Castlewood Eating Disorder Treatment Center Blog

Castlewood Eating Disorder Treatment Center Blog


Men, Depression, and Stigma

Depression is more than just a feeling of sadness or melancholy. It’s a true mental health disorder, and the effects can be both pervasive and extreme; that’s why depression is a leading factor in suicide. Treatment for depression is readily available, and recovery is attainable—but many people, especially men, choose instead to suffer in silence, never seeking the help they need or allowing themselves to hit rock bottom before they admit to a problem. There are a number of reasons why men might not seek treatment. Misinformation about depression is one major culprit; some men may not realize its seriousness,…

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New Year’s Resolutions That Support Recovery

Every January, men and women across the world resolve to make their lives different; to turn over new leaves, kick bad habits, and develop healthy new ones. Setting goals for the New Year is admirable, and for many of us quite healthy. For those who are in recovery, and have already resolved to start living their best life, the resolution process can be a little bit complicated. The temptation with any resolution is to make it too lofty, which is why so many resolutions are jettisoned by mid-month. Those who are in recovery cannot afford to set themselves up for…

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Warning Signs of Over Exercise

Something we often say at Castlewood is that eating disorders are not fundamentally about food; in fact, some of the defining characteristics of eating disorders have little to do with food or with eating. A good example of this is exercise. There are many forms of eating disorder in which over exercise is one of the key symptoms—and a serious symptom, at that. “Contrary to popular belief, there is such a thing as too much exercise,” notes the Alliance for Eating Disorders. “Compulsive exercise is another way to ‘purge’ calories and it can be as dangerous as Anorexia and Bulimia.…

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How to Cope with Holiday Stress

The holiday season is supposed to be full of good things—but as we all know, it doesn’t always work out that way. Your holiday season may be heavier on stress than on frivolity or good cheer—and if you happen to be in eating disorder recovery, that additional stress can prove truly damaging. Stress can exacerbate any mental health condition, be it an eating disorder, depression, or an anxiety disorder. As such, those who are in recovery often have a particularly hard time during the busy weeks of December. The good news is that there are always steps you can take…

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When is it safe to exercise once you are close to your maintenance weight?

Great question, but not an easy answer. Bottom line: only your treatment team can answer that question for you specifically, based on your personal history, the eating disorder behaviors that you used most frequently, your weight patterns before, during and after eating disorder behaviors, and your recovery journey itself. But let’s talk about why… Physical activity has many positive benefits for both physical and mental well-being, all supported by research; however, the negative consequences that occur when physical activity becomes dysfunctional are also many, and supported by research. (Calogero, R and Pedrotty-Stump, K (2010). Incorporating exercise into eating disorder treatment…

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Handling Food Challenges Over the Holidays

The holiday season can often be full of family, fun, and good cheer. Of course, it can also be full of stress—and above all, it can be full of food. Many holiday traditions and festive gatherings revolve around food and drink. For those who are in eating disorder recovery, navigating these events can be challenging. The good news is that it is more than possible to handle holiday food challenges with your recovery intact—and even to have a sweet and enjoyable holiday season. Today, we’ll offer a few tips that we hope you will find helpful. How to Approach Food…

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Experiencing Life, Love and Recovery

Written by L. M. Castlewood Alumnus  Falling in love makes you vulnerable, it is probably the most vulnerable thing you will ever do in your life to love someone and to allow them to love you in return, the real you, the good and bad and everything that falls in between. Eating disorders are incredibly isolating, I know mine was, I did not think anyone could understand the pain I felt or the sadness I had and I did not think anyone but my eating disorder could help me. That is a convenient story we tell ourselves to keep us…

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Trauma Resolution and Eating Disorder Recovery

All of us have experiences with anxiety and stress, and even with painful situations. For some of us, those painful situations can cause real trauma and lingering pain, sometimes even manifesting in post-traumatic stress disorder. Those who struggle with PTSD, or with any form of ongoing trauma, often seek tools for coping—in some cases turning to substance use and addiction, but in other cases developing eating disorders. It is no coincidence that many of the people who seek eating disorder treatment are also diagnosed with trauma. That’s something we want to draw attention to during the month of December, as…

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If Not Now… When? by Paul Beuttenmuller Castlewood Alumnus

“Somewhere in the archives of crudest instinct is recorded the truth that it is better to be endangered and free than captive and comfortable” – Tom Robbins For the longest time, I thought I was comfortable with where I was in life. I gave off the impression that I was happy and satisfied. But after some time, I came to realize that I was really just settling because I did not believe (and I was too afraid) that life could get any better. I was too set in my beliefs and my comfort zone to really open up and admit…

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Practice Gratitude Daily

It sounds almost platitudinous to say that we should all be more grateful, yet the daily practice of gratitude is more than an empty cliché. Being thankful, as an active state of mind, can have far-flung effects on our mental health, all of them positive. When we make ourselves grateful, it helps us to mitigate anxiety, stress, and internalized negativity; it allows us to be more open to the good things in this world. For those in recovery, it can be an invaluable tool. Practicing gratitude can also be surprisingly easy. Essentially, it boils down to making a mental record…

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