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October 2011 - Heleen's Blog

Christian Based Eating Disorder Treatment: Do you need it?

You might have seen my blogs about Christian based eating disorder treatment and wondered if you really have a  “problem”.  Maybe you just need another diet or need to pray more about this… This question of whether one really has an eating disorder is actually quite common, also in Christian circles. It is plain to see that a person with anorexia or bulimia needs help, but other eating disorders such as compulsive overeating or binge eating disorder tend to be outright denied or minimized by the person who struggle with this as well as the people surrounding her life. For years I wasn’t sure what to make of it either because as Christians we tend to do one of two things: ONE We look at our eating problem only from a spiritual perspective. We neglect to face the fact that God has made us stewards over our bodies and emotions: So we pray and we fast yet nothing seems to change and we stay stuck in a cycle of  promising ourselves and God that we will do better, just to fail again the next day. TWO On the flip side, we tend to totally deny that food struggles might have a spiritual root such as idolatry or gluttony. We play it down as something insignificant, something we have to take care of ourselves and not “bother” God with. We are convinced that we should just “find the right diet and get a grip” or “have some self-control already!” So we stay stuck in this place year after year, feeling condemned and convinced that we are “second-class Christians” Have you considered that what you are dealing with might be an eating disorder? You don’t have to vomit or sneak food to have an eating disorder.  A disordered way of relating to food can rear its …

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