A Holistic Approach to Eating Disorder Treatment
t our clinic we treat eating disorders from a holistic approach, meaning we treat the whole person and every single factor at play in the disorder. From our perspective, the nutritional aspect, the psychological/emotional aspect and the physical aspect of the eating disorder all need attention. We know that mental health is so multi-factorial that it’s impossible to tease out exactly what the problematic pieces are – it’s usually an accumulation of multiple factors from multiple sources that lead to breakdown when in combination. When we address the three aspects of your health that are affected by an eating disorder things seem to click into place and you can move forward.
- Physical – most patients we see are having serious issues with digestion, sleep, energy, hormones, etc. Some of these issues can be a serious hindrance to moving forward in recovery! So as a naturopathic doctor I will provide my patients with supplements or herbs as well as do acupuncture to minimize these symptoms, which makes the nutrition work and therapy work easier.
- Emotional – in therapy patients are able to work through patterns that are at play with the eating disorder and their life, address any anxiety that is present as a result of changes being made in their life in recovery, and start exploring ways to let go of the eating disorder and fill that space with a healthy coping mechanism.
- Nutritional – the symptoms of an eating disorder live in the world of food so in nutrition the work is individualized and specialized to meet you exactly where you are at. Nutrition often involves education about food, cooking, meal planning together, outings to restaurants; really anything that involves food.
We know that throughout recovery there will be times when the food piece is harder and that’s why there is therapy to have a place to process that; there are times when the therapeutic piece is harder and that’s when more acupuncture or supplements to help with anxiety are really helpful. The process of recovery is dynamic, always changing and constantly requiring different support – so through the 3 components of our program we are able to adjust accordingly.
We believe 100% from the bottom of our hearts that recovery is possible. It’s really hard work and often really scary to take the leap but we have seen so many people find wellness and every one of them is so thankful they did what it took because they would never want to turn back. We feel so honoured to work with our patients so closely through the process and we absolutely love what we do.