Eating Disorders - Synergy Hypnotherapy

Eating Disorders

What Is Eating Disorder? and How Can Hypnotherapy Eliminate Eating Disorder!

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Eating disorders are problems associated with food, eating and body image. People will feel unhappy about them self, their appearance, and they focus on food as the issue. These problems can become serious for the individual affecting all aspects of their life.

These conditions can affect the person's well-being seriously; Sometimes they have serious medical complications and can even threaten their life. People suffering from an eating disorder can have problems with weight management, body weight, and shape and eating habits.

Eating disorders are abnormal patterns of eating and exercising that severely interfere with your everyday life. For example, you might eat extremely small amounts of food or eat in an uncontrolled way. All eating disorders can occur in both males and females of any age.

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Types of Eating Disorders

  • Anorexia Nervosa
  • Bulimia Nervosa
  • Binge Eating Disorder
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)
  • Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID)
  • Pica Disorder
  • Rumination Disorder

Anorexia Nervosa

People with anorexia nervosa usually set themselves the goal of losing weight and lose so much that they become very underweight for their age and height and become unwell.

Most are also overly concerned or distressed about their body shape and weight.

Some people with anorexia nervosa severely restrict their eating and may also exercise excessively. Others may binge-eat (eat a large and excessive amount of food in an uncontrolled way), and then make up for overeating by purging (vomiting or using laxatives or diuretics).

The male or female suffering from anorexia nervosa will typically have an obsessive fear of gaining weight, refusal to maintain a healthy body weight and an unrealistic perception of body image. Many people with anorexia nervosa will fiercely limit the quantity of food they consume and view themselves as overweight, even when they are clearly underweight.

Anorexia can have damaging health effects, such as brain damage, multi-organ failure, bone loss, heart difficulties, and infertility. The risk of death is highest in individuals with this disease.

Bulimia Nervosa

People with bulimia nervosa or binge eating disorder regularly binge-eat. Most people with these conditions are overly concerned or distressed about their weight and body shape.

People with bulimia nervosa compensate for their binge eating by repeatedly trying to control their weight in extreme ways, such as purging (vomiting or using laxatives or diuretics) or exercising excessively.

People with binge eating disorder do not display these behaviours, so they can either have a normal weight or be overweight, even obese.

Binging and purging can be a symptom of both bulimia nervosa and anorexia nervosa. However, people with bulimia nervosa are not extremely underweight, like people with anorexia nervosa.

The binge-eating and purging cycle is typically done in secret, creating feelings of shame, guilt, and lack of control. Bulimia can have injuring effects, such as gastrointestinal problems, severe dehydration, and heart difficulties resulting from an electrolyte imbalance.

Binge Eating Disorder

Characterised by recurrent periods of binge eating (can include eating much more than normal, feeling uncomfortably full, eating large amounts when not physically hungry). Binge eating does not involve compensatory behaviours, such as for bulimia nervosa

Individuals who suffer from binge eating disorder will frequently lose control over his or her eating. Different from bulimia nervosa, however, episodes of binge eating are not followed by compensatory behaviors, such as purging, fasting, or excessive exercise. Because of this, many people suffering from BED may be obese and at an increased risk of developing other conditions, such as cardiovascular disease.

Men and women who struggle with this disorder may also experience intense feelings of guilt, distress, and embarrassment related to their binge-eating, which could influence the further progression of the eating disorder.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)

People who have this illness constantly worry about the way they look. They may believe an inconspicuous or non-existent physical attribute is a serious defect. They respond to this by performing repetitive acts such as mirror checking or comparing their appearance with others.

People with body dysmorphic disorder BDD can dislike any part of their body, although they often find fault with their hair, skin, nose, chest, or stomach. In reality, a perceived defect may be only a slight imperfection or nonexistent. But people who have body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) think about their real or perceived flaws for hours each day. They can't control their negative thoughts and don't believe people who tell them that they look fine.

Their thoughts may cause severe emotional distress and interfere with their daily functioning. They may miss work or school, avoid social situations and isolate themselves, even from family and friends, because they fear others will notice their flaws.

