Jennifer L. Gaudiani, MD, CEDS, FAED

Level 2: Medical Care in Patients with Eating Disorders: Not About the Weight

Jennifer L. Gaudiani


The tendency for the medical community and for society in general to focus on weight as a marker of wellness potentially harms everyone. Diet culture is particularly harmful for patients with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes who have concurrent eating disorders. Perfectionistic, “all-or-nothing” thinking with regards to numbers (weight and glucose) can contribute to worse eating disorder pathology AND diabetes outcomes. At the same time, diet culture and medical practitioner advice to lose weight can clearly exacerbate both mental and physical problems. This case-based workshop will review two different populations: those with type 1 diabetes and concurrent eating disorders, as well as those with type 2 diabetes and concurrent disordered eating or eating disorders. Aiming for “good enough” diabetic control and encouragement not to restrict foods best supports those with type 1 diabetes. A Health At Every Size® (HAES®) philosophy, with a weight-inclusive lens and firm rejection of diet culture and of checking body weights, yields remarkable outcomes for those with type 2 diabetes.

Why I Value Weight-neutral Care

Speaker Bio

Jennifer L. Gaudiani MD, CEDS, FAED is a board certified internal medicine physician who is founder and medical director of the Gaudiani Clinic in Denver, Colorado. Trained at Harvard, Boston University, and Yale, Dr. Gaudiani moved to Denver in 2007 and became a leader of the ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health for eight years. In her private outpatient practice, which cares for individuals with eating disorders of all ages, genders, sizes, and shapes from around the country, using a telemedicine platform, Dr. Gaudiani has become a passionate advocate for size-inclusive care. Her book “Sick Enough: A Guide to the Medical Complications of Eating Disorders” (Routledge, 2018) describes the wide variety of medical complications both measurable and unmeasurable that may occur in those with eating disorders, and it consistently espouses a weight-inclusive perspective and rejects diet culture.