OTR Blogger | 19th December 2016

OTR Life – Christmas Blog from a Mental Health Practitioner

[Read the first post here]

For confidentiality reasons we are anonymising the member of staff, and any reference to young people. 

Well hi there!

It’s been a hectic week to say the least. Every so often I find a space to breathe and go eat in The Kitchen downstairs, where there’s great food, and a great community with loads going on!

Food is certainly something at the centre of my life. Sometimes I eat too much and sometimes I can’t even manage to squeeze a lunch into my day. But I always notice that how I eat can really affect how I am feeling.

Many of the young people we work with have different relationships with food. A study from last year (The Costs of Eating Disorders – Social, Health and Economic Impacts) estimates that over 725,000 people in the UK live with a type of ‘disordered eating’.

There are all kinds of diets, ideas and fads which get us eating in all sorts of weird and wonderful ways. “Eat this, Don’t eat that!” it can be really confusing for everyone to know what to eat.

When I meet with young people I am always curious to know what their favourite meal is. It gives a little insight into what makes them happy – and there is always one thing which people enjoy, if not, it’s a good goal to set. It might be chicken or chips, or chocolate or lasagna (I like chips and aubergines – but not together!)


Challenging ideas about whats ‘good or bad’ to eat AND maintaining some sort of balance with what we eat, are all really great if we want to have healthy minds and healthy bodies.

Perhaps you could host a dinner for friends or bake something nice for Christmas? If you are not sure where to start, look for local projects in your area – there are lots of growing veg and cooking clubs in the Bristol area.

If you feel that you struggle with food there is lots of information on where to get support, right here on the OTR website.

‘Til next time! 🙂