SpECIALIST EATING DISORDER THERAPY
Dr Georgie Heath
Chartered Clinical Psychologist
Over 1.6 million people in the UK are affected by eating disorders. Research has indicated that 35% of normal dieters progress to pathological dieting and of those, 20-25% progress to partial or full-syndrome eating disorders. The sooner someone gets the treatment they need the more likely they are to make a full recovery.
As a chartered clinical psychologist, I offer comprehensive assessment and evidence based psychological therapy for adolescents and adults struggling with eating and body image difficulties. I am passionate and committed to helping people develop a healthy relationship with food and their bodies.
Learn to develop a healthy relationship with food and your body.
Difficulties I work with
Bulimia nervosa is characterised by recurrent episodes of binge eating (eating a large amount of food in a short period of time). Binges often feel out of the person's control and tend to be immediately followed by feelings of guilt and shame. This leads the person to engage in compensatory behaviours such as self-induced vomiting, fasting, overexercising and/or the misuse of laxatives or diuretics.
People who suffer from anorexia often try to keep their weight as low as possible by not eating enough food or exercising too much, or both. They often have an intense fear of weight gain and may also have a distorted image of their bodies, thinking they are fat even when they are underweight.
Binge Eating Disorder
A person with binge eating disorder will frequently engage in episodes of binge eating (eating a large amount of food in a short period of time). Similarly to bulimia nervosa, binges are often followed by feelings of guilt, shame and low mood. Contrary to bulimia, however, those with binge eating disorder do not engage in compensatory behaviours such as purging, although it might lead them to engage in repetitive diets. Binge eating might be used as a form of escapism or avoidance from difficult emotions.
Body Dissatisfaction & Low Self-Esteem
People with eating disorders often struggle from body dissatisfaction (disliking all or areas of their body). At times this can lead to body dysmorphia - when an individual suffers from a distorted picture of their body, often believing their body to be larger than it is. Body dissatisfaction is often associated with low self-esteem, where an individual feels unworthy, incapable, and not good enough.
Chronic or yo yo dieting
Chronic dieting is when, over a period of years, a person's world is governed by diets and food restriction, all with the goal of achieving or maintaining a certain (often unrealistic) weight or body type. Yo yo dieting is often linked to chronic dieting and is when a person goes through cycles of dieting, regaining weight and dieting again. Both chronic and yo yo dieting can lead to adverse health consequences and have a negative impact on someone's quality of life.
People suffering with orthorexia have an unhealthy preoccupation with eating only healthy or "clean-eating" foods. This goes above and beyond that of a healthy eating plan, leading individuals to feel extremely anxious or guilty if they eat food they perceive to be unhealthy. It might also lead to physical difficulties if an individual has cut out essential nutrients or whole food groups.
Atypical Eating Disorders
An atypical eating disorder encompasses anyone struggling with eating difficulties who does not neatly fall into other eating disorder categories. This can include someone with all of the characteristics of anorexia nervosa, who is not underweight, or someone who regularly engages in purging behaviour who does not binge eat. It can also encompass individuals with eating difficulties, which are not associated with body dissatisfaction or a desire to lose weight.