Eating Disorders, Obesity Shame Counselling & Therapy

Eating Disorders, Obesity

Eating disorders comprise a range of attitudes and behaviors relating to food and body-image. The three main eating disorders are Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia, and ED NOS (eating disorder not otherwise specified). These conditions manifest to different degrees in different people and can sometimes be mistakenly judged as poor eating habits, or a lack of willpower.

People with eating disorders don't eat in harmony with their bodies' needs, instead, people with Anorexia Nervosa eat much less than they need, while Bulimia sufferers binge and then induce vomiting. They may also do other things to compensate for overeating, including exercising or fasting. ED NOS combines any combination of the other two conditions.

Apart from the physical symptoms and behaviors above, someone with an eating disorder will generally also have poor self-esteem and obsessively research or talk about food, dieting or exercise. Poor body image will cause them to either wear clothes that cover up every inch of their bodies, or flaunt  in order to attract attention. They will find it hard to accept criticism and compliments.

Therapy for eating disorders depend on the patient. While some people respond well to short term outpatient treatment, others respond better to long-term inpatient treatment. Cognitive behavioral therapy and family therapy are long term treatments that have been proven to be effective, while group therapy, psychodynamic psychotherapies and feminist therapies work for people who will respond well to short term therapy.

Family therapy is often advised for children and adolescents who are experiencing eating disorders. Research has also shown dialectical behavioral therapy to be effective.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who addresses eating disorders, you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Obesity is a silent killer and an epidemic that is growing at alarming rate. Someone who is obese will have more body fat than the average person and is at risk of contracting a range of lifestyle conditions, including heart problems, diabetes and high blood pressure.

Many obese people find it nearly impossible to lose weight, no matter what they do. They often end up on the yo-yo dieting cycle, where they would lose some weight on each new fad diet, just to regain double as soon as they stop the diet. Scientists have proven again and again that the only formula for successful weight loss and permanent maintenance of your ideal weight is to burn more calories than you consume.

The main reasons for obesity in healthy individuals is binge eating, and snacking when they are not really hungry. Emotional eating is very common too and many people with obesity issues tend to eat when they are stressed, happy or bored.

If there is no medical reason for your obesity, you should consider speaking to a therapist. Therapy from a psychologist or counsellors  who is experienced in obesity-related issues will help you to explore the emotional blockages that stop you from losing weight. A range of therapy approaches will be used help you to establish the factors that cause you to over-eat and help you to find ways to better manage your emotions. Your therapist will help you set goals for your psychological and physical health to ensure that once you have lost all your weight, you can maintain it and feel good about yourself.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who offers counselling approaches to address your obesity issues, you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Shame Counselling & Therapy

There are a variety of approaches to address the issue of shame.  One of them is the Shame Resilience method is based on the research of Bren√© Brown, Ph.D. LMSW. 

Shame Resilience is the developed ability to practice authenticity when we experience shame, to move through the experience without sacrificing our values, and to come out on the other side of the shame experience with more courage, compassion, and connection than we had going into it.

Shame Resilience is about moving from shame to empathy- the real antidote to shame. Self-compassion is also critically important, because when we’re able to be tender with ourselves in the midst of shame we’re more likely to reach out, connect and experience empathy.

Other approaches, like Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems (CIMBS)  uses what is called a systems perspective that can address how an individual has learned to respond due to early trauma and or other developmental experiences.

Approaches to shame are not limited to the above.  There are many other therapies that address feeling.

If you do contact a therapist regarding shame issues please make sure that you ask them about their training in this area and choose a therapist whose approach makes sense to you.

 

Angela Birnie

M.Ed., RCC
I am a registered clinical counsellor and registered dietitian focusing on the treatment of eating disorders, emotional eating, and generally helping clients to improve their relationship with food. Clients come to... Read more