Body dysmorphic disorder BDD sufferers may perform some type of compulsive or repetitive behavior to try to hide or improve their flaws although these behaviors usually give only temporary relief.

Examples of these behaviours

  • Camouflaging (with body position, clothing, makeup, hair, hats, etc.)
  • Comparing body part to others' appearance
  • Seeking surgery
  • Checking in a mirror 
  • Avoiding mirrors
  • Skin picking
  • Excessive grooming
  • Excessive exercise
  • changing clothes excessively

Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID)

People with ARFID have food phobias and avoid some foods, although they are not worried about their body shape and weight.

They lose a lot of weight or develop nutritional deficiencies, and some people with this condition cannot eat food at all. When this happens, they might need supplements or need to be fed through a nasogastric tube (a tube passed through the nose and into the stomach).

Both children and adults can develop ARFID. Children with ARFID usually have medical problems similar to children with anorexia nervosa.

Although ARFID generally develops during infancy or early childhood, it can persist into adulthood. Also, it is equally common in men and women.

Individuals with this disorder experience disturbed eating either due to a lack of interest in eating or a distaste for certain smells, tastes, colours, textures, or temperatures.

Symptoms of ARFID

  • Avoidance or restriction of food intake that prevents the person from eating sufficient calories or nutrients
  • Eating habits that interfere with normal social functions, such as eating with others
  • Weight loss or poor development for age and height
  • Nutrient deficiencies or dependence on supplements or tube feeding
  • It does not include the avoidance or restriction of foods due to lack of availability or religious or cultural practices.

Pica Disorder

Pica is another eating disorder that involves eating things that are not considered food.

Individuals with pica crave non-food substances such as ice, dirt, soil, chalk, soap, paper, hair, cloth, wool, pebbles, laundry detergent, or cornstarch.

Pica can occur in adults, children and adolescents. That said, this disorder is most frequently observed in children, pregnant women and individuals with mental disabilities.

Individuals with pica may be at an increased risk of poisoning, infections, gut injuries, and nutrition deficiencies. Depending on the substances ingested, pica may be fatal.

To be considered pica, the eating of non-food substances must not be a normal part of someone's culture or religion. In addition, it must not be considered a socially acceptable practice by a person's peers.

Rumination Disorder

Rumination disorder is another newly recognized eating disorder.

It describes a condition in which a person regurgitates food they have previously chewed and swallowed, re-chews it and then either re-swallows it or spits it out.

This rumination typically occurs within the first 30 minutes after a meal. Unlike medical conditions such as reflux, it is voluntary.

This disorder can develop during infancy, childhood, or adulthood. In infants, it tends to develop between three and 12 months and often disappears on its own. Children and adults with the condition usually requires therapy to resolve it.

If not resolved in infants, rumination disorder can cause weight loss and severe malnutrition that can be fatal.

Adults with this disorder may restrict the amount of food they eat, especially in public. This may lead them to lose weight and become underweight.

What Are the Symptoms of Eating Disorders?

You may experience a range of symptoms and they will vary from one person to another. Below is a range of symptoms that you may experience.

Eating Disorders May Include Other Emotional Signs

  • Angry
  • Sad
  • Anxious
  • Guilt
  • Resentment
  • Resentment
  • Shame
  • Useless
  • Not good enough
  • Worthless
  • Unlovable
  • Fat
  • Ugly
  • Lost
  • Helpless
  • Trapped
  • Confused
  • Lonely
  • Isolated
  • Failure
  • Exhausted
  • Hopeless
  • Numb
  • Empty

Physical Signs of Eating Disorders May Include

  • Mouth — erosion of dental enamel, swollen jaw, bad breath, gum disease, tooth decay
  • Throat / oesophagus — chronic sore throat, indigestion, heartburn, reflux, inflamed or rupture of oesophagus
  • Heart — irregular or slow heartbeat, cardiac arrest, heart failure, low blood pressure, fainting, dizziness
  • Stomach and intestines — ulcers, pain, stomach rupture, bowel problems, constipation, diarrhoea, cramps
  • Hormones — irregular or absent periods, loss of libido, infertility
  • Kidneys — dehydration
  • Skin — calluses on knuckles, dry skin
  • Muscles — fatigue, cramps caused by electrolyte imbalance, tiredness, lethargy
  • Weight loss or weight fluctuations
  • Sensitivity to the cold or feeling cold most of the time, even in warm temperatures

