I’m not a mother. Do you help women who aren’t moms?
Absolutely!! Many of our clients are not moms! We work with all kinds of women and we actually work with men sometimes too. We just have a sub-specialty in mama care.
I’ve never been diagnosed with an eating disorder and I don’t think I have one. Do you work with people who haven’t been diagnosed with an eating disorder?
Yes! Our clients deal with a wide range of food and movement challenges and many have not been diagnosed with an eating disorder. However, most are experiencing some sort of discomfort when it comes to their “relationship” with food and their bodies. No matter the challenge, we always incorporate mindfulness and intuitive eating principles, as appropriate. Our diet rehab program is for those who don’t have eating disorders but have a history of dieting that has left them frustrated with their eating experience. In addition, due to her experience in clinical nutrition, Kelsey Peterson (one of our fabulous RDs), works with women diagnosed with diabetes, gastrointestinal issues, celiac disease, etc…
Do you do any blood analysis, food allergy and intolerance testing or other nutrient testing?
We do not do food allergy or intolerance testing. We will often ask that you get a basic blood panel done to assess your general nutrient status. We also have access to a test that can assess your omega 3 levels.
How much does it cost to work with you?
Fees vary based on your needs and what services you purchase. We offer hourly fees as well as packages. We don’t offer a sliding scale but we do keep a couple of spots available for those who do need help financially. Contact us to receive information on pricing.
Do you take insurance?
At this time, we can offer you a superbill that you can submit to your insurance in hopes of getting reimbursed. We are currently working on contracting with some insurance companies and will update our site when this changes.
Where are you located?
See Contact Page.
Questions About Intuitive Eating
What exactly is intuitive eating?
Intuitive eating is a unique, non-diet approach to wellness and one that I use extensively in my practice – in many different ways. Many people understand it as an approach that focuses on using our own internal hunger and fullness cues to guide our eating choices. While that is a core tenant of intuitive eating, it’s important to know that this approach extends far beyond hunger and fullness cues. When you work with someone who is truly trained in this approach you will extensively explore what food and movement means to you. In our sessions we will sort through your food beliefs, self-talk, food behaviors, etc… to get to the bottom of why you do what you do when it comes to eating and moving. The real, central focus is always self-care and this looks different for every body. Using a counseling technique call motivational interviewing, I will help guide you towards your unique wellness by helping you see the self-care skill set you already have.
Will I lose weight? It seems like you think weight loss is a bad thing.
Intuitive eating is a non-diet, weight neutral approach. I work with clients to heal their relationship with food and their bodies and guide them in shifting the focus from weight loss to health. Some clients naturally lose weight in the process and others don’t. If you’ve experienced a lifestyle shift that has caused unnatural weight gain (i.e. regular bingeing as a result of deprivation – a very normal response by the way!) then it’s possible your body will eventually trend back down with this approach. However, we will not be weighing or using weight as an indicator of success. I will support you in reducing the focus on weight and we may spend several sessions on this topic alone.
I don’t think weight-loss as a result of authentic self-care is bad thing. That is something we can’t actually control. Weight-loss is not a behavior; rather it’s an outcome. I do believe that, for the majority of individuals, focusing on weight-loss impedes on our ability to confidently respond to our body’s needs and ultimately moves us further away from wellness and self-trust. For example, let’s say you decide you’d like to start getting outside and taking a nice walk on your lunch break. Sounds lovely! You make this decision because you would like to lose weight. As you begin this new walking routine you begin to monitor your weight change and notice that your weight is not changing in the way you expected it would. Let’s say you become frustrated with this fact and decide to stop the walking all together. If it’s not “working,” what’s the point? Unfortunately, using weight change as an indicator of wellness and perceived benefit of movement has ultimately caused you to decrease what would typically be considered a healthy behavior. If we were to take weight out of the equation and focus on other perceived benefits of exercise we may point out that you noticed better performance in the afternoon at work, a decrease in stress and an increase in energy. When we can be present enough to notice these positive side effects of self-care, we can be much more likely to stick with a healthy behavior.
Will we talk about healthy eating?
Absolutely! Many of my clients feel so inundated with messages about nutrition and healthy eating that they aren’t even sure what it means anymore. Often times, they feel paralyzed when it comes to making choices for themselves and their families. We’ll start that conversation by taking a close look at what healthy eating currently means to you and what you hope you’re eating will look like after we work together. During our work together, we will likely look at expectations you have for yourself when you make a food decision, explore the common categorization of “good” and “bad” foods, look at how food impacts your mood, energy levels, ability to focus, etc…, just to name a few. Often times there are some other aspects of your eating that will need to be addressed before we can discuss nutrition in a neutral way without the diet mentality taking it and using it in a negative way. This will be something we discuss and assess when we meet.
Do you offer groups?
Yes, periodically, I will host groups such as my Postpartum Body Image and Nutrition Support Group, Prenatal Self-Care Class, Diet Rehab Workshops or Child Feeding Coaching series. If you’re interested in one of my groups sign up here to get news on new groups and discounts. You’re also encouraged to recommend or request that I host a group! I’ll hold a group for 3 or more individuals so if you have a group of friends who would like a special, private group I’m happy to work with you on scheduling this. Also, the individual who initiates the group gets a discount!
