Healthy eating gives our bodies and brains the support they need to carry us through life’s challenges. But for people dealing with a mental health condition, getting the right nutrition can be a real roadblock in the journey to wellness.
At SunCloud Health, we work with many people who need to change the way they eat in order to get their lives back on track. For example, people who are addicted to drugs or alcohol need help rebuilding self-care habits, including nutrition. Those who suffer from depression and other mood disorders also benefit from learning about the gut-brain connection and the nutrients that support mood stability.
People who come to us for help with eating disorders need caring, specialized, individualized support in healing their relationship with food. Our dietitian therapists work closely with them to deal with a range of issues that are crucial for their recovery.
For those with eating disorders, the road to balanced nutrition isn’t easy
Many people with eating disorders spend a substantial amount of time thinking about food. Many know more about nutrition than just about anyone because they’ve spent so much time studying the calorie and nutrition content of foods and how the body processes these. Some have developed fears of specific foods, refusing to eat them at all – denying themselves of nutrients needed to keep their brains and other internal organs functioning properly.
When we work with people who are recovering from anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder, orthorexia and other eating disorders, we focus on healing attitudes and building new habits which serve to normalize one’s relationship with food and body.
Many people with eating disorders have distorted, rigid ideas about what’s healthy when it comes to food, our bodies and exercise. A healthy relationship with food is flexible, including choices from all different food groups. This definition of healthy can include processed foods, high-fat foods and high-sugar foods consumed in moderation.
A healthy relationship with food also includes an active connection with self, intuition, tastes and desires. A healthy relationship with body includes acceptance and belief in weight diversity. A healthy relationship with exercise means being active on a regular basis, engaging in pleasurable movement but without rigid or compulsive thinking or action.
A majority of us – even those of us who don’t suffer from clinical eating disorders – could use help overcoming old, sick, culturally supported beliefs that don’t serve us well. We need to find satisfying new ways to nourish ourselves at the body, mind and soul level.
Embracing good nutrition, one bite at a time
If you or someone you know is dealing with an eating disorder, here are 4 crucial things we want you to know.
- Food freedom is possible. Thoughts of food don’t have to control your life anymore. With help, you can learn to choose foods and eating behaviors which will sustainably nourish your body and support your total health.
- You can transform the way you see your body. We provide a safe space where you can talk about your self-image, and re-experience who you are and how you see yourself. Understanding the biological, psychological, social, and spiritual roots of your negative beliefs about your body began is the first step in developing a more accurate and loving image of yourself that supports your recovery.
- Change is possible for you, too — replacing behaviors rooted in fear and isolation with powerful new behaviors rooted in community, love and acceptance. With time, support and practice, you can learn to eat in nourishing rather than self-abusive ways. As your skill level grows, you will find yourself eating comfortably in social settings, choosing foods from grocery stores and restaurants that support your overall health and learning to prepare flavorful meals you will savor and enjoy as an act of responsible self-care. We offer supported meals and snacks, as well as experiential outings, to help you along the road to change. For people in recovery from eating disorders, food is medicine – and we will empower you every step of the way.
- You are not alone. At SunCloud Health, we understand that your struggles aren’t simply about food. Many people with eating disorders have suffered significant emotional or physical trauma that must be healed. We see you as a whole person and we are here to treat the full spectrum of challenges you may be facing.
If you need help healing your relationship with food, we are here for you. Call 844-202-4230 or email us here.