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Expert Health Panel: Developing A Healthy Relationships with Food

The Food War: Nurturing a Healthy Relationship with Food

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Do you want to foster a healthy relationship with food for your family? How can you make sure your children eat well? How can you spot eating disorders? Our expert panel discusses these and more.


Eric Wellman: I’m really pleased to be a part of tonight’s conversation. Your Teen Magazine did a fantastic job of organizing tonight’s event, and just one more time, what a fantastic performance we just saw. If you’ve got any more questions, and I’m sure you do, write them on the notecards on your chair, send them up here and we’re going to be asking them, and then right at nine o’clock we’re going to be wrapping up, so that’s in just about half an hour we’ll wrap up pretty sharply.

So get your questions in, and without further ado, let me introduce the panel. To my immediate left is Dr. Leslie Heinberg, doctor of behavioral sciences for the Bariatric and Metabolic Institute of Cleveland. Her research and expertise focuses on obesity, on eating disorders, and on body image. Dr. Lucene Wisniewski is the clinical director at the Cleveland Center of Eating Disorders. Did I say that right? Excellent. And Dr. Laura Gillespie is a pediatrician and the Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital, specializing in eating disorders. Welcome.

Let me see if I can begin with a question for Dr. Heinberg. I have a healthy house with healthy meals. Despite my best efforts, my oldest child is extremely overweight, and I feel like I no longer have the power to exact change. Do you have any suggestions?

Leslie Heinberg: Well that’s to some degree true depending on how your child is, that as children enter adolescents and get older, a lot of eating is done outside of the home, and a lot of social eating is done outside the home. So I’d tell these parents probably the first thing is your child probably knows he or she is overweight, and you don’t necessarily need to tell them that. It’s probably an area that has become a bit of a power struggle in that family. And often the more the parent clamps down on the food, the more the child eats outside of the home, sneaks or hides food, so I would suggest maybe pulling out of that power struggle and getting the involvement of somebody else.

(For the rest of this presentation, please listen to our podcast)

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