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“Popcorn for breakfast! Why not? It’s a grain. It’s like, like, grits, but with high self-esteem.”

― James Patterson, The Angel Experiment

The best anti-body shaming national campaign day is here: Eat What You Want Day is a National U.S. awareness day that encourages individuals to eat whatever they want without having any regrets. Eat the double-decker hamburger and cheese fries, try new food, eat breakfast for dinner and go in for that second helping of ice cream. We live in a society where we are measured by how we look, how much we weigh, what dress size we buy and what we put into our bodies. Parents often shame each other for giving their kids fast food while social media makes us feel pressured to only consume a specific amount of calories each day, so we don’t “overdo” it. Eat What You Want Day is simply a fun day to explore your taste buds, try new food and break out of the box of calorie restriction that is dictated by our society.

A recent survey was taken, and Americans chose which foods they would consume daily if they didn’t have any guilty restrictions eating away at them. The following are the most common foods that Americans crave:

  • Pizza
  • Pasta
  • Hamburgers
  • Ice cream
  • Tacos or burritos
  • Chocolate
  • French fries
  • Donuts
  • Cake
  • Chips
  • Cheese
  • Cookies
Everything in moderation is okay

We live in a society where we taught to label foods as “good” or “bad” based on their nutritional value and calorie count when realistically everything in moderation is okay and is, good for you if it makes you feel good.

Eating disorders and balancing food

Eating disorders such as bulimia nervosa, anorexia nervosa and binge eating disorder all have a common ground: an obsession with body image, body weight, and food, however, these are not the underlying reasons that drive individuals to develop an eating disorder. Unhealthy emotional and mental trauma, past abuse, low self-esteem, poor coping skills, self-injury, mental health disorders, and substance abuse disorder are all common underlying triggers for developing an eating disorder. Although food is not necessarily the culprit, learning to have a healthy relationship with food while in recovery can be challenging. Many individuals struggle with issues of self-control when it comes time to food and body image, blurring the lines between rigidity and chaos. Finding a healthy balance is critical to be successful in recovery.

The post Eat What You Want Day: May 11 appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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Eat What You Want Day: May 11

“Popcorn for breakfast! Why not? It’s a grain. It’s like, like, grits, but with high self-esteem.”

― James Patterson, The Angel Experiment

The best anti-body shaming national campaign day is here: Eat What You Want Day is a National U.S. awareness day that encourages individuals to eat whatever they want without having any regrets. Eat the double-decker hamburger and cheese fries, try new food, eat breakfast for dinner and go in for that second helping of ice cream. We live in a society where we are measured by how we look, how much we weigh, what dress size we buy and what we put into our bodies. Parents often shame each other for giving their kids fast food while social media makes us feel pressured to only consume a specific amount of calories each day, so we don’t “overdo” it. Eat What You Want Day is simply a fun day to explore your taste buds, try new food and break out of the box of calorie restriction that is dictated by our society.

A recent survey was taken, and Americans chose which foods they would consume daily if they didn’t have any guilty restrictions eating away at them. The following are the most common foods that Americans crave:

  • Pizza
  • Pasta
  • Hamburgers
  • Ice cream
  • Tacos or burritos
  • Chocolate
  • French fries
  • Donuts
  • Cake
  • Chips
  • Cheese
  • Cookies
Everything in moderation is okay

We live in a society where we taught to label foods as “good” or “bad” based on their nutritional value and calorie count when realistically everything in moderation is okay and is, good for you if it makes you feel good.

Eating disorders and balancing food

Eating disorders such as bulimia nervosa, anorexia nervosa and binge eating disorder all have a common ground: an obsession with body image, body weight, and food, however, these are not the underlying reasons that drive individuals to develop an eating disorder. Unhealthy emotional and mental trauma, past abuse, low self-esteem, poor coping skills, self-injury, mental health disorders, and substance abuse disorder are all common underlying triggers for developing an eating disorder. Although food is not necessarily the culprit, learning to have a healthy relationship with food while in recovery can be challenging. Many individuals struggle with issues of self-control when it comes time to food and body image, blurring the lines between rigidity and chaos. Finding a healthy balance is critical to be successful in recovery.

