Thursday, March 16, 2017

Journaling to Treat Eating disorders

Journaling to Treat Eating Disorders

Journaling, or jotting down what you eat and how you feel, is an important part of treating eating disorders. Write your way to good nutrition today.

By Marie Suszynski

Medically Reviewed by Lindsey Marcellin, MD, MPH

When you have an eating disorder and obsess over every calorie you put in your mouth, it’s easy to think it’s all about the food. But professionals will tell you it’s not.

“The food is not why people have eating disorders,” says Julie Dorfman, RD, director of nutrition services at the Renfrew Center of Philadelphia, an eating disorders treatment facility. Rather, food is what people with eating disorders use to communicate their frustrations, Dorfman explains.

Journaling: The Benefits

Journaling can be an outlet for those frustrations. Writing down what you eat and how you’re feeling while you’re eating can pinpoint emotions that are causing your symptoms, Dorfman says.

Journaling: What to Report

An important part of journaling is keeping track of the number of servings of food you’re getting during the day to ensure that you’re eating enough, Dorfman says. Your dietitian can tell you how many portions of each of the different food groups to eat daily to get the nutrition you need to stay healthy; the specific amounts will vary based on your weight and caloric needs.

You’ll want to be sure to record triggers: Nutritionists tell people with eating disorders to record their feelings before, during, and after a meal so that they’ll recognize which feelings or situations trigger their eating disorder symptoms. The compulsive eater who had an argument with someone before lunch might find that she wants to eat more than she needs at that meal.

Journaling not only serves as an outlet for your emotions, it can also help you slow down and think about what you’re doing before you restrict, binge, or purge, Dorfman notes.

Full article here