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In today’s episode, I had the pleasure of hosting Michelle Zagardo, a member of the post-traumatic parenting community. Our discussion centered around post-traumatic parenting while in eating disorder recovery. We debunked the myth that only those who are severely ill require treatment for eating disorders. Additionally, we delved into the relationship between food and control, especially for individuals who grew up without much autonomy. 

We also explored how societal messages can impact our relationship with food and our bodies. It is crucial to have a healthy relationship with food, where it is viewed as a tool for nourishment and enjoyment without becoming an obsession. 

Furthermore, we highlighted how parents can inadvertently project their discomfort with food onto their children, leading to a lack of self-regulation and co-regulation skills. Tune in as we examine the impact of trauma on our relationship with our bodies, how it can become a battlefield that we cannot escape, and discover how to model positive relationships with food and your body for your children.


More about Michelle Zagardo:

Michelle is an eating disorder survivor, a person with narcolepsy, a post-traumatic parent, the host of The Body Competence Podcast, and a therapist in training (a current MSW student). Her work is focused on understanding the impact that trauma and our early relationships have on the way we interact with food and with our bodies. 


Topics covered on Eating Disorder Recovery:

  • Michelle shares her experience of post-traumatic parenting while in eating disorder recovery.
  • Michelle explains the concept of having a competent relationship with food.
  • Differing perspectives on feeding children candy.
  • Potential risks of hyper-focusing on nutrition and creating hangups about food.
  • How do big industrial food companies make non-nutrient-dense foods attractive to children?
  • Importance of balance and avoiding perfectionism in post-traumatic parenting.
  • Early childhood experiences with food impact our relationship with food later in life.
  • How parents can unintentionally project their own discomfort with food onto their children?
  • How can you as a parent model positive relationships with food and your body for your children?
  • Educating children about nutrition can be done positively by focusing on nutrients rather than labeling food as “healthy” or “unhealthy.”
  • Influence of diet culture and societal pressures on body image and self-perception.
  • How can trauma disconnect us from our bodies and lead to eating disorders?


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