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You Are More Than Your Eating Disorder

Behavioral health challenges are unique among medical issues in several ways. One of the most notable may be how people often feel defined almost entirely by their disorder. There is frequently a degree of shame and guilt associated with mental health issues rarely seen with other physical ailments. 

Whether the issue is addiction or an eating disorder, clients are often conditioned to believe that their problem is somehow a result of a lack of willpower or discipline. They look around and see others who do not behave as they do. They see people who seem to maintain a healthy relationship with food effortlessly. Celebrities how somehow maintain a “perfect” weight. 

People who appear to be able to indulge in any food they like without consequence. But that is not the reality. The shame and guilt of the anorexic, bulimic or binge eater are no more justified than they would be with any other health condition. For example, someone with Type 1 diabetes does not blame themselves for their body’s inability to produce insulin. 

Part of the healing process involves putting your illness in perspective. Simply put, you are not your eating disorder. For whatever reason, your relationship with food has come to dominate your life in the present moment. That does not have to be a permanent condition, and it does not make you who you are. 

It may help to begin by taking a broader view of yourself and your life. What interests do you have outside of your relationship to food? What are you passionate about? What fascinated you most as a child? Who do you admire? 

Humans are full of complexity and nuance. You deserve to get to know yourself better. Make it a priority to become a student of yourself. Particularly all of those interests and dreams that may have become obscured by the eating disorder and the consequences it has brought. 

We all must eat to live; abstinence isn’t an option. The only way forward is to change your relationship with food. Having an eating disorder is not your fault, but you must work through some layers to fully understand and manage it. Eating disorders do not appear and arise from nowhere. A crucial task in eating disorder recovery is to work toward comprehension of the underlying causes

Your condition manifests itself in your relationship with food, but food is not the cause. Most eating disorders coincide with another mental health diagnosis. The most common co-occurring condition paired with eating disorders is anxiety. For instance, anxiety is common in bulimia nervosa, with research showing more than 80% of those with the disorder also exhibiting an anxiety disorder 

Receiving an accurate diagnosis of an eating disorder and any underlying issues is the key that opens the door to recovery. Effective, evidence-based eating disorder treatment exists. Millions of people have recovered and live healthy, productive lives in the wake of their eating disorder diagnosis. 

The Ranch Tennessee can help you discover who you truly are outside of disordered eating. Let us support you as you work to find healing. No matter where you are in your journey toward healing, our recovery specialists can help you better understand your options. Call us today at 844.876.7680

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