After six years of chronic bingeing and purging, Kathryn Hansen stopped her eating disorder independently and abruptly, using the power of her own brain.
I recently heard Kathryn’s story while listening to the Nutrition Matters podcast. Her story was powerful and her approach to recovery sounded compelling. She also sounded very bright, and she supported her ideas with research. So, I purchased and read her book, Brain Over Binge, to learn more.
In the first half of the book, Kathryn shares the intimate details of her struggle with bingeing. She describes dieting as a teenager, which led to the development of urges to binge. She describes her binge urges, which felt as powerful and instinctual as the urge to breathe after holding your breath. She describes her experiences in therapy, which seemed to dance around her binge eating issues without addressing them head-on. Finally, she describes finding the book that helped her to think about her eating disorder in a new way, ultimately leading her to recovery.
In the second half of the book, Kathryn critically examines the research, explains why she developed an eating disorder, and uncovers how her recovery approach worked. She takes readers on a tour of the brain, explaining relevant neuroscience concepts in a reader-friendly way. Finally, she offers a step-by-step approach to help readers rewire their brains and quit bingeing, using mindfulness techniques.
I am excited about the ideas presented in Brain Over Binge. Mindfulness research is growing, and the results are promising. New studies show that mindfulness may be more effective than conventional approaches in a variety of areas, from helping people to quit smoking, to helping patients manage OCD. Additionally, I applaud Kathryn for speaking out against the risks of dieting, and supporting a non-diet approach to health. I believe this book will be a powerful tool in my nutrition practice.
I am now reading Kathryn’s second book, a recovery guide that helps readers implement the Brain Over Binge approach through thoughtful journaling activities and exercises. To learn more about Brain Over Binge and get Kathryn’s free e-book, visit brainoverbinge.com.