Viewing blog posts tagged with "Weight Gain"

The Surprising Similarities Between Anorexia and Obesity

posted by Julie O'Toole on January 28, 2015 at 10:14am

One thing I've observed over the years is that those readers who are interested in anorexia nervosa seem to have little interest in obesity, which they often seem regard as an lifestyle choice irrelevant to them, while those who study obesity often ask themselves what this rare condition (AN) has to do with their vastly more prevalent (read: important) condition of obesity (OB)? Quite a lot, as it turns out. And by the way, it’s worth repeating at the outset, neither condition is one…

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The Dangers of Staying Slightly Below Weight

posted by Julie O'Toole on December 10, 2014 at 8:35am
I am a pediatric eating disorder doctor and try my best to limit my practice to patients 22 and younger. Why is this hard? Because I have a great treatment team and good treatment is hard to come by, so we sometimes run into deserving and desperate adult patients, whom we simply must refer to adult providers. I say this so that readers of this blog may put my recommendations into the context of the age group with which I am most familiar, although it is my opinion that this topic is… Read More

When The Smile Comes Back

posted by Julie O'Toole on December 3, 2014 at 8:29am
Re-feeding has its own rewards, though there can be misery and challenge to get there.  I know that some of you who have been through this, either at home or with a team not at home, will be able to relate to what I am talking about.  It’s when the smile comes back. It’s hard to predict when the tipping point will come.  For some it’s within the first 48 hours of beginning to eat: the circulation improves, the cheeks fill with more color, the eyes brighten and they just feel… Read More

Taking A Moment To Vent

posted by Julie O'Toole on November 19, 2014 at 9:27am
My good friend and colleague Therese Waterhous, a PhD, RD eating disorder specialist and board member of the parent organization F.E.A.S.T., called me the other day.  She needed to vent, and now, apparently, I do too. It’s not that her annoying experience was rare or new, it’s just the fact that such ignorance persists and that at this point -- given the avalanche of new information about pediatric eating disorders --  such ignorance seems willful. You can update your database.… Read More

Yes, But Where’s The Evidence?

posted by Julie O'Toole on November 13, 2014 at 9:32am
You may have heard me say it before: medicine is as prone to fads as the fashion industry. And worse: tightly held “truths” in medicine can be as entrenched as religious beliefs and providers will respond to being challenged with as much heat and resentment as if you had challenged their religion. Didn’t your grandmother tell you (mine did) to avoid talking politics and religion in polite society? Well… here I go anyway. And sorry for the many citations. If you’re going… Read More

What To Do With An Affected Parent?

posted by Julie O'Toole on November 5, 2014 at 9:15am
This blog is asking for help from those of you who have a child with anorexia nervosa but who may have experienced an eating disorder yourself. Any clinic or provider who treats pediatric eating disorders will sooner or later see children whose families have more than one affected (or partially affected) family member. This is the fancy way of saying that when you do a careful history you are likely to find other family members who have eating disorders in addition to the child.… Read More

Can I speak to the chef, please?

posted by Julie O'Toole on October 22, 2014 at 7:33am
It’s not very common for me to hear things out of the mouths of our patients that I have not heard before—I have heard most things many, many times. For example: “exercise (insert dance, soccer, cheer, ballet, etc) is my only social life, I don’t have any friends without it,” or “school is the most important thing to me. I can’t get behind because of treatment,” or “I don’t care abut how much weight I gain, as long as it’s muscle,” or “I don’t tolerate… Read More

The Promise of Personalized Medicine

posted by Julie O'Toole on September 3, 2014 at 8:15pm

Advances in medicine come in all shapes and sizes: vaccines, antibiotics, anti-virals, immune system boosters and reducers, technological changes and recently, the hope that faster, cheaper and more accurate genetic analysis can bring us the new approach to medicine and medications: personalized medicine.

As I have mentioned in a previous blog, a leading proponent of personalized medicine has been Dr Eric Topol, editor-in-chief of Medscape and director the Scripps Translational…

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Making ‘em Mad

posted by Julie O'Toole on August 13, 2014 at 10:43pm

I’m sometimes not sure whom I make madder: some kids, some parents, or some insurance companies!

Making kids mad:

Me:  “Jill, help me understand why your weight would be way down this week?”

Jill (shrugging):  “I don’t know.  I actually exercised less and ate exactly what I was supposed to.”

Me:  “OK. I guess your body is just telling us you need more food.”

Jill:  “What!!?? No way!  I refuse to have more food.”

Me:  “Well…. unless you can think of something that didn’t go…

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Eating Junk

posted by Julie O'Toole on June 26, 2014 at 1:12am

Recently a patient of ours returned from a treatment setting where she had been presented with “challenge foods”.  In her case she had been given cheetos and soda pop.  Now I ask you, why on earth would someone encourage a child to eat such a thing?

A lot of ink has been spilled on teaching Americans in general and children in particular to make good food choices.  Just because you have anorexia nervosa as a child, and desperately need to gain and maintain adequate weight, does not…

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