Eating Disorders

I know these next few days may be hard for you

December 24, 2015

Self-Paced Course: Non-Diet Academy


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A Certified Eating Disorders Registered Dietitian (CEDRD) with a master's degree in dietetics & nutrition. My passion is helping you find peace with food - and within yourself.

Meet Katy

For those of you who are struggling with eating and body image issues, I know the holidays can be hard.  With everyone around us acting merry and full of cheer, I want to take a moment to acknowledge that you may not feel that way – and that's ok.

It makes total sense that this time of year is a struggle.  After all, the days get shorter meaning we have less sunlight, which is correlated with seasonal affective disorder.  Less sunlight, less time spent outdoors because it's cold, and more clothing covering our skin means that the body produces less vitamin D.  Vitamin D has been shown to be correlated with mood.  So the moral of the story here is that biologically you're set up to feel more down and depressed in the winter.  (Side note – you can easily have your doctor check your vitamin D levels.  It's an easy blood test and you can take a supplement if it's low.)

Several other things can factor into making this time of year difficult.  We tend to get out of sync with our normal daily routine.  Holiday parties, breaks from school and work, increased demands on our time to do shopping, wrapping, cooking, decorating and all sorts of other things get us out of our groove.  Routine gives stability when you're struggling with an eating disorder.  Simply the routine of following a meal plan or eating schedule helps your blood sugar and gut hormones stay stable (news flash: this has a big impact on your emotional stability – ever been "hangry?") 

Then there's the family time.  Sure, in an ideal world we'd all love spending extra time with our families like they do on the Hallmark Channel movies, but that's not always the case.  Reality is that families are complicated, and no family is perfect.  The eating disorder can interfere with these relationships and create tension and conflict.  And consider those who have suffered trauma from a family member.  Christmas dinner doesn't taste so good when you're sitting next to the uncle who sexually abused you as a child. 

Give yourself grace.  The holidays can be hard.  You don't have to pretend to enjoy it.  If you need to take some extra time to yourself, do so.  Know that you are not alone and plenty of other people feel the same way you do.  Give yourself the gift of compassion.

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