THE GENETICS AND EPIGENETICS OF EATING DISORDERS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RED HOUSE is dedicated to utilising the latest evidence-based research in genetics and epigenetics to change the way in which eating disorders are perceived and treated. The ways in which diet can alter gene expression has enormous relevance to Anorexia and other eating disorders. While there is a wide range of triggers for eating disorders (e.g. trauma, family issues, social pressures, media influences) we are discovering that the common underlying factor which determines the manifestation, course, and severity of an eating disorder, is genetics.  We are working hard at discovering how individual micro-nutrient deficiencies/imbalances can influence the development and course of an eating disorder, and consequently, how individualized (micro) nutritional therapy can be used to return the body, and mind, back to a state of equilibrium, by re-altering individual genetic make-up. We believe these findings will revolutionize the way in which eating disorders are treated, prevent relapses, and most importantly, result in improved recovery outcomes.

We do not ignore the psychological aspects of eating disorders. It is undeniable that the majority of cases, especially severe and chronic cases, are complicated by some level of psychological trauma and/or  are almost exclusively accompanied by anxiety and mood disorders. However, why is it that some people with a history of trauma develop anorexia, or another serious eating disorder, while others who have suffered similar trauma do not? Compelling new evidence suggests that the answer lies in genetics; specifically, the epigenetic brain and gut changes that occur as a result of initial dieting or disordered eating. While that trauma and/or other psychological issues may prompt a sufferers’ initial dieting and/or binge-purge behaviour, it is the predisposing anorexia gene, along with the micronutrient deficiencies which cause, exacerbate and perpetuate the illness. Our approach is to treat these micronutrient deficiencies so that an individual’s disordered eating patterns, and physical and brain health are corrected before addressing the psychological aspects that may have initiated the dieting behaviour. It is proven that in doing so, often those underlying psychological issues can be resolved quickly, without the need for years of time-consuming and expensive psychotherapy. There is also significant evidence suggesting that intensive psychotherapy can in fact  complicate and exacerbate the illness, causing more harm than good. 

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©  Website created by Mary Jane Lawson. Updated 2019.