Eating Disorders

eating disorder treatmentTreatment of Eating Disorders

Barnes & Klatt specializes in the treatment of all eating disorders including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder and compulsive and emotional overeating.

Although there are biological and psychological components to the development of an eating disorder, eating disorders are social issues, not personal failures. We live in a culture that worships thinness and a culture of disordered eating. Parents do not cause an eating disorder and those suffering do not choose an eating disorder.

An eating disorder is a form of compulsive behavior that serves the purpose of soothing oneself or distracting oneself from something that is painful or intolerable. Eating disorders are used when healthy coping mechanisms are not available or do not work effectively. Eating disorder behaviors interfere with the development of healthy coping mechanisms (ones which lead to personal development, growth, and mastery of new challenges). With enough repetition these destructive behaviors take on a “life of their own”, are no longer under the voluntary control of the person.

Comprehensive treatment includes working in a collaborative manner with other health care providers to include a combination of psychotherapy, nutritional, and medical modalities. Both individual and family treatment is utilized as appropriate. Psychotherapy includes evidenced- based treatment including: cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, mindfulness skills, and motivational interviewing.

Group therapy is for individuals with a common problem who meet regularly to identify and process factors that contribute to negative patterns. Through the guidance of the group facilitator and member feedback, individuals learn new coping skills, are able to practice these skills within the group and provide support to other group members.

The following groups are available:

  • Binge Eating Disorder Group
  • Body Image Workshop

Binge Eating Disorder Group

Philosophy of Treatment: This group assists those who suffer from Binge Eating Disorder in assuming an active role in their treatment. The primary goal of the group is to assist members in developing a healthier relationship with food and with themselves. Members will learn to effectively regulate emotions rather than to depend on disordered eating patterns. The group incorporates a non-dieting approach with an emphasis on self-acceptance and growth. Members are encouraged to identify and act on realistic short-term goals in order to promote overall health and well-being.

Structure: The group meets weekly and is comprised of the following two groups which meet on the alternating weeks:

The Food and Nutrition Psycho-educational Group focuses on connecting with and learning to regulate one’s own hunger and satiety. In addition, the group teaches the foundation of good food and nutrition, handling challenge foods, interrupting emotional eating and binges and learning strategies for coping with distressing emotions. Cognitive-behavioral techniques, including imagery and mindfulness exercises are utilized.

The Interpersonal Group is a working process group in which the fundamental goal is for members to develop trust and acceptance of themselves and fellow group members so that they may interact in a more genuine, assertive and spontaneous manner. It is expected that individuals will eventually be able to generalize new patterns of relating outside of group so that they develop a stronger support system and more meaningful and satisfying relationships.

Commitment: Group members are expected to make a three month commitment to the group and to fellow members. Individuals may re-enroll on a quarterly basis.

  • Maintain a food-hunger-emotion journal.
  • Members need to have a working relationship with a primary care physician and a recent medical history, including physical.
  • Individuals may be required to be in individual psychotherapy and sign a release of information to facilitate collaboration and treatment planning.


Dr. Ann T. Barnes, Psy.D., R.D., Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Registered Dietitian


Body Image Workshop

Philosophy of Treatment: This workshop is for all women who want to enhance their connection to their whole self. The primary goal is to assist participants to develop respect of their natural shape and learn to replace negative thoughts and feelings with positive, affirming and accepting ones.

For most women, our bodies are intimately linked with poor sense of self. Body attitudes become self attitudes. Body esteem is equated with self esteem. The workshop focuses on the power and significance of inner acceptance, because until you love and accept yourself, unless you feel beautiful inside, you will not see your outer beauty. Believe it, and enjoy it! If we truly live in and accept our bodies, we are able to connect more acutely to our cues of hunger and satiety and respect our needs. As a result, we can make loving changes and refinements to appearance as we may be ready. The inner shift of acceptance must precede the outer change.

Structure: The workshop meets once per week for four weeks. Each session meets for two hours. During each session, participants will experientially explore issues related to negative body image, in the context of the modern woman

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. Activities will include guided imagery and movement. Sharing of experiences will be encouraged in order to promote individual development. As some exercises may be emotional, each session will include relaxation and self-soothing exercises.


  • A minimum of four and a maximum of six participants are required for this group.
  • Members need to have a working relationship with a primary care physician and a recent medical history, including physical.
  • Individuals may be required to be in individual psychotherapy and sign a release of information to facilitate collaboration and treatment planning.


Dr. Ann Barnes, Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Registered Dietitian

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