Tag Archives: binge eating disorder

Keto Vitamin C Smoothie Update

This  is an update on my Keto vitamin C smoothie.

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One Of My Favorite Supplements

Today I’m going to talk about one of my favorite supplements, Resveratrol.  Talk about the fountain of youth! Resveratrol just may be it. 🙂 

Resveratrol
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Friday, April 22, 2020

This Is going to be a short post… Not to complain, but I’ve been working all freaking day on a new PowerPoint.   My eyes are falling out of their sockets, my butt hurts and my knees are stiff.  

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Change can be a good thing!

Hot Tea

I was devastated!  How was I going to work out? How was I going to get any research or writing done on my books? Who would make my tea? How could I start my day seeing patients without this respite that was such an important part of my morning , my life? It is literally what motivated me to get up every morning…

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The Best Vitamin C

In our newsletter this week we talked about the importance of vitamin C. 

View Newsletter Here

In this blog I want to give you some ideas about how to source the best vitamin C. The best vitamin C comes from Kakadu Plum from Australia or Camu Camu from the Amazon Rainforest.

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Scrumptious and Super Easy Chicken Parmesan

Super Easy Chicken Parmesan

Today we are going to do a Chicken Parmesan that is scrumptious and super easy. 

I used only two chicken breasts which is enough to last me for three meals.  You could easily double the recipe. Here are the ingredients as I used them:

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When Is “Bingeing” Actually Binge Eating Disorder?

BED

We use the word “binge” very casually in our society.  We “binge” watch episodes of our favorite shows on DVR or Netflix.  We “binge” listen to podcasts.   Most of us probably “binged” on Star Wars movies before.

But when is bingeing on food actually Binge Eating Disorder?

Consider a time when you thought you were bingeing and ask yourself the following questions:

*. Did you consume an abnormally large amount of food in a short period of time as compared with what others might eat in the same amount of time under similar circumstances?

*.  Did you experience a loss of control over eating during these episodes?Do you consume food faster than normal?

*.  Do you feel fuller than usual?

*.  Are you consuming large amounts of food when not hungry?

*.  Are you consuming food alone due to embarrassment over the amount of food you are eating?

*.  Do you feel disgusting, guilty or depressed after the binge?

*.  Do you feel distressed about the binge?

Finally, think about your behavior over a period of time.

Has the binge eating occurred at least once a week for 3 months?

It is important to note that weight gain may or may not be associated with BED. And while there is a correlation between BED and weight gain, not everyone who is overweight binges or has BED.

If you find yourself answering yes to these questions, I am here to help.

Email me at drnorton@eatingdisorderpro.com or call 513-205-6543 to schedule an appointment.  Tele-therapy phone sessions available.

-Dr. Norton

#GetSunEatCleanBeWell

The Food is at Fault!

The Blame Game

We tend to blame the victims of disordered eating, no matter what form it takes. Binge Eating Disorder, Bulimia, Emotional Eating and Obesity are all assumed to be the result of poor choices and/or emotional disturbances that lead to over eating. Anorexia is often perceived as a choice the patient makes to achieve cosmetic improvements.

The eating problems plaguing Americans are the direct result of the deficiencies and toxins in the food supply and are not the result of implusive choices or vanity.

The Big Pharma complex, industrial farming, and the food and beverage industries, (I call them Big Pharma, Big Farming and Big Food or the 3 Big Pigs) have worked hard to convince us that our foods, beverages and drugs are safe as long as we take/eat them in moderation.

The issue is serious. The United States has the distinction of being the unhealthiest wealthiest country in the world today. So, how can a country with so many economic and natural resources not maintain healthy eating habits? The answer is simple and scary. Not only are the foods and drugs constructed by the 3 Big Pigs not safe, they are driving the catastrophic decline in the health of Americans and seriously decreasing the quality of life for millions of people.

Clean food heals the dysfunction and diseases caused by polluted foods. One of the reasons my patients get well is that they learn to trust food again by learning how to “eat clean.” Clean eating empowers them—it frees them from the slavery of addiction, and it calms the anxiety they have about eating. The more clean food they eat, the fewer cravings they have because the systems that regulate eating behaviors and weight fluctuations stabilize in the presence of clean food. Under these circumstances my patients can learn new healthy eating patterns.

The sad thing is that most of the treatment for eating disorders completely ignores the role of food pollution during recovery. To highlight how important clean food is and how destructive therapies can be that ignore the problems with our food, I’m going to describe the experience of a young patient of mine (age 14) in a typical residential treatment program for eating disorders.

In the residential program MA was ingesting the majority of her calories in the form of Boost[1] as a behavioral consequence of refusing to eat. She was also being kept in bed, all day, every day, for 13 days in a row. Understand she was not being kept in bed because she was too medically unstable to be up and around; she was kept in bed because she refused to eat. Her parents, or their insurance company, were paying a small fortune for this “treatment.”

Her treatment with me began by giving her choices about her food. She could pick whatever she wanted, as long as it was clean and had the necessary nutrients for her to slowly regain her weight. She slowly but consistently has expanded her foods to include everything she needs to thrive while consistently gaining weight.

Here is her experience with my approach to eating disorder treatment:

 The Blame Game-2

Did I mention this patient is only 14? She wasn’t asked to write this, she felt compelled to. After having such a terrible experience in residential treatment and finally finding a treatment program that was really working for her she needed to express what was changing in her relationship with food.

Whether you are bingeing, purging, restricting or are addicted- I guarantee that polluted food is playing a part in your illness. The food is at fault!

-Dr. Norton

#GetSunEatCleanBeWell

 

[1] These are the first 10 ingredients in Boost: water, sugar, corn syrup, milk protein concentrate, vegetable oil, (Canola, High Oleic Sunflower, Corn) soy protein isolate, and Carrageenan. The only ingredient that is not GMO or a form of processed L-Glutamine (MSG) which is highly addicting, is the water. (See Chapter _ Sources of Food Pollution)

 

News You Can Use: December 1-December 8 2013

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your weekly news update for the week of December 1-8 2013!”

Children as Young as Nine Treated for Eating Disorders – It has been claimed that the NHS is treating children as young as nine for anorexia. Overall, the health service is dealing with ‘record’ numbers of patients with eating disorders, with 350 beds being taken up every night by people with eating-related illnesses. Learn More.

New Research Shows Obesity is Inflammatory Disease – In a new research report scientists show that there is an abnormal amount of an inflammatory protein called PAR2 in the abdominal fat tissue of overweight and obese humans and rats. Learn More.

Behind Closed Doors – Displays of Vulnerability Can be a Crucial Part of Dealing with an Eating Disorder. Learn More.

Anorexia: You are Not the Person You Were – There are many physical changes when it comes to anorexia — the symptoms of starvation, the lack of body warmth, the insomnia, the brittle bones and chemical imbalances. These can be life-threatening. But the effect on the mind can be just as deadly and maybe even more insidious. Learn More.

Past Weight Loss an Overlooked Factor in Disordered Eating –  Dieters and weight loss researchers are familiar with the principle: The more weight you’ve lost, the harder it is to keep it off. A complex and vicious cycle of biological and behavioral factors make it so. But eating disorder research has largely overlooked this influence, and Dr. Michael Lowe, a professor of psychology at Drexel University, has published a flurry of research studies showing that needs to change. Learn More.

Hunger Pains – Binge-eating disorder linked to lifelong impairments in 12-country study. Learn More.

Chemical industry expects BPA sales to increase over next six years – A report by Transparency Market Research shows that the chemical industry expects bispehnol A (BPA) sales to increase by 44 percent by 2019. Learn More.

Is Picky Eating the Newest Eating Disorder – Find out if your picky eater has Avoidant /Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) and what to do about it. Learn More.

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Dr. J. Renae Norton is a clinical psychologist, specializing in the outpatient treatment of obesity and eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, bulimarexia, and binge eating disorder (BED) and the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio.


Let’s Connect!
Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship. This information is not necessarily the position of Dr. J. Renae Norton or The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity.

©2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’.

News You Can Use – October 15-22 2013

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your weekly news update for the week of October 15 – October 22 2013!”

Binge Eating Disorder is Different from Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa – Food addiction is not yet recognised as a mental disorder but certain obese individuals clearly display addictive-like behaviour towards food. To achieve a formal diagnostic status, ‘food addiction’ requires a stronger evidence base to support the claim that certain ingredients have addictive properties identical to addictive drugs of abuse. This topic is up for debate in the session, ‘Binge eating obesity is a food addiction’. Learn More.

Animals are Having an Obesity Crisis Too – Americans aren’t the only ones getting fatter — our animals are also growing overweight, reports Pro Publica. And it isn’t just pets and lab animals piling on the pounds (though they are; the likelihood of chimps living with or near humans being obese increased tenfold between 1985 and 2005): one study found feral rats in Baltimore are also getting plumper. Learn More.

