Going Deeper Than Diets: Rethinking Relationships with Food and Weight


Watch this video interview, where Leanne from the Calabash interviews Andy Nossel. Andy is a registered counselor and an occupational therapist, and has developed a powerful method for helping people overcome their stumbling blocks around food and eating, drawing on her wealth of experience in addiction and other psychological counseling. She runs a 6-week course and offers individual sessions.

We know that eating and food is an area of challenge for many individuals. From a psychoanalytic perspective, our earliest relationship is with the breast or bottle, and Freud called the first phase of psychosexual development the oral phase, where an individual's somatic and psychological experiences are concentrated around oral experiences. The mouth becomes the locus of pleasure, dependency and satisfaction. Freud famously proposed that an individual can struggle with fixation around phases which are not adequately negotiated. We carry our relationship to food into adulthood, and it has implications for how we feel about our bodies and ourselves.

Many people deal with their struggles around food by embarking on diets. Andy highlights that diets are largely behavioural, and that other components, such as the psychological, the social and the sensory, are all interrelated in our relationship to food and eating. Her programme offers a multifaceted intervention for people who would like to improve their relationship to food, promoting self-awareness and a positive experience of something that, for many individuals, is fraught with suffering and struggle.


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