Disabled Nottingham woman has eating disorder after monitoring food costs as prices rise

ITV News Central Correspondent Peter Bearne spoke to Anne Vivian-Smith who describes herself as 'collateral damage' in the cost of living crisis.

A warning this report discusses eating disorders.

A disabled woman from Bilborough in Nottingham says she has developed an eating disorder as she rations meals to save money.

Anne Vivian-Smith has a neurodegenerative condition and uses a wheelchair.

She relies on disability benefits and her husband's salary as a university administrator. But her energy bills have already tripled this year and she doesn't yet know what she'll be paying from tomorrow when the energy prices rise.

"It's no longer heating and eating, it's now heating and eating and washing, it's heating and eating and washing and washing your clothes and only one of those can you have."

She says monitoring what food she buys and the cost of heating it up, has had an impact on her health. By the time she's gone through all those checks, she can easily no longer want to eat at all, leaving her with an eating disorder.

"A bit like checking how many calories there are in the food, you also check how much it's going to cost to buy, and then how much it's going to cost to heat, and once all of that is calculated in, well I can talk myself out of eating it.

Tomorrow energy prices will rise and the average household energy bill will rise from £1,971 to a frozen £2,500 under the energy price guarantee announced by Prime Minister Liz Truss earlier this month.

"We've been able to keep our heads above water, our concern is that after tomorrow we won't be waving but drowning.

"We have lots of people saying it MAY be this bad, it COULD go to this and that's terrifying.

"I'm clearly not important, I'm clearly collateral damage, it's obviously much more important to make sure that somebody who earns more than £150,000 has a tax break than it is for me to get up in the morning and be frightened about whether I'm going to receive my benefits any more."

The Department for Work and Pensions said in a statement that almost six million £150 Disability Cost of Living payments worth around £900 million have been processed.

There is support here for people living with eating disorders and below.