Signs & Symptoms


Eating disorders are complex psychological, behavioral and medical syndromes. To obtain a strong and healthy recovery is difficult. All three of these areas must be addressed for treatment to be effective. A mutli-disciplinary approach has been proven to be the most successful in treating eating disorders. EDA is associated with professionals who have worked extensively with eating disorder clients. Each member of our treatment team contributes their skill and expertise in a coordinated effort to maximize full recovery.

Isa Van Helden LMHC

Isa Van Helden, LMHC is the director of EDA. She has been working with eating disordered clients since the early eighties and was the coordinator for an outpatient eating disorder program at Suncoast Mental Health Centers. In 1990 Isa started Eating Disorder Associates, an intensive outpatient treatment program that offers many of the same services patients receive in an inpatient treatment center.

Here is what we provide:

Your recovery begins with an extensive evaluation by one of our directors. After the evaluation further assessment by a medical doctor, a nutritionist and a psychiatrist will be provided, if needed. After having established exactly what your needs are, an individualized treatment plan will be designed for you. Our treatment plans typically include individual, family and group therapy, as well as nutritional counseling and medical supervision. You and your therapist will meet once or twice per week. Your sessions will address your eating disorder behaviors as well as the underlying issues contributing to your symptoms.

We have many groups to provide exactly what you and your family need for your particular eating disorder:

  • The BULIMIA / ANOREXIA GROUP will focus on changing the behaviors of bingeing, purging and restricting. All group members will be encouraged to set definite goals that they will be able to reach. The group will work on issues such as accepting and facing the feelings of grief and loss that accompany letting go of an eating disorder. The group will provide a supportive and challenging environment to practice expressing emotions and to accept imperfections in yourself and others. The group will learn to develop the understanding, trust and patience that make recovery possible.

  • The OVEREATERS GROUP is for those who have tried everything to be thinner yet find they have not made peace with food, their bodies or themselves. This group is for compulsive overeaters or binge eaters. The group is designed to help each participant transcend the mindsets, beliefs and behaviors that have kept them stuck in self-defeating behaviors. The group provides an emotionally safe environment to begin the process of change.

  • The FAMILY SUPPORT GROUP is designed to help family members and significant others of those with eating disorders cope more effectively. It offers support and direction along with specific techniques on how to deal with the loved one that has an eating disorder. The group experience helps reduce isolation and shame. It helps members realize they are not alone in dealing with the effects of an eating disorder.

  • The ADOLESCENT GROUP is for girls 12 to 18 years old with anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder. Adolescent girls are much more susceptible to peer pressure to be thin and popular and many develop eating disorders in a desperate attempt to belong. This group addresses not only those aspects unique to teenagers but also offers the support of others struggling to overcome their eating disorders. Issues of perfectionism, identifying and expressing emotions, distorted thinking, behavioral changes, trust, intimacy and separation from family are some of the concepts that are focused on in a confidential and caring atmosphere.

  • An OVEREATERS GROUP FOR CHILDREN is in the process of being formed.


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2801 Fruitville Rd., Suite 110 . Sarasota, FL. 34237 Phone 941-924-2991