#5- Recovery is Possible

  • posted by Marci Evans
  • Friday, February 26, 2016

A client in recovery wishes you knew:

I never really believed in the concept of recovery. And while I’m not fully recovered, I’m so much further along than I ever dreamed possible. And while it’s been tough, my life is so much better without the clutches of my ED. I’m starting to believe that full recovery is possible. But if that scares you, hold on to the idea of getting “just a little bit better.”

Julie Duffy Dillon wishes you knew:

Recovery is possible for you. No matter how long you've been in throws of ED, no matter how tough it gets, no matter how dark it is, I believe in your recovery. I believe eating disorder behaviors deprive the brain of the nourishment it needs to feel hope and blocks the path to recovery. My job, as your dietitian, is to let you know I have plenty of hope for your recovery in my noggin. Your team believes this too and we will patiently walk beside you as you find your secure footing to recovery.

Julie Duffy Dillon  MS, RD, NCC, LDN, CEDRD



Registered Dietitian, Speaker, Writer
Eating Disorder Specialist
Owner, BirdHouse Nutrition Therapy
Nourishing the hope to heal (TM)



#4- Societal & Cultural Norms Fuel the Fire

  • posted by Marci Evans
  • Thursday, February 25, 2016

A client in recovery wishes you knew:

There are so many things that I wish people knew about EDs - and primarily because people don’t talk about them as much as they should given their prevalence and our society’s warped perspective on women’s bodies. No one who has an eating disorder wants it; they affect people of all ages and genders and backgrounds and races and cultures and - anyone; saying “just eat more” isn’t going to do anyone any good; it’s more important to listen to someone who has an ED often more often than talking to them. The list goes on and on. What’s important is to know that there is so much to learn about and to stay open to and to gather support for, because the more you know and the more they know, the better off you all will be.

Emily Fonnesbeck wishes you knew:

That they aren’t glamorous, although it’s easy to assume in a culture of clean eating, fitspiration,filters and photoshopping. When our bodies are our primary focus, we can miss emotional distress that can lead to mental illness. That isn’t anything to take lightly; eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. While the causes and triggers for eating disorders are multiple and varied, they often start as innocently as trying a diet (yes even so-called “healthy diets”; a true oxymoron). I wish people realized the possible triggering that can result from viewing or listening to YOUR before/after pictures, gym selfies and dieting tips. If you are the one triggered, get rid of it. Be careful about the type of media messages you let into your mind, heart and soul. While it may not be culturally acceptable, please know that you absolutely, positively get to say NO.

It seems that in terms of health and fitness, a common belief is that strength and self-improvement comes from eating a certain way, sticking to a diet or pushing through the pain in exercise. I don’t believe it. I feel true strength and self-improvement comes from being true to yourself and respecting yourself enough to avoid the demoralizing world of weight, body shape and diet obsession. Anyone can (and deserves to) find peace with food, their body and themselves.

Emily Fonnesbeck RD, CD






Helping you make peace with food to end disordered eating.

#3- The Judgments Really Hurt

  • posted by Marci Evans
  • Wednesday, February 24, 2016

A client in recovery wishes you knew:

1. I'm not lazy (even though I'm fat)

2. Your judgement hurts- a lot. (I'm probably more judgmental of myself than you are of me anyway, I constantly have to content with "negative voices".)

3. You can help by valuing me as a person for my ideas and what I do- not based on what I look like.

4. It can be really hard to get up and face the world everyday confidently when you know that others are judging you so much.

5. My eating disorder helps me cope with really tough stuff. Is it healthy and good? No. But it helps me to function when all else fails. I'm working on finding a better way.

Lindsay Stenovek wishes you knew:

I wish that others knew that people suffering from eating disorders aren't "liars" or "manipulative" or "non-compliant." I cringe every time I hear this! Even though eating disorders are maladaptive, someone suffering from an eating disorder often feels that their behaviors are helping them cope with life, avoid emotional pain, manage anxiety, etc... This comes in many different forms and serves many different purposes. As a dietitian, I am asking my client to decrease the use of these coping skills. That can be terrifying for the client. It's understandable that it would trigger them to report inaccurately, tell me what they think I want to hear or change their story between an appointment with me and another treatment team member. This is not manipulation. This is not lying. It's fear and shame and all of the other challenges that come from dealing with a serious illness. Labeling someone this way adds fuel to this shame and keeps us from helping those who need our non-judgmental support, understanding and trust.

Lindsay Stenovec, MS, RDN, CEDRD


Founder of The Nurtured Mama Program

Twitter @RealisticRD

#2- Eating Disorders Come In All Shapes and Sizes

  • posted by Marci Evans
  • Tuesday, February 23, 2016

A client in recovery wishes you knew:

Bodies really do come in all shapes and sizes, and we don't teach kids that it's OK to follow your own genetic blueprint. For me, eating disorder recovery means accepting that plus-sized is my body's healthy setting.

Another client in recovery wishes you knew:

Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes and no two are the same. People are not bad b/c they struggle with an eating disorder, they are not disabled, they are not any less successful than those who do not, in many cases the individuals are stronger and deeper because they have to reach out and embrace the disease, the challenge and the recovery. The experience is individual, the journey a life long process. Engaging and trusting a group of people to be your “village” is imperative to a road to successful recovery.

Christy Harrison wishes you knew:

I wish people knew that eating disorders come in all shapes, sizes, genders, ages, and ethnicities. These disorders are a lot more common than people recognize. You don't have to look a certain way to have an eating disorder—in fact, many people who suffer from eating disorders look like what society considers to be “normal” or “healthy.”

No matter what you look like on the outside, you deserve to be properly nourished so that you can pursue the important things in life: relationships, meaningful work, community, connection, joy. Life is about so much more than food and weight, and no one should be stuck thinking about those things all the time!


Christy Harrison, MPH, RD, CDN


Nutrition therapist, journalist, and podcaster helping people develop healthy relationships to food


#1- You Can’t Always See The Pain

  • posted by Marci Evans
  • Monday, February 22, 2016

A client in recovery wishes you knew:

I wish that people knew that even though you are eating and smiling again and look better on the outside, you can still be suffering on the inside.

Rebecca Scritchfield wishes you knew:

You can't always see the suffering.

Most people assume that "harmless" occasional body bashing, or other negative food, fitness, or health talk even directed at themselves, won't have an impact on someone in recovery, especially if you think they are doing good and getting better. There's a lot of internal work trying to make sense of what is "eating disorder" and what is not. What you think feel and do matters. Your version of "being healthy" may not really be truly flexible. While it may not trigger an eating disorder in you, that doesn't mean it's the best thing for you or the person you care about. It's not shameful to be open to explore your own biases and challenges with taking good, reasonable care of yourself. You could help yourself and help support your loved one.

Rebecca Scritchfield MA RDN ACSM HFS

Creator and Host of Body Kindness a podcast, where health is about being good to yourself.