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Eating Disorder Recovery During the Holidays

Eating Disorder Recovery During the Holidays

By Alex Raymond, RD, LD. Aah, the holidays are right around the corner…… Even though Christmas stuff has been out in the stores since August. Sure, the holidays can be a joyful time for many of us. I personally remember loving the holidays growing up. I got to travel to my grandparents’, hang out by fire, eat some cookies, and most importantly, I didn’t have to go to school. Nowadays, the holidays are a bit different… I wind up traveling to see my mom or dad who live out west. My apartment sadly doesn’t have a fireplace, but I’ll snuggle under a blanket. And, I still eat cookies… As wonderful as the holidays can be, they can also be extremely stressful. When healing from an eating disorder, being around food, maybe moving less, hanging out with family, can all be triggers to increased ED thoughts about food and body. With many of my clients, we spend time discussing these triggers and possible healthy coping tools. That’s why I created this holiday guide. I wanted to give my clients space to brainstorm ideas about the holidays (struggles, excitements, plans, worries…etc) and different coping tools to use. You can refer back to this guide throughout the holidays when you feel you need a reminder of what to do. I’d encourage you to add to it and to use with various members of your treatment team. Click here to Download the Guide to ED Recovery During Holidays Worksheet     I also wanted to use this blog to talk about some coping skills to use, especially on the big family gathering days:   ...
Food Free End of the Year Rewards!

Food Free End of the Year Rewards!

Finding Ways to Reward Yourself Without Food It seems that in the society we live in today we tend to either not reward ourselves or reward ourselves and our children with “things”.  Many of the “things” we use include food or special treats. While there is nothing wrong with celebrating with food, it can become a problem when it replaces building relationships or spending time with others.  Food is meant to be enjoyed and to fuel our bodies, and it does a great job of doing that.  We are then taught that these rewards should be very rich foods we start to associate these foods with being good, being taken care of, or succeeding. So this year when your child brings home their report card with straight A’s, or perhaps a B or a C in a class they particularly struggled with and worked hard to earn; or are on their best behavior running errands during the day; or complete their chores for the week reward them with TIME, affection, love, activities with the individual child without siblings. Give them the verbal validation of “I’m so proud of you!  I see how hard you have worked and how much time you have spent studying and it has really paid off.  Mommy and daddy are so proud of you and we love you so much.” Build up these relationships to reward hard work and good behavior, or just because! Remember you deserve rewards as well! Here is a list of some creative things to try to reward good behavior (yours or a family members) that don’t only revolve around food.  Think about...
Bobbi Boteler RD, LD, CEDRD: Helps clients and their families recover

Bobbi Boteler RD, LD, CEDRD: Helps clients and their families recover

Bobbi Boteler Continues to Support Her Clients in Eating Disorder Recovery I have had the honor of watching Bobbi blossom into an amazing nutrition professional. She started with our practice over ten years ago while she was a dietetics student at the University of Maryland. She had already been in recovery from her own eating disorder for about five years and was ready to help others begin their journey of treatment of their own eating disorder. Bobbi brings an enormous amount of knowledge, compassion and empathy into her work with clients each day. She brings enormous passion and dedication to help her clients heal from eating disorders and also helps them discover tools to help clients live a rich and meaningful life as they separate themselves from their eating disorders.   How can Bobbi help? As Bobbi helps clients face their food fears, she will help clients manage their anxiety around food and will even share meals and snacks with her clients as they learn to push past their fears and nourish themselves. Bobbi has an incredible ability to meet clients where they are and to nudge them to go outside of their comfort zone and take the next right step toward recovery, Bobbi brings such genuine caring and kindness to each session, her clients are able to tolerate and eventually even enjoy food again. Our clients LOVE Bobbi!   How does Bobbi work with a team? Bobbi is a strong, dedicated member of each client’s treatment team and spends enormous amounts of time coordinating care with physicians, psychotherapists, school counselors, psychiatrists, parents and loved ones of those struggling...
From College Girl to College Girl: The 10 Most Important Things We Learned During College

From College Girl to College Girl: The 10 Most Important Things We Learned During College

By Alex Raymond and Shelby Santin This is a throwback blog! I wrote this with my friend Shelby Santin when we were in college. I edited it a bit to make sure that it aligns with my message today. I hope you enjoy it!  Are you in college or about to start college? You may have noticed that we’ve been less active on social media the past few weeks. We took a short hiatus to celebrate our graduation! That’s right, we just graduated from the University of Maryland with a Bachelors of Science Degree in Dietetics. Real world here we come! Even though we are technically college graduates, From College Girl to College Girl still holds a special place in our hearts. To start off the summer right, we would like to share with you some (there are MANY) of the most important things we learned during college: College Girl to College Girl Tips: 1) Spend Less Time Comparing. Focus on you instead of focusing on what everyone around you is doing. Remind yourself everyday that you are unique and different. There are going to be so many opportunities to compare, but instead repeat some of your favorite positive affirmations! 2) Get enough sleep … but stay up late sometimes. “No one ever says they wished they slept more in college.” It’s true! Sure, you definitely need to make sure you are getting enough sleep to maintain your health, but when your friends are hanging out late at night, and you have to get up for an 8am… It’s okay to stay up with them every once in awhile!...
How a Dietitian Changed My Life

How a Dietitian Changed My Life

  How a Dietitian Changed My Life I am living a full and vibrant life thanks to the patience, guidance, knowledge and inspiration of Rebecca Bitzer. She is so much more than a dietitian to me, but without her expertise in nutrition, I know that I would not be in such a strong and wonderful state of recovery. Until I was faced with my life-altering diagnosis of bulimia, I believed my thoughts and food patterns were normal. Luckily, my mom quickly took to researching treatment, therapists and dietitians, where she found Rebecca’s website. I could breathe again Meeting with Rebecca gave me a new view of my eating disorder and I left my first session feeling I could breathe again for the first time in months. She gave me hope and took action right away- she gave me ‘homework’, helped me find positive coping tactics, worked with me on my food logs, talked with me about my food ‘fears’, and always had new ways to keep me engaged. Dieting thinking was part of the problem I learned that my eating disorder was not about food, but without Rebecca’s help it would have been near impossible for me overcome the trouble I had at meals, or the distorted views I had of ‘dieting’, to heal the causes of ED. Support is key From the very beginning, she helped me understand that in order to recover, I needed to be honest with myself, and share honestly with her as well. I didn’t hold back logging my food or recounting exactly what happened if I acted on symptoms. Rebecca never made me feel ashamed if...

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