Eating Disorders—such as anorexia, bulimia and binge eating—include extreme emotions, attitudes and behaviors around weight and food issues. Eating disorders are serious emotional and physical problems that can have life-threatening consequences for both men and women.
If you struggle with body image, compulsive exercise, self-esteem, or disordered eating, do not suffer alone. Help and support are available.
Other conditions often accompany eating disorders, such as major depression, anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, sleeping trouble and substance abuse. Often it is family members or close friends who first draw attention to the root problem by noticing common symptoms, including:
- Withdrawing from friends and family, especially to avoid comments about their physical appearance
- Avoiding meals and group situations involving food
- Preoccupation with a specific aspect of appearance.
- Obsession over calories consumed or burned during exercise
I believe that freedom from disordered eating is possible. Treatment often involves reconnecting with your body’s inherent hunger and fullness cues which most people with eating issues have lost touch with. We also want to understand the function of your eating disorder, because it can begin as a way to cope with pain and stress. Learning skills such as mindfulness, assertiveness, and emotional distress tolerance can support you in choosing to let go of your eating disorder.
I have been on staff at La Luna Center, an intensive outpatient program for eating disorder treatment, since its inception in 2003. I currently supervise staff, see individual clients, and lead a monthly Psychodrama training group for clinicians and students.