Eating occurs on a continuum. If completely free of weight and food worries and being an intuitive eating is on the right, then degrees of dieting and disordered eating are somewhere in the middle (not free from weight or food worries, exercising to burn calories, eating “healthy”, weight not stable would describe this area) then eating disorders would be the left end of the spectrum.
Maybe you are feeling disconnected from why you eat what or how much you eat……
Or you can’t get going with an exercise routine or feel like you should……,
If you experience anything other than free eating (depicted on the right side of the eating continuoum, then you could benefit from nutrition therapy.
It is considered normal to be concerned about , calories, carbs, fat in this culture. As I have said earlier, I was taught to teach people to “watch” these in order to manage their weight. But really, what is empowering about constantly being vigilent about food intake? Especially when we were born to be able to manage our weight just fine through our connection with hunger and fullness.
You can live life without meticuosly monitoring exercise or food. By healing your relationship with food and body image concerns, you can maintain a lifestyle that includes a healthful diet, desire to move your body in ways you enjoy and ability to be resilient to the culture’s message to NOT listen to your inner authority about how to live and love your body and life.
If you are not quite sure how healthy your relationship with food is, take this quiz:
If you have decided that you want to pursue treatment visit here for resources to get the right treatment for you.
It is possible to live a life free of eating problems or weight worries! Please don’t wait one more day to start or strenthen your commitment to your journey for peace and sanity with food. And remember, your level of freedom with food and weight concerns will mirror your level of freedom with other issues in your life!
Eating disorders are serious, potentially life-threatening disorders. They vary in intensity and there is no “look” that indicates you have an eating problem.
Treatment for all eating disorders is best achieved with a multidisciplinary team approach that includes the client, dietitian, therapist and physician. Nutrition therapy will explore your relationship with weight and food and partner together set gradual and attainable goals to improve your health and eating as well as learn to stop using disordered eating symptoms. Goals may include:
Below are some of the common characteristics of different eating problems.
Anorexia Nervosa is characterized by weight loss and self-starvation.
Medical symptoms that occur in time:
Bulimia Nervose is described by secretive cycles of eating followed by purging.
Medical symptoms that develop over time include:
For more information and visuals about Bulimia visit here.
EDNOS is basically a combination of anorexia without significant weight loss or low weight compared to height.
Can have any or all symptoms of anorexia as well as compensatory behaviors from bulimia.
Recurrent episodes of binge eating.
An episode of binge eating is characterized by both of the following:
Emotional and behavioral
A 2007 study asked 9,282 English-speaking Americans about a variety of mental health conditions, including eating disorders. The results, published in Biological Psychiatry, found that 3.5% of women and 2.0% of men had binge eating disorder during their life.
Hudson JI, Hiripi E, Pope HG Jr, and Kessler RC. (2007). The prevalence and correlates of eating disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication. Biological Psychiatry, 61(3):348-58. doi:10.1016/j.biopsych.2006.03.040. Combining information from several sources, Eric Stice and Cara Bohon found that:
For further reading:
Westerberg, D. P., & Waitz, M. (2013). Binge-eating disorder. Osteopathic Family Physician, 5(6), 230-233.
All information compiled from: https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/learn/by-eating-disorder/bed
Citation: De Coverley Veal, DMW: “Exercise Dependence”, British Journal of Addiction
Volume 82, Issue 7, pages 735–740, July 1987
Do not allow anyone (professional or not) to judge the intensity of your eating problem based on “if you look like you have an eating disorder”. Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes. Please remember, the beliefs and feelings you have about food, weight and how much or little you are flourishing in your life say so much more about how well you are. No matter how long you have been struggling, it is not too early or late to begin the process of healing your relationship with food and body image issues.
Take the first step to feeling more comfortable in your skin and eating "normally".