Therapy Helps Relieve Stomach Aches for Some Kids – Talk therapy may help some children with frequent and unexplained stomach pain, a new study suggests. More than half of kids and teenagers who met weekly with a therapist had their stomach aches lessen or go away within a year. A similar proportion improved after regular appointments with a pediatrician, researchers found. Learn More.

Non-Regular Bedtimes Tied to Kids’ Behavior Problems – Kids without a regular bedtime tend to have more behavior problems at home and at school, a new study suggests. Researchers found that when children started going to sleep at a more consistent time, their behavior improved as well. Learn More.

Puberty and Eating Disorders – The Perfect Storm – In a recent paper in Hormones and Behavior, Kelly Klump reviewed what we know about puberty, eating disorders, and disordered eating. Especially in females, the surge of sex hormones seems to activate underlying genetic risk factors and alter neurochemistry. Although researchers still aren’t sure exactly what is going on, they are collecting a vast body of evidence that puberty is a particularly high risk period for Eating Disorders. Learn More.

New USDA Rules Further Degrade Integrity of Organic Certification – USDA ruling sidesteps the law, makes it easier for Big Food to continue adding junk ingredients to organic foods. Learn More.

Bottled Water: Your New Hormone Disruptor –  German researchers have just published a study finding nearly 25,000 chemicals in bottled water. And some of those chemicals act like potent pharmaceuticals in your body. Learn More.

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Dr. J. Renae Norton is a clinical psychologist, specializing in the outpatient treatment of obesity and eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, bulimarexia, and binge eating disorder (BED) and the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio.


Let’s Connect!
Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship. This information is not necessarily the position of Dr. J. Renae Norton or The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity.

©2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’.

News You Can Use: September 30 – October 7 2013

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your weekly news update for the week of September 30 – October 7 2013!”

Binge Eating Twice as Common as Bulimia [Study] – Women who binge eat are less likely to get married while men who binge eat are more likely to struggle with finding — and keeping — a job, says a new study in the Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences journal. The study shows both men and women, however, will experience long-lasting effects, such as depression, on par with those living with bulimia. People who struggle with binge eating are also more likely to experience more days where they’re unable to work or participate in regular activities. Learn More.

Heart Doctors Call for Help for Severely Obese Kids – Rates of overweight and obesity in U.S. children and teens may be leveling off, but kids at the extreme – the severely obese – are still swelling in numbers and need attention, according to a new statement from the American Heart Association (AHA). Learn More.

New York Times Reporter Michael Moss Talks About Food Addiction – “We can reduce our addiction to salt, fat and sugar,” New York Times reporter Michael Moss said Thursday. Moss was the first speaker in the 2013 Springfield Public Forum speakers series held at Springfield Symphony Hall. “I would encourage people to do simple cooking,” Moss added, and rely less on ready made convenience foods from the supermarket. Learn More.

The High Fructose Corn Syrup Addiction – Yes, a teaspoon of sugar may help the medicine go down.  Take 12 and it is a good bet that you are on the road to needing more medicine. The average American consumes about 12 teaspoons of high fructose corn syrup daily.  That’s nearly 55 pounds per year! Learn More.

Researchers Discover Brain Circuit that Controls Overeating –  When a particular circuit in the brain is stimulated, it causes mice to voraciously gorge on food even though they are well fed, and deactivating this circuit keeps starving mice from eating, a new study shows. The findings suggest that a breakdown within this neural network could contribute to unhealthy eating behaviors, the researchers said, although more work is needed to see whether the findings are also true of people. Learn More.

Readers Beware: Hidden GMO Ingredient Found in Cheese, Even from Grass-Fed Cows –  Many people enjoy cheese, but its getting harder to find high-quality GMO-free cheeses. As many readers already know, most dairy cows are fed GMO feed, but what few people may know is that even cheese derived from grass-fed cows may be contaminated with GMOs. Learn More.

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Dr. J. Renae Norton is a clinical psychologist, specializing in the outpatient treatment of obesity and eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, bulimarexia, and binge eating disorder (BED) and the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Let’s Connect!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship. This information is not necessarily the position of Dr. J. Renae Norton or The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity.

©2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’.

News You Can Use: September 22-29 2013

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your weekly news update for the week of September 15 – September 22 2013!”

Hunger Pains: Binge-eating disorder linked to lifelong impairments in 12-country study – Binge-eating disorder, designated only months ago by the American Psychiatric Association as a diagnosis in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, is associated with substantial lifelong impairments comparable to those of bulimia nervosa, according to a World Health Organization study based on community epidemiological surveys conducted in 12 nations worldwide. Read More.

How to Meditate – Ideas for how to begin daily meditation for people who’ve never tried it or feel like they couldn’t ever get their mind to be quiet. Read More.

Women living near pesticide-treated fields have smaller babies – The slightly smaller babies have not shown the health effects associated with low weight babies like developmental delays and learning problems. Read More.

GMO Label Initiatives: 3 Things Washington is Doing Better than California Did – Will Washington be the first state to mandate GMO Labeling? The state’s ballot initiative 522 is going to the people in November’s elections. The measure would require the labeling of genetically modified foods such as those containing corn and soy, and GMO salmon. Meat products from animals that were raised on non-GMO feed will be exempt though. Read More.

Obesity, Addiction, and Personalized Medicine: Future Treatment for Obesity Will be Individualized and Based on Cause –  Dr. Mark Gold, chair of Psychiatry at the University of Florida, and his colleagues have championed the concept that certain eating behaviors have characteristics that are similar to addictive behaviors. In fact, they suggest that some types of food can be addictive in specific individuals and that these foods influence the same brain systems that are usurped and re-programmed by addictive drugs. Dr. Gold and others have studied obesity in animals and humans and have generated data that support this concept. But does this mean that everyone who is obese is addicted to food? This seems unlikely. In fact, Dr. Gold and colleagues are not suggesting that all obese people are food addicts. Rather, they see food addiction as one of several causes for obesity. Read More.

Emotional Eating? 5 Reasons You Can’t Stop – Take control of your joy and pain to take away the power of food. Read More.

New Bill Would Finally Define “Natural” Food Labels – A new bill introduced to Congress would force the FDA to come up with concrete definitions for misleading and vague food labels. Read More.

Find Out if You Live Near a Factory Farm – A new interactive Factory Farm Map from a consumer advocacy group suggests some “local” food could come from a factory farm in your county. Read More.

Brain Cannot be Fooled by Artificial Sweeteners; Higher Likelihood of Sugar Consumption Later – Eating low-calorie sweetened products – especially when hungry or exhausted – may lead to a higher likelihood of seeking high calorie alternatives later, due to a newly discovered signal in the brain, suggests new research published today in The Journal of Physiology. Read More.

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Dr. J. Renae Norton is a clinical psychologist, specializing in the outpatient treatment of obesity and eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, bulimarexia, and binge eating disorder (BED) and the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Let’s Connect!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship. This information is not necessarily the position of Dr. J. Renae Norton or The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity.

©2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’.

Eating Disorder Pro Podcast: How Eating Disorders are Changing with Maria Rago

Dr. Maria Rago

Join us on TUESDAY July 23 at 7 pm EST as we talk with Dr. Maria Rago, Executive Vice President of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) and clinical director and founder of Rago and Associates Counseling Services. We’ll be taking your questions LIVE at 646-378-0494. You can tune in HERE.

“Dr. Maria Rago is a licensed clinical psychologist for the last 20 years working as a specialist in eating disorders.  She was clinical director of the Eating Disorders Program at Linden Oaks hospital at Edwards in Naperville IL for over 10 years, helping to make the program a national leader, including the creation of the innovative Arabella House, a residential group home for eating disorders treatment.  Dr. Rago is also the founder of Rago & Associates Counseling Services, specializing in eating disorders and other important issues that people need help with.  Dr. Rago loves to travel across the country to speak to college students and other groups about loving their body and eating without fear, and she is the author of, a book that speaks out against the literature that promotes restrictive eating and acceptance for only the thin.  Dr. Rago is also proud to be the Executive Vice President of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) the nation’s first eating disorders foundation, created in 1976.”

Dr. J. Renae Norton is a clinical psychologist, specializing in the outpatient treatment of obesity and eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, bulimarexia, and binge eating disorder (BED) and the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is the Director of The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Let’s Connect!

Sign up to receive my FREE ‘Lifestyle’ eBook

Take my new Eating Disorder survey!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

©2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’.

Eating Disorder Pro Podcast – Why Do I Overeat? With Zoë Harcombe

Zoe harcombe

Join us Wednesday May 29 at 7:30 pm as we talk with Zoe Harcombe, author of Why Do You Overeat? When All You Want to Be is SlimWe’ll be talking about a variety of topics including food addiction and we’ll be sharing tips to help people overcome overeating! You can tune in HERE!

