Center for Discovery
Discovery News
August, 2008

Clinical Spotlight:
Article: Nutrition Therapy:
Rachel Liger

Upcoming Events
CEU Events
Upcoming Conferences

Join the Preferred Partner Network
Join Here

Alumni Groups
Eating Disorder Alumni
Dual Diagnosis Alumni

Meet Clinical Outreach
Christina Weiss
Alexia Mowry
Elizabeth Rock

Discovery at a Glance
Eating Disorder Program
Dual Diagnosis Program
Discovery Staff

Discovery Therapeutic Family Meal
-Rachel Liger, MS, RD

In the past, the approach to treating adolescents with eating disorders has been to keep the parents “out of the food.”  Instructions to parents were not to say or do anything when they saw their child struggling.  This is because popular belief stated that parents contributed to the onset of the eating disorder and thus, by parents being involved in the re-feeding process, the eating disorder would get worse.  In many cases when this happened, clients often began to feel that the parents did not care, stating, “I refused to eat most of my meal and my parents did nothing about it.  They must not care.”  Hearing this inspired me to explore methods of healthy parental involvement during a meal or snack.

The Discovery Therapeutic Family Meal was adapted from family-based treatment methods that utilized parents in the re-feeding process.  We are proud to share with you this integral part of Discovery’s eating disorder treatment program that helps parents to differentiate between food policing and food support.  During this process, parents learn how to confront their child effectively and gently when they notice a lapse during a meal.  By helping parents to intervene early, we hope to reduce, even prevent, the progression from a single lapse to a full-blown relapse. 

During the course of treatment, we invite parents to come to the facility with a meal of their choosing, while the client prepares his or her meal at our facility.  The family eats their meal with the dietitian and therapist present, also eating a meal, in a private area in the facility.  Throughout the Discovery Therapeutic Family Meal, we encourage the parents, siblings and client to speak freely, as if they were at home.  While their conversations occur, the professionals check in with the client about whether or not the conversation is conducive to them finishing their meal and keeping it down.  Clients are also encouraged to role-play scenarios such as leaving the table to use the restroom or not finishing their food so their family can learn to react appropriately to the situation.  The therapist and dietitian coach the parents to help support the client to make healthy choices during the meal.  This support may come in the form of a statement from the parents and siblings that helps the client feel more comfortable and one that supports the client to continue eating.  Every client is different and the support statements will vary accordingly.

Prior to eating disorder treatment, many parents have described feeling as if they were “walking on eggshells” around their son/daughter when it came to meal times.  Now, equipped with the tools and guidelines that they learn, parents are able to promote recovery at home. Parents appreciate the Discovery Therapeutic Family Meal as it gives them an important role in the recovery process and removes the feeling of powerlessness they had before treatment.

Upcoming Events

CEU Events
Center for Discovery Presents their 2008 Education Series
Adolescent Eating Disorders: Current Trends and Practical Approaches to Treatment

Buck Runyan, MFT, LPC, CEDS
The Integration of Imagery and Art: A Family Systems Approach to Treating Eating Disorders
Rachel Liger, MS, RD
Nutrition Therapy in Eating Disorders
Brian Holt, MD, MPH
The Role of Psychopharmacology in Eating Disorders

San Jose, CA: September 26, 2008
San Jose State University
University Room, One Washington Square
San Jose, CA , 95192

Los Angeles, CA: October 3, 2008
Sherman Oaks Marriott

San Diego, CA: October 10, 2008
Sheraton La Jolla

5 CEU Credits: PsyD, PhD, MFT, RD, LCSW
$60/person (lunch included)

Please RSVP to Yusvi Salza:
800.760.3932 or
Or online at

Adolescent Resource Network – Sherman Oaks, CA co-hosted by Center for Discovery, Clearview and Insight Treatment Centers featuring 300.7 Body Dysmorphic Disorder: Identifying and Treating BDD, presented by Arie M. Winograd, MFT, Director, Los Angeles Body Dysmorphic Disorder & Body Image Clinic on  Friday, August 22 from 8:30 – 10am held at Insight Sherman Oaks. For more information contact Christina Weiss at 562-457-7373 or

South Bay Network – Torrance,  CA co-hosted with Torrance Memorial
Hospital’s Thelma McMillen Center. Meetings are held on the forth Tuesday of every even month at Thelma McMillen Center. Next meeting will be on Tuesday, August 26 from 8:30 – 10:00am. For more information, contact Christina Weiss at 562-457-7373 or

The OC Network – San Juan Capistrano, CA co-hosted by BHC Alhambra, Center for Discovery, and Hope by the Sea. Meetings are held on the third Friday of every month at Hope by the Sea. Next meeting will be on Friday, September 19 featuring John Lieberman from Visions Adolescent Treatment Center, “ An Adolescent’s Treatment Process from Intervention to Aftercare”, from  11:30  –  1:00pm. For more information, contact Alexia Mowry at 562-881-9886 or

The SD Network  – La Costa, CA co-hosted by BHC Alhambra, Center for
Discovery, and Hope by the Sea. Meetings are held on the first Thursday of every month. First meeting will be on Thursday, October 2 from 11:30 –1:00pm. For more information, contact Alexia Mowry at 562.881.9886 or

Adolescent Resource Network – Pasadena, CA co-hosted by Center for Discovery, Clearview and Insight Treatment Centers on October 17 from 8:30 – 10am held at Casa de las Amigas. For more information, contact Christina Weiss at 562-457-7373 or

The OC Network – San Juan Capistrano, CA co-hosted by BHC Alhambra, Center for Discovery, and Hope by the Sea. Meetings are held on the third Friday of every month at Hope by the Sea. October 17, 2008 featuring Gina Tabrizy, MFT, founder Harmony Heals. For more information, contact Alexia Mowry at 562-881-9886 or

Upcoming Conferences
Stop by Discovery’s booth!

