Gut Reactions: Eating Disorders and Digestion
I don't think that I've ever met an eating disordered client that didn't struggle with digestive issues. The digestive tract is directly affected by binging, purging and restricting. The discomfort from digestive problems is a common obstacle to recovery. It's such a challenge for women to adhere to their meal plans when their bodies are rebelling.
Women with eating disorders often experience heartburn, indigestion, gas, bloating and constipation. Fortunately, naturopathic supplements are very effective in assisting efficient digestion. Using digestive enzymes with meals assists in the breakdown of foods. A probiotic supplement can reduce gas, bloating and constipation. Drinking aloe vera juice can calm heartburn. And I often prescribe a magnesium citrate supplement to ensure regularity.
The whole foods approach is healing in itself. Whole foods supply needed fiber. Many people have too little fiber in their diets. I may encourage the use of ground flax meal to increase one's fiber intake. Water is important for regularity, especially in the desert environment. A minimum of half your weight in ounces should be ingested each day.
Finally, the most important "supplement" is reducing stress and anxiety. Our program emphases the creation of stress-management tools for each client. Yoga, bodywork and healthy exercise are encouraged as lifestyle changes. I also help women train their bodies by allowing regular bathroom time. These are all important and effective components of healthy digestion.
Top 10 Eating Disorder Blogs of 2015
Eating Disorder Hope Award
- Breaking the Cycle of Eating Disorders, Insomnia and Trauma January 17, 2017
- The Promise of Trans-Cranial Electrical Stimulation November 5, 2016
- Fall Backpacking Trip October 18-20, 2016
- Embrace: The Movie September 20, 2016
- Shift. Focus. Evolve. August 31, 2016
- Maria's Worlds August 30, 2016
- The Challenges of Summer July 15, 2016
- High Ropes Course Challenges Families to Develop New Dynamic June 20, 2016
- Mirasol's Family Program: Recovery for the Whole Family June 16, 2016
- Eating Disorders, Shame and Tools for Recovery June 9, 2016
- Esquire Magazine's Recipe for Male Anorexia April 26, 2016
- Backpacking with Clients: What We Brought, And What We Took Away April 20, 2016
- Finding Yourself in the Middle of Nowhere April 20, 2016
- Eating Disorders and Sexuality: A Mirasol Panel Discussion March 10, 2016
- Straight Talk on Body Image: A Mirasol Panel Discussion February 22, 2016
- Treatment Center Reviews February 16, 2016
- Art Therapy: Challenging the Inner Critic February 8, 2016
- Men Experience Eating Disorders Too! February 8, 2016
- Jenn’s Story: Learning to Put Recovery First January 27, 2016
- “Reflections:” A Powerful Tool for Healing Relationships, Developing Personal Responsibility, and Moving Forward in Recovery January 23, 2016
- The Best Present: The Neurobiology of Giving December 16, 2015
- Having Faith: A Mirasol Client Video Testimonial December 11, 2015