“Zoë Harcombe is a qualified nutritionist with a Diploma in Diet & Nutrition and a Diploma in Clinical Weight Management, but she is first and foremost an obesity researcher. She works exclusively in the area of weight and obesity and reads, writes and talks about obesity as many hours as possible, seven days a week. Her complete goal and drive is to reverse the obesity epidemic.”

Let’s Connect!

Take my new Eating Disorder survey!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’.

Show Notes: The Slender Trap – Lauren Lazar Stern

In this weeks episode we talked with Lauren Lazar Stern, author of The Slender Trap. We had a great talk about the use of art therapy in the treatment of eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, obesity, and binge eating disorder (BED).

Listen to internet radio with Eating Disorder Pro on Blog Talk Radio

In this episode we covered:

7:00 – About Lauren Lazar Stern
8:10 – How Lauren Lazar Stern got started in the field of treating eating disorders
11:44 – What is “The Slender Trap”?
20:12 – What does an art therapy session for an individual with an eating disorder typically involve?
22:00 – Some patients tell me that they have had a negative experience with art therapy in residential treatment. Why would this be?
26:38 – What is more powerful, individual art therapy or group art therapy?
28:40 – What is the Expressive Arts Method?
30:33 –  Caller Question – Is art therapy effective for obese patients? Do you have to be artistic to benefit from art therapy?
32:00 – Is art therapy something that patients just practive in their therapy sessions? Or do they practice it between sessions?
37:33 – When working with an individual with an eating disorder, do you consider yourself to be doing tradition therapy that integrates art therapy, or is art therapy the primary mode of treatment?
46:06 – Are there any negative aspects of art therapy?
53:45 – What is EMDR?

Links We Discussed

PERSONALIZED, SIGNED COPY of How Maji Gets Mongo Off the Couch! for purchase from EatingDisorderPro.com
Maji and Mongo: Let’s Eat! for preorder from amazon.com
The Norton Center Lifestyle eBook
APA Presentation – The Food Pollution/Addiction Model for Treating Eating Disorders and Obesity: A Systems Approach
The Benefits of Coconut Palm Sugar [infographic]
iTherapy
Lauren Lazar Stern’s Official Website
The Slender Trap by Lauren Lazar Stern
The Healing Memory Project

Let’s Connect!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

How Visual Cues Affect the Amount of Food We Consume.

Sifu Renka/Creative Commons license

A study completed at Cornell University examined whether visual cues (as they relate to portion size) could influence the amount of food participants ate, without altering estimated food intake or satiation.

The study involved 54 participants between the ages of 18-46 with varying BMIs. The participants were divided into two groups; one group was given a bowl of soup in a normal bowl, the other group was given a bowl of soup in a self-refilling bowl. The self-refilling bowls were hooked up to a hose from underneath the table; the bowl would slowly refill as the participant ate.

Participants eating from the self-refilling bowl consumed 73% more soup than those participants eating from the normal bowl. Those that ate from the self-refilling bowl did not believe that they ate more soup than those eating from the normal bowls; they didn’t even perceive their appetite to be more satisfied!

The study findings suggest that people typically use their eyes to count calories, not their stomachs. The study also shows the importance of being mindful and the importance of having accurate visual cues to prevent overeating.

Let’s Connect!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

Source: Bottomless bowls: why visual cues of portion size may influence intake.

 

Show Notes – Food Addiction with Dr. Vera Tarman

In this weeks episode we talked with addictions specialist Dr. Vera Tarman of addictionsunplugged.com. We talked about the science behind food addiction!

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In this episode we covered:

3:40 – About Dr. Tarman
4:45 – What is food addiction? How did you becomes interested in becoming a specialist in food addiction?
6:38 – What are the signs that someone is a food addict?
11:38 – Is there a relationship between food addiction, obesity, and/or eating disorders?
13:50 – There’s an article on your blog entitled “Are we dieting ourselves into obesity?”. What do you mean by this?
20:10 – What impact does food addiction have on recovery from drug and alcohol addiction?
21:55 – Caller Question – What does an addiction-free diet look like?
33:10 – What is the three-part brain model?
36:39 – What role do dopamine, seratonin, and endorphins play in food addiction? What are symptoms of low neurochemical levels?
42:05 – What is the most successful treatment for food addiction?

Links We Discussed

Addictions Unplugged
Anorexia, Addiction, and the Three-Part Brain Model
How Maji Gets Mongo Off the Couch! for purchase from EatingDisorderPro.com | amazon.com
Maji and Mongo: Let’s Eat! for preorder from amazon.com
Dangerous Liaisons:  Comfort and Food – Understanding Food Addiction DVD

 

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2013, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

DSM-5 Changes in the Diagnosis Eating Disorders

As of May 2013, several changes will be made to the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) in regards to the diagnosis of eating disorders.

Binge Eating Disorder (BED) will now be listed as a separate diagnosis. Previously, individuals with BEDs were diagnosed as Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS). BED is associated with major medical complications such as high cholesterol, heart disease, and obesity. By listing BED as a diagnosis that is separate from EDNOS, individuals will now receive a proper diagnosis and more effective treatment.

Individuals will no longer need to present with amenorrhea in order to receive a diagnosis of Anorexia Nervosa. There are also changes being made to the weight requirements. Previously, an individual had to present at 85% of their ideal body weight. In the upcoming edition of the DSM, the individual will present with a significantly low body weight due to restriction of energy (food) intake.

In the current edition of the DSM, the main criteria for diagnosis of Bulimia Nervosa is based on the number of binge/purge episodes that occur per week. Currently, to be diagnosed with Bulimia Nervosa, the individual must binge/purge more than two times every week for a period of three months; otherwise they are diagnosed with EDNOS. In the 2013 version of the DSM, the number of weekly binge/purge episodes has been reduced. The individual must binge/purge at least once per week for a three month period in order to be diagnosed with Bulimia Nervosa.

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

News You Can Use – Oct 1 – 9 2012

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your weekly news update for the week of October 1-October 8 2012!”

Buy Organic, Avoid Birth Defects

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

The Effects of Macronutrient Intake on Binge Eating and Satiety in Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating Disorder

Macronutrient Ratios

Photo Credit: greggavedon.com – Creative Commons

Research shows that diets that are high in protein may reduce the frequency of binge eating episodes in individuals with Bulimia Nervosa (BN) or Binge Eating Disorder (BED).

Eighteen women with Bulimia Nervosa or Binge Eating Disorder participated in a five-week study to determine if macronutrient ratio affected the frequency of binge-eating episodes. The study was completed in two phases, one phase was a high-protein phase, one phase was a high-carbohydrate phase; both phases were separated with a one-week “washout” phase. Each participant was provided with a two-week supply of high-protein supplementation, and a two-week supply of high-carbohydrate supplementation. The 280-calorie high-protein supplement contained 75.47% protein, 10.31% carbohydrates, and 14.23% fat; the 280-calorie high-carbohydrate supplement contained 0% protein, 67.3% carbohydrates, and 1.33% fat. The supplements were taken one hour before meals. Participants were required to keep a food diary for the duration of the study.

After each two-week phase, each participant was required to fast overnight and then consumed one 420-calorie supplement of the same composition of the supplement given throughout the phase. Three hours after consuming the supplement, each participant was placed in a private room and presented with a buffet of foods that were typical of both meals and binges. The buffet consisted of a wide variety of foods with varied macronutrient ratios; examples include cheese, cake, cookies, bread, potato chips, ice cream, fruit, vegetables, meat, eggs, fish, beans, and peanut butter.

Upon completion of the study, it was determined that the frequency of binge eating episodes were 62% lower during the high-protein phase than during the high-carbohydrate phase. Three hours after high-protein supplementation, participants reported a greater sense of fullness and a reduced sense of hunger; they also consumed 21% less food than they did during the high-carbohydrate phase. It was also noted that participants gained a significant amount of body weight during the high-carbohydrate phase, while body weight during the high-protein phase was stable. The researchers hypothesize that a diet high in protein may protect both eating disordered individuals and non-eating disordered individuals from overeating or binge-eating.

Why did the episodes of binge-eating decrease during the high-protein phase? The researchers believe that when participants consumed the high-protein supplement there was an increased release of the satiety agents CCK and glucagon. When CCK and glucagon is increased, satiety signals are improved or restored. When this occurs, participants were less likely to binge on high-carbohydrate or high-fat foods. By not binge eating on high-carbohydrate or high-fat foods there was inherently an increased proportion of protein in the participant’s diet.

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

Source:

Latner, J.D., Wilson, G.T., (2004), Binge Eating and Satiety in Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating Disorder: Effects of Macronutrient Intake, Int J Eat Disord 2004 Dec;36(4):402-15.

