Sometimes when I hear about someone going on yet another diet or notice a “revolutionary” new weight-loss book topping the best-seller list, frankly, I feel a little blue. I’ve been teaching the “normal” eating model for 30 years and it often seems as if very little has changed in our culture in all that time regarding sensible eating (in spite of Weight Watchers new no-diet spin). I wonder and wonder when people are going to wake up and smell the coffee.

Read More Intuitive Eating Works

Dear Readers, My freelance writing has taken me lately into research on orthorexia, a topic that Marcia addressed a little while back in one of her posts. Described as a “fixation on righteous eating,” orthorexia is a condition where obsession with eating healthily becomes so extreme that it leaves no room for other interests or activities and can imperil the sufferer’s health. Sounds familiar, right? Marcia described it as a modern-day variant on anorexia. Another…

Read More Orthorexia revisited

A report in Prevention magazine (5/10/08, page 10) has got me going—“Research shows that typically half of all women drop out of exercise programs within the first 6 weeks of starting one. Most women say having little free time, a lack of confidence when exercising, and supportive friends and family are the main reasons they stop short of achieving their goals.” Superficially reasonable answers, sure, but based on my years of professional experience, researchers need to dig deeper to get at the real issues.

Read More Exercise

According to Amy Alkon, Sarasota Herald-Tribune “Advice Goddess,” men are hard-wired to assess women’s looks. From an evolutionary standpoint, they’ve used body weight to select mates to ensure survival of the species, hoping that someone who looked healthy was healthy. Alkon adds that “…research suggests that the body size men look for in a woman is inverse to the availability of food. Where eats are scarce, like in the Sahara, Lane Bryant ladies are in. Where there’s food-a-plenty, men go for slimmer women.” (When I emailed her, Alkon quoted the source as Shackleforth and Buss and I will try to track down their work and get more information on the theory).

Read More Weight and Mating

I recently had the pleasure of speaking with the director of the documentary film, "Do I Look Fat?–Gay Men, Body Image and Eating Disorders," by Mr. Travis Mathews.  Mr. Mathews is currently active as a video journalist in the Bay area.

The documentary was made in 2004, has been screened at NEDA and the American Psychiatric Association Conferences, which are no small feats. 

Read More Do I Look Fat? (the documentary) part one

In my work, I meet many passionate people. Most recently, I e-met Patrick Bergstrom. He has an important message for all of us:

We Are Different!
By Patrick Bergstrom

Who am I, and do I have a real purpose on this earth? I believe these are two questions that people spend most of their lives trying to answer and never really find a personal answer to these questions. I am 25 years old and I believe I have found my personal answers to both of these questions. I guess I should start by first introducing myself. My name is Patrick Bergstrom and I am recovering from a four-year battle with a horrifying eating disorder. One more thing – did I mention that I was a male? I guess I just assumed you would have recognized that by my first name.

Read More Guys have Eating Disorders, Too

A client of mine lost about 30 pounds by stopping dieting and bingeing and learning to eat more “normally.” Like many of the people I treat, she’d previously been hyper-focused on her weight rather than on her eating. This mindset must shift for intuitive eating to start taking hold: losing weight needs to take a back seat to gaining skills in eating and emotional management. I knew the shift had occurred for this client when she said she wasn’t sure if she could lose more weight or if she even wanted to, but that she’d decided, for now, to continue trying to eat “normally” and see where her weight stabilized.

Read More Weighing Weight

I received this question recently and have had it posed to me in the past.  It always saddens me to hear someone ask it.

I am have been told reasons why people do not feel deserving of treatment, or worse, horror stories when attempting to access treatment. 

But it boils down to one question…How bad do things have to get in order for YOU to be tired of this mean disease? 

Read More Am I sick enough to get treatment?

An article in the April issue of the Nutrition Action Health Letter on the correlation between moving your body more and weight loss intrigued me. James Levin, professor and researcher in the Division of Endocrinology at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, heads something called the NEAT lab which studies the effect of body movement and expending energy on weight. NEAT stands for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis, which is any movement that is not exertion for the sake of physical fitness.

Read More Move Your Body

Tension is who you think you should be, relaxation is who you are.
                                                                      – Chinese proverb

In today’s world, it may seem difficult to imagine life without tension. There are hundreds of stresses we must deal with every day. But people who struggle with eating disorders experience tension on a much deeper level – soul tension. This is the tension of expectations and whom a person thinks they should be.

Read More Tension & Relaxation