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Say YES to Chocolate Cake! Interventions for Eating Issues

CHOCOLATE CAKE

Specific forms of therapy have proven to be very effective for those who struggle with any extreme eating patterns. You know the drill: the holidays hit, we overeat or eat all the nutritionally weak foods, then resolve, usually in January, to stop all sugar intake or eliminate total food groups like “carbs”. We’re disciplined for 2 or 3 weeks then our body feels deprived and we do a complete 180. Does this feel like banging your head against a wall? It does to me!

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) offers 4 techniques to find balance in eating.:

1) Sequence NOT Elimintation. The order in which we eat foods does make a difference. Try to eat nutritionally dense foods FIRST, but don’t eliminate food groups altogether. Eliminating ALL SUGAR or ALL CARBS leave us feeling deprived and the psychology behind that process increases our desire for something. Often nutritionists recommend eating lean protein first because as it is more filling, then vegetables/fruits, then grains, then desert. One client I worked with 5 years ago lost 50 pounds just be adopting this technique. She lost her strong desire for sugary deserts over time because she didn’t feel deprived of them (she could have them if she wanted them….just after the healthy stuff). She set herself up to succeed not fail. It took 6 months, and by then it was a lifestyle for her,. Today, 5 years later, she still wears the same jeans.

2) Measure progress with Feelings not Numbers. Rather than weighing yourself everyday, try tapping into how you feel at the beginning of each day. Do you feel bloated? Do you feel fatigue? My guess is over time, after eating healthier, you will wake up feeling energized, more relaxed about food having a sense of control over your health. Scales increase anxiety whether you have lost or gained weight. If you are down, you become more anxious increasing worry about maintaining that weight; more rigid in food choices, and ultimately set yourself up to buckle under pressure.

3) Start and end your day with Breathing Techniques. Ideally, a trained therapist can teach you these skills, called “mindfulness skills”. DBT offers one skill called 4 Square Breathing which leads to balanced food choices throughout the day and relaxation at night.

4) Stay in the Present Moment. When you make unhealthy choices, don’t dwell on it day after day or even hour after hour. Stay present and start making heathier decisions now. Beating ourselves up about poor eating habits only lead to extreme cycles once again. Stop the head banging once and for all! Personally, I eat chocolate cake to prevent binging! To learn more about mindful eating contact our office about enrolling in a 6 week DBT course.

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Teach Your Daughter Body Love: Julie Hanks on Studio 5

Many of you have joined our Body Love movement, turning the negative self-talk into positive views of our bodies. Now, we challenge you to help your daughters feel good about how they look. Studio 5 Contributor, Therapist Julie Hanks, LCSW shares 10 ways to teach young girls the concept of body love.

Free Printable – 10 Ways to Teach Your Daughter Body Love!

Teaching Your Daughter Body Love Julie Hanks PRINTABLE

Download PDF Printable – Teaching Your Daughter Body Love Julie Hanks

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5 Ways to Love Your Body: Studio 5 #bodylove

5 Ways to Love Your Body - Studio 5

 
What do you see when you look in the mirror? If the first thing that comes to mind is something critical, you’re not alone. This month on KSL’s Studio 5 with Brooke Walker, we challenge you to think positive about your body.
Join the #BODYLOVE movement!

1) Take a photo of a physical feature of yourself

2) Post it to Instagram, Twitter or Facebook with the hashtag #BodyLove

3) Tag 5 of your friends and ask them to do the same.

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Combating Teen Body Trends: Julie Hanks on HuffPost Live

There’s a new body obsession among some teen girls called “the thigh gap.”

I was invited to participate on this HuffPost Live panel and discuss how we can to combat this dangerous trend.

Here’s the link to the Segment
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[Video] Teen Girls Ask Am I Pretty Or Ugly? YouTube Videos Alarm Professionals: KSL TV News

5-17-11Insecurity about appearance among teens girls is nothing new. In past decades, girls would ask friends and peers, “How do I look?” The internet now allows teens to take that question to the masses asking in YouTube videos “Am I pretty or ugly?” Desperate cries for validation are opening up young women to mean and insensitive comments or sexual innuendos by anonymous commenters.

When I first heard about these videos I felt sick inside. It played to the insecure teen that still lurks in me, and at times. I can quickly connect with those feelings of early adolescence when I was trying to find myself and to be accepted by others.

We are constantly bombarded with messages that women’s primary value is in the attractiveness of her physical appearance, and unfortunately sometimes the parents place excessive emphasis on daughter’s external qualities.

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Ask A Therapist: My Therapist Looks Like A Skeleton

Q: My therapist looks like a skeleton. I don’t know what to do. I have been seeing my therapist for 3 years. I suffer with body image issues and distorted eating. My therapist has always been thin/healthy. Sometimes her weight drops and I am very sensitive to it. We have talked about it before and I am very open with it if I feel triggered by her. I saw her today and she looks like an eating disordered patient. She said she is aware of it and working on it. She said she has medical issues that make her body do things if she’s not careful and stress plays a part. I believe she is OK and she will work at getting back up to a healthy weight, but its really hard for me to make sense of. Why can she look like that but I have to work to keep myself healthy? Why are such high expectations put on me that she doesn’t live up to? She is my biggest role model, and all I can think of at this moment is starving myself until I look like her. She is happy, successful, smart, has a family and is pretty. She said, “I hope you’re not jealous of this (her body)” and she said that she wished she was in a different place. I just can’t get the picture of her out of my mind. Oh and she’s been getting sick a lot recently. It scares me. I want her to be healthy. She’s MY motivation to be healthy. But when she’s not…my motivation goes away and I want to restrict. How do I make sense of this?

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