Meditation-Based Intervention for Binge Eating Disorder (BED)

Meditation and Binge Eating Disorder

Photo Used Under a Creative Commons License via AlicePopkorn

Is it possible that individuals with Binge Eating Disorder could gain a greater sense of control over eating by giving up a certain amount of conscious control? It’s quite the paradox, really. A study completed at the University of Indiana examined this very idea. The study explored the use of meditation-based intervention for Binge Eating Disorder. The six-week study introduced 18 obese women to standard and eating-specific mindfulness meditation. After completing the study, episodes of binge-eating decreased from 4.02 episodes per week, to 1.57 episodes per week. Additionally, the women’s scores on the Binge Eating Scale (BES), the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) decreased significantly; anxiety and depression went from mild-moderate to non-clinical levels.  The women also reported an improvement in their sense of mindfulness, perceived control, awareness of hunger and satiety cues.

There are numerous reasons that meditation may be a successful form of therapy for individuals with Binge Eating Disorder (BED):

– people that regularly meditate exhibit greater control over random flow of thought

– meditation lowers brain reactivity; this may lower the impulses associated with Binge Eating Disorder

– it is believed that the act of meditating puts a space between thought and action, allowing for more time to think situations through before acting

– people that meditate regularly show an increased amount of connection in the white matter that connects the Anterior Cingulate Gyrus (ACG) to the rest of the brain; deficiencies in these connections are associated with addiction (including food addiction), depression, ADHD, obsessive behaviors, compulsive behaviors, and eating disorders

If you want to incorporate the art of meditation into your everyday life, there are several free downloadable meditations available through Buddha Net. A good meditation to start with is the Body Scan, which gives instructions on bringing awareness to bodily sensations. Buddha Net also offers meditations for progressive relaxation, learning how to calm the body with breath, cultivating peace and joy with the breath, mindful standing and walking, mindfulness of breath, mindfulness of sound and thought, healing painful emotions, and loving-kindness meditation.

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

Sources:

J Health Psychol May 1999 vol 4 no 3 357-363

News You Can Use – Aug 9-16

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your weekly news update for the week of August 9-16 2012!”

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Let’s Connect!

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Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

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View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

The Science Behind Overeating

Many of my clients and readers who are seeking treatment for Binge Eating Disorder, Obesity, or Bulimia ask the question “Why do I overeat?” There are numerous factors that drive us to overeat. But first let’s identify the five main types of overeating; compulsive overeating, impulsive overeating, impulsive-compulsive overeating, anxious overeating and emotional overeating.  The following are possible causes, and ways to decrease the tendency to overeat.

The Science Behind Overeating

Compulsive Overeating

Compulsive Overeaters tend to obsess over food and are compelled to eat with very little self-control.  The condition characterized by low serotonin in the brain, which causes the portion of the brain known as the Anterior Cingulate Gyrus to overwork. The Anterior Cingulate Gyrus is the portion of the brain that is responsible for allowing us to move from thought to thought, co-operate, and see errors; it’s the brain’s gear-shifter. An overactive anterior cingulate gyrus can be caused by genetics, emotional trauma, or poor diet.

Your serotonin levels may be too low if you get thoughts stuck in your head, you worry excessively, you are easily upset, you obsess over food, or you tend to be a night time eater. Serotonin can be raised through aerobic exercise, and supplements (5HTP, saffron, inositol, vitamin B6).

Impulsive Overeating

Impulsive Overeaters often have good intentions when it comes to eating good foods, but have a hard time controlling urges when they see a not-so-healthy food.

Impulsive Overeating is characterized by low dopamine in the brain. Low dopamine decreases the function of the portion of the brain known as Pre-Frontal Cortex. The Pre-Frontal Cortex is the front third of the brain, responsible for allowing us to focus, control impulses, to be emotional organizers and planners, be empathetic and insightful, and to learn from our mistakes. You can think of it as the “then what?” part of your brain; if I eat this, then what will happen? If I say this, then what will happen?

When the function of the Pre-Frontal Cortex is decreased (either through injury or a condition like ADD), it makes it very difficult to think ahead, to focus, etc. Functionality of the Pre-Frontal Cortex is improved by raising dopamine levels. Dopamine may be raised through aerobic exercise and supplements (L-tyrosine, green tea extract, ginseng, rhodiola).

Impulsive-Compulsive Overeating

Impulsive-Compulsive Overeaters constantly think about food and have a difficult time controlling themselves around food.  This condition is characterized by low dopamine and serotonin.  Impulsive-Compulsive Overeating is commonly seen in those suffering from eating disorders, as well as children and grandchildren of alcoholics.

Impulsive-Compulsive Overeating can be improved by increasing both dopamine and serotonin. This can be accomplished through aerobic exercise and supplements (5HTP and L-Tyrosine in the right proportions).

Anxious Overeating

Anxious Overeaters typically use food in an attempt to alleviate feelings of anxiety and fear.

Anxious Overeating is common in those with overactive Basal Ganglia. The Basal Ganglia is a large collection of cells that are located deep within the brain. It’s the portion of the brain that integrates thought with movement; clapping our hands when we’re excited, jumping when we’re frightened.

Symptoms of overactive Basal Ganglia include anxiety, nervousness, tension, the tendency to predict the worst, the tendency to use food as a way to medicate, and physical symptoms of stress (headaches, stomach aches, irritable bowel syndrome etc). Functionality of the Basal Ganglia can be improved through hypnosis, meditation, learning to correct negative thinking patterns, limiting alcohol and caffeine consumption, assertiveness training, and supplements (gaba and magnesium).

Emotional Overeating

Emotional Overeaters tend to use food to alleviate feelings of negativity and hopelessness.

Emotional Overeating is characterized by low levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine in the brain. Low levels of these neurotransmitters cause the Deep Limbic System to become overactive. The Deep Limbic System sets our emotional tone; when it’s working at a normal level we tend to be more hopeful and positive.

You may have low levels of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine if you experience a lot of negative thoughts, are sad or depressed, have trouble sleeping, and/or experience a lack of motivation.  These neurotransmitters can be increased though aerobic exercise, learning to replace automatic negative thoughts with healing, rational thinking, and supplements (fish oil, DHEA, S-adenosyl methionine aka SAMe).

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

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Sources:

KNOW YOUR BRAIN: One Size Does Not Fit Everyone — Targeted Interventions Just For You

Amen, D. G., & M.D., F. (2012). Change your brain, change your body, use your brain to get and keep the body you have always wanted. Three Rivers Press.

Eating Disorder Pro Radio Show – The Epidemic of Obesity & Escalation of Eating Disorders

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In this episode we discussed: The Epidemic of Obesity & Escalation of Eating Disorders

Links we discussed:

Maji and Mongo: How Maji Gets Mongo Off the Couch

Full Text Transcript

Good Evening! Welcome to Eating Disorder Pro. I’m Dr. Renae Norton and I’ll be your host. This is our very first blog talk radio show. Our debut. Our maiden voyage, as it were. So I’m sure there’ll be some mistakes, a few dead silences, accidental hang-ups. Just don’t change that channel.  Because we have good content show here and something worth hearing if you are struggling with disordered eating.

Our topic this evening is going to be the connection between obesity and eating disorders in the U.S. So if you have been struggling with an eating disorder, if you’ve been in and out of treatment, and nothing works, you’re still bingeing, purging or restricting you’ve come to the right place. Maybe you are on that roller coaster that many of us have been on of losing and gaining weight, and you can’t figure out what you are doing wrong. You’ve come to the right place. Maybe you have a child that can’t stop eating, or maybe you have a child that is terrified of food. Whatever the problem, if it has to do with eating, you are right where you should be!

So log on, tune in and call in.  The number, by the way, is 646-378-0494.

I think it’s probably a good idea to start with a little bit about me. I’m a clinical psychologist with a specialty in family treatment and neuropsychology. I’ve been in practice for the last 25 years and have specialized in the treatment of eating disorders almost exclusively for the past ten years. I’d appreciate if you’d visit my website at www.eatingdisorderpro.com.

Be sure to check out my latest book called “How Maji Gets Mongo Off the Couch!”. It is the first of a series of books for children designed to interest them in a healthier lifestyle.  Maji, who is a very healthy little dog, meets Mongo and takes him under his wing.  When they meet Maji is very active and Mongo is pretty much a couch potato. Maji patiently gets Mongo to move out of his comfort zone and off the couch. Eventually Mongo finds the healthy part of himself and the two have great adventures together.  Check it out by going to my website.

