Lori Jasinski: Eating Disorder Interventionist, Sober Companion and Sober Coach

By The Fix staff 09/27/18

Jasinski emphasizes the importance of meeting people where they’re at—and keeping an open mind regarding the most effective approaches to treating eating disorders.

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Lori Jasinski

The Basics

Based in Los Angeles, California by way of Chicago, Illinois, Lori Jasinski is an eating disorder interventionist known for her compassion, empathy, and personalized approach. In recovery herself from both an eating disorder and substance abuse, Jasinski is available for clients in New York City, Los Angeles and internationally. She helps individuals, their families and loved ones find the path to recovery that works for them, and wholeheartedly believes there is no one-size-fits-all formula for healing from eating disorders.

The Background

Lori Jasinski began her work as an eating disorder sober companion after 10 years of working in residential treatment. Having struggled herself with food issues in early sobriety, she emphasizes the importance of meeting people where they’re at—and keeping an open mind regarding the most effective approaches to treating eating disorders. For example, while 12-step meetings like OA might be helpful to some, they’re not ideal for everyone. Jasinski found relief through learning the concept of intuitive eating, one of many tools she acquired in individual therapy. After working in treatment for so long, she realized there aren’t many one-on-one resources available to those in the grips of an eating disorder; she saw she could make a serious impact serving this population.

Intervention Services

Jasinski is also available to serve as an eating disorder interventionist before taking over as an eating disorder sober companion. Before meeting with a client, Jasinski usually likes to see if the family believes their loved one would be willing to meet one on one with her. This private meeting is a safe environment in which the person can open up. In Jasinski’s experience as an eating disorder interventionist, she has found that sometimes people are more willing to be honest when they’re not around their family. If the client is not aware of the family’s concerns and the family wants to do a surprise intervention, then Jasinski meets with the family to establish their goals. When she determines what they would like to achieve by hiring an eating disorder interventionist, they plan the intervention and execute it accordingly.

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The individuals Jasinski treats are not necessarily in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction while also struggling with food issues; sometimes their only issues are disordered eating and body image hangups. While many of her clients do need a lot of guidance because they aren’t familiar with recovery, they don’t necessarily need around the clock residential treatment.

Usually Jasinski lives with a client and only treats that person. When she is not living with anyone, however, she can have more than one client. After residing with the client and being with them as they go about their daily lives, her goal is to gradually grant the client more freedom, checking in regularly but for the most part stepping back so they can gain independence and confidence in their own recovery.

The amount of time Jasinski serves as someone’s eating disorder sober companion is different for each person. She’s been hired for as as short as three weeks and as long as six months. It varies based on how quickly she’s able to get them to their goals.

Sober Companion: how it works

When staging an intervention or working as an eating disorder sober companion, Jasinski helps the client’s family create a treatment team if necessary. She is then available to communicate with the client’s therapist, psychiatrist, dietitian and nutritionist to make sure they’re getting the best care possible. If medication management needs to be facilitated, she sees to it that the proper physician is involved and the client is stable with whatever is prescribed.

As an eating disorder sober companion, Jasinski actively helps the person apply what he or she has learned in therapy or treatment to everyday life. She not only tries to do everything possible to get the person to normalize eating and meals, but she also eats alongside them, always consuming exactly the same foods. Jasinski promotes healthy habits and hobbies, and tries to remind clients of their own humanity. One of the most common issues she sees is a lack of compassion people have for themselves around so called indulgent foods. She reiterates that cravings are okay. Still, she does make sure clients are aware of their emotional well being and how that ties into their eating habits. As an eating disorder sober companion, she is mindful of a client’s mood and is able to relay any pertinent concerns to other health professionals helping with their treatment. Jasinski doesn’t really discuss weight with her clients. If they are struggling with body image, she communicates this to their therapist and works on redirecting their thoughts.

Summary

Jasinski recognized a need for more resources for people with eating disorders, especially in terms of individual care as opposed to a group setting. Residential treatment for eating disorders can be hard to find, and often one-on-one care for clients in recovery from eating disorders is limited to the realm of a therapist or dietitian. An eating disorder sober companion is a valuable asset since sober companions for those in recovery from substance use disorders — while valuable professionals in their own right — might have limited expertise when it comes to disordered eating. Jasinski offers a very specific service to a very specific demographic. She has helped many individuals repair and renew their relationship with food and their bodies.

Lori Jasinski, Eating Disorder Interventionist
Los Angeles, CA and New York, NY; international clients considered upon request.

Reach Lori by email at [email protected] or find her on Instagram.

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