Eating disorders behaviours are adaptive functions; they serve a purpose. they may provide a sense of comfort, distraction, punishment, sedation, predictability, or identity. eating disorder are, to an extent, rarely about the food. more so, they are the maladaptive behaviour that is an external agent to fill any unmet need.
To put it another way – dependency on “external agents” (e.g. restriction of food intake) is developed to fill the unmet needs; thus, an addictive cycle is set up. not an addiction to food, but an addiction to whatever function the eating disorder behaviour is serving (e.g. predictability/control/comfort). without addressing the underlying function that the eating disorder is serving, the underlying deficit in the self remains.
As a dietitian, I see this a lot. eating disorder behaviours are safe. they are reliable. they calm the chaos. but they can’t solve the problem they create.
If you want to chat and see how a dietitian can help you, you’re welcome to reach out and book a free discovery call here
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©2023 [alice bleathman dietitian]