Today’s episode is one of the most important topics we’ve ever covered on this show. A few years ago, someone I love very much was hospitalized near death because of an eating disorder. This struggle affected our whole family. The things I learned then about this disease - how it should not be dismissed as a phase or only affects a certain type of person - have stuck with me.
It’s not about the food, it’s never about the food.
Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. It is a disease that is often not taken seriously in pop culture, sometimes even subtly encouraged in our society. In spite of the millions of people here in the US who suffer with an eating disorder, the research into this disease is still too scarce.
Registered Dietician Nicole Avila is our guest today talking about the mind/body disconnection that happens and often leads to a person's complicated relationship with food. What our mind and body is doing as we develop disordered eating habits, but before it becomes a full blown eating disorder.
Nicole started off her education at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. Her dream had always been to become a doctor, but after her first nutrition class she fell in love with preventative medicine and aspired to be a dietitian. She went on to complete her masters in nutritional Science, and her dietetic internship, at California state university, Los Angeles. With a year left in my internship, she fell into disordered eating at The Bella Vita- a residential and outpatient treatment program for individuals suffering from eating disorders. From the Bella Vita, where she would work for 4 years, Nicole learned about the mind/body connection and the detriment to losing that mind/body connection.
Books mentioned in this episode:
Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley