Nutritional Counseling: From Eating Disorders To Dietary Habits
Basic health is vital in maintaining a content mind and a large part of a person's basic health is their dietary habits. What, how much, and how often each person eats can factor into their behavior, moods, and thought processes. If someone is found to be suffering from an eating disorder or an unhealthy dietary habit, nutritional counseling should be considered.
How can Eating Habits Affect the Brain and Vice Versa?
What came first, the chicken or the egg? In the case of eating disorders, it is the brain that is responsible for the development of such.
Heredity can influence one's likelihood in developing an eating disorder, but nothing will occur unless under a great deal of stress. This can be anything as minimal and natural as puberty to an event that is devastating and tragic as the death of a loved one.
It was also said by Amanda Leigh Mascarelli in her article "Eating Disorders: The Brain's Foul Trickery", that neurotransmitters (messengers that transmit signals around the brain) play a significant role in stress, moods, and appetite.
If some of these neurotransmitters are not being produced enough or are unbalanced, then the brain begins lying about the perception of your appearance.
How can Nutritional Counseling Help?
Whether someone is eating too much or too little or is troubled with bulimia, anorexia nervosa, or binge eating, one can be helped through the direction of nutritional counseling.
It was said in "Nutrition Counseling" that a part of nutritional counseling sessions is to assess dietary habits. Essentially, this is a recording of one's food intake in a certain amount of time. The most common and more concise method is recording what one has eaten over two weekdays and one weekend day.
Body weight will then be assessed using weight-for-height tables and body mass index (BMI), both of which determine whether someone is underweight or overweight in relation to their height.
After this, therapists such as the ones at BetterHelp will speak with those troubled with these disorders and eating habits, and work with them as they promote gradual improvement, help set up realistic goals, and maintain results.
It is important that therapists keep an open mind to a person's religious beliefs, preferences, and dietary requirements when arranging and encouraging regular meal schedules. If these are disregarded, the trust between a patient and a therapist is weakened and therefore the patient is more likely to stick with their original and damaging eating habits.
However, nutritional counseling can be highly effective with the right therapist as a client can develop a long-term connection with someone who genuinely cares about their physical and mental health, which will help them maintain a healthy weight and body image.