Eating Disorders

Austin Eating Disorder Therapy/Treatment -Austin Trauma Therapy Center
Austin Eating Disorder Treatment Center-Austin Trauma Therapy Center

Are you looking for professional eating disorder treatment in Austin, TX.? At Austin Trauma Therapy Center, our goal is to help you work through your trauma and repair your relationship with food, as it relates to overall mental health.

What is an eating disorder? Eating disorders are characterized by a persistent disturbance of eating or eating disorder-related behavior that results in the altered consumption or absorption of food and that significantly impairs health or psychosocial functioning. These eating disorders affect adults, adolescents, and families of all races, genders, ages, socioeconomic status, and ethnicities, just as mental illness does.

The Connection Between Food & Mental Health

The connection between food and mental well-being is an increasingly important topic in the mental wellness world, but integrating nutrition into a trauma recovery plan still isn’t talked about often. The fact is that eating disorders are often co-occurring with trauma, just as we see with substance use disorders and many other mental illnesses-the underlying issue is trauma. This is because chronic stress or trauma is a catabolic process; it breaks down healthy tissues. Therefore, we need proper nutrition in the body to counteract inflammation caused in the body as a result.

For someone working through trauma, emotional eating or restricting food altogether can exacerbate the lack of micronutrients being used to sustain the flight, fight, or freeze response. Not eating meals regularly sends messages to your brain that food is scarce, which disrupts blood sugar levels, hence the term eating disorders. The brain then releases the stress hormone cortisol which stimulates the release of glucose from its energy stores to make up for the disrupted blood sugar levels. But of course, chronic levels of cortisol has a trickle-down effect on the rest of the body, making it harder to sleep, disrupting digestion, and potentially even impacting menstruation and other crucial body systems.

Types of Eating Disorders

There are three main types of eating disorders: Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Binge Eating Disorders.

It is not unusual for eating disorder symptoms to shift over time in those who struggle. Someone may begin with binge eating behaviors and move into restrictive eating as part of mental illness. Those with restrictive eating behaviors may find purging behaviors become more common over time. This is part of the spectrum of disordered eating, and while eating disorders are difficult to fit into categories, these are the primary diagnoses:

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia Nervosa is characterized by three essential features including persistent food restriction, intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat or behaviors that interfere with weight gain, and a disturbance in self-perceived weight or shape.

Bulimia Nervosa

Bulimia is characterized by recurrent episodes of binge eating, inappropriate compensatory behaviors to prevent weight gain and counteract episodes of binge eating, and behaviors that are influenced by the perception of body image and weight.

Binge Eating Disorder

Characterized by recurrent episodes of binge eating that must occur, on average, at least once per week for three months without regular use of compensatory behaviors.

Binge Eating Disorder

Food is soothing, it’s comforting, and as infants, this is how we learned to soothe at an early age. Binge eating disorder is no different for some. Binge eating disorder goes back to emotional eating and how we tolerate or cope with stressors. Our Trauma-informed Nutritionists in Austin, TX teach clients how to implement essential steps of attuned eating to replace disordered eating patterns, including binge eating.

Recognizing Eating Disorders

Treatment for Eating disorders: anorexia, bulimia, body image, binge eating disorder, eating disorder therapy
Treatment for Eating disorders: anorexia, bulimia, body image, eating disorder recovery

The treatment for an eating disorder requires the approach of a multidisciplinary team of professionals. Regardless of diagnoses, the first step for recovery is stabilizing physical symptoms, stopping purging behaviors, and receiving adequate nutrition. A treatment plan with a treatment team may include individual, group, and/or family psychotherapy, regular nutritional counseling with a registered dietitian, medical care, and monitoring with a physician that specializes in eating disorders, and medication management.

A treatment plan should be tailored toward an individual’s needs and is not contained to only the eating disorder behaviors. Comprehensive treatment should include addressing the physical, biological, social, nutritional, physical, and cultural factors that all contributed to the disorder. With appropriate treatment, people go on to fully recover from eating disorders and live happy and healthy lives.