    The post Eat What You Want Day: May 11 appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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    Restaurants are centers for entertainment, nourishment, fun, and celebration. But for many who make them their life’s work, chefs, servers, restaurant managers, food photographers, and beyond, food is complicated. Chefs and servers work odd, grueling hours on their feet, always surrounded by food. Working in the food service industry can be rewarding, but it is vital for those recovering from eating disorders to evaluate if it will be contributing to or detracting from their recovery. Individuals with eating disorders often develop an obsession with food, including meal preparation and cooking for others, leading many to pursue careers in the culinary arts. Others might seek entry-level jobs in food service out of convenience, including positions as greeters, servers, or bussers. Some may develop an eating disorder while working in the food industry. Whether you are a well-known chef working in a five-star restaurant, a waitress at a cocktail bar, a food delivery driver; working in the food industry while struggling with an eating disorder can be difficult and may even perpetuate your disorder if you are not careful. With that being said, it is possible to still remain in the food industry during your recovery as long as you have the coping skills and the tools to handle any sort of triggers that may come your way.

    Common eating disorder triggers in the food service industry
    • High paced job can lead to stress, which can cause you to want to use food as a coping mechanism
    • Food industry workers often have short breaks which means a limited time to eat a snack or meal which can lead to grabbing whatever food you find handy
    • The constant exposure to food can trigger you to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as binging, purging or restricting
    • The restaurant industry is widely known for substance abuse, which often co-occurs with an eating disorder
    • Always overhearing conversational fragments about the nutritional value of the food
    Signs you may need to take a break from the food service industry
    • You find yourself continually obsessing about food while you are at work
    • You are purging or binging on your breaks
    • You are continually judging customers by what they are ordering
    • You find yourself continuously counting calories in your head while at work
    • You use food as a stress reliever when you come home from work
    • You are continually sneaking bits of food
    • You are overwhelmed with feelings of guilt after eating a meal
    Seeking help for your eating disorder

    Many well-known culinary artists have left the food industry to seek advice for their eating disorder and for others, it may take years until they realize they actually have an eating disorder. Returning back to the industry after treatment and having a new perspective on food is what helps many individuals in recovery succeed in this industry. Chef Jennifer Ophir, left her career in retail design at the age of thirty-four to follow her culinary dreams. Ophir graduated from culinary school, cooked on the line in a Michelin-starred restaurant, taught aspiring chefs, and led food tours. Now she works as a private chef and food stylist. Her eating struggles flourished in tandem with her career. Her obsession with food eventually became an unhealthy and gratifying relationship, and she later went to treatment for food addiction and began the long, slow process of changing her relationship with food. “I started to realize the food for work was not my food. I could still be creative and appreciate the fine art of cooking and plating and serving, yet I don’t need to engulf all of that.”

    Recovery and having a healthy relationship with food is possible, but sometimes, you may need to step away from the industry for a limited or for an extended time to seek treatment for your eating disorder.

    The post Surviving in the Food Industry with an Eating Disorder appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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    Surviving in the Food Industry with an Eating Disorder

    Restaurants are centers for entertainment, nourishment, fun, and celebration. But for many who make them their life’s work, chefs, servers, restaurant managers, food photographers, and beyond, food is complicated. Chefs and servers work odd, grueling hours on their feet, always surrounded by food. Working in the food service industry can be rewarding, but it is vital for those recovering from eating disorders to evaluate if it will be contributing to or detracting from their recovery. Individuals with eating disorders often develop an obsession with food, including meal preparation and cooking for others, leading many to pursue careers in the culinary arts. Others might seek entry-level jobs in food service out of convenience, including positions as greeters, servers, or bussers. Some may develop an eating disorder while working in the food industry. Whether you are a well-known chef working in a five-star restaurant, a waitress at a cocktail bar, a food delivery driver; working in the food industry while struggling with an eating disorder can be difficult and may even perpetuate your disorder if you are not careful. With that being said, it is possible to still remain in the food industry during your recovery as long as you have the coping skills and the tools to handle any sort of triggers that may come your way.

