Anorexia/Eating Disorders/Anorexia recovery

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Question
Hello, I've been struggling with Anorexia for about 4 years now (I just turned 17) and I am working on recovery. I haven't seen a nutritionist recently, because I'm trying to avoid what the last five have told me ("It's all in your head," "Just make yourself eat".) So, this morning I have started on eating more than 500 calories a day. I ate two hash browns and some peach low-fat yogurt and a small bit of pecans and dried blueberries. I ate all of the hash browns and all the yogurt, and a bite or two of the pecans and blueberries. I feel absolutely awful and as if I'm going to throw up and/or pass out. Walking up the stairs to lie down was work in itself, which it normally isn't. I feel like eating has made me feel worse than not eating does.

So, my question is - Is this normal? What should I do?

Answer
Jeanne Rust, PhD
Jeanne Rust, PhD  
No, this is not normal behavior -- however it is normal for someone who is anorexic.  You need to start out with a minimum of 1200 calories a day -- I can't imagine any nutritionist telling you that it's just all in your head.  Try another one and when you make the appointment, ask if they know anything about eating disorders.  Eating disorders are diseases that kill people.  You need to see your doctor and a nutritionist.  What is your height and weight right now?  This is important because if you're very very thin, refeeding can cause some significant health problems and needs to be monitored by a doctor!!  Please give me a little more information!!

Thanks!

Warmly,
Jeanne Rust, PhD
www.mirasol.net

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Jeanne Rust, PhD

Expertise

I have been treating eating disorders for over 25 years and I have a doctorate in clinical psychology. I am an expert in anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorders and in co-occurring disorders as well -- depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, etc. I was the official eating disorder therapist for the University of Arizona athletic department and love working with girls and women of all ages! 12 years ago I started my own treatment centers in Arizona where we treat adolescents and adults. I love working with people and have been helping people online since 1994. My hearts go out to the people out there who are unable to find help, who aren't sure whether they need help, and who don't have much of an understanding of the terrible consequences, emotionally and physically, that go hand in hand with the eating disorder. I view eating disorders as coping mechanisms that people use when they are under stress. I believe that eating disorders most times have many similarities whether it is anorexia, bulimia, or binge eating. The good news is that people can heal from an eating disorder and learn to create the lives they would like to live.

Experience

I have 25 years of experience in treating eating disorders of all kinds. I also do consultations for people who are starting treatment centers.

Education/Credentials
Northwestern University -- BA Masters in Counseling Doctorate in Clinical Psychology -- Saybrook institute

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