Eating Disorders and Body Communication
- Category: Coping Strategies
Language of the Body The body has no words. Still, our bodies tell us when they need sleep or food or a change in external temperature. Our bodies tell us when they need a more firm or cushioned bed or chair. They certainly tell us when something is hurtful to them, like too much heat or cold or abrasion or puncture. Most of us have had a near miss when our eyelids blinked faster than thought to avoid a spec from flying into our eyes. Our bodies communicate potentially life saving information like when the hair on the back of the neck rises. This is a primitive body warning of danger on a survival level. An aspect of eating disorder recovery involves giving respect to the body itself and learning not only its language but also how to heed what the body says.
Listening to Your Body's Requests What if the anorexic woman listened to her endocrine system that cried out for nourishment as hormonal function shut down? What if the bulimic woman listened to her esophagus plead for a rest from the continuous flow of digestive acids? What if the compulsive eater or binge eater listened to a stomach that cried out for mercy and relief from the continuous need to stretch to the point of pain? What if, instead of war, we learned to make peace with our bodies? What if we befriended ourselves? Joanna Poppink, MFT, psychotherapist eating disorder specialist, Los Angeles, CA bulimia, anorexia, compulsive overeating recovery, www.poppink.com