If patient is fit for outpatient treatment
What is Anorexia Nervosa
Anorexia nervosa is characterized by: the constantly increased fear of gaining weight, although being at an unhealthy low weight below the minimun normal for height and age, practicing constant food restriction in order to avoid weight gain, having distorted body image, over-concern about body shape, not being able to recognize and accept the situation even when the physical signs are there.
It affects adolescents and young adults, however, the age of onset can be as early as12-13 years of age. It is one of the most threatening eating disorders to health.
If others are worried and have told you about it, even if you do not agree, it is recommended to clarify the situation and talk to a professional. Early prevention/ treatment is key to recovery.
The dietary approach to treatment is working with you and your multi-disciplinary team, i.e. your private care doctor and psychiatrist/ psychologist in order to restore your weight and overall health and help you gain your energy back and control over your food, because now food is controlling you and your life!
Your medical status will be taken into account as well as the foods you already eat. The goal is to provide your body with the essential, protein, energy and healthy fatty acids in order to achieve normal growth and body functioning; to help you feel stronger, concentrate better and be active (plus many more benefits). Common nutrient deficiencies are in protein (used to build muscle), essential fats (used in the nervous system and brain), vitamin B1 (thiamin for a good metabolism), calcium and vitamin D (strong bones), magnesium (muscle function), iron and folate (avoiding anaemia).
The “dietrophy” tools that will be used, based on the latest scientific evidence for best outcome, include:
- Food diaries
- Nutrition education
- Goal setting
- Food and energy/protein supplements where appropriate
- Collaboration with you, your family and the rest of the medical team
- Support and guidance