Dr. Danielle Shelov discusses eating disorder treatments with the Upper School community


Helena Randolph '24

Dr. Danielle V. Shelov visits Sacred Heart Greenwich January 27 to raise awareness for eating disorders in adolescents.

Psychologist Dr. Danielle Shelov spoke to Sacred Heart Greenwich faculty, students, and parents about adolescent eating disorder treatments January 27.  She also discussed the negative impact of social media on teenagers and offered advice to parents on how to talk to their children about eating disorders.

Dr. Shelov has worked in the nutrition-psychology field for 13 years and runs the Shelov Psychology Practice in New York City and Westchester County.  She specializes in divorce and eating disorders.  The practice also offers marital and premarital counseling, according to shelovpsychologygroup.comDr. Shelov attended the Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology at Yeshiva University in New York, New York.  In addition, she completed her doctoral research on the impact of yoga on mindfulness, cardiovascular reactivity, and empathy.  She then received her post-doctoral training in eating disorders at Columbus Park Collaborative, a New York-based treatment center.

The team of therapists at the Shelov Psychology Group believes in therapy based on teamwork.  Courtesy of shelovpsychologygroup.com

Dr. Shelov teaches middle school and high school students how to recognize disordered eating and speaks with parents and educators about ways to treat the condition.  She explained how eating disorders manifest themselves in different ways depending on the individual.

“I have seen a lot of eating disorders in my day and so I am very aware that each one is unique, and they all cannot be managed the same way,” Dr. Shelov said.  “If I do anything, I put eating disorders in that perspective.”

The purpose of Dr. Shelov’s talk was to reshape the stigma surrounding eating disorders while addressing the importance of seeking treatment efficiently.  Dr. Shelov emphasized how adolescents should not feel ashamed if they suffer from an eating disorder because professionals can help them overcome it.

“Ultimately, [eating disorders] illustrate a very strong coping mechanism in your daughter,” Dr. Shelov said.  “They illustrate a way of coping with anxiety that she has figured out on her own.  Our job is to help her figure it out.” 

Dr. Shelov also discussed the five types of eating disorders, anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder, other specified feeding and eating disorder (OSFED), avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID), and orthorexia.  She mentioned that adolescents whose family members suffer from an eating disorder are 40 percent more likely to develop one as well.  They are also susceptible to developing obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), rigid perfectionism, and separation anxiety.  Dr. Shelov highlighted that around 75 percent of people diagnosed with eating disorders are female.

Dr. Shelov urged students to seek help from professionals if they are struggling with an eating disorder.  She reminded them that Dr. Lisa Schwartz, School Psychologist, and Dr. Melissa Otero, School Psychologist and Middle School Wellness Teacher, are available as resources. 

Dr. Shelov has worked in the field of eating disorders for 13 years.  Helena Randolph ’24

Dr. Shelov will return to Sacred Heart to impart knowledge to the Upper School on diets, stress, and body image in March.  She concluded her January visit by reiterating that students should not feel embarrassed or hopeless if they suffer from disordered eating.  Dr. Shelov encouraged students to exhibit positivity towards others and not voice positive or negative comments about appearance.

“Do not comment on bodies,” Dr. Shelov said.  “As hard as it is, we talk about how wonderful people are, how smart people are, that people are different, that people can be happy at every size.”

Featured Image by Helena Randolph ’24