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Changing How You Think About Weight

Four Steps to Transform Your Internalized Views About Body Size

Judith Matz • 1/13/2017

By Judith Matz - I’ve come to believe that the way we as therapists feel about our clients’ body size is not only a clinical concern, but a social justice issue. It’s not easy to challenge internal attitudes that are reinforced every day in the general culture, but if you’re willing to go against the cultural current, here are some things you can do to help you assess—and transform—your internalized views about weight and dieting.

Daily Blog

The Hidden Link Between Diets and Overeating

Why Therapists Need to Be Weight-Neutral

Judith Matz • 5/4/2016

By Judith Matz - Clients struggling with compulsive eating often seek therapy because they feel overeating may have an emotional component. But the idea that people overeat to soothe or avoid painful emotions is only part of the story. Dieting---intentional self-deprivation---sets in motion automatic physiological and psychological factors that actually trigger overeating. In fact, there's growing evidence that diets make us fat! And not only does dieting make people fatter: it affects psychological health.

Daily Blog

A Diet-Free Way to Help Clients with Eating Problems

Judith Matz on Abandoning Weight Loss as a Marker for Success

Judith Matz • 10/30/2015

Most therapists have been taught that if we can help clients understand the emotional triggers of their overeating, they’ll be able to control their behavior and lose weight. We tend to build strategies around nutrition, portion control, and exercise habits. But more often than not, the pursuit of weight loss typically triggers and sustains overeating. My focus with clients who have overeating and weight concerns is to help them learn how to have a healthy relationship with food. We therapists need to recognize that when we reinforce the notion of weight loss as a marker of success, we set our clients up to leave therapy with even more shame about one more failure.

Daily Blog

Case Study

It’s Not about the Diet: Building a healthy relationship with food

Judith Matz • 9/1/2015

Too often both clinicians and clients fall into the trap of pursuing weight loss as a therapeutic goal.

Magazine Article

Facing Our Client Prejudices

How to Transform Assumptions about Overweight Clients

Judith Matz • 4/30/2014

I’m comfortable working with clients on all types of issues, but I notice that when I meet with clients whom I consider fat, I feel a sense of disapproval toward them. How can I change my attitude?

Daily Blog

In Consultation

Beyond Lip Service: Confronting Our Prejudices Against Higher-Weight Clients

Judith Matz • 3/7/2014

Therapists should not only be aware of their prejudices toward higher-weight clients, but should commit themselves to challenge those attitudes as well.

Magazine Article

Recipe For Life

Is Attuned Eating the Answer to Diet Failure?

Judith Matz • 1/1/2011

Despite the common cultural notion that anyone can successfully lose weight---constantly reinforced by the $60 billion-a-year diet industry---at least 95 percent of dieters regain lost pounds. Here's an alternative approach to weight control.

Magazine Article

In Consultation

Beyond the Diet Mentality: Empowering Clients Through Attuned Eating

Judith Matz • 7/1/2010

Attuned eating can take people beyond the dead end of the diet mentality.

Magazine Article
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Changing How You Think About Weight

Four Steps to Transform Your Internalized Views About Body Size

Judith Matz • 1/13/2017

By Judith Matz - I’ve come to believe that the way we as therapists feel about our clients’ body size is not only a clinical concern, but a social justice issue. It’s not easy to challenge internal attitudes that are reinforced every day in the general culture, but if you’re willing to go against the cultural current, here are some things you can do to help you assess—and transform—your internalized views about weight and dieting.

Daily Blog

The Hidden Link Between Diets and Overeating

Why Therapists Need to Be Weight-Neutral

Judith Matz • 5/4/2016

By Judith Matz - Clients struggling with compulsive eating often seek therapy because they feel overeating may have an emotional component. But the idea that people overeat to soothe or avoid painful emotions is only part of the story. Dieting---intentional self-deprivation---sets in motion automatic physiological and psychological factors that actually trigger overeating. In fact, there's growing evidence that diets make us fat! And not only does dieting make people fatter: it affects psychological health.

Daily Blog

A Diet-Free Way to Help Clients with Eating Problems

Judith Matz on Abandoning Weight Loss as a Marker for Success

Judith Matz • 10/30/2015

Most therapists have been taught that if we can help clients understand the emotional triggers of their overeating, they’ll be able to control their behavior and lose weight. We tend to build strategies around nutrition, portion control, and exercise habits. But more often than not, the pursuit of weight loss typically triggers and sustains overeating. My focus with clients who have overeating and weight concerns is to help them learn how to have a healthy relationship with food. We therapists need to recognize that when we reinforce the notion of weight loss as a marker of success, we set our clients up to leave therapy with even more shame about one more failure.

Daily Blog

Facing Our Client Prejudices

How to Transform Assumptions about Overweight Clients

Judith Matz • 4/30/2014

I’m comfortable working with clients on all types of issues, but I notice that when I meet with clients whom I consider fat, I feel a sense of disapproval toward them. How can I change my attitude?

Daily Blog
Page 1 of 1 (4 Items)

Case Study

It’s Not about the Diet: Building a healthy relationship with food

Judith Matz • 9/1/2015

Too often both clinicians and clients fall into the trap of pursuing weight loss as a therapeutic goal.

Magazine Article

In Consultation

Beyond Lip Service: Confronting Our Prejudices Against Higher-Weight Clients

Judith Matz • 3/7/2014

Therapists should not only be aware of their prejudices toward higher-weight clients, but should commit themselves to challenge those attitudes as well.

Magazine Article

Recipe For Life

Is Attuned Eating the Answer to Diet Failure?

Judith Matz • 1/1/2011

Despite the common cultural notion that anyone can successfully lose weight---constantly reinforced by the $60 billion-a-year diet industry---at least 95 percent of dieters regain lost pounds. Here's an alternative approach to weight control.

Magazine Article

In Consultation

Beyond the Diet Mentality: Empowering Clients Through Attuned Eating

Judith Matz • 7/1/2010

Attuned eating can take people beyond the dead end of the diet mentality.

Magazine Article
Page 1 of 1 (4 Items)
Judith Matz, LCSW, is the co-author of two books on the topics of eating and weight struggles. Beyond a Shadow of a Diet: The Comprehensive Guide to Treating Binge Eating Disorder, Compulsive Eating and Emotional Overeating has been called “the new bible” on this topic for professionals. The Diet Survivor’s Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating, Acceptance and Self-Care was a #1 bestseller on Amazon and a favorite resource for therapists to use with clients. She is also the author of Amanda’s Big Dream, a children’s book that helps kids to pursue their dreams – at any size!

Judith has a private practice in Skokie, IL, where she focuses her work with clients who want to get off the diet/binge rollercoaster and learn to feel at home in their bodies. Through her individual counseling, groups, workshops, presentations and books, Judith has helped thousands of people to develop self-care skills that increase physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing without a focus on the pursuit of weight loss. Through educational programs, she is dedicated to helping people end the preoccupation with food and weight. Judith received her MSW at University of Michigan, and earned her post-graduate certificate at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago, where she trained in the treatment of eating disorders.

Judith is a frequent contributor to the Psychotherapy Networker magazine and a popular speaker at national conferences. Descriptions of her work have appeared in the media including the New York Times, LA Times, Allure, Fitness, Self, Shape, Today’s Dietitian, Diabetes Self-Management, NBC News Chicago, Huffington Post Live, and she appears in the documentary America The Beautiful 2.