, juicing, filtered water, yoga, meditation etc..after years of self sabotage without realise. I am extremely motivated when it comes to health but find myself continuing to binge drink when catching up with old friends who i don't see often. I do tend to get very guilty and angry at myself the next day although i know i make these choices myself.

      Is there any tips you can give me in these catch up situations when everyone else is drinking the night away. I don't want to miss out on nights out but do want to miss the damaging effects and hangovers. I'd like this to be a life-long change and want to be able to enjoy a G&T in moderation but stop the binging. Any tips would be much appreciated!
      Await your reply
      E x

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        May 6, 2014

        Hi Ellie,

        Thanks for your comment.

        I used to be exactly the same. Why can't you go out and just enjoy your friends company? Why do you have to drink? I would ask yourself why do I feel the need to self sabotage with alcohol?

        Also you could try do other things with your friends instead, like having them over for dinner instead of going out.

        Good luck my love and let me know how you go.


      • May 26, 2014

        This was exactly what i wanted and needed to read.
        I've just returned from a 5 day silent retreat in Bali and realised in that time that the things that i deemed as "routines" are actually the rituals that make me feel and be and live a life that is AMAZING and filled with gratitude.
        It's tricky breaking the cycles of berating myself when i don't do these soul nourishing rituals BUT... these HAVE to be my priorities because they create the best version of myself which ripples out into my surrounding world and community.
        And that includes meditating and sitting with the uncomfortable things in my life, taking the time to enjoy the stillness.
        Thanks for the post :)
        p.s. For anyone on the Gold Coast, we run the Miami Organic Markets where EVERYTHING is certified organic! Every single stall holder must have certification. Not only is the produce sensational, It is the absolute delight of my week to get to work there and be in the most AMAZING COMMUNITY!!! I get up 2.30am for the day and it is the best day.

        • Melissa Ambrosini
          May 27, 2014

          Thank you so much for sharing Tia. Do you have a link to the market or an address so we can share it with everyone?

    • May 26, 2014

      Oh Mel this was a beautiful read. I had to share it with my tribe on fb. Lovely work.

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        May 27, 2014

        Thank you so much honey and thank you for sharing it.


    • Jodi
      May 26, 2014

      Oh sweet Jesus did ya have to Facebook this post right now? You interrupted my planning for a Monday Champagne rampage.

      But seriously, I came close to death at the end of last year with anorexia weighing only 36kgs. I have done so much damage to my body but I got my shit together and survived.

      I'm in the process of transforming my life by following your example, well the planning stage I haven't actually done anything yet.

      But as I'm about to take that leap I all of a sudden have gone from sheer excitement to sheer terror hence my Champagne night I'm planning tonight. Ok well was planning until I went on fb lol

      J x

    • May 26, 2014

      Baby girl this is so ridiculoulsy timely! Just today in the shower, I was thinking, 'why do I wake up in agony every morning?'

      Back pain, tight shoulders... it's crazy. xo

    • Brelynn
      May 26, 2014

      Hi Melissa, I really like this article. I am a HUGE self sabatoger. It feels like every time I try my addiction to sugar gets the better of me. I am also concerned because organic is expensive. I am highly motivated to be healthy, like I love the idea of that lifestyle and I really want to until I attempt to and then I give in to cravings. I know it's getting close though, where everything comes together so I was wondering if you have any advice. Thank you so much

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        May 27, 2014

        Hey Brelynn,

        It's time to stop letting your Mean Girl win. You have been letting her run the show for far too long now. Nourish your beautiful temple because you love to honey and take the steps to do that.


    • Grace
      May 26, 2014

      Good on you!
      Each morning I wake up, I practice some yoga asanas, meditate and journal. I talk to my angels and set an intention for the day. I make a juice each day and drink as much water as I can get my hands on. I smile at people and try to be as happy and soak up as much joy as possible. Its not easy everyday but I try.

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        May 27, 2014

        Simply beautiful honey.

        I love it!


