I just came back from attending the 2015 ASDAH Conference in Boston! What a transformative weekend! While it was very packed with sessions, I think it was the 'difficult conversations' we had that proved extremely valuable. One of my favorite sessions was with my colleague & friend, Marci Anderson Evans RD. Marci discussed the conflicts between an eating disorder recovery perspective when working with clients who have experienced weight loss surgery. Fortunately, a HAES (Health At Every Size) model still works amazingly well with clients who have had surgery-the body still speaks to us and it's still our job to listen & respond. It was nice to see a specific instance where Marci has been able to marry these two worlds which can sometimes seem at odds. They don't have to be; HAES is for everyone. We got to also hear from Marci's client and listened to her perspective on how HAES was healing for her.
Other important presentations included discussing the role of size bias in counselor education, size diversity & birth practices, and using motivational interviewing when working with clients & colleagues around HAES and size bias related issues. I met a ton of awesome professionals from all around the world, and connected with folks on many levels.
In addition to discussing size diversity and health, we also had some intense but purposeful dialogue about how the HAES model, ASDAH, and its membership can be more open & sensitive to issues of diversity, privilege, and food justice. I felt that while these were difficult conversations at times, they are issues I am passionate about as a person & clinician. I'm looking forward to seeing what the future holds for ASDAH, it's membership, and the HAES model!
If you are struggling with an unhealthy relationship with food...if you've dieted on and off for years....if you can't stop emotionally consuming, or overexercising...or restricting.....let's change it. Let's stop fighting your body and work with it. Let's change your relationship with food forever, and help you develop body trust-because I always believe that you are the expert of you.