    Common eating disorder triggers in the food service industry
    • High paced job can lead to stress, which can cause you to want to use food as a coping mechanism
    • Food industry workers often have short breaks which means a limited time to eat a snack or meal which can lead to grabbing whatever food you find handy
    • The constant exposure to food can trigger you to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as binging, purging or restricting
    • The restaurant industry is widely known for substance abuse, which often co-occurs with an eating disorder
    • Always overhearing conversational fragments about the nutritional value of the food
    Signs you may need to take a break from the food service industry
    • You find yourself continually obsessing about food while you are at work
    • You are purging or binging on your breaks
    • You are continually judging customers by what they are ordering
    • You find yourself continuously counting calories in your head while at work
    • You use food as a stress reliever when you come home from work
    • You are continually sneaking bits of food
    • You are overwhelmed with feelings of guilt after eating a meal
    Seeking help for your eating disorder

    Many well-known culinary artists have left the food industry to seek advice for their eating disorder and for others, it may take years until they realize they actually have an eating disorder. Returning back to the industry after treatment and having a new perspective on food is what helps many individuals in recovery succeed in this industry. Chef Jennifer Ophir, left her career in retail design at the age of thirty-four to follow her culinary dreams. Ophir graduated from culinary school, cooked on the line in a Michelin-starred restaurant, taught aspiring chefs, and led food tours. Now she works as a private chef and food stylist. Her eating struggles flourished in tandem with her career. Her obsession with food eventually became an unhealthy and gratifying relationship, and she later went to treatment for food addiction and began the long, slow process of changing her relationship with food. “I started to realize the food for work was not my food. I could still be creative and appreciate the fine art of cooking and plating and serving, yet I don’t need to engulf all of that.”

    Recovery and having a healthy relationship with food is possible, but sometimes, you may need to step away from the industry for a limited or for an extended time to seek treatment for your eating disorder.

      The post Surviving in the Food Industry with an Eating Disorder appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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      Research suggests that restrictive dieting can lead to a higher body mass index (BMI) over time, and a greater future likelihood of being overweight, a preoccupation with food, guilt about eating and higher levels of depression, anxiety and stress. In other words, restrictive eating, otherwise known as dieting can potentially lead to an eating disorder known as orthorexia nervosa, which is characterized by the obsession with eating only “pure” and “healthy” foods in order to prevent illness and increase longevity. Unlike anorexia nervosa, orthorexia is not about losing weight or changing one’s body type but rather is based on prolonging an individual’s lifespan through eliminating unhealthy foods. This obsession with pure and clean eating can lead to perfectionism, social isolation, extreme feelings of guilt or shame when consuming unhealthy foods, severe anxiety, and interference with one’s professional and personal aspects of life due to this obsession. Many researchers believe that instead of focusing on what is clean, healthy and pure, it may be more beneficial to focus on the body’s internal hunger and satiety cues and how the body reacts to certain foods. Should an individual ignore his/her craving for chocolate just because it is deemed unhealthy? Or should they listen to his/her body’s craving? The concept of intuitive eating is the exact opposite of restrictive eating and could potentially be the treatment for individuals who are struggling with orthorexia nervosa.

      What is intuitive eating?

      Intuitive eating was popularized by two dietitians, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, who published a book on the subject and developed a website dedicated to the topic. The term intuitive eating is often interchangeably used with “mindful eating”; both terms describe the same approach to listening to one’s body and allowing it to guide them on when and how much to eat, rather than being influenced by their environment, emotions or the rules prescribed by diets. Mindful eating involves developing an awareness of internal hunger and satiety cues and making conscious food choices. It emphasizes the importance of paying attention to the emotional and physical sensations experienced while eating.

      Unlike many other diets, intuitive eating encourages and individuals to eat what they want; no food is off-limits. While some may expect this to lead to eating more high-fat or high-sugar foods, research suggests that this is not the case. Advocates of intuitive eating suggest that the more you restrict yourself, the more likely you are to binge later.

      Cure for eating disorders?

      Research suggests that intuitive eating may lead to a reduction in binge-eating symptoms and eating for external and emotional reasons. Intuitive eating is also associated with greater positive body image, body satisfaction, positive emotional functioning, and higher self-esteem. Further research found that higher levels of intuitive eating predicted lower eating disorder symptoms, compared with calorie counting and frequent self-weighing. This is a contrast to typical restrictive dieting, which has been associated with an increased risk of disordered eating, one that may be greater for those who also experience symptoms of depression and low self-esteem. Many individuals who begin their eating disorder recovery process are often unaware of what hunger or fullness even feels like anymore, and this is because the extremes of both are what characterize eating disorders.

