Eating Recovery Conference on Eating Disorders and Pathlight Conference on Mental Health
It’s that time of year again — the Eating Recovery Conference on Eating Disorders and Pathlight Conference on Mental Health are right around the corner. The best part? Our virtual format makes it easy to attend. Join us from just about anywhere and get ready to grow your career.
Today we’re putting the spotlight on two of the expert speakers featured this year: Adrianne Kenny, RD, LDN and Jessica Moore, MD, FAAP, CEDS. As a registered dietitian, Adrianne approaches medical nutrition therapy through an anti-diet and weight-inclusive lens. She will join Theodore Weltzin, MD, FAED, FAPA in the Pathlight Conference on Mental Health presentation “When OCD Takes Over Eating: A Dietary Perspective on Treating OCD in Eating Disorders” on Thursday, September 15, 2022. Later that day, Dr. Moore, a primary care physician, will join Dori Bowling, LCSW in the Eating Recovery Conference on Eating Disorders session “The Clinical Conversations: What Does Your Client Really Need?” to discuss the varying levels of care within behavioral health treatment and how outpatient providers can determine whether their patient needs additional support.
We sat down with Adrianne Kenny and Jessica Moore for Q&A’s to learn more about their session topics and backgrounds.
ERC Pathlight: Can you tell us about your conference session?
AK: Throughout my work in the eating disorders field, I have found that treating folks with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and an eating disorder is complex. This session focuses on the interplay between the two diagnoses and how this can bring challenges in treatment. I also talk about Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) and how we can utilize this treatment modality in different levels of care. Lastly, I go over how undernourishment exacerbates both disorders.
JM: Dori and I want our attendees to leave the presentation feeling more comfortable navigating the assessment process and identifying symptoms that indicate need for the various levels of care from inpatient to intensive outpatient, recognizing when and how to ask for additional support for a patient in need. We will cover in detail the continuum of care and how to assess patient needs, offering tools providers can start using in their practices today.
ERC Pathlight: Why did you enter the mental health/eating disorders field?
AK: It started off with exploring the healthcare field in general. After college, I did not know where I wanted to go. I had a degree where I could pursue dietetics, but my interest waned as I realized I was less into prescribing diets and more into working with people. I thought maybe nursing was more my path. I worked as a certified nursing assistant in the ICU at Little Company of Mary in Chicago for several years, but I didn’t care much for working in a hospital. It wasn’t until I worked in residential treatment that I finally became excited about a career path. A job that combined working with people in a therapeutic way and talking about food every day fit like a glove. I feel lucky to have found this career. I find excitement and energy in this field every day through learning from and connecting with others.
JM: I was originally trained as a pediatrician, but I’ve always found behavioral health care fascinating and highly needed. Since working with this population early in my career, I have found mental health disorders and eating disorders to be incredibly complex and interesting. I also really enjoy working with these clients and their families. I have since tailored my career to work in the eating disorders field and it has been highly rewarding to see my patients get well and to help them and their families navigate this illness.
ERC Pathlight: How do you support your own mental health?
AK: Laughing, singing, and exploring are my favorite things. I love being in new places, trying new foods, and meeting new people. I also care for myself by exploring the musical realm. I sing, play the piano, and write songs. I have found what nurtures me most is feeding into my own creativity and connecting deeply with nature and people.
JM: By practicing self-care, including taking the time to be present with my children and husband. I also enjoy traveling (when I can).
ERC Pathlight: What do you hope attendees will get out of your session?
AK: I hope attendees walk away with a few things:
- An understanding of the complexities of eating disorders
- A solid understanding of OCD
- How eating disorders and OCD interplay and how they differ
- How we, as professionals, can help our patients heal
- The various helpful tools we have at our disposal
- A framework for providing effective treatment at different levels of care
JM: Navigating treatment for behavioral health disorders is hard. In my own experience, I’ve found families are generally in crisis mode when trying to find the right treatment for their loved one. I hope that attendees will take home tools from this session that will aid and strengthen their assessments, making the transition into treatment a smoother process for their own patients and families.
About Adrianne Kenny, RD, LDN
Adrianne Kenny is a registered dietitian who currently works at the intensive outpatient level of care at ERC’s Chicago downtown location. Adrianne has over nine years of work experience in eating disorders treatment under nutrition services. In 2015, she also attended the only dietetic internship program that had a focus area in eating disorders, The Emily Program at the University of Minnesota. Adrianne approaches medical nutrition therapy through an anti-diet and weight-inclusive framework (Health at Every Size) to aid in providing more inclusive and individualized care for everybody. Last year, she acted as a resource to DePaul University’s health department, providing several presentations to students concerning topics of interest related to eating disorders and nutrition. Other passions of Adrianne’s include music, exploring the outdoors, and, most importantly, enjoying delicious meals with others.
About Jessica Moore, MD, FAAP, CEDS
Jessica Moore graduated from Southern Methodist University with a BS in biology and went on to Texas Tech University for medical school. She completed her residency in pediatrics at Arkansas Children’s Hospital and after residency joined the adolescent medicine section as an assistant professor. Dr. Moore became the medical director for the child and adolescent eating disorders program in 2014 and helped expand the program over the next few years.