An eating behavior is considered normal if it satisfies its triple biological, emotional and relation function and helps maintain an optimal state of health. A healthy, functioning diet essential for individual survival as well as for personality formation, depends on the interplay of these three factors. For a dysfunctional diet to be considered “pathological” behavior (e.g. anorexia, bulimia, or uncontrolled eating disorder) it must fulfill these criteria:
- The eating behavior differs significantly in qualitative or quantitative terms from the standard eating behavior of people living in the same dietary, social and cultural environment.
- Dietary habits result in harmful consequences on physical health (obesity, malnutrition, deficiencies) or psychological (feeling of abnormality, social exclusion, obsession, depression…).
- Dietary behavior exhibits an existential difficulty in controlling food intake, a psychological suffering strongly connected to the ideal of thinness, weight and body shape control.
When self-confidence is linked to the verdict of the weighing scale, the chances of falling into an eating disorder trap increases considerably.
Although psychological therapy is the most important component in the treatment of eating disorders, the importance of an accurate clinical exam followed by therapy is equally as important.
The proposed consultation includes:
- nutritional case history aimed at an in-depth layout of a long-term dietary plan especially rooted in the individual’s bio-history, its heredity and predisposition, as well as the their life biography and patterns of reaction to events and emotions.
- research on pathological consequences.
- evaluation of the social and economic situation accompanied by an inquiry into the patient’s relation with his/her family and social groups.
- research on other behavioral disorders such as anxiety, addiction, depression, paranoia, obsessive compulsive disorder, hyperactivity, etc…
Given the difficulty and complexity of information-retrieval, multiple appointments are advised so the patient can be guided on multiple fronts:
- therapeutic support integrated with a holistic body-mind-spirit approach
- dietary and nutritional rehabilitation
- integration of micronutrition and eventual oligotherapy
- Active listening and diagnosis
- analysis of the relation between mood and food-intake (or refusal of food)
- research on the energetic and food requirements
- Education on meal context: place and timing
- Awareness work on nutritional sensation: self-aware eating
- pleasure restoration
- re-awakening of a person’s internal resources
- overall self-awareness: what am I really hungry for? What nourishes my life?
- Healing through self-forgiveness: awareness of personal wounds, acceptance, abandonment