February 20, 2014

When the Scale Becomes Your Enemy

image: http://artilleri.blogspot.com/2011_11_01_archive.html

I had a client, Sandra (not her real name) who came in this week feeling particularly down about her weight. She is anorexic, and at least 25-35 pounds under what most doctors would consider a minimum healthy weight. She avoids looking at herself in the mirror, afraid of looking at her "fat body." When Sandra gets in the shower, she checks herself out to see how far out her ribs stick out. It never feels like enough. 

Frantic to know that she was skinny enough, she weighed herself and found that she was "only" about 25 pounds underweight. Considering how little she eats, she was sure she would weigh less. Sandra was crushed to see the number on the scale. She ruminated for days feeling disgusted about how much she weighed.

I had a second client who came in this week, Claire (not her real name),  also feeling down about her weight. She had started exercising regularly and eating better. Yet, when she was weighed at the doctors office, she found she had not lost any weight. Claire was discouraged at first, but after a few days was able to turn around her thinking and realize that the number on the scale is not the whole picture. She admitted that although she had not lost any weight, she had started to have more energy, less pain in her knees, and felt generally happier. 

There are many ways you can tell if you are healthy, and the number on the scale is just one of them. But it can often be the most dangerous. People can feel discouraged when they see the number. It can cause a lot of anxiety, anger, and self-doubt when your weight does not seem to match up to what you want it to be. The clients I work with often become obsessed with weighing themselves. Untold hours are lost to thoughts about how to lose weight and decrease that number. 

I would encourage you to instead focus on your overall health. Assess your fitness routines and nutritional intake. Pay attention to how your clothes fit, how much energy you have, if you have any muscle tone. These can all be more helpful indicators of your health than your weight alone. If you need to, get rid of your scale. 

February 6, 2014

Free Online Seminars For Those in Recovery From An Eating Disorder


The Renfrew Center is offering a FREE upcoming recovery webinar series. These one hour webinars are open to anyone in recovery or currently struggling with disordered eating.

February 19, 2014
12pm - 1pm & 8pm - 9pm EST
March 19, 2014
12pm - 1pm & 8pm - 9pm EST

April 16, 2014
12pm - 1pm & 8pm - 9pm EST

May 21, 2014
12pm - 1pm & 8pm - 9pm EST

June 18, 2014
12pm - 1pm EST & 8pm - 9pm EST