Now more than ever, mental health and behavioral health are important. Working with a GI psychologist is typically short-term, but significantly helpful in improving your quality of life, coping with stress and decreasing the severity of your GI condition. Today, I interview Dr. Megan Riehl who is a GI psychologist who specializes in psychogastroenterology and anxiety related-disorders. 

Nutrition Pearls for Psychogastroenterology

  • Psychogastroenterology targets psychological interventions to the management of digestive disorders
  • This tool focuses on the brain-gut interaction, reducing food fears, mindfulness, and future oriented thinking, providing patients with skills to manage their digestive disorder
  • The most researched technique is cognitive behavioural therapy
  • Gut directed hypnotherapy is another well-researched tool that is gaining popularity
  • Referrals to a gastro-psych can help to provide holistic care.

Today, I interview Dr. Megan Riehl who is a GI psychologist who specializes in psychogastroenterology and anxiety related-disorders. She is the Clinical Director of the GI behavioral health program at the University of Michigan and Director of Behavioral Health Services and Support for Gastro Girl, INC., a co-parent owner of GI OnDemand. Dr. Riehl’s clinical research focuses on the delivery of GI behavioral health treatment for patients with disorders of the gut-brain and IBD. Dr. Riehl participates on several national committees dedicated to research and education to enhance the psychosocial functioning of patients with gastrointestinal problems.   

We talk about:

  • how Megan became interested in gastroenterology as a psychologist
  • what is psychogastroenterology?
  • why does psychogastroenterology help digestive disorders?
  • what is the brain-gut connection?
  • how does the brain-gut connection play a role in digestive disorders?
  • how does psychotherapy alter the brain-gut connection?
  • different types of therapy proven to help those with IBS
  • what is the difference between gut-directed hypnotherapy and mindfulness?
  • how does food fears drive symptoms? How does psychogastroenterology help reduce food fears?

To learn more, you can follow Megan on twitter @DrRiehl or on Instagram @DrRiehl

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