      A person may only know what severe hunger and fullness are, but the reality is that these signals in the body are actually much more subtle. How does a person undo years of eating disorder behaviors and learn how to reconnect with subtle signals of hunger and fullness? For many people in eating disorder recovery, this begins with slow steps, starting with regulating eating habits and normalizing hunger. Intuitive eating can help these individuals listen to their hunger and satiety cues as well as learn to eat what their body is craving.

      Sources: Denny, K. N., Loth, K., Eisenberg, M. E., & Neumark-Sztainer, D. (2013). Intuitive eating in young adults: Who is doing it, and how is it related to disordered eating behaviors? Appetite, 60(1), 13–19. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2012.09.029
      Bacon L, Aphramor L. Weight science: evaluating the evidence for a paradigm shift. Nutr J. 2011 Jan 24; 10():9.

      The post Is Intuitive Eating The Solution for Individuals Struggling With Orthorexia Nervosa? appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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      Recovering from an eating disorder is a difficult struggle that affects everyone differently. Although the treatment plans may be similar, each person experiences different emotions and their own versions of highs and lows, triumphs and defeats, loves and losses. Recovering from an eating disorder means more than the obsession with scales, measuring cups, hiding food, constant guilt and baggy clothes. It means learning to appreciate yourself for who you are without obsessing about your body image or food. It means mending broken relationships that have been damaged because of your eating disorder. It means learning to cope with negative emotions associated with past abuse and trauma. Recovery means overcoming your battle with low-self esteem and not listening to the advertisements, fashion magazines and all of the negative media telling you what your body should and shouldn’t look like.

      Life in treatment

      However remaining in recovery, post-treatment, is very difficult and you may be faced with unhealthy urges and difficult decisions. When you are in a treatment facility, you are constantly looked after by professionals who set boundaries for you, tell you when and what you can and cannot eat, chart every step of your progress and provide you with therapy and tools to help uncover and control your emotions. Treatment is not easy by any means, it is extremely hard to admit you have a problem, share your feelings in group sessions, eat every vitamin, snack, and meal you are provided when you are used to eating next to nothing and be vulnerable to every person around you. Life in recovery after treatment is a different kind of challenge.

      The transition to the real world

      When you are back in the real world (working to earn money, doing housework, walking your dog, and grocery shopping), no individual is going to “watch over you” like they were while you were receiving acute treatment. You are responsible for your own actions and decisions. You may feel like you are always around people or environments where you feel pressured to make poor decisions about your diet or engage in behaviors such a binging or purging that can result in relapse. But these are your choices to make, and you are now in control. Your support system in recovery will most likely consist of therapists, nutritionists, friends, doctors, and family members but at the end of the day, you have to make your own individual choice to eat right and maintain your goal body weight, whatever that may be.

      Here are some things to keep in mind during the transition from being in acute treatment to being released into the “real world” of recovery:

      • Be honest with yourself. If you or your therapist believes you are not ready to leave inpatient care and transition into a lower level of care, then trust this decision.
      • Surround yourself with people who will support you. You will have enough triggers and urges to work through in recovery. You do not want to be around people who are negative or may tempt you in your recovery.
      • Rely on your support system. If you feel a rush of negative feelings that you may not be able to control, call a friend, family member, therapist or go to a support group. These people are here to help you through rough days.
      • Practice the tools you learned in therapy. You went through weeks or months of treatment to learn coping skills and tools to help you throughout the rest of your life. Whether it is mindfulness, meditation, learning to dissociate your thoughts through cognitive behavior therapy or simply walking away from the negative situation; your tools are there to be practiced daily and not just when you are in a tight spot.

      The post Recovering from an Eating Disorder: The Transition Between Acute Care and Recovery appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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      No Diet Day

      Diets are everywhere in today’s society, and there is always someone inventing a new diet to lose weight faster and build stronger muscle. The Atkins diet, alkaline diet, Paleo diet, intermittent fasting, ketogenic diet, and the raw food diet are just some of the popular diets. National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) along with other like-minded eating disorder organizations has launched a new social media campaign entitled #NoDietDay on May 6, 2019, to encourage rejection of diet culture and the elimination of shame associated to beauty standards and body shape. No Diet Day helps us to fight back against diets that produce self-hate, body shaming, and false societal ideations.

