…And 3 Ways to Talk about Them with Your Clients
By Judith Matz - There’s been a lot of outcry from mental health professionals, doctors, parents, and people who’ve suffered from eating disorders about the trailer for the new Netflix series, Insatiable, which portrays higher-weight people in a poor light. Here are three alarming myths the series perpetuates, and the lessons we can learn from them.
Four Steps to Transform Your Internalized Views About Body Size
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.
Why Therapists Need to Be Weight-Neutral
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.
Judith Matz on Abandoning Weight Loss as a Marker for Success
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.
It’s Not about the Diet: Building a healthy relationship with food
Too often both clinicians and clients fall into the trap of pursuing weight loss as a therapeutic goal.
How to Transform Assumptions about Overweight Clients
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?
Beyond Lip Service: Confronting Our Prejudices Against Higher-Weight Clients
Therapists should not only be aware of their prejudices toward higher-weight clients, but should commit themselves to challenge those attitudes as well.
Is Attuned Eating the Answer to Diet Failure?
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.
Beyond the Diet Mentality: Empowering Clients Through Attuned Eating
Attuned eating can take people beyond the dead end of the diet mentality.