Pull a chair up to the table and… …get comfortable. Nourishing the Soul was created to be a forum for growth and self-discovery, as well as a resource for the latest news, research, and advocacy information in the fields of eating disorders and body image. Whether you’ve experienced disordered eating, know someone who has, or simply want to learn more about how our relationship with food and our bodies can become distorted, I welcome you. I hope this site is not only a source of information, but one of hope as well. The mission of this site… …to help readers reconnect with their bodies, minds, and spirits and begin to appreciate themselves as truly, uniquely beautiful. This isn’t an easy task in a culture that promotes unhealthy and unrealistic ideals – and not just in size and shape, but in other areas as well. There are so many pressures on all of us to achieve success, remain unfulfilled in our relationships with others and ourselves, and stay disconnected from our internal wisdom. I believe that this is why, as a society, we experience so much mental and physical illness. I hope that Nourishing the Soul plays a small role in encouraging its readers to develop a healthier and more respectful relationship with themselves. I chose the name because… …the idea of “nourishing” is powerful – it literally means both “to feed in order to keep alive”, as well as “to promote the development of.” I like both meanings. To feed and to foster. To sustain and to grow. To uphold and to thrive. Both are vital to our humanness. And, sometimes, both get lost in the shuffle. When our lives become crowded with non-nourishment (e.g. friends who drain us emotionally, food that sucks up our energy, work that tears us down), we lose our ability to create the self that we desire. And in that process, many of us react to this stifled development by misusing food or mistreating our bodies. Whether you consider the human body a spiritual entity, a gift from a higher power, or a biological organism, it’s difficult to dispute just how incredible it is (If you doubt this, spend a full 60 seconds observing one of your hands… I’ll wait.). Thus, our bodies deserve our attention and our compassion… our nourishment.