As far as the content for this evening’s show, much of it is result of research that I am doing for another more serious book, coming out in the Fall called “Cycles of Shame”. “Cycles of Shame” looks at the epidemic of obesity that we have in the United States, the expanding eating disorder population, and the role that food, or more specifically, food addiction plays in both problems. That’s right, I said ‘food addiction’.  Our foods in the United States are polluted with MSG, GMO’s (or genetically modified ingredients) neurotoxins, obesogens, carcinogens and allergens.  And they are killing us! Perhaps you think that I’m exaggerating?  Consider a few statistics –

  • Obesity is epidemic in the US and has reversed a 20-year trend of longer life expectancy especially for today’s children.
  • If the present rate of obesity continues, the entire population will be obese by the year 2030.
  • Likewise, eating disorders such as anorexia are growing reaching new segments of the population, primarily younger children (sometimes cases with children that are only 6 years of age), middle-aged women and many more men. It used to be that only about 5% of the eating disorder population was men, this has moved up recently to about 10%. I think it’s actually continuing to move. The important thing about these new groups is they were relatively unaffected by eating disorders in the past. It’s very significant that they are getting worse.

So, how do we compare to other developed nations?

One thing to think about is whether this is just us or whether this is something that is happening around the world. In fact, it really is mostly just us. Other countries are getting fatter, eating disorders are pretty much a phenomenon of the United States. They are a phenomenon of other countries, but only when they become westernized or in other words, start eating our food.

What’s happening in our country that’s different than in other countries, is that our food is essentially polluted and its taking a terrible toll on the populous.

The United States life expectancy is 42nd in the world, lagging behind almost all other developed nations. In the 1990’s the U.S. was in 11th place. That’s a tremendous difference, a huge difference

Infant Mortality – In 1960, the U.S. had the 12th lowest infant mortality rate in the world. In 2008 we were in 34th place. One of the variables that significantly impacts infant mortality rates is the nutritional status of the mother during pregnancy.

Health Care – It isn’t that we are ignoring health care.  We pay more for it than any other country in the world. In the United States, we spend on average $6,714. This is more than twice the average for individuals in any other country, unfortunately.  A sizeable portion of the overall health care spending in the U.S. is directly or indirectly related to obesity and its many complications.

So, what is causing this? Why is this happening in the United States and not in other countries? Part of the problem is definitely our culture. Pop culture plays a significant role. There are several factors that may be contributing to these problems. Pop culture weighs in by glamorizing extreme thinness, while simultaneously promoting excessive, often gluttonous eating.

Most people who overeat assume that they are entirely at fault. To begin with, they ignore the fact that our culture puts a lot of pressure on them. We are also bombarded with advertisements extolling the virtues of foods that are actually extremely dangerous.  We are not clued in that the foods are dangerous. We are pretty much clueless when it comes to the safety of or food supply. It’s sort of a cultural myth that “the government protects us from dangerous substances”, because of that we assume that it’s our fault that there is something wrong with us. “Maybe it’s my metabolism, maybe I’m just lazy”.

The self-blame and shame that follows drive yo-yo dieting, bingeing followed by purging, and restricting followed by overeating or bingeing.   That puts us in a frame of mind that makes the problem significantly worse. The behaviors that we’re talking about and the pressures people in the United States are under are the opposite of reality.

Despite the fact that scientists and public interest groups point to the escalation of toxic additives in the U.S. food supply as a major contributing factor in our declining health, the warnings go unheeded.

We have a tendency to “blame the victim”. So, what this refers to is that the individual with the problem is often blamed for having the problem. This is really unfortunate because it’s very difficult for someone who is blamed for the problem (especially if they accept the blame) to solve the problem under these circumstances. The upshot of “blaming the victim” is that those seeking treatment for obesity and eating disorders are often stigmatized, the may be disenfranchised, managed care may cost them.

In the industry today, it’s not uncommon for people that are obese to be excluded from their managed care policies. Perhaps they are excluded for anything that has to do with their obesity or weight problem. This is definitely “blaming the victim” and disenfranchising people who need help. By disenfranchising, their condition gets worse and expenses go up.

We really have a problem with affordable or available treatment, of course this increases relapse rates. Often, the anorexic patient is allowed one inpatient stay. After that, if she needs residential care again, she pays for it out of pocket. A month of residential stay can cost as much as $30,000, that’s usually prohibitive for most families.

The misplaced blame that “it’s the way we eat” makes it very difficult to find real solutions to the problems that people have today.

Another problem, another thing that is part of our culture is that treatment ignores or is often ignorant of the role of safe nutrition. In general, most of the treatment we get in this country is for the symptoms. Often treatment incorporates pharmaceutical remedies, some of which make the symptoms even worse.

In a nutshell, treatment does not recognize the role that food additives play in obesity and eating disorders. They damage parts of the endocrine system that are responsible for healthy weight management.

Because treatment uses in incorrect underlying assumption, the focus is always on the relative amounts of food; the number of calories, or the relative amounts of fat, carbs and protein. It rarely looks at the quality of the food that we should be looking at. That frame of reference often prevents people from actually recovering from their eating disorders. A good example would be: if you suffer from anorexia and you are in a residential treatment program, it’s very possible that the food that you would eat during the refeeding phase has so many toxins, obesogens, allergens and sweeteners that they actually do more damage than good. Likewise, for people that are dieting, the severe reduction in calories during the diet impacts your metabolism in a way that is suppressed, getting slower and slower. This results in “normal” eating causing rapid weight gain.

In future programs, we’ll be talking about what happens to the endocrine system depending on the types of food we are eating and what the endocrine system does. It actually tries to do many adaptive things that are actually maladaptive.

There are also “new” eating disorders on the horizon that are very troublesome. The one that worries me most that I’ve been seeing the most of in my private practice is a combination of anorexia and bulimia, known as bulimarexia. Bulimarexia is very troubling because if there is such thing as the “best of both worlds” it’s the “worst of both worlds”. The complications of bulimarexia are significant and often life threatening, more so than anorexia. Anorexia is currently the most life threatening emotional disorder one can have. Bulimarexia, which again is not on the radar of most practitioners, is popping up frequently. We don’t really seem to know what to do with it, how it is happening, why it is happening, let alone know how to help people overcome it or recover. I think there is a direct link between bulimarexia and the food that we are eating in this country presently.

Finally, last but not least, in terms of how our culture plays in these problems there is very little applied research. In the research that is available, it’s very unclear that certain food additives damage parts of the brain responsible for weight management. However, the very obvious indicators that there is a problem are being ignored. There is very little research demonstrating the safety of GMOs, yet in the United States you can barely buy a food that doesn’t have a genetically modified ingredient. But, that’s another show for the future. We’ll be talk about what that means, how it impacts obesity, how it impacts eating disorders. So stay tuned for that one.

The main problem , or saddest thing, is what is happening right now to children in the country, they pay the biggest price. There is an epidemic of obesity among U.S. children. It is not uncommon today for a child to leave the pediatrician’s office with a diagnosis of Type II Diabetes, high blood pressure, a heart condition or joint deterioration.  These diseases, are things our grandparents used to get. Right?

It’s crazy what we are seeing with little children. We have the fattest children in the world. We are the only country in the world right now that has obese infants. If you want to know, it’s because food additives target children’s foods. Just as an example, I have a can of Gerber Goodstart baby formula. Let me read some of the ingredients. Ok, the first one is “corn maltodextrin”. First of all, it’s GMO. Second of all, it’s MSG. “Vegetable Oil”, we have “palm” (that’s good), “soy” (that’s bad), “coconut” (that’s good), “safflower” and “sunflower” (those are both bad). Then we have “enzymatically hydrolyzed soy protein isolate”, that’s MSG. Then we have “sucrose”, that’s not good. We finally get to a relatively “good” ingredient; we have some “calcium” here, but only 2%. What we’re talking about here is that out of the first ten ingredients or so, seven or eight of them are either GM or some form of MSG. MSG is a neurotoxin; GMOs cause all kinds of endocrine problems including obesity.

We have some major problems when it comes to the foods we are feeding our children. The result is they are the first generation in many, many years to have a shorter life expectancy than their parents. They are the fattest children in the world, they are tied only with Scotland.

So what is causing this mess?  A list of things we’ll be talking about in the future are:

  • Food Addiction
  • GMOs
  • MSG and the impact it has on obesity
  • Healthy vs Unhealthy Fats
  • Grass-fed animal protein versus grain-fed animal protein.

Be sure to catch us when we are reviewing these topics. The call-in number tonight is 646-378-0494.

For this evening, suffice it to say, the missing link for many is the role that food additives play. Most Americans assume that foods in the U.S. are safe. WRONG!  We have been led to believe that we are the problem and that the reason we are having all of these problems is that we are lazy, or glutinous or uninterested in being healthy. WRONG! Finally we believe that our children are spoiled which is why they fall on the floor frothing at the mouth when they don’t get Chicken McNuggets. WRONG AGAIN!