    • stina hollesen
      May 26, 2014

      Hi Ellie, I can relate to your situation and over the last 6-8 months I've found myself often not joining in on the alcoholic drinks but still being at the parties having equally fun! When I ocationally do chose to have some drinks my inflammation saviour is a glass of coconut water with a spoon full of turmeric powder before bed. Next day plenty of green juices and lemon water.. Alcohol messes our insides up but this helps me bounce back :)

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        May 27, 2014

        Nice tip to rebalance honey. Thanks for sharing.


    • May 26, 2014

      Oh a nice kick up the pants at just the right time! Time to come home to more stillness and time in nature, and far more patience with myself and loving words to my body. Yes xx

    • Tyleah
      May 26, 2014

      My body had recently just let me know how badly I treated it... I used to be in a toxic relationship, had a stressful job, and spent all my spare time volunteering for an animal rescue group which also was highly stressful. I drank alcohol a lot in my uni years and was on the pill for over 10 years which also didn't help. Only recently my eczema broke out so bad I would refuse to get out of bed, I would cry myself to sleep and i wouldn't even let my fiancé look at me naked at one point. It's not only until now where I am teaching myself to relax again and take time for me, paired with fuelling my body with the right things that it's slowly starting to repair itself and my eczema is getting better. If someone had told me 2 years ago what I'm going through now I would be horrified. Now my body is my number 1 priority and will continue to be and like you said a lot of those things come naturally now in my everyday routine

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        May 27, 2014

        Well done sweetie. Very proud of you for taking the time to nourish your beautiful temple. It's the little things we do each day that matter.


    • Kona
      June 5, 2014

      This is a beautiful and inspiring article. I know all of the things I need to be doing but I still don't do them :( I am causing damage to my body even though I eat organic, etc...by drinking too much alcohol and eating fattening food to deal with stress and anxiety.
      I will try harder and do better.

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        June 5, 2014

        Choose loving things that are going to nourish your beautiful temple darling.


    • Holly
      June 6, 2014

      Hi beautiful! You have been inspiring me so much lately I can't get enough of your blog! I wake up every morning and start my day with apple cider vinegar in warm water, then I usually hit the gym, go for a walk, practice yoga, or drink some hearbal tea. I drink plenty of water throughout the day but the water I drink is from a tap... Is using a bobo water bottle with a built in filter the best way to make sure I'm getting clean filtered water?

      • Melissa Ambrosini
        June 6, 2014

        Hi sweetie,

        Thank you so much for your kind words.

        I am not too familiar with those bottles but they must be better than tap water. I have a filter on my tap which you could look into also.


    • June 23, 2015

      Hi beauty! Such a random question but do you ever drink high quality himalayan sea salt in your water throughout the day or in the morning to balance your adrenals? I read that this is fantastic for women. What do you think? xxx

      • Melissa
        June 24, 2015

        Hi Danielle,

        I have in the past but at the moment I am taking these minerals and they seem to be working great for me. But please always do what feels right for you hun ;)


    • September 3, 2018

      Thank you for your honesty. I'm curious about you not using perfume. I've heard it can contain some toxic elements but surely there are healthy natural options? I sometimes use doterra oils for immune defence and wind up smelling like apple pie

      • September 5, 2018

        Hey Nicola, I personally only use doTERRA essential oils as my perfume because almost all perfumes are highly toxic. My fave doTERRA oils for perfumes are Whisper, Rose, and Jasmine. Try those... they smell delish and you won't smell like apple pie. xx

        • September 6, 2018

          Your response was perfectly timed! I just listened to your Essential Oils podcast ep today. Thanks Melissa x

        • September 13, 2018

          YAY honey. What did you get out of it?

    • September 13, 2018

      I found the Essential Oils podcast was both confirmation that essential can works in SUPPORT of an overall holistic approach to health & also your comments about doing away with your perfumes were very interesting. And also using the oils to support health like a 'medicine cabinet' x

      • September 19, 2018

        They sure can be a massive support and act like nature's 'medicine cabinet'. They are the best! Enjoy them my love. xx

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