      Why we diet

      Often, the decision to diet is rooted in bad social attitudes about body size, weight, and shape. Consider the idea of a “healthy weight,” a term that implies that weight itself can be healthy or unhealthy, but this is just a perception and therefore is not true. An individual can be of “normal weight” and still be unhealthy. For example, they could be deficient in vitamins, have chronic medical conditions or have an untreated mental health disorder. On the other hand, an individual can be overweight but exercise and maintain a healthy balance and have no medical complications or nutritional deficits. Instead of having a size-diverse attitude about bodies, we have an opinion that skinny is good and fat is bad.

      Diets do not work

      95% of individuals who engage in dieting will regain back their lost weight within five years. Research has found that dieting is strongly associated with increased weight gain, binge eating, body shaming, and low-self esteem and many eating disorder professionals believe that dieting could potentiate disordered eating.

      Dieting can be dangerous

      Studies have shown that dieting is a trigger for the development of eating disorders and popular weight loss trends associated with dieting force individuals to be consumed with calorie counting, weight loss, exercise, and food restriction. The National Eating Disorders Association reports that 35% of “normal dieters” progress to pathological dieting and that 20-25% of those individuals develop eating disorders. Children, teenagers, and adolescents who diet are at an increased risk for the development of an eating disorder when they reach adulthood.

      Fat does not equal unhealthy

      Our society depicts overweight as unhealthy and unattractive however a normal weight or underweight individuals can also have the same health risks in terms of diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure as an overweight individual. How you treat your physical body and mind is what determines whether you are healthy. Eating a balanced diet that consists of all the food groups with sufficient vitamins and providing your body opportunities to move is the healthiest way to live.

      Depriving our body of food can negatively affect us

      Labeling food as good and bad, restricting the bad foods, counting calories and only eating “diet foods” is a form of restricting that can lead to self-doubt, body shaming, unhappiness, and an unhealthy lifestyle. When we deprive our bodies of food, this can affect our mental and emotional health as well. Instead, we should allow ourselves to recognize when we are hungry and when we are full and practice mindful eating by nourishing our bodies with foods that we crave.

      “And dieting, I discovered, was another form of disordered eating, just as anorexia and bulimia similarly disrupt the natural order of eating. “Ordered” eating is the practice of eating when you are hungry and ceasing to eat when your brain sends the signal that your stomach is full. … All people who live their lives on a diet are suffering. If you can accept your natural body weight and not force it to beneath your body’s natural, healthy weight, then you can live your life free of dieting, of restriction, of feeling guilty every time you eat a slice of your kid’s birthday cake.”
      ― Portia de Rossi, “Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain”

        The post No Diet Day appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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        Is Intuitive Eating The Solution for Individuals Struggling With Orthorexia Nervosa?

        Research suggests that restrictive dieting can lead to a higher body mass index (BMI) over time, and a greater future likelihood of being overweight, a preoccupation with food, guilt about eating and higher levels of depression, anxiety and stress. In other words, restrictive eating, otherwise known as dieting can potentially lead to an eating disorder known as orthorexia nervosa, which is characterized by the obsession with eating only “pure” and “healthy” foods in order to prevent illness and increase longevity. Unlike anorexia nervosa, orthorexia is not about losing weight or changing one’s body type but rather is based on prolonging an individual’s lifespan through eliminating unhealthy foods. This obsession with pure and clean eating can lead to perfectionism, social isolation, extreme feelings of guilt or shame when consuming unhealthy foods, severe anxiety, and interference with one’s professional and personal aspects of life due to this obsession. Many researchers believe that instead of focusing on what is clean, healthy and pure, it may be more beneficial to focus on the body’s internal hunger and satiety cues and how the body reacts to certain foods. Should an individual ignore his/her craving for chocolate just because it is deemed unhealthy? Or should they listen to his/her body’s craving? The concept of intuitive eating is the exact opposite of restrictive eating and could potentially be the treatment for individuals who are struggling with orthorexia nervosa.

        What is intuitive eating?

