Castlewood Eating Disorder Treatment Center Blog

Author Archives: Nancy Albus LPC NCC CEDS

Nancy Albus is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Certified Eating Disorder Specialist (CEDS) with extensive training and more than a decade of experience in eating disorders, intimacy, relationships, family therapy and Internal Family Systems therapy.
Healthy & Balanced Living Means Freeing up, Not Feeling Pressured

Healthy & Balanced Living Means Freeing up, Not Feeling Pressured

We live in a society in which balance isn’t often a word that gets integrated into daily existence. Most everything that we are exposed to encourages us to be perfect and therefore out of balance: the perfect student, perfect worker and have the perfect body. Look at what is promoted on television in programs such as The Biggest Loser—perfection in both body ideal and performance, and not having that means that there is something wrong with you. Unfortunately, our culture is currently lacking in clarification of what a balanced life looks like. There are so few good examples of balance…

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The season finale of the Biggest Loser has sparked considerable discussion

Case In Point: Biggest Loser

The season finale of the Biggest Loser has sparked considerable discussion.  As part of a team who helps people with eating disorders transform to healthier lives, I would like to add my voice to the conversation. The goal of getting healthier is a good one—but every day we see what happens when the drive to get healthier backfires into self-destructive behaviors. The fact that Rachel lost over 59% of her body weight in seven months isn’t healthy.  Exercising to extremes isn’t healthy. And societal pressures to be thin aren’t healthy. It is one of our goals at Castlewood Treatment Center…

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Top 10 Tips for Handling New Year’s and Other Holiday Parties!

Top 10 Tips for Handling New Year’s and Other Holiday Parties!

Castlewood’s clinical team has put together a top ten list of ways for those with eating disorders to get the most positive experience from holiday parties. Each are effective strategies and approaches, and we hope that they help make New Year’s Eve and other holiday parties safe, comfortable, and enjoyable. 1 Think more closely about and evaluate the event that is being attended. Is it with friends, co-workers? Is it a sit-down dinner or heavy hors d’oeuvres? 2 Determine where the event is on a “green light/yellow light/red light” scale of emotions. A green light event is comfortable, with family…

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Managing Stress Around Body Image and Holiday Parties

Social experiences can be very intimidating for those with eating disorders. The expectation of attending holiday parties can trigger fear and self-doubt, and a desire to soothe these overwhelming feelings through eating disorder behaviors. “What should I wear? What will people think of what I’m wearing and how I look?” Other fears are present around the party: being able to modulate the triggers around food, how to change a meal plan around a holiday buffet, heavy hors d’oeuvres, and alcohol. When at a party, or engaging in a social outing, the internal Eating Disorder Voice tells clients that everyone is…

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Gifts of the Season What Our Clients Unknowingly Give to Us

At Castlewood, our clients often rave about the quality of our clinical staff, but seldom see or understand the impact that they have on our lives. I feel it is impossible to do our work here without being deeply touched by the intensity of work and effort we witness in our clients. As clinicians, we are also moved by the willingness of families to come to a treatment center, be open and vulnerable, and work through many issues in order to create a healthier personal and family intimacy. We say that Castlewood is a place that transforms clients and families,…

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Taking the Blame

In over 10 years of working with eating disorders, I can clearly state this fact: I have never seen one case of an eating disorder that could be attributed solely to the family. But this is a very hard thing for many to believe. Parents and other family members often come to Castlewood with deep feelings of shame, guilt, and sadness around the idea that they are the cause of their loved ones eating disorder. This is just not true. Many things go into a person needing an eating disorder in their life. It is very much a case of…

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Impact of Communication on Interpersonal Relationships

Effective communication is the cornerstone to satisfying, healthy relationships. Very often in eating disorders, a client’s communication is silenced, or there is little or no real communication going on. This is extraordinarily problematic from the perspective of building and creating satisfactory personal intimacy. It may also leave a person feeling unattached from anyone in the word. This lack of attachment and connection causes the eating disorder to be more heavily relied upon. The importance of communication in interpersonal relationships just can’t be overstated. This is the reason why every aspect of treatment at Castlewood includes the development of formal and…

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Giving Back On the Greens!

Giving Back On the Greens!

As a dedicated eating disorder professional and an avid golfer, sponsoring and playing in a golf tournament that benefits the Alliance for Eating Disorder Awareness (AEDA) helps celebrate both of these personal passions. On December 12th, I’ll be representing Castlewood Treatment Center at the 2013 Alliance Golf Classic in Florida. Created in 2000, this exceptional non-profit organization has provided extensive programs and activities aimed at outreach and education on eating disorders, positive body image, and self-esteem. Castlewood is proud to not only be a platinum sponsor of the Alliance and this year’s golf classic fundraiser, but to be playing! LPGA…

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The Mission of Connection and Community

Mission of Connection and Community

Castlewood’s mission isn’t just to provide eating disorder care during the time that our clients are in active treatment. We also believe that we have a mission and commitment to support the cause of recovery locally, and across the nation. Actively sponsoring and taking part in the professional and community events of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (iaedp) are important ways that we do this. Winter Gala’s held on December 7, 2013, at iaedp chapers across the nation bring professionals and those in recovery together to celebrate the message of hope for recovery from eating disorders. Castlewood is…

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Prioritizing Recovery during the Holidays

When a young adult with an eating disorder heads off to college in August for their freshman year, many parents hope that this new environment will provide a degree of change that will allow their child to step away from their eating issues. But when their loved one returns home for the holiday season, they are often shocked to see that their child isn’t doing as well as they’d hoped, and in many cases is doing much worse. Parents have the best intentions for their children, and invest a lot of time and expense into helping them pursue higher education.…

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