For the past 40 years, there has been an escalation of substances known for their neuro-toxic, obesogenic, diabetic, carcinogenic, addictive and allergic impact added to the American food supply for the simple reason that these things increase profits for the food industry.  Scientists convincingly demonstrate that these additives damage the systems that regulate appetite, fat storage and weight gain or weight loss.

The fact is that they are highly addictive, they cause food cravings, binge eating, food obsessions, weight gain, weight loss, allergies and some of the worst chronic illnesses of our time. The problem is that they are everywhere!

Food additives and/or GMO ingredients are found in 95% of processed foods in the U.S.   A processed food is any food that comes in a bottle, box, bag, can, carton or shrink-wrap, as well as the vast majority of deli and restaurant foods. So, pretty much everything we are eating, unless we are eating a fruit or vegetable, frying up a chicken breast, or maybe having some fish. Dangerous additives are more common, and found in higher quantities in children’s foods. This is a serious problem for our future generations.

The problem is that most people don’t know what they are, let alone how dangerous they are. And then there is the issue of finding foods without them. It’s tricky; however it’s really worth it. When you do find the foods that don’t have food additives in them, you are going to discover some amazing things. First of all, the foods are absolutely delicious. What you will discover is that it’s very easy to maintain the correct weight. How can that be?

  • For one thing, when you are eating foods that are not toxic, your blood sugar levels will stabilize. This means it will be hard to gain weight; unless you are anorexic, in which case your weight gain will be slow and steady.
  • Your cravings will disappear, since you will be extinguishing the food addictions you have developed unknowingly.
  • Your allergies will improve or go away.
  • For those of you who think you are gluten intolerant (and so many people today do), you may discover that you are not, that you are allergic to GMO’s or herbicides and insecticides. It’s interesting, I have a patient that was certain that she was gluten-intolerant. She went to Italy, where there are no GMOs. She ate the pasta and the bread (because she was in Italy) and had no allergic reactions whatsoever. Likewise, I have many patients that thinking they have dairy allergies. When I turn them onto whole milk that is from an A2 casein grassfed or pastured cow, they have no allergic reaction. What’s more delicious than a glass of whole milk, or whipped cream that you can put blueberries in? One of my obese patients (who has lost well over 100 pounds at this point) said that the most significant, positive thing about this approach was the fact that he was able to eat homemade whipped cream and strawberries every night before bed.
  • Your immune system will improve because it will no longer be under attack.

I have patients that come in today that are bulimarexic or anorexic that are losing their teeth, are having kidney failure and losing their hair. In the last 2 years, on three different occasions, I’ve had patients with no teeth. In one case, it wasn’t even possible for her to have implants because she had no jaw left. I also have patients at a very young age that have such severe osteoporosis that they suffer from kyphosis. That isn’t something that any one should experience anyone should experience. The reason they are experiencing these things at such a young age is because not only are they anorexic, but the foods they do eat are loaded with dangerous food additives, one of which is a sweetener.

For those of you that are guzzling down those diet soft drinks, you really need to find some substitutes. If you go to my website (www.eatingdisorderpro.com), you will find a lot of really good suggestions in handouts and articles on my blog. One drink, for example, that I think is exceptionally good is a drink by a company called “Q”. There’s a “Q Cola” a “Q Gingerale” and, for those of you who like a good vodka and tonic, there’s “Q Tonic” and it’s excellent. They only have 16 grams of carbohydrates.

What impact does obesity have on us? We know for the adult there is depression, reduced earning power, infertility and isolation are common among adults who are obese. It’s very difficult if not impossible for people to travel, very difficult for the morbidly obese to go to restaurants and to the movies. But what about individuals who have been obese since they were 3 or 4, and end up with Type II Diabetes by the time they are 10 or 11?  What are the developmental issues at risk for such individuals?  What are the implications for our society? Where does this leave us in comparison to other countries in the world that aren’t having these problems?

What impact are we seeing with eating disorders?  Eating disorders also take a toll on life expectancy. For example, females between the ages of 15 and 24 who suffer from anorexia have the highest mortality rate for that age range. Studies have also shown that the risk for early death is twice as high for anorexic’s that purge.

Presently, the prevalence of purging anorexics or bulimarexics is on the rise. That particular type of eating disorder is a perfect example of what happens when you take someone who is afraid of eating and expose her to foods that are addictive. She can’t resist the impulse to eat these addictive foods. Unfortunately, she often learns to eat them when she is in a residential treatment center. Once this happens, she is at her wit’s end to know what to do and ends up purging. These are the patients I see with such horrendous complications; liver failure, cirrhosis of the liver, kidney failure, calcium problems (bones shattering, being unable to keep their teeth in their mouth) and endless horrible things like that. This new disorder appears to be driven by food addictions and/or intense food cravings, both of which have increased with the increase in food additives that we see in the American diet.

There seems to be a connection between the variables driving the epidemic of obesity, the changing demographics of eating disorders, and the escalating medical complications in both populations.  Just as an example (aside from the fact that we are being subjected to food additives that are extremely dangerous), another connection is being obese as a child puts one at greater risk for being anorexic, or bulimarexic, later in life.

Today 17% of U.S. children between the ages of 2 and 19 are obese according the Center for Disease Control, that’s a scary scenario. By implication many more children may be at risk for developing an eating disorder in the future.  A history of childhood obesity also makes recovery less likely for those suffering from anorexia or bulimarexia. They tend to be much more frightened of the refeeding process and has a much higher likelihood of relapse.

Not only is the general public unaware of the impact that food additives may be having on their health or the health of their children, especially when it comes to disordered eating, but practitioners also appear to be fairly in the dark.  This is unacceptable. Americans can’t help that they are basically being sold a bill of goods about the safety of our foods. Practitioners should have a higher standard to meet.

There is research documenting the role that food additives are having on weight regulatory systems in the body, yet this connection is not yet on the radar of a lot of practitioners, which may help to explain why recovery rates for obesity and eating disorders are so low. It’s really not uncommon today, if you have anorexia, to have your physician or if you end in the ER to have the physician to ask you a question like “Why are you doing this to yourself?” This tends to be experienced as very judging for most people in that situation, it’s just not helpful.

What are the recovery rates for these problems? Not great. For example, recovery rates across treatment modalities for those with anorexia and bulimia are only about 50% at best.  They drop to 30% for treatment that relies primarily upon residential care. For those who are obese, or overweight, the failure rate is even higher, in as much as 95% percent of all those who try to lose weight by dieting alone fail. Finally, when one considers that yo-yo dieting is a significant risk factor for developing an ED and that approximately 41% of the U.S. population is on a diet at any given time; the outlook is dismal at best.

Why is this happening here and not in other countries? In a nutshell other countries regulate these additives or prohibit them altogether. The pollution of the American food supply is a silent but deadly problem.  It is also comes at a high cost.

It is silent because the American public buys products assumed to be safe that are anything but safe. The average citizen is simply not aware that Citric Acid, Malted Barley, or Natural Flavorings are neurotoxins.

Likewise, most people assume that buying a food that is certified “organic” is safe. But organic foods are not necessarily safe, in as much as the FDA allows unsafe additives to be put into the vast majority of processed foods, including those that are “organic.”

If you want to be sure that your food is safe, it must say 100% organic. If it doesn’t, it’s not necessarily safe. It if says “USDA Certified Organic”, it will be 95% safe, but can still contain 5% GMO ingredients, MSG and other unhealthy additives. If it says it is made with “organic ingredients” it doesn’t mean anything; it could have anything in it. We have to be very careful, and that’s the point. Why do we have to be careful? Why do we have to mistrust a label? The reason is simple: If we don’t mistrust the label we are likely putting ourselves in danger.

The pollution of our food supply is deadly because it results in decreased life expectancy, premature infant mortality, and the mortal complications of ED’s and obesity.  The toxification of the U.S. food supply is costly because it contributes to the increased incidence of the most costly diseases of our time, including obesity and its complications, various types of cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

These problems have long-term implications, as the largest and most profitable market targeted for dangerous food additives is children’s food, beginning with infant formula. Not surprisingly, childhood obesity in the U.S. is epidemic, beginning with obese infants.  This is a first in our history and does not occur in other countries.

There are a number of things that you can do to protect yourself; you can find help for what to do on our website. There are also other organizations that are watching out for you, those are watch-out groups. It would be very helpful and worth your while for you to search these out if you haven’t already. Again, we have a list of resources and places you can find good information that you can trust.

[Caller Question] I have a question. I was wondering what is more dangerous: anorexia, bulimia or obesity?