Through the collaborative care approach at Austin Trauma Therapy Center our Nutritionists will provide input on individual patients’ nutritional status using evidence-based & trauma-informed nutrition counseling to clients on modified diets. As well as conduct nutritional screenings and assessments of patients. Our Nutritionists will collaborate with ATTC Clinicians to coordinate and implement nutritional recommendations and identify and communicate potential nutritional implications of medications.

Additionally, our Trauma-Informed Nutritionists will suggest recommendations for diet, supplements and enteral/parenteral nutrition, and implement and monitor individual patient meal plans based on individual client needs.

Anorexia Nervosa

  • Obsessive fear of weight gain
  • Refusal to maintain a healthy body weight
  • Unhealthy view of body image
  • May restrict food intake
  • May purge food eaten

Bulimia Nervosa Treatment in Austin, TX

  • Repeated binge eating; eating past the point of being uncomfortably full
  • Feelings of lack of control over binge eating episodes
  • Behaviors to compensate for increased food intake:
  • Excessive exercise
  • Purging
  • Diet pills or laxative use
  • Unhealthy view of body image

Binge Eating Disorder

  • Repeated binge eating (at least once per week for 3 months)
  • Feelings of lack of control over binge eating episodes
  • Feelings of distress over binge eating
  • No behaviors to compensate for increased food intake

Get Nutrition Therapy in Austin, TX

Nutrition Therapy Austin, TX
Nutrition Therapy Austin, TX – Austin Eating Disorder Therapy

Located in Central Austin, Austin Trauma Therapy Center (ATTC) provides comprehensive outpatient care. At ATTC we believe in strengthening and supporting patients who are trauma survivors and that it is not about the eating disorder, it is about lasting recovery. We believe that quality care is driven by quality people and it can help restore healthy lives.

Our culture’s declared “war on obesity” has resulted in significant body image and binge eating harm to individuals across the size spectrum both physically and emotionally/socially, through declination of health care coverage, denial of routine health screening procedures, and increased stigmatization.

Measures of body weight/size do not accurately reflect an individual’s health status and often lead to ineffective interventions rather than efforts that enhance health and wellness. See one of our Trauma-Informed Nutritionists alongside your Trauma Therapist, at our one-stop-shop Treatment Center in Austin, TX and work through co-occuring concerns simultaneously.

Meet our Austin eating disorder nutritionists here:

The Health At Every Size® (HAES®) approach is a continuously evolving alternative to the weight-centered approach to treating clients and patients of all sizes. It is also a movement working to promote size-acceptance, to end weight discrimination, and to lessen the cultural obsession with weight loss and thinness. The HAES approach promotes balanced eating, life-enhancing physical activity, and respect for the diversity of body shapes and sizes.

The Health at Every Size® Principles Are:

  1. Weight Inclusivity: Accept and respect the inherent diversity of body shapes and sizes and reject the idealizing or pathologizing of specific weights.
  2. Health Enhancement: Support health policies that improve and equalize access to information and services, and personal practices that improve human well-being, including attention to individual physical, economic, social, spiritual, emotional, and other needs.
  3. Respectful Care: Acknowledge our biases, and work to end weight discrimination, weight stigma, and weight bias. Provide information and services from an understanding that socio-economic status, race, gender, sexual orientation, age, and other identities impact weight stigma, and support environments that address these inequities.
  4. Eating for Well-being: Promote flexible, individualized eating based on hunger, satiety, nutritional needs, and pleasure, rather than any externally regulated eating plan focused on weight control.
  5. Life-Enhancing Movement: Support physical activities that allow people of all sizes, abilities, and interests to engage in enjoyable movement, to the degree that they choose.

Eating Disorder Treatment Affiliations:

Association For Size Diversity And Health (ASDAH)
Association For Size Diversity And Health (ASDAH)
Central Texas Eating Disorders Specialists - Austin Trauma Therapy Center
Central Texas Eating Disorders Specialists
Other Treatment our professional therapists (LPC, Licensed Counselor of Social Work) offer:

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, EMDR Treatment, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, relationship and family counseling for adolescents and adults, etc.

Peace with food is possible! Get help, today. Email, or contact Austin Trauma Therapy Center, today, to learn more about our outpatient behavioral therapy treatment.

For more information on eating disorder recovery and support groups in Austin, TX, visit the following resource:

Central Texas Eating Disorders Specialists: https://cteds.org/

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