Eating in secret and other embarrassing side effects of dieting.

I consulted with a client the other day who wanted to admit something embarrassing. The admission started out like so many others that I’ve heard: “I’ve never told anyone this but… when everyone is in bed, sometimes I sneak into the kitchen and eat foods I am not supposed to. I feel out of control, like I cannot stop myself, eat more than I want to and end up feeling panicked and guilty. What is WRONG with me?!” While I am thrilled that my clients feel comfortable enough to share these intimate details, I am sad that they feel so embarrassed. I am also angry that, […]

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Orthorexia is NOT healthy eating

Orthorexia nervosa is a serious problem. It is loosely defined as an obsession for healthy food. In extreme cases, starvation can occur if the person refuses to eat any food they deem “impure” or harmful to their health. The biggest catch is that what is considered “impure” or unhealthy is decided by the sufferer, and is often arbitrary. Sure, they may have read that sugar or saturated fats are “bad” but these claims are then taken to the extreme. Rather than avoiding eating too much of these foods or ingredients on a regular basis, they are avoided at all costs. Also, […]

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Where to turn when extreme dieting (ultimately) fails

Although I help people every day manage their weight, I also work with people with eating disorders. My counseling techniques do change depending on my client but one thing always remains the same: extreme dieting is bad. Understanding the difference between normal, everyday improvements with eating and extreme dieting can be tricky. Explaining this difference to anyone who does not have a skewed relationship with food (and even to those with this problem) can be a challenge. Extreme dieting is a problem for so many reasons since both physical and mental health is compromised. Unfortunately, a new trend is emerging […]

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Are my eating habits normal? Use this tool to know when to reach out for help

There are a few ways to screen for an eating disorder. One short and easy questionnaire is called the SCOFF. SCOFF is an acronym that is used to help people & professionals remember the specific questions. It is touted as being simple, memorable, easy to apply and score. It is designed to raise suspicion of the presence of disordered eating rather than to diagnose. It is mostly used by health professionals but since it is easy to understand, it can be used by anyone.  The SCOFF questions Do you make yourself Sick because you feel uncomfortably full?Do you worry you have lost Control […]

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Eating disorders: “simple” solution, complex issue

Eating disorders can be hard to understand. What seems like a straight forward “skewed vision of one’s body” is rarely this simple. Providing a fridge full of good food or begging people with an eating disorder to “just eat!” very rarely works. No matter how minor the problem seems to be (and it is common to scoff it off as not serious enough for therapy) professional help is needed to recover. One problem that tends to be underestimated is binge eating disorder. Unfortunately, many people who suffer from BED have the same body image problems as people with anorexia or […]

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skinny is the OLD “healthy”. Welcome to 2013!

Study upon study has proven that it is more important to focus on living/eating healthy rather than just “being skinny” for healthy living. One major issue that perpetuates the misconception that skinny = healthy is the fact that other health professionals (doctors, nurses, etc) often focus on weight to help decrease risk for certain diseases or disease progression. Although it is true that excessive weight (if all other aspects of lifestyle are disregarded) may put certain people at risk, there are far more aspects to look at when evaluating a persons health. Perpetuating the idea that higher weights translate into unhealthy […]

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How can binge eating be related to dieting?!

As discussed in earlier posts, binge eating can be a difficult problem to identify, especially by people who are suffering from it.After understanding that further dieting does not help reduce binging, the next challenge is to find ways to improve your relationship with food (among other things like self worth and self esteem). One of the first steps to decrease binge eating is to start eating 3 meals per day along with a few snacks. By eating regularly, you will avoid feeling deprived and very hungry, which contribute to binges. Your body will start to expect nourishment on a regular basis (rather than sporadically) […]

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