Focus on Fearful Object Recommended

Why does the seemingly simple act of eating help people with eating disorders?

1) Full nutrition restores normal brain chemistry so the patient can be freed from the body distortion, obsession with food, and mental numbness that keeps them ill.

2) The other element is behavioral: facing the phobia that has come to surround food. As with other anxiety reactions, this involves "exposure and response prevention." The patient is faced with the feared stimuli (plates of food) and is safely and compassionately prevented from running away or later ridding the body of the feared thing.

ERP is an important concept for parents to know. As with any psychological therapy, it can't be rushed, and it takes consistency and skill and TIME. Not days or weeks, but many months of sitting in a safe place among safe people, facing that plate, and eating.


  1. I have 2 boys with OCD I'm very very familiar with this concept. One son, we've only used behavioral therapies with, no medications. (he became manic when we tried, behavioral therapy was our only option)

    Applying this to myself ? hmmm
    interesting concept.

    contemplating here ... seriously.

  2. And it's not only the eating and improved nutrition- it's the very *act* of eating itself that is part of the ERP. The act of eating meal after meal and learning to deal with the anxiety.

    This makes even more sense, given the close link between AN and OCD. Of which I am very personally familiar.


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