Other Signs of Eating Disorders May Include

  • Afraid of putting on weight, or you weigh yourself all the time
  • Think about food all the time, or you feel anxious at meal times
  • Restricting how much food you eat
  • Overeat uncontrollably
  • Hoard food to binge on later
  • Make yourself vomit after eating
  • Take laxatives to make you lose weight
  • Preoccupation with body appearance or weight
  • Check yourself in the mirror constantly
  • Avoiding social situations, especially those involving food
  • Eating “normal” quantities in social settings and binging when alone
  • Started to lie about what you eat or how much you eat
  • Exercise too much
  • Eating when not physically hungry
  • Fear of the disapproval of others
  • Self-harm or suicide attempts
  • Obsessive rituals, such as only drinking out of a certain cup
  • Wearing baggy clothes or changes in clothing style
  • Constant and excessive dieting

Health Problems from Eating Disorders

Eating disorders can lead to serious health problems. Malnutrition or Starvation can lead to osteoporosis, kidney problems, heart problems, constipation or diarrhoea, fainting, and headaches. Vomiting exposes the teeth to stomach acid, which causes decay and abdominal pain. Laxatives cause constipation or diarrhoea, dehydration, and bowel disease.

Eating disorders lead to difficulties in concentrating, at studying, or work. They increase the chance of having depression, anxiety, substance misuse, irritability, and moodiness.

Current Statistics

Eating disorders affect females; however, one in ten with an eating disorder is male. In Australia, anorexia nervosa affects 0.5 percent of females. Bulimia nervosa 2 - 3 percent and other eating disorders 2 - 3 percent approximately.

Testimonials

Binge Eating Problem

Hi Rodney,

You cured my binge eating. I haven't binged in weeks.

Thanks so much. I'm doing well

Samantha

Samantha

Binge Eating Problem

Hi Rodney,

Hope you're well.

I've moved to Sydney but was hoping to find someone who does a similar kind of therapy as it really worked!!

Do you have someone you can recommend and explain the type of therapy you did so I can find someone with a similar technique?

Thanks in advance,

Hayley

Hayley Communication Strategy

Weight Loss

Hi Rodney.

I wanted to thank you for your help with my eating and weight management.

Being able to tap into all the related feelings, deal with them appropriately and banish them from future scenarios has led me to finally feel like I am in control of what I do and how I react to situations that use to get the better of me.

I am eternally grateful for your expertise in allowing me to discover the version of me I wanted to be. It took so little time to sort it out with you and I just wish I had been recommended to you far sooner.

Andrea W. Glen Waverly

Andrea W.

How Do You Develop Eating Disorders?

There are many reasons why people develop Eating Disorders there’s no one cause, there are many different reasons and they vary from person to person below we outline some factors that can cause Eating Disorders.

These factors can be biological (the way your brain works), genetic (familial), psychological (how you think), social (your relationships with other people) or cultural (the customs and values of the people around you). Girls / women are at higher risk of developing an eating disorder than boys/men.

Social Factors

  • Media and other presentations of the “ideal” body shape as slim and fit
  • Pressure to achieve and succeed
  • Peer pressure to be or behave in a certain way
  • A cultural tendency to judge people by their appearance
  • Occupations or pursuits in which body image is a concern (e.g. professional or competitive dancing, gymnastics, fashion modelling, Rowing, Diving, Wrestling, Long distance running)
  • Experiencing stressful life changes (e.g. leaving home to go to university, a relationship breakup or the physical bodily changes of puberty)
  • Living in a western culture in which being thin is considered the ideal body shape
  • Migrating from a developing country to a western culture