        Intuitive eating was popularized by two dietitians, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, who published a book on the subject and developed a website dedicated to the topic. The term intuitive eating is often interchangeably used with “mindful eating”; both terms describe the same approach to listening to one’s body and allowing it to guide them on when and how much to eat, rather than being influenced by their environment, emotions or the rules prescribed by diets. Mindful eating involves developing an awareness of internal hunger and satiety cues and making conscious food choices. It emphasizes the importance of paying attention to the emotional and physical sensations experienced while eating.

        Unlike many other diets, intuitive eating encourages and individuals to eat what they want; no food is off-limits. While some may expect this to lead to eating more high-fat or high-sugar foods, research suggests that this is not the case. Advocates of intuitive eating suggest that the more you restrict yourself, the more likely you are to binge later.

        Cure for eating disorders?

        Research suggests that intuitive eating may lead to a reduction in binge-eating symptoms and eating for external and emotional reasons. Intuitive eating is also associated with greater positive body image, body satisfaction, positive emotional functioning, and higher self-esteem. Further research found that higher levels of intuitive eating predicted lower eating disorder symptoms, compared with calorie counting and frequent self-weighing. This is a contrast to typical restrictive dieting, which has been associated with an increased risk of disordered eating, one that may be greater for those who also experience symptoms of depression and low self-esteem. Many individuals who begin their eating disorder recovery process are often unaware of what hunger or fullness even feels like anymore, and this is because the extremes of both are what characterize eating disorders.

        A person may only know what severe hunger and fullness are, but the reality is that these signals in the body are actually much more subtle. How does a person undo years of eating disorder behaviors and learn how to reconnect with subtle signals of hunger and fullness? For many people in eating disorder recovery, this begins with slow steps, starting with regulating eating habits and normalizing hunger. Intuitive eating can help these individuals listen to their hunger and satiety cues as well as learn to eat what their body is craving.

        Sources: Denny, K. N., Loth, K., Eisenberg, M. E., & Neumark-Sztainer, D. (2013). Intuitive eating in young adults: Who is doing it, and how is it related to disordered eating behaviors? Appetite, 60(1), 13–19. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2012.09.029
        Bacon L, Aphramor L. Weight science: evaluating the evidence for a paradigm shift. Nutr J. 2011 Jan 24; 10():9.

          The post Is Intuitive Eating The Solution for Individuals Struggling With Orthorexia Nervosa? appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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          Recovering from an Eating Disorder: The Transition Between Acute Care and Recovery

          Recovering from an eating disorder is a difficult struggle that affects everyone differently. Although the treatment plans may be similar, each person experiences different emotions and their own versions of highs and lows, triumphs and defeats, loves and losses. Recovering from an eating disorder means more than the obsession with scales, measuring cups, hiding food, constant guilt and baggy clothes. It means learning to appreciate yourself for who you are without obsessing about your body image or food. It means mending broken relationships that have been damaged because of your eating disorder. It means learning to cope with negative emotions associated with past abuse and trauma. Recovery means overcoming your battle with low-self esteem and not listening to the advertisements, fashion magazines and all of the negative media telling you what your body should and shouldn’t look like.

          Life in treatment

          However remaining in recovery, post-treatment, is very difficult and you may be faced with unhealthy urges and difficult decisions. When you are in a treatment facility, you are constantly looked after by professionals who set boundaries for you, tell you when and what you can and cannot eat, chart every step of your progress and provide you with therapy and tools to help uncover and control your emotions. Treatment is not easy by any means, it is extremely hard to admit you have a problem, share your feelings in group sessions, eat every vitamin, snack, and meal you are provided when you are used to eating next to nothing and be vulnerable to every person around you. Life in recovery after treatment is a different kind of challenge.

          The transition to the real world

          When you are back in the real world (working to earn money, doing housework, walking your dog, and grocery shopping), no individual is going to “watch over you” like they were while you were receiving acute treatment. You are responsible for your own actions and decisions. You may feel like you are always around people or environments where you feel pressured to make poor decisions about your diet or engage in behaviors such a binging or purging that can result in relapse. But these are your choices to make, and you are now in control. Your support system in recovery will most likely consist of therapists, nutritionists, friends, doctors, and family members but at the end of the day, you have to make your own individual choice to eat right and maintain your goal body weight, whatever that may be.

