Eating Disorders, What We Knew Before and What We Know Now, with Alexandra Paul

Episode 15

28th June 2021

The former Baywatch star dealt with anorexia and bulimia but new information on those disorders that runs against what we thought we knew

Episode notes

Alexandra Paul wasn’t allowed sugar as a kid but she snuck it anyway, not for the taste but for the comfort it provided. As a teen, Alexandra’s modeling and acting careers were going great. Her relationship with food, on the other hand, had become a real mess. At boarding school, it seemed right and normal to deny herself food in order to be as skinny as possible. The other girls were doing it and no one ever talked about it as a disorder. Over time, as she moved into modeling in New York City and acting in Hollywood, the anorexia turned to bulimia and she got hooked on the ritual of bingeing and purging. She’s stayed away from that behavior for the last 30 years but still feels like she could slip back if she’s not careful.

Dr. Jillian Lampert, who also dealt with eating disorders herself as a young person, is the Chief Strategy Officer for the Emily Project, an organization that treats and studies eating disorders. She says there’s a lot of recent research indicating that genetics are much more responsible for who will develop eating disorders of all kinds than we previously thought. 

Alexandra Paul personal site 

Alexandra Paul IMDb page 

Alexandra Paul Wikipedia

Alexandra Paul on Twitter – @alexandra_paul

The Emily Program – https://www.emilyprogram.com/

Dr. Jillian Lampert – https://www.emilyprogram.com/about-us/leadership-team/jillian-lampert/
Reward sensitivity article: https://jeatdisord.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40337-017-0138-2
Sensation and emotion study in progress: http://eatingdisorders.ucsd.edu/research/our-research.html
Sensation study: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3955712/
Another sensation study: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7230430/
Bodily sensations study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29483865/
Sensation study looking particularly at disgust: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6759364/
Broader study on interoceptive awareness (awareness of body cues): https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7927286/
Genetics and neurobiology: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21243469/

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In this episode...

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  • Alexandra Paul
  • Dr. Jillian Lampert

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Join host John Moe (The Hilarious World of Depression) for honest, relatable, and, yes, sometimes funny conversations about mental health. Hear from comedians, musicians, authors, actors, and other top names in entertainment and the arts about living with depression, anxiety, and many other common disorders. Find out what they’ve done to address it, what worked, and what didn’t. Depresh Mode with John Moe also features useful insights on mental health issues with experts in the field. It’s honest talk from people who have been there and know their stuff. No shame, no stigma, and maybe a few laughs.

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