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This video touches on when we will get a meal plan, how one is put together, and how much say we have as one is created for us. What we learn is that it really depends on the level of care. If we are in a residential or hospital program there may not be that many choices and once you have chosen what to eat each day for that week you cannot change it, and you are required to eat it all. If you are in a day program there are usually more options available, and you may be able to eat intuitively. However, you are still required to eat what is prepared (or what you have prepared) and eat with everyone else in the program. At any treatment facility, the staff will eat with you and eat the very thing that you and everyone else is eating. We are there to support you and usually there are groups after most meals in order to give you time to process what you are feeling and get some extra support during the time when our ED voice is at it's loudest.
The last level of care is outpatient treatment. That is when you see someone like Kate and myself once a week or so and the rest of your week is on your own. When working at this level, your meal plan, as well as how quickly Kate moves, depends on where you are in your recovery. You may have just stepped down from a day program or you may just be considering treatment for the first time. At this level, your dietitian will work with you to see how you do with food in general, and what type of "meal plan" is needed to get you through until your next session. This may just be that you need to try and eat one meal, or this may be 3 meals and 3 snacks each day. So being honest with your dietitian about how you are doing and what your struggles are is key at this level, as it is at any level. They are not going to become angry at you if you are not able to eat what you talked about eating, instead they will work to gain more information about it and try something else.
Everyone is here to help and to better understand you and your ED, so try your best to be honest, and we will do our best to give you the support you need. Let's continue working together towards a Healthy Mind and a Healthy Body.
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