Questions About Eating Disorder Treatment
What kind of experience and training do you have working with people with eating disorders?
I have been working in the eating disorder field for 5 years and have over 10 years of education and training in the areas of nutrition, nutrition counseling, and nutrition science. I am a Certified Eating Disorder Dietitian (CEDRD). That means I have completed at least 2,000 supervised patient hours (I’ve completed over twice that) in the individual and group settings. For 3 years, I received ongoing professional supervision from one of the leading CEDRD’s in the nation, Marci Anderson Evans, and continue to receive support and supervision as needed. As part of this credential, I was also required to take courses through the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (iaedp), pass an online exam and submit a case study. I have experience in the partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient and outpatient levels of care and provide education to students and professionals in the field. In addition, I have attended trainings and continue to seek education in the areas of eating disorder treatment methods and research, motivational interviewing, addiction recovery, mindfulness, body image, Health at Every Size ® and intuitive eating. You can see my Linked In profile for additional details.
I see you’re an advocate for intuitive eating. I’m dealing with an eating disorder and I don’t think I’m ready for that. I’m not even sure I want my recovery to include intuitive eating. Are you ok with that?
I’m so glad you asked this question! First, I always discuss what vision my clients have for recovery. This is an important part of the recovery process. It’s also an ongoing conversation of which the outcome is constantly changing. If you don’t feel intuitive eating is where you’d like to head in your recovery, we absolutely will discuss what you do envision instead. If we’re mainly looking at intuitive eating as just listening to your hunger and fullness, there are many instances where that would not be appropriate in eating disorder recovery. There are complex brain processes that can inhibit one’s ability to do so, especially in early stages of ED treatment. As the body and brain heal, many will begin to identify cues of various degrees and we can work very carefully on how to respond in a way that feels safe. We spend many sessions discussing your cognitive, physical and emotional reactions to these cues, fears you may have about their return and how to respond, factors that impact the senses of hunger and fullness, etc…
Our family has been using Family Based Therapy (FBT/Maudsley). Do you know what that is and can you continue to help us with feeding our child?
Yes, I’m very familiar with FBT/Maudsley. I have worked for a treatment center that developed one of the leading FBT/Maudsley programs in the US. I have also attended many trainings and continuing education on this approach. Traditionally, dietitians are not used in FBT so, depending on where you received treatment, you may have not worked much with a dietitian. I share one of the core beliefs of FBT, which is that parents should be part of the treatment process and that they are the experts in their child. I’ve been saying this for many years and, now that I’m a parent, I really understand how true and important this is. I do believe parents should play a very active role in their child’s recovery. As a dietitian, I can be a support tool for you during this process. Re-feeding a child with an eating disorder is scary, draining, stressful, confusing and emotional. I am here to encourage, reassure and provide education as needed as you move through the stages of FBT with your child. I can also work with your family to help transition your child back to his or her role as an active participant in his or her self-care as the responsibility of self-feeding is re-introduced. This is a critical point in this process. In addition, it’s important that teens don’t transition to college before working directly with a dietitian who can support them with essential life skills of grocery shopping, cooking, feeding, etc…, ways of resisting and challenging food and body image triggers, etc… In order for treatment to be effective, I typically recommend that I work directly with your child and also have parent support sessions as part of your outpatient nutrition treatment. However, since each family is unique, the plans for treating teenagers will vary.
Are you familiar with Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)?
Yes! I was the lead dietitian for an adult program that used DBT as a core therapy method and I have received training and continuing education in this area. As a dietitian, I can use methods that compliment DBT skills and coping tools that you are using in therapy.
Will you give me a meal plan?
Yes, you will likely have some sort of a meal plan as part of your treatment. In my process, meal plans are highly individualized and very carefully constructed with your full participation. Some clients need very clear, structured plans and others need more loose guidelines. We may spend several sessions collecting information before constructing the right plan for you or we might start a plan at your first appointment. I always encourage you to share what you think you need and what feels the most supportive.
I need someone to tell me what to do? Can you do that?
I expect you to be an active participant in the recovery process. We are a team. I do not see myself as an authoritarian (controling, demanding) figure in our working relationship. Rather, I see myself as a supporter, advocate, educator, and cheerleader. I’m 100% invested in your treatment and I expect you to also be 100% invested. That looks different for everyone depending on your stage in recovery. Being ambivalent (unsure) about your recovery from time to time is part of the recovery process and I’m here for you on your recovery-minded days as well as your entrenched-ED days. On a rough day or week, just showing up for a session tells me you are invested. Some clients need more direct recommendations than others and this will be assessed on an ongoing basis. If you are looking for a dietitian who does take on a more authoritarian position and spends the majority of the session instructing (rather than listening and encouraging you to be an active participant), I am not the dietitian for you.
How would you describe your style when working with people with eating disorders?