Eating Disorder Therapy
Are thoughts about food & weight consuming your life?
Do you find yourself preoccupied with thoughts of food, weight, or dieting?
Do these thoughts feel overwhelming or overly intrusive?
Do you see these thoughts interfering with your general functioning, your relationships, or your work?
Disordered eating and eating disorders can present in various different ways and behaviors.
At Grace Therapy we acknowledge that disordered eating can present in many ways and our therapists are here to help you on your recovery journey. Eating Disorders and disordered eating can often be misunderstood or overlooked due to commonly held misconceptions. Whether it is messaging from society, media, family, friends, or other areas of your life, eating disorders can be dismissed which creates a great barrier to receiving treatment. No matter what stage of life you are in or what your relationship with food and your body looks like, your eating disorder is valid and you are worthy of recovery.
Major Types of Eating Disorders
1. Anorexia Nervosa - This is most likely the Eating Disorder that you know. It's characterized by highly rigid and usually restrictive eating patterns, excessive weight loss, and, often, distorted body image. Anorexia can present with either restrictive behaviors or cycles of binge eating followed by purging.
2. Bulimia Nervosa - Bulimia is characterized by cycles of binging and compensatory actions. These actions can include purging, over-exercising, or misuse of laxatives or other drugs. Common warning signs include frequent shifts in weight (both loss and gain), fixation around weight or control of food intake, evidence of purging, or discomfort eating around others.
3. Binge Eating Disorder - Characterized by recurrent episodes of eating to excess, this disorder often results in high levels of shame and guilt following eating without the use of compensatory behaviors to counter the eating. Signs of this disorder include hoarding or storing food, discomfort eating with others, food related rituals, and more.
4. "ARFID" Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder - Previously known as "Selective Eating Disorder", ARFID often presents similarly to Anorexia due to severe limitations of food intake. This disorder does not however include disturbances in body image or weight.
5. Orthorexia- is characterized by an intense obsession or preoccupation with “healthy” food and ingredients. Orthorexia is not currently recognized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), but can cause just as much physical and emotional distress as the disorders that are recognized. Symptoms and signs include checking ingredients and menus to determine “safety” of food, distorted body image, preoccupation with what other people are eating, and an increased focus on certain food groups.
How can Eating Disorder Therapy help?
Eating Disorders are extremely serious and potentially life-threatening especially in the instances of severe weight-loss, malnutrition, or unseen risks of cardiac arrest. Damage can occur to the physical body even if a person “looks healthy” or is at a healthy weight. Seeking professional help can support you in navigating both the physical and mental aspects of these disorders. Treatment can often involve a multi-disciplinary team including both therapists and dietitians.
There are various treatment models that are often used with eating disorder treatment. Some of these include behavior oriented models such as Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Together, you and your therapist will come up with a treatment plan that will work best for you and meet your unique needs.
Through individual therapy and mental health services, we can support you through your eating disorder recovery. Our team is here to help you in navigating the best treatment plan for you based on your specific needs. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out.
What does recovery from an eating disorder look like?
Maybe you feel that your life is controlled by your relationship with food? This can lead to distraction at work and school, withdrawing from loved ones, frequent anxiety, hopelessness, and so much more. Recovery from an eating disorder may look different for each person, but some key components may include healing your relationship with food, processing anxieties and worries you have about food, connecting to other things in your life that are valued, and increasing self compassion and acceptance. Reach out to us to learn more about how therapy can help in your recovery journey.
Common concerns that you might have before starting treatment...
Starting treatment for an eating disorder may feel scary, confusing, or overwhelming. You may even feel angry or protective when the idea of eating disorder treatment arises. All of these emotions, and many more, are valid. Eating disorders serve a purpose, as do most behaviors. Whether your eating disorder is a means of control, escape, communication, or soothing we at Grace Therapy and Wellness understand that your disorder has a role in your life. Through therapy, one of our therapists can help you to understand the role and function of your eating disorder, while also addressing the many emotions you may be experiencing and attempting to cope with. While this process may feel scary, our therapists value a collaborative process in the therapeutic setting.
Whether you are concerned about losing your eating disorder and navigating life without it, we are here to support you in a kind and informed way. Just as much as treatment providers are a part of eating disorder recovery, you are too. With eating disorder treatment, the goal is to help you reclaim your life from your eating disorder and connect to your values.
An inclusive and holistic practice
At Grace Therapy and Wellness we value inclusivity and diversity. Like other mental health conditions, Eating Disorders do not discriminate based on age, weight, race, socioeconomic status, sexuality, gender identity, and many other parts of your valued identity and experience. An eating disorder can develop at any stage of life for any person. Our therapists take all of these factors into consideration when working with clients and treating eating disorders.
You CAN experience a life of freedom from disordered eating
Take the next step in your recovery
If you think our services may be right for you, take the next step and reach out to us today to schedule an initial appointment. We offer local in-person counseling in Austin, TX and online for the state of Texas.