London Centre for Intuitive Eating (LCIE) has launched its latest online course for nutrition and healthcare professionals who work with children. The Raising Embodied Eaters course has been created by anti-diet movement pioneer Laura Thomas, PhD and her team at LCIE, alongside special guest contributors.
Rasing Embodied Eaters aims to equip course attendees with the tools to support an attuned and responsive feeding relationship with children based on trust and respect, laying the foundation for a positive relationship with food and their bodies for the years ahead.
The course, which is self-paced and available to healthcare and childcare professionals to enrol on here, covers the science and practical aspects of feeding children and is designed to help anyone who works with kids in a professional capacity around food, body image, and feeding – from healthcare to education or community settings.
Developed by Intuitive Eating expert, LCIE founder, and author Laura Thomas, PhD, the course runs on the Teachable platform, can be used as credits towards Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and gives users lifetime access to the resources.
The course content will add value to professionals’ current knowledge and offers, allowing them to focus on areas not part of the normal curriculum. Course attendees will also gain access to a monthly Facebook live with members of the LCIE team where they can ask questions and have access to previous live events.
Laura said: ‘We often go to great lengths to get children to eat – offering things like sticker charts for eating a piece of broccoli, cutting sandwiches into fancy shapes, or saying ‘just one more bite. But none of this sets kids up to have a positive relationship with food and their body; in fact, the harder we try to make kids eat, the more likely it is to backfire.’
‘This course offers a brand-new perspective on feeding kids, based on trust and respect, and building on the latest research in this area.’
The course, which runs over 11 and a half hours, begins by looking at how typical eating develops and how common feeding practices often lead to disconnection and disembodiment, undermining safety and trust in the feeding relationship and overriding the child’s internal cues and autonomy.
It will look at more responsive feeding practices that prioritise embodiment, safety, agency, and connection, consider how to address common nutritional concerns and give practical strategies for working with families to help reduce pressure and anxiety.
This will include looking more closely at the difference between typical ‘fussy’ or ‘picky’ eating and more severe eating differences, such as Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (and when to seek referral support).
The course will cover the role of anti-fat stigma and diet culture and how these can skew how we view children’s growth. Two modules have been created by guest contributors –Decolonising Nutrition Practice: Disrupting White Supremacy in Dietetics by Registered Dietitian Mun Cho, based in Ontario, Canada, who specialises in paediatric nutrition, eating disorders and food allergies. Australian primary school teacher Kelly Fullerton has designed the module Do we really need to teach nutrition to kids? Exploring bottom-up approaches to nutrition education.
Kelly has completed other nutrition and feeding therapy training and has a strong interest and passion for positive yet neutral food and nutrition education in primary schools.
Intuitive Eating is a science-backed concept that promotes self-compassion and acceptance, equipping people with simple tools and techniques for a trusting, happy, and healthy relationship with food by rejecting diet mentality and understanding the body’s hunger cues.
Author of two books, Just Eat It and How to Just Eat It, nutritionist Laura’s approach draws heavily on nutritional and behavioural science and psychology, as well as her own experiences with food. Through her books, podcast, one to one clinical practice, and training courses for healthcare, childcare and nutrition professionals, she has helped thousands transform their relationship with food and is regarded as one of the leaders in the Intuitive Eating community.
Laura is joined at LCIE by a team of nutrition professionals dedicated to supporting people to get off the never-ending dieting merry-go-round and find food freedom, self-compassion, and a renewed sense of purpose that doesn’t involve trying to fit into society’s narrow body ideals. To find out more about LCIE’s professional courses, visit here.