When we are in school getting our nutrition degrees, we learn all about food safety, how to counsel a nutritious diet, a metric ton of chemistry, and medical nutrition therapy to treat various conditions and diseases. We spent some time learning nutrition counseling techniques too.
But rarely are we prepared for what is often at the root of so many eating problems: a fractured relationship with our body image.
In school, they never gave us the language to understand this, for ourselves or other people, and they certainly never gave us the idea that we might also help the healing.
But in fact, we need to be able to help our clients heal not just their relationship to food and eating, but also their bodies.
I’m not talking about doing the work of a therapist. I’m talking about being able to listen and validate and understand WHY someone could hate their bodies so much that they lose their ability to eat in any peaceful, nourishing way. And helping them to find ways to reconnect with their bodies with self-compassion.
We CAN and SHOULD talk about this with our clients, and in the below episode of Dietitians Unplugged, Aaron and I talk more about how we as dietitians can start doing this work.