what is this episode about?
In this episode I chat to Kelly, mom to one of my clients, Kendall, and we hear a parent’s perspective of walking through eating disorder recovery alongside her daughter. She speaks of the frustrations and limitations of in-person care, and how the Internet and virtual platforms offer greater accessibility to specialists and targeted treatment programs, like what we offer at Rise Up Nutrition.
For Kelly, an early sign of Kendall’s eating disorder was severe constipation and GI distress, alongside mood and personality changes. However, despite her over-exercising and obsession with eating healthy, for months Kendall’s eating disorder went unnoticed - an all too common reality. We discuss the more subtle red flags and the importance of finding the right professional.
Kelly gives hope to anyone suffering that with the right help, recovery is possible much faster than you may imagine! And to parents, she reminds us there is no room for blame: you did not cause your child’s problem, nor can you fix it! Kelly’s advice to parents includes listening, empathizing, avoiding body comments, and understanding that first the child has to be wanting to recover before treatment is effective.
Eating disorders affect the whole family, and it’s not just the one with the diagnosis that struggles and needs support. For Kelly, communication between everyone involved was key for Kendall and the whole family. She credits Kendall’s transformation through the Rise Up Nutrition FAST Track Program with giving Kendal back a life free of food and exercise obsession, and restoring her daughter’s fun and lively personality. This program also helped Kelly overcome some of her own habits deep rooted in decades of diet culture: Kendall wasn’t the only one who found food freedom!
Kelly is mom to Kendal, one of my clients who has been through the Female Athlete System of Transformation (FAST), the 12-week program we offer at Rise Up Nutrition to overcome disordered eating and exercise. Kelly writes this to listeners:
During the 2020-21 school year, my daughter, a senior at the time, developed an eating disorder while we were all in quarantine shut-down. For months, neither she nor I understood that she had an eating disorder because she was under-eating and overexercising. We thought eating disorders were either not eating or binging and purging. She was seeing GI specialists, a gynecologist, and cardiologist for all the problems that came with this disordered eating. No one could give us answers as to why she was so sick until we contacted Lindsey. With Lindsey and Jenna's help, my daughter went from a girl who spent so many days sick and exhausted in bed, nauseous and constipated, to a happy, social, energized freshman college student. The change has been unbelievable!
I really want listeners to understand that there are a variety of eating disorders, not just starving and/or binging. We saw so many doctors, and no one addressed this issue. They pulled us aside and asked if we thought she had a disorder, but never looked at her food intake or exercise output. I also want parents to know the signs and signals of an eating disorder: constipation, nausea, exhaustion, no period, low heart rate, etc., especially if your child is an athlete. Doctors simply say that the low heart rate and lack of a period are signs that she is a healthy athlete. She was far from healthy! So many medical missteps in this process!
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