Psychodietetics is a field that combines medical knowledge related to medicine, dietetics and psychology. Thanks to this multidisciplinary – holistic approach to health and nutrition problems, different specialists working together are able to more effectively help patients with lifestyle and nutrition changes that serve to improve health, well-being and self-acceptance. The goal is to learn about conscious and healthy food choices and a healthy lifestyle.
Changing habits, because these are learned behaviors and every day acting subconsciously we perform them automatically, require time to unlearn them, but in exchange for these wrong habits should be learned those pro-health for Us. Which is quite a challenge for many of us.
Therefore, it is worth going for help to a specialist, including a dietitian and a psychologist, who will effectively guide us through this difficult and complicated period.
The psychodietetic approach to changing eating habits is based on close cooperation between psychologists and dieticians, nutritionists, doctors, physiotherapists and other health professionals. In this case, the patient leaving the dietitian is not left to himself with a list of dietary recommendations, which are usually quite a lot and often we feel overwhelmed by this amount and it is difficult for us to implement them all at once. True?
Going to the next specialist, I mean mainly a psychologist who would be able to help transform theory into practice, that is, systematic work on the implementation of subsequent recommendations from the dietician into practice, is often delayed by the lack of free deadlines (at the same time as the dietary consultation) or misunderstandings between specialists (due to the difficult contact between them).
Psychodietics – opportunities
Today’s opportunities to educate further specialists, who finally have education – knowledge of both aspects of dietitian and psychologist work, facilitate the work of specialists and thus patients receive comprehensive help, not only a list of recommendations, but also support and motivation in their implementation.
Takie holistyczne podejście do pacjenta sprzyja lepszej jakości współpracy specjalisty i pacjenta. Zwiększa to skuteczność pomocy, dzięki czemu przyspiesza to osiąganiu szybciej efektów u pacjentów.
Who does a psychodietician help?
- people with eating disorders (excess weight, anorexia, bulimia, binge eating syndrome, night snacking, …)
- people who have suffered many failures in previous processes of weight loss
- people struggling with abnormal eating habits
- people who are determined to start healthy lifestyles and healthy eating, but lack adequate knowledge, motivation and support
- not accepting their appearance – silhouettes
- people who have lost control over what and how much they eat (stress eating, emotional eating, …)
Psychological approach to diet
From the existing Maslow pyramid, we know that food is one of the elements of basic physiological needs in order to survive. This is how we know that when we get hungry we have to reach for food, and when we feel full it means that we have already eaten enough to cover our energy needs for the foreseeable future.
However, sometimes there is a psychological dimension to the consumption of meals or specific foods. I’m talking about emotional food. Nutritional knowledge and good will are often not enough to lead a healthy lifestyle. Nutrition and a healthy lifestyle is a complex process that depends heavily on psychological factors.
What and how much we eat depends on our mental condition, emotions and stress, or even on the environment around us. We often lose control when we are tired, when negative emotions arise, when temptation is within reach. And all because we often associate food with pleasure. It’s hard to resist your favorite food when you smell it or reach for ONLY one chocolate cube.
Another aspect is the transition to the so-called. “fashionable diets” that require us to restrict and forbid us to eat what we like. Therefore, such diets often end in failure, because no one in their right mind is able to endure them for a long time. No wonder! Only a common sense approach to diet, that is, our way of eating, and actually learning healthy eating habits and eliminating nutritional errors is the attitude of our achievements and effects.
Finally, going to the best specialist and receiving a thick file of dietary recommendations, a menu for a month and the possibility of constant contact with a specialist, without the appropriate approach to the patient providing him with support, motivation to make changes in his life and a practical guide how to implement them properly (the golden rule – not everything at once!) and other useful information, the patient will not always be able to apply them, precisely because of the psychological aspect. So very important! But often overlooked and misunderstood ;(
Every change in Our lives needs work in the head, which is why it is not enough just to list the activities to do, but it is necessary to work on oneself and to re-establish new habits. So the psychological aspect is so important in such a situation!