[Dr. Norton] That’s a very good question. Let’s take obesity first. Most people don’t die from obesity; they die from the complications of obesity. I guess I could say that about anorexia as well and also about bulimia. This is a very good question because the answer is changing. It used to be that you didn’t start to become obese until middle age, and then you might die from some of the complications like heart disease, perhaps type II diabetes. However, with obesity beginning in childhood and infancy we don’t really know what it’s going to do. We know that it has lowered life expectancy of children presently for the first time in several decades. At this point, I would have to pick obesity as being the most dangerous. I can tell you that since bulimarexia doesn’t really have a diagnosis; we aren’t really tracking it, but at some point I’m sure we will. At that point, I am thinking it’s going to be viewed as a more lethal disorder. So, I’m not sure if I really answered your question.

[Call dropped]

Please tune in next Tuesday at 7 pm. We’ll be doing some show notes, of course. We’ll make sure you have access to those. Please visit www.eatingdisorderpro.com, and be sure to check out the ‘Maji and Mongo’ book. Please look for ‘Cycles of Shame’ that will be coming out in the Fall. Thank you very much to those of you that joined us tonight.

Let’s Connect!

Take my new Eating Disorder survey!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

News You Can Use! June 3 – 10 (part ii)

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your news update!”

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

Wheat – The Staff of Life or the Kiss of Death?

Wheat

“I’ve been treating eating disorders (ED’s) and obesity for nearly 25 years and have always had good outcomes.  My rate of success improved dramatically, however, when I discovered the critical role that processed food plays in causing as well as in preventing recovery from Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, (a combination of the two) Binge Eating Disorder (BED,) Emotional Eating and Obesity. To this end, I find it of great importance to provide both my patients and readers with relevant nutrition information to aid in their recovery. You can view all my Nutrition, Fitness, and Health articles here.

Today’s wheat is not the same wheat eaten during biblical times, when wheat was referred to as the “Staff of Life”. The wheat consumed in the United States today is a product of many, many years of hybridization with the purpose of creating a greater yielding crop that is resistant to heat, drought and cold, making it a more lucrative crop for industrial farmers.  (Shouldn’t “industrial farmer” be an oxymoron?)  Besides being cheap and plentiful, it is virtually impossible for humans or animals to digest without significant health consequences.

How did the Staff of Life become the Kiss of Death?

The first variety of wheat, called Einkorn, was grown by man more than 12,000 years ago. Einkorn is a fairly simple plant with only 14 chromosomes. Today’s wheat is much more complex, it has 42 chromosomes.  This is how we arrived to the type of wheat we consume today:


During the mid-18th century, there were 5 different varieties of Triticum Aestivum (commonly known as Bread Wheat), today there are 25,000 varieties.

It is no secret that the number of calories consumed by Americans has increased. A study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition documented a 440 calorie per day increase from 1977 to 2006 in 28,400 children and 36,800 adults. That is an extra 3080 calories per week.  It only takes 3500 extra calories to gain a pound. At the same time that calorie intake began to increase, a new variety of wheat was introduced into the American food system. This wheat was unique, because it contained a protein called gliadin. According to Dr. William Davis, author of The Wheat Belly, gliadin “exerts opiate-like effects”. Gliadin binds to the opiate receptors in the brain but instead of resulting in a “high” that would typically be experienced with the use of an opiate drug, gliadin causes us to experience food cravings (for wheat products as well as for other foods). This explains why so many Americans began gaining weight around this time.

Dr. Davis has also seen a link between wheat consumption and the development of eating disorders. He recently published an article stating that “we know that when people with celiac disease remove all wheat/gluten from the diet, calorie intake goes down 400 calories per day. We know that normal volunteers administered an opiate-blocking drug, such as naloxone or naltrexone, reduce calorie intake by around 400 calories per day. We also know that people with eating disorders, such as binge eating disorder, reduce calorie intake, yup, 400 calories per day when injected with an opiate-blocking drug. We also know that a drug company filed its FDA application in 2011 for naltrexone, a drug already on the market for heroin addiction, to be prescribed for weight loss.

Einkorn, the original wheat, can still be purchased today and may be an alternative for those looking for a wheat replacement. A company called “Jovial Foods” sells organic einkorn flour, organic einkorn berries, and einkorn-based cookies and pasta. Jovial Foods grows their einkorn on five different organic farms in Italy. All the ingredients in their products are completely non-GMO. As an added bonus, they use palm fruit oil in their cookies! None of their foods contain excitotoxins, MSG, high fructose corn syrup, or any other concerning food additives. You can buy their products directly from their website, or in some stores.

Let’s Connect!

Take my new Eating Disorder survey!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

News You Can Use – April 22 – 29 2012

News You Can Use

“As an Eating Disorder Professional, I know that many of my clients that are in treatment for Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, Binge Eating Disorder or Obesity are overwhelmed by all the information in the news about our health. In hopes of relieving some of the stress this can inflict on both my patients and readers, I’ve highlighted some of the weekly health news that was of particular interest to all of us at The Norton Center for Eating Disorders and Obesity. From my eating disorder and obesity treatment center in Cincinnati, here is your news update for the week of April 22 – April 29 2012!”

Were there any news articles that you saw this week that really grabbed your attention? Leave a comment with a link. If the article helped you, it will likely help some of my other readers!

Let’s Connect!

Take my new Eating Disorder survey!

Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. //edpro.wpengine.com’

Eating Disorder as Addiction

Refeeding, A Step at a Time

Refeeding, A Step at a Time

Re-feeding: What is Normal? 

The central and most difficult issue to be dealt with in the treatment of serious eating disorders is the issue of re-feeding and/or the establishment of a healthy relationship with food. The degree to which the patient can do this determines her success in conquering her disorder. The problem is that “normal” eating is a very complicated phenomenon, let alone the intricacies of re-feeding. This is one of the reasons that the “cure” rate for eating disorders is so low.

In some ways, it is more difficult to treat a severe eating disorder than it is to treat alcoholism or drug addiction. There is no such thing as cold turkey when it comes to eating. We have to eat every day, preferably 5 or 6 times a day. Likewise we cannot avoid the situations that trigger maladaptive eating behavior like the alcoholic or drug addict can do in an attempting to recover from their addictions. We eat for many reasons, under many different circumstances. We eat when we are hungry, not hungry, starving or full. We eat to socialize, to celebrate and to mourn. We eat to reward, nurture or punish ourselves. We eat when we are procrastinating, trying to relax or as part of a “working” breakfast/lunch/or dinner. We eat when we are happy, sad, mad, or for some of us, whenever we feel emotional.

Dieting Doesn’t Work

An equally important part of eating is the whole “not eating” thing, also known as “dieting”.  Ninety-five % of US women believe that they are overweight and 65% of the general population diets. The dieting mind-set is so well ingrained in our society that some 5 and 6 year olds are worrying about how many calories and how much fat is in their Lunchables. Indeed, so many people in the US are dieting that it is a 93 billion dollar a year industry. There are hundreds of “diets”, diet workshops and diet programs, the vast majority of which fail. In fact, without exercise, 95% of all diets fail.

So why do so many people do it?  We try to lose weight out of fear, vanity, pride or guilt or we may diet to feel stronger, more disciplined, superior and/or healthier, or we may just diet because everyone else seems to be doing it. The combination of being bombarded with advertisements  to eat along side strong media pressure to be thin is constant in our culture.

Eating Disorders

All of the above behavior comes under the heading of “normal” eating. For those whose eating problems have risen to the level of a disorder, eating triggers feelings such as euphoria, guilt, shame and intense anxiety. Those suffering from Bulimia or Bulimarexia (restricting, binging and purging or just restricting and purging) engage in mindless eating or bingeing to numb or distract themselves from stressful situations or unhappy thoughts and memories.

Purging by vomiting or abuse of laxatives can last hours, keeping the individual up late into the night or causing her to miss work or school when she cannot resist the impulse to binge and purge during the day. One patient recently described a nightmarish scene in which she could not purge into her toilet because it was broken and so took a chance on using the tub drain as she showered. Unfortunately, the food would not go down that drain either. In horror she continued to vomit into the tub until she was standing in a foot of water thick with vomit.  It took her and her mother hours to scoop the vomitous water out with buckets, which they then had to carry to another bathroom and flush down another toilet.  The unbelievable part?  Though repulsed by the mess, she was astonished and secretly impressed by the amount of vomit that she was able to produce!

Once she has binged (or simply eaten something she is uncomfortable eating) the need to purge is often so compelling that it goes beyond all reason, as in the case above.  However this is a temporary “fix”.  The purging gives the individual a temporary “high” followed by feelings of guilt and anxiety and a determination not to repeat the experience. Unfortunately this leads to restricting, which eventually leads to bingeing and the cycle begins again.

Sounds like drug and alcohol addiction, doesn’t it? Eating disorders are very much like other addictions, i.e. they are part of a classic addictive cycle. This includes an increase in tension, which the addict believes can only be relieved by the “fix”. In most addictions, relief from the fix is of shorter and shorter duration before the cycle begins again. This is what is known as a very vicious cycle.

