Discover what's new & improved in the MyFitnessPal app!
We’re dedicated to helping you achieve your health and nutrition goals. And our newest features and updates? They do just that. Learn how we're making tracking your progress easier, faster, and more motivating than ever.

Professional help?

LaurenMAP Posts: 9 Member
Hi all! I'm new to MFP, and this is my first post on this group. I joined MFP at the suggestion of my physician to start gaining some awareness of my nutrition. I have cycled between binging and restricting for the majority of my life. I used to have big weight swings of 30lbs or more over the course of months when I regulated my weight by purging. I never sought treatment even though I would purge multiple times a day for weeks until I dropped enough weight, and then I'd swear I was done and the cycle would start over. I suffered some abuse in an unhealthy relationship as a young adult and at one point finally, truly resolved to stop purging (as a protection against men, I'm guessing). After that, I rapidly gained 120+lbs over the course of about 4 years and then the gain began to slow. I very slowly lost about 20lbs and then more quickly lost 30lbs last year doing weight watchers. But admittedly, I would fast through much of the day and then binge within my points (intermittent fasting is probably not a healthy thing for me). Since stopping WW, I have gained about 20-25 lbs back in the past 5 months or so.

ALL that to say, clearly I am in need of some therapy. Thankfully, the purging is a thing of the past (although I still crave that feeling of erasing my binges). My doctor has encouraged me the past several visits to see a mental health provider to discuss all this and also rule out mood disorder etc since there's an ongoing issue with depression too. I'm having some difficulty finding a counselor or psychologist who specializes in eating disorders that takes insurance in my area, so I may end up with a provider in another specialization. :neutral:

I'd love to hear if anyone has had any successes with some kind of counseling relating to binge eating. If so, was it group, individual, or something else? Is your counselor eating disorder specialized, or is that unnecessary? What kind of methods are used (I'm just beginning to research all this)? Do you feel it has helped you?

I know this is a LOT of personal info to read through, and I also know many people on this group may not need professional help, so it won't hurt my feelings if there aren't many responses. :smile: Just wondering what info I may learn. Thanks in advance.


  • RunawayCurves
    RunawayCurves Posts: 688 Member
    I have had various therapy, counselling, been on lots of groups. Everyone is different. Therapy and counselling for me was only helpful if I trusted the person I was working with , saying that although it felt good to talk about stuff it made very little impact on my eating disorder. I joined food addicts in recovery anonymous for a while which is like alcoholics anon but for eating disorders. I got a great sponsor and for 9 months I ate perfectly but my head was still screwed and I was totally emotionally dependant on my sponsor which was not healthy. When my sponsor had to stop working with me I lost plot and had a full on mental breakdown and quit group. In UK the group is very small and a bit cult like , In US i believe it is much bigger network so perhaps better. You would have to be truly desperate and committed to stick with that group but it did work for me better than anything else ever did. Now I am using groups on MFP to stay motivated with my own plan but it is very early days.
  • LaurenMAP
    LaurenMAP Posts: 9 Member
    Thanks so much for sharing your insight. I know I have to truly want better for myself, and I'm not sure I really hate this addiction. I can understand going through the motions of a program will only last so long unless I can do it wholeheartedly. I really appreciate your honesty. I wish you well!
  • redrosez4
    redrosez4 Posts: 23 Member
    Sadly, it seems like there isn't a lot of support for this problem. You would think since this is such a wide-spread issue that there would be more help out there.

    I feel like I need help as well. I just signed up with a weight loss clinic and hope that they can help me. My appointment isn't for a couple weeks from now.

    I have mixed feelings about my appointment. I am afraid that it's not going to work. I;m afraid they're just going to give me handouts that I could have found for free and send me on my way. But at this point, I don't know what to do. I feel like I need to be locked away somewhere and forced to eat healthy.

    If you like, I can give you an update on my appointment. Have you found anyone yet?
  • JessiLynnFit
    JessiLynnFit Posts: 41 Member
    The book Brain Over Binge saved my life. Some counsellors are familiar with the AVRT technique in the book.
  • traci9028
    traci9028 Posts: 104 Member
    Hello. I just recently started seeing a counselor after years of trying to battle my binge eating and emotional eating. Although I didn't seek help only for this, it is one of the major reasons. Unfortunately, I don't have a counselor who specializes in eating disorders, since I live in a small town, but maybe that's a good thing, since I have a few different things to work on. I've only seen her once so far but am very hopeful. I see her again tomorrow (once a week) and she has told me to work on doing things that make "me" happy (instead of making everyone else happy). I can already see how this will help distract me from eating. I have quite a few things in mind that I want to do for myself (finally getting my hair done, having alone time to workout or peace and quiet, or getting together with long lost friends) and the fact that I'm going back to see her is exciting because I'm very anxious to improve myself. I wish you the best of luck. You can send me a friend request for support and I will encourage you along the way.
  • Jdkbs
    Jdkbs Posts: 98 Member
    I just started Shrink Yourself today, it's an online counselling program with good reviews. I like that I have access to it anytime.