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What Health Professionals Should Know about Eating Disorders

What Health Professionals Should Know about Eating Disorders

What Health Professionals Should Know about Eating Disorders By Alex Raymond, RD, LD Bringing knowledge and awareness to the health field about eating disorders is something that I am particularly passionate about. Probably due to my own experiences of working with those in recovery! I firmly believe that doctors, therapists, dietitians and other health professionals should be well equipped to screen for ALL eating disorders. Early detection and intervention is key for treating the disease. If we are able to get those struggling into proper treatment early on, it allows for the eating disorder voice to be challenged and quieted sooner. Unfortunately, in the health field there is TONS of stigmas surrounding eating disorders. I think the media and even what we learn in school perpetuate these stigmas. I recall in my dietetics classes, we barely touched the subject of eating disorders. When we did, I remember learning just the basics and reading a case study about a woman who was severely struggling with anorexia.  If you don’t get the proper education surrounding eating disorders, so much information about the truth of the disease can be missed. I love busting myths. After all, it’s part of my job as an eating disorder dietitian 😉 I hope this blog will shed some light to the health field on the truth of eating disorders. And most importantly, what you should be keeping in the back of your mind to screen your patients for an eating disorder. 1)   Eating disorders don’t discriminate. I can’t emphasize this enough! You can probably find information about this everywhere on our blog. It’s so important to...
Smart Women on “Conquering Emotional Eating”

Smart Women on “Conquering Emotional Eating”

Conquering Emotional Eating with the REBEL Approach By Dana Magee, RD, LD, CLT This past week I had the pleasure of presenting for an amazing group of women that follow the Smart Women series at Anne Arundel Medical Center. I had the honor of presenting alongside some superstar practitioners in the eating disorder community, Ann Caldwell and Dr. Ramona Seidel. The topic of the evening was “Conquering Emotional Eating”. Having a full audience with almost every seat filled was reassurance that information about this topic is important and sought after! It is important to also point out that there was a range of body shapes and sizes. Emotional eating is not reliant on the BMI. Emotional eating occurs when we are eating for a reason other than hunger or pleasure. First off, it is normal to enjoy food! It is also normal to eat along with emotions. The problem occurs when eating and food becomes overused as a coping mechanism, when it is the only tool in the toolbox. Emotional eaters may crave specific foods, and it may come on suddenly and intensely. Alternatively, physiological hunger comes on gradually, comes and goes, and any food can satisfy it. Ann and Dr. Seidel discussed in their presentations how this emotional eating can be disordered eating, compulsive eating or binge eating.   Binge eating disorder is defined below.   REBEL Dieting If you follow our social media or our blog you probably can guess where my presentation started… REBEL Dieting. The reason for this is that dieting can start off as something very innocent, but it becomes a slippery slope that can grow...
All About Binge Eating Disorder Treatment

All About Binge Eating Disorder Treatment

Not sure where to go for treatment of binge eating disorder? Did you know binge eating disorder is the most common eating disorder in the United States? If you or a loved one are suffering from this terrible illness, look no further for binge eating disorder treatment. Binge eating disorder treatment will likely involve a team including your Registered Dietitians, therapist, and primary care doctor. Support groups, art therapy, and psychology appointments may also be helpful if recommended. Tips for Managing Binge Eating Disorder If you struggle with Binge Eating Disorder, here are some things you can do to get started. 1) Identify your triggers- Stress, boredom, fatigue, can all be triggers that can lead to emotional, binge eating. A good first step is to start journaling and identify trends. Remember not to be judgmental this is just to practice awareness. 2) Practice forgiveness- Along the same lines, the road to recovery is never a straight line. There are going to be bumps in the road and forgiving yourself and moving forward will help you keep going. 3) “Normalize” eating patterns- Eat balanced meals including carbohydrates, protein and fat to help keep you full and satisfied. It is also helpful to eat every 3-4 hours to keep your blood sugars stable and prevent you from getting over hungry. 4) Plan ahead- In order to do this try thinking of your meals one day at a time according to your schedule. Will you need to pack snacks or lunch? If you are working late is there a 10 minute meal you can make when you get home or purposely make...
Overcoming Overeating, A book Review

Overcoming Overeating, A book Review

How Can I Overcome Overeating? I recently read Overcoming Overeating, a book designed to help readers end the diet/ binge cycle and to start a healthier life. It speaks about compulsive eaters, people who have become preoccupied with food. Their lives have been organized by this restriction of food so much that it has turned into a way of life. Unfortunately this means that those people have relinquished control of their eating. Society has convinced us that in order to be thin and happy we must go on restrictive diets and follow crazy rules. Because of this, we have entered a diet/binge cycle. We diet for as long as we possibly can until we finally “break” and enter the binge part of this cycle. It would be impossible to maintain these diets as we restrict foods that our bodies both crave and need. There are a few tools that this book suggests to stop this vicious cycle. We need to put an end to the avoidance of certain foods. To do this we have to “legalize foods,” remove all of the taboos, restricts, and external controls. By doing this it gives us the freedom to choose what we want to it. If we keep “forbidden” foods around so that we always know they are there we are less likely to binge on them. Many times this binge happens right before a restrictive diet is about to start because it is the “last chance” you have to eat that food. By allowing all foods in moderation it takes away the immediate binge of that particular food. It is important to...

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