Biological Factors

  • Adolescence and its associated physical changes
  • Genetic or familial factors — for example, families that are overtly focused on food, weight, shape and appearance

Psychological Factors

  • Low self-esteem
  • Negative body image
  • Being a perfectionist or impulsive or having difficulty managing emotions
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Impulsivity
  • Obsessive thinking
  • Difficulties expressing emotions
  • Having experienced physical, emotional or sexual abuse

So all the things mentioned above can trigger you into developing an eating disorder; However, it’s not that simple. To begin with, you will need a couple of factors before you develop and Eating Disorder firstly you will need to have developed negative emotions such as anxiety, anger, depression etc but the key factor in all eating disorders is low-selfesteem specifically related to physical appearance.

We store our emotions in our bodies and they are anchored to our memories. So over time as you have more and more memories or experiences of negative emotions like low-self esteem specifically related to physical appearance, you store these emotions in your body anchored to your memories and you accumulate them.

So imagine emotions are not on or off they are on a scale of say 1–10 so when you’re young your anxiety level is low say a 1 and as you get older and accumulate more memories of anxiety that level goes up to say 3, 6, 7 etc till it reaches a point where you really feel anxious. The level at which this happens differs from person to person. This goes for all negative emotions that are related to causing the eating disorder like low-self esteem specifically related to physical appearance.

So all the things mentioned above have the potential to create an Eating Disorder that gets stored in the body anchored to your memories and if you have enough of these events, you will develop an eating disorder. Usually and accumulation of many of these events that will develop into an eating disorder.

The reason why people develop the eating disorder is because while a person engages in the behaviour they go in to a trancelike state where they actually escape all the pain they are in for as long as they are engaging in the behaviour they essentially are numb and oblivious then as soon as they stop all the emotional pain comes crashing back in on them. So it is all about escaping their pain even if it is only temporary.

Now once they start to do the eating disorder behaviour they then start to anchor all these emotions to the actual behaviour of the eating disorder and the more you build up and anchor these emotions to the eating disorder behaviour the more you strengthen the disorder and the more you will do the behaviour, it is a circular pattern or reinforcement that just gets worse over time.

Treatments for Eating Disorders

  • Medical Care and Monitoring
  • Counselling
  • Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy
  • Interpersonal psychotherapy
  • Medications
  • Group therapy (including support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous)
  • Dietary adjustments and nutrition

How Can Hypnotherapy Eliminate Eating Disorders?

Hypnotherapy that is designed to work with emotions and eliminate emotions is very effective in eliminating emotions causing and eating disorder.

However, most hypnotherapy approaches don’t work to eliminate negative emotions in this way most hypnotherapists work by introducing suggestions into your subconscious mind to change your thoughts and hence your behaviours, so it can work great with behaviour problems but not emotions. Unfortunately, most hypnotherapists are taught this behavioural suggestion type of hypnosis.

Fortunately, I am trained in how to work with emotions, more importantly how to remove them, and this is the key to eliminating eating disorders.

I have been working with clients for years helping them eliminate their eating disorders by using hypnotherapy and other neuro-hypnotic re-patterning techniques.

This is achieved by removing or disconnecting the emotions from your memories; Remember, you store your emotions in your body anchored to your memories. So using these techniques, we can make your memories emotionless.

So we will remove all emotions that trigger their eating disorder like anxiety, anger, sad, worthless, low-self esteem, etc.

At the end of my hypnotherapy sessions as a test I get the client to go back to all their bad memories and try to get any old emotions associated with them back, but hey cannot get any emotion associated with these memories, they just feel blank or neutral. I also will get them to test a variety of contexts in their life such as work, self, relationships, future, etc. But all of these different contexts and memories are the same they just feel blank or neutral.

Finally, I will get them to go back to all the times they can remember having the eating disorder behaviour and they won’t be able to get any of the old emotions, physical sensations from those memories.

So at the end of the session these clients no longer have the eating disorder.

Enquire Now

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  • or you can contact Rodney at Synergy Hypnotherapy Melbourne on the following number
    03 9078 6103

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