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If you suffer from an eating disorder now or have in the past, please email Joanna for a free telephone consultation.



Eating Disorder Recovery
Joanna Poppink, MFT
Eating Disorder Recovery Psychotherapist
serving Arizona, California, Florida, Oregon and Utah.
All appointments are virtual.


read for eating disorder recovery
Reading quality novels can help your mind and spirit grow beyond the mental and spiritual chokehold of an eating disorder.

Reading quality novels can be particularly helpful in eating disorder recovery for the following reasons:

1.   Emotional Connection:

Novels often provide rich and nuanced portrayals of characters and their experiences. By immersing themselves in a well-written novel, individuals in recovery can form emotional connections with the characters and gain a deeper understanding of their own emotions and struggles. This can foster empathy, self-reflection, and validation, which are crucial aspects of the recovery process.

2.   Identification and Representation:

Novels can feature characters who have dealt with eating disorders or body image issues, offering a sense of representation and validation to individuals in recovery. Seeing characters who share similar experiences can help them feel less alone and provide a source of inspiration and hope. It allows readers to identify with the characters' journeys and witness their growth and recovery, which can be empowering.

3.   Perspective Shifts:

Reading quality novels can broaden one's perspective and challenge rigid or distorted thinking patterns associated with eating disorders. Novels often explore diverse themes and tackle complex human experiences, helping individuals gain a new outlook on life, relationships, and personal growth. This expanded perspective can support individuals in reevaluating their own beliefs and values and encourage them to develop healthier perspectives on body image, self-worth, and recovery.

4.   Escapism and Stress Reduction:

Novels offer an escape from the demands and pressures of daily life, allowing individuals to temporarily immerse themselves in a different world. This can provide a much-needed break from the stress and anxiety associated with eating disorders. Engaging in a captivating novel can help shift focus away from negative thoughts and obsessive behaviors, promoting relaxation and mental well-being.

5.   Cognitive Stimulation:

Reading quality novels requires mental engagement, concentration, and active imagination. This cognitive stimulation can be beneficial for individuals in recovery, as it helps redirect their attention towards positive and constructive activities. It can also improve concentration skills, enhance cognitive flexibility, and promote overall brain health.

Remember, reading novels should be seen as a complement to a treatment plan for eating disorder recovery. However, it's also important to keep in mind that obsessing about food, weight and body image blocks your mind from receiving mental nourishment. 

See Essays:

Can fiction teach us how to live in a world full of suffering?
Reading and Writing Can Help Us Understand the Difficult Past and Imagine Better Futures

If this goes on, where will it lead?
The purpose of science fiction.

Joanna Poppink, MFT, is a psychotherapist in private practice specalizing in eating disorder recovery.  She is licensed in CA, OR, UT, FL and AZ. She specializes in eating disorders, anxiety, depression, PTSD and self doubt.

All appointments are virtual. Ages accepted begin at 25 and go up, including seniors who are most welcome.

For a free telephone consultation e-mail her at 
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Author of This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Healing Your Hungry Heart: recovering from your eating disorder

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