Anorexia/Eating Disorders/want to lose weight

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QUESTION: Hello, thank you for taking the time to help people.  I am 21. When I was about 17 I was pretty overweight and I starved myself and excersised abd lost 60 lbs in about 2-3 months, to a weight if about 125 ( I was and am still 5'7) For the next 3 years I dieted carefully and excersised to mantain a weight of 130, and if I gained weight people would comment and I would make sure to lose ot quickly. Now, I am married and in order to make my wife feel peaceful about my wating habits ( she knew me when I was young and the matter concerned her greay) I ate normally, with some binge eating, besides for my drinking (1-3 drinks a day) i still eat quit healthy foods, low catd, no fried food or ice cream etc.I still excersize daily but I have incorrporated weight lifting into my routine. Since my wedding I have gained 15 pounds. At first the weight gain did not bother me TOO much, but people have been commenting and now I really want to starve myself and only do cardiovascular excersize so I can lose 20 pounds and go back to a low weight. I am married, I work and I am expecting a child. I am very embarrased to feel this way. I am not even quite sure what I am asking , but if you gave any advice,  I'd greatly appreciate it.

ANSWER: Hi Charles,

I am so sorry you are going through this. The first thing we need to do is work on improving your body image. The second thing we need to do is to make sure you are eating a healthy diet.

You didn't say what you eat these days, but I'd like you to go to this website and create a profile: https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/CreateProfile.aspx. Once you've done that, it will tell you how much you should be eating of each food group each day. If you click around, you'll even find sample meal plans. It sounds like you may not be eating enough carbohydrates or calories, potentially. Ironically, if you eat too little, your weight will plateau and weight loss will stop - although, I am not convinced that you need to lose weight. At 5'7" with a medium bone structure, you should be around 157.

Now to address your body image issues. You might find these websites helpful as they discuss male body image issues and what to do about it:

http://www.msoe.edu/life_at_msoe/current_student_resources/student_resources/cou

http://www.eatingdisorderhope.com/treatment-for-eating-disorders/special-issues/

http://www.something-fishy.org/cultural/issuesformen.php

http://www.namedinc.org/treatment.asp

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-forgotten-gender

I hope you find these websites helpful. Please don't hesitate to contact me with any further questions you may have.

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QUESTION: I eat around 1500 -2000 caloroies a day. With a doet heavy on high fiber carbs and lean protiens. But will also occasionally binge on ice cream or cookies if it is late or I drank a lot etc. I weigh about 150 from 135 since my wedding. When I was striving to maintain a low weight I ate around 500 caloroes a day if that, which I feel the urge to pysg myself to return to that diet, like I mentioned before. Thank you very much for responding and the advice.

Answer
Hi Charles,

You are definitely eating too few calories per day - that's why you: 1) aren't losing weight, and 2) keep getting the urge to binge. If you follow the healthy diet plan recommended by the website I gave you, you should be eating enough that you won't get those cravings for ice cream as often.  Good luck!

Anorexia/Eating Disorders

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Mary Pritchard

Expertise

I can answer questions about the psychology of eating, disordered eating attitudes and behaviors such as drive for thinness, drive for muscularity, binge eating, body dysmorphia, dieting, excessive/obsessive exercise, and body dissatisfaction. I can also answer questions about anorexia and bulimia.

Experience

I have a PhD in Psychology and teach courses in the Psychology of Health and the Psychology of Eating. I have been conducting research on disordered eating and exercise behaviors for 15 years.

Organizations
Midwestern psychological association, rocky mountain psychological association

Publications
Over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles in journals such as Eating Behaviors, Eating Disorders, and Eating and Weight Disorders

Education/Credentials
PhD in Psychology from the University of Denver

Awards and Honors
30 teaching awards, have received funding to conduct my research from academic institutions and state and local government

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