Though not as obvious, the individual suffering from Anorexia is also an addict of sorts, i.e. she restricts to overcome feelings of inferiority, helplessness and hopelessness and to make herself feel in control. Often, she can only be proud of herself when she is pushing starvation to the extreme. This is her “fix”. Many of my patients describe the feeling of being able to function or stay alive on as few calories as possible as a “high”. Indeed there is scientific evidence that fasting does cause the release of endorphin’s, which do make us feel good. Not coincidentally, they report to the same part of the brain that drugs and alcohol do.

To summarize, even “normal” eating behavior can be stressful. Disordered eating takes over the individual’s life, much like alcoholism and drug addiction take over the addict’s life, robbing her of her relationships, her independence, her health and in far too many cases, her life. The mortality rate for eating disorders is higher than that of any other psychological disturbance.

Unfortunately, eating disorders are less likely to be understood as addictions, and more likely to elicit a judging stance from the general public, families and even a surprisingly high proportion of treating professionals. It seems as though the more serious the disorder, the more likely it is to be viewed as an attempt at getting attention or being manipulative.

Take, for example, the Cincinnati physician that said to one of our very attractive patients suffering from Bulimarexia, “You’re beautiful and you’re rich. You have it all. You should be counting your blessings. Why would you want to do something as stupid as refusing to eat?”

But the topper might be the psychiatrist that had another very attractive patient stand up at her first appointment so that he could “assess” her physique and make the following brilliant observation “Yup, you have breasts, hips and thighs. In other words you have curves, what’s the problem?” Individuals such as this often view Anorexia and Bulimia or Bulimarexia as vanity issues.

What Causes An Eating Disorder?

The causes are complicated and for most of the people suffering from an eating disorder, not the result of one factor, but many. The well-known causes are societal pressures to be thin, peer pressure, a major set-back at a critical point in the individual’s life, such as a loss or a traumatic event, childhood disturbances and/or dysfunctional family relationships, etc. However, there are also bio-physiological issues that play a significant role, although they tend to be poorly understood.

Many eating disorders are driven by cravings that are part of a classic addictive cycle, which may actually be perpetuated by food industry profits. In the early 70’s, the food industry discovered that high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) was much less expensive than sucrose. This was primarily because it was much sweeter. So, in it went into our foods, everything from baby food to hot dog buns and cigarettes! They ultimately took it out of most of the baby food, but it is still in the cigarettes, just in case cigarettes aren’t addictive enough without the sugar!

In Cincinnati, there are many fast food establishments still using HFCS’s in their buns, including; Arby’s, Blimpie, Burger King, Chick-fil-A, Dairy Queen, Jack in the Box, KFC, McDonald’s, Subway, and Taco Bell. You’re not safe at the Cincinnati Kroger’s either, or any of the major grocery chains for that matter, since it is actually harder to find foods at the supermarket without HFCS’s, than it is to find foods with it. For example, there are no less than 10 teaspoons of HFCS’s in a single 12 once can of soda. Likewise they are found in almost all snacks, dairy products, condiments, canned goods, cereals, bread, even supplements and vitamins. In total, the average American eats 83 pounds of corn syrup a year plus 66 pounds of sucrose, for a total of 149 pounds of refined sugars.

What does that mean in terms of unnecessary weight gain? Well let’s do the math: We have 159,360 calories from the corn syrup, and 102,168 from the sucrose totaling 261,528 calories per year from sugar. If it takes 3500 calories more than you use in a given period of time to gain 1 pound, that means that unless you work it off, you could gain 75 lbs/year from ingesting sugar you don’t need and probably don’t realize you are eating. To avoid gaining weight from the HFCS’s added to processed foods, the average person would have to run a total of 438 hours per year or 8 hours per week. The net/net of all of the above is to avoid processed foods, i.e. if it didn’t have a face (meat, poultry, fish, fowl) or come out of the ground (fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes), think twice about eating it. (The exception would be dairy products, such as yogurt, soft European cheeses, and milk. The lower fat varieties of these foods are very good for you, especially when they are lactose free.)

Sugar and Eating Disorders

Sugar Cubes

photo used under creative commons license

What does HFCS have to do with eating disorders? For starters, sugar has recently been shown to be the main culprit in insulin resistance, which is the precursor to obesity. In this country, obesity has become the nation’s most critical health problem. Ultimately it leads to such chronic diseases as Type II diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease. These diseases are threatening to dismantle our entire health care system because of their increased incidence and skyrocketing cost of treatment.

Binge eating, bulimia, and bulimarexia are basically sugar addictions, as most individuals suffering from these disorders binge on simple carb’ s (highly refined foods that are often loaded with HFCS’s). Simple carbohydrates convert to sugar in the blood stream. Research has shown that sugar is as addictive as alcohol and/or cocaine.

Recovery from a food addiction (eating disorder) requires a basic understanding of the addictive nature of food and a commitment to replace the offending food(s) with something equally satisfying but less addictive. Otherwise you find yourself in a perpetual and very vicious cycle of restricting or deprivation (dieting) followed by the onset of withdrawal symptoms (food cravings, obsessive thoughts) a build up of anxiety and behaviors designed to quiet the beast, (bingeing, cutting, compulsive spending, binge drinking) and possibly efforts to compensate (purging with vomiting, excessive exercising, abuse of laxatives and/or diet pills). This leads to guilt and a profound sense of failure, which is followed by renewed determination to stop the cycle by not “eating so much” which is a euphemism for restricting or dieting, at which point the cycle begins again.

Unfortunately, many in an effort to avoid the offending food(s) restrict too much and end up avoiding the foods that could break the cycle, proteins or complex carbohydrates i.e. low fat meats, cheeses and fish or fresh fruits and vegetables. Instead they eat foods that actually contribute to the food addiction and cause the cycle to begin again. For example, so many of my patients avoid all protein because of their fear of fat and eat simple carbs, like pretzels or diet soft drinks when they are in restricting, dieting or “being good”. Or worse, they eat candy that has no fat, like jellybeans, thinking that this is a safer snack than a piece of chocolate or a handful of nuts. The chocolate, especially if it’s dark chocolate, does have some fat, but it has fewer sugars than a bag of jellybeans and, because it is dark chocolate, it has antioxidants. And the nuts have a good deal of fiber, which means that they usually have a glycemic load of 0. (This means that they do not enter the blood stream as a sugar and therefore do not contribute to a sugar addiction, which is the primary culprit in the weight gain that leads to obesity).

The jelly beans, on the other hand, and even the diet drink, make the problem much worse because they enter the blood stream almost immediately as glucose, adding to the sugar addiction, which in turn drives more binging behavior. They also have dyes and additives and no nutritional value. The real kicker however, is the long term negative impact that carb loading followed by purging or restricting has on ones’ metabolism, i.e. it slows it down to such a degree that it is almost impossible for the individual suffering from bulimia to eat normally without gaining weight. Until she understands which foods and supplements will stimulate her metabolism instead of suppressing it, she is stuck in this terrible self-perpetuating vicious cycle.

Once she understands how delicious real food can be and how much more of it she can eat without fear of gaining weight if she is exercising and supplementing, she has begun the journey toward a healthy relationship with food and the end of her eating disorder. But this requires courage, patience and lot’s of support from family, friends and allied professionals.

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2008, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

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ADHD and Incidence of Eating Disorders

ADHD and eating disorders

Eating Disorders Common In ADHD Girls: Compulsive Behavior Tied To Body Image Problems

Girls with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are more likely to have an eating disorder, a new study said. “Adolescent girls with ADHD frequently develop body-image dissatisfaction and may go through repeating cycles of binge eating and purging behaviors that are common in bulimia nervosa,” said University of Virginia psychologist Amori Yee Mikami.

ADHD is thought to be three times more common in boys than girls, so researchers are still learning its long-term effects on girls. But eating disorders are 10 times more common in girls. “Our finding suggests that girls may develop a broader range of problems in adolescence than their male counterparts,” Mikami said. She said girls often go undiagnosed and untreated for ADHD, which could increase the risk of eating disorders. “As they get older, their impulsivity may make it difficult for them to maintain healthy eating and a healthy weight, resulting in self-consciousness about their body image and the binging and purging symptoms,” she said.

The results are based on a study of 228 girls in the San Francisco Bay area; 140 had ADHD. “An additional concern is that stimulant medications used to treat ADHD have a side effect of appetite suppression, creating a risk that overweight girls could abuse these medicines to encourage weight loss, though we have not yet investigated that possibility,” Mikami said. The findings appeared in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology. Note: if you treat both eating disorders and ADHD, then consider joining our sister organization at www.addreferral.com

Source:

UVA Today – Adolescent Girls with ADHD Are at Increased Risk for Eating Disorders

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2008, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

Please credit ‘© 2008, Dr J Renae Norton.