You know, or suspect, that you have RED-S/ REDs (Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport), but you just can’t afford professional help, like a dietician or psychologist. What are your options?
Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani has suggestions for other resources, including how you can approach people in your life who may not be “experts,” but can still help you.
Read the transcript
[Tina] I know I need to see someone, but I just can’t afford $200 a week to see a dietitian, to see a psychologist. What should I do?
[Jen] It’s so frustrating that health care is not universally accessible with universally expert, thoughtful, really knowledgeable experts, but you’re right; this is the case. However, fortunately, in this day and age, there are a lot of good resources out there that, where there’s a true lack of financial resources, we have to go to other excellent resources. So, among those are to look at resources like Tina’s, and to really understand, read, listen. “All right, it looks like maybe I’ve gone down a pathway I didn’t even realize was dangerous for myself. I can do this research. There’s a lot of really good information out there.
When I’m in doubt, I can actually reach out to experts and say, ‘Hey, I’m in this situation; I don’t have the capacity to pay for a full multi-disciplinary team; what are my best, safest, high-quality resources in order to help me?'” And in the final analysis, as athletes recognize that they’ve not been resourcing their bodies adequately with sleep, rest, nutrition, and hydration, making important changes in those independently, even if it feels a little bit scary, will start to yield important responses.
Now, if there are medical things going on that feel scary or uncertain, by all means use even the inexpert resources at your disposal to get evaluated. I don’t want you to think that you have to do this completely on your own, but there are also a lot of resources in your life as an athlete. You might have one coach that’s somewhat toxic on these matters, but you might have an assistant coach or a physical therapist, who you know you can trust and who are really sensible. Those would be other good people to go to and say, “You know what, I’ve got a bunch of these symptoms. I recognize that there’s a lot of pressure on people in my sport to do things similar to how I’m doing them, but I think this is harming my performance. In the final analysis, I am an athlete; my dedication is to honing my body and my hard work ethic so that I perform at a certain level, while caring for my health. I need more assistance. What can I do?”
[Tina] Thank you so much. Such an important one.
check it out
Recovering from RED-S is hard. It’s even harder if you’re working through it alone. Even if you have professional support, they’re not available 24-7, and that can lead to going down search engine rabbit holes that have the potential to derail everything.
Our online resource, RED-S: Realize. Reflect. Recover, will answer all those questions swimming around in your head about recovery. It will give you the opportunity to connect with the experts you’ve come to know here, and to surround yourself with a community of others who are going through it too. THANK YOU! to Athletic Greens and Tracksmith for supporting this YouTube series and RED-S: Realize. Reflect. Recover.
Go to athleticgreens.com/reds to get five free travel packs of AG1 and a free one year’s supply of vitamin D3+K2 with your subscription!
When you go to https://tracksmith.com/tina and use the code TINA15 at checkout, you’ll get free shipping and Tracksmith will donate 5% of your order to Rising Hearts, the Indigenous-led nonprofit founded by Jordan Marie Daniels.
more about Dr G:
Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani, CEDS-S, FAED, is an internist who specializes in eating disorders. She practices from a deeply anti-diet, weight-inclusive perspective and partners with therapists and dietitians around the country to ameliorate medical roadblocks in patients’ recovery journeys. Her book, “Sick Enough: A Guide to the Medical Complications of Eating Disorders,” is for patients, families, and practitioners. You can find Jen at https://gaudianiclinic.com