          Here are some things to keep in mind during the transition from being in acute treatment to being released into the “real world” of recovery:

          • Be honest with yourself. If you or your therapist believes you are not ready to leave inpatient care and transition into a lower level of care, then trust this decision.
          • Surround yourself with people who will support you. You will have enough triggers and urges to work through in recovery. You do not want to be around people who are negative or may tempt you in your recovery.
          • Rely on your support system. If you feel a rush of negative feelings that you may not be able to control, call a friend, family member, therapist or go to a support group. These people are here to help you through rough days.
          • Practice the tools you learned in therapy. You went through weeks or months of treatment to learn coping skills and tools to help you throughout the rest of your life. Whether it is mindfulness, meditation, learning to dissociate your thoughts through cognitive behavior therapy or simply walking away from the negative situation; your tools are there to be practiced daily and not just when you are in a tight spot.

            The post Recovering from an Eating Disorder: The Transition Between Acute Care and Recovery appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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            No Diet Day

            Diets are everywhere in today’s society, and there is always someone inventing a new diet to lose weight faster and build stronger muscle. The Atkins diet, alkaline diet, Paleo diet, intermittent fasting, ketogenic diet, and the raw food diet are just some of the popular diets. National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) along with other like-minded eating disorder organizations has launched a new social media campaign entitled #NoDietDay on May 6, 2019, to encourage rejection of diet culture and the elimination of shame associated to beauty standards and body shape. No Diet Day helps us to fight back against diets that produce self-hate, body shaming, and false societal ideations.

            Why we diet

            Often, the decision to diet is rooted in bad social attitudes about body size, weight, and shape. Consider the idea of a “healthy weight,” a term that implies that weight itself can be healthy or unhealthy, but this is just a perception and therefore is not true. An individual can be of “normal weight” and still be unhealthy. For example, they could be deficient in vitamins, have chronic medical conditions or have an untreated mental health disorder. On the other hand, an individual can be overweight but exercise and maintain a healthy balance and have no medical complications or nutritional deficits. Instead of having a size-diverse attitude about bodies, we have an opinion that skinny is good and fat is bad.

            Diets do not work

            95% of individuals who engage in dieting will regain back their lost weight within five years. Research has found that dieting is strongly associated with increased weight gain, binge eating, body shaming, and low-self esteem and many eating disorder professionals believe that dieting could potentiate disordered eating.

            Dieting can be dangerous

            Studies have shown that dieting is a trigger for the development of eating disorders and popular weight loss trends associated with dieting force individuals to be consumed with calorie counting, weight loss, exercise, and food restriction. The National Eating Disorders Association reports that 35% of “normal dieters” progress to pathological dieting and that 20-25% of those individuals develop eating disorders. Children, teenagers, and adolescents who diet are at an increased risk for the development of an eating disorder when they reach adulthood.

            Fat does not equal unhealthy

            Our society depicts overweight as unhealthy and unattractive however a normal weight or underweight individuals can also have the same health risks in terms of diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure as an overweight individual. How you treat your physical body and mind is what determines whether you are healthy. Eating a balanced diet that consists of all the food groups with sufficient vitamins and providing your body opportunities to move is the healthiest way to live.

            Depriving our body of food can negatively affect us

            Labeling food as good and bad, restricting the bad foods, counting calories and only eating “diet foods” is a form of restricting that can lead to self-doubt, body shaming, unhappiness, and an unhealthy lifestyle. When we deprive our bodies of food, this can affect our mental and emotional health as well. Instead, we should allow ourselves to recognize when we are hungry and when we are full and practice mindful eating by nourishing our bodies with foods that we crave.

            “And dieting, I discovered, was another form of disordered eating, just as anorexia and bulimia similarly disrupt the natural order of eating. “Ordered” eating is the practice of eating when you are hungry and ceasing to eat when your brain sends the signal that your stomach is full. … All people who live their lives on a diet are suffering. If you can accept your natural body weight and not force it to beneath your body’s natural, healthy weight, then you can live your life free of dieting, of restriction, of feeling guilty every time you eat a slice of your kid’s birthday cake.”
            ― Portia de Rossi, “Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain”

              The post No Diet Day appeared first on Center For Discovery.

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