40th Annual Southwest Behavioral Conference
August 24 – 28, 2008
Tucson, Arizona
Lowes Ventana Canyon Resort

NEDA (National Eating Disorder Awareness)
September 18 – 20, 2008
Austin, Texas
Renaissance Austin Hotel

BFI Summit for Clinical Excellence
October 23 – 26
Tempe, Arizona
Tempe Mission Palms Hotel

Join the Preferred Partner Network
It is important to us that our patients have a quality team to go to after treatment. We look for quality Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Medical Doctors, Therapists and Dieticians across the country to refer our patients to. Simply click here, complete the online form, and a representative from the Center for Discovery and Adolescent Change will contact you.

Alumni Groups

Eating Disorder Alumni
For more information please call
Lisa Arndt at 562-698-8888

Dual Diagnosis Alumni
Free Alumni Group for all former residents and their parents of La Habra, Long Beach, and Whittier's Dual Diagnosis Programs.

Thursday evenings at 8:00 PM at the Long Beach Facility
For more information please call

Meet Clinical Outreach

Central Coast, Central Valley & Los Angeles
Southeast US
Christina Weiss, MA, MPHC

Orange County, San Diego, Inland Empire & Nevada
Northeast US     
Alexia Mowry, MA    

Arizona & Texas
Southwest US
Elizabeth (Liz) Rock, BA

Clinical Outreach Coordinator
Yusvi  Salza
Los Alamitos, CA

Discovery at a Glance
Center for Discovery is a residential treatment program dedicated exclusively to adolescents struggling with eating disorders and dual diagnosis issues. We believe that just as eating disorders and dual diagnosis disorders require specialized treatment, so do adolescents. Discovery offers professional, structured environments with the comfort and nurturing of serene home-like settings where adolescents can safely address their challenges. Our individualized treatment approach is provided by a multidisciplinary team and a low staff to resident ratio. At Center for Discovery, we assist hundreds of adolescents and their families annually across our six JCAHO accredited and California licensed campuses. Since 1997 we have been privately owned and operated. Discovery is contracted with most major healthcare insurance providers and will assist families in verifying their insurance benefits. Our Intake Department is available for both professionals and families 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

• Helping males and females 10 to 19 years old
• Disorders treated:
  - Anorexia Nervosa
  - Bulimia Nervosa
  - Binge Eating
  - Other related complex disordered eating
• Weekly Family Involvement
• The Discovery Therapeutic Family Meal
• Four private therapy sessions per week
• Over 41 structured groups per week

• Helping males and females 12 to 17 years old
• Disorders treated:
  - Addictive Disorders
  - Anxiety Disorders
  - Depressive Disorders
  - Childhood/Adolescent Disorders
• Weekly Family Involvement
• 12-Step Focus
• Four private therapy sessions per week
• Over 41 structured groups per week

Our mission at Center for Discovery is to combine the finest traditional inpatient approaches with creative, innovative and individualized interventions that position our therapeutic experience at the forefront of adolescent treatment.

For more information please call 800.760.3934 or visit us at 

The Center for Discovery utilizes highly skilled healthcare professionals who are carefully screened for appropriate education, training, experience, practical skills, certification, and licensure. Each member of our team demonstrates a deep commitment to the healing and well being of young people and their families. Each of our treatment homes are comprised of the following staff:
•    Physician
•    Psychiatrist
•    Clinical Psychologist
•    Registered Dietitian
•    Masters and Ph.D. Level Clinical Therapists
•    Registered Nurse
•    Residential Counselors
•    Educational Liaison
•    Dietary Assistant
•    Housekeeper

Craig Brown, Ph.D. - Chief Executive Officer, Psychologist and Co-founder
Dr. Brown has been the Chief Psychologist and co-founder of multiple inpatient programs for substance abuse and emotional disorders. He has been involved in the treatment of eating disorders for over 20 years and has specialized in the residential treatment of adolescent disorders for the past ten years.

Jerry Carminio - Chief Financial Officer and Co-founder
Jerry Carminio is a co-founder of The Center for Discovery and Adolescent Change and in a career change has dedicated himself to the creation of treatment centers which offer teens the opportunity to make profound life changes. Jerry is the organization contact to discuss fees and financial arrangements.

James D. "Buck" Runyan, MS, LMFT, LPC, CEDS, Chief Operations Officer Eating Disorder Programs
Buck joined Center for Discovery in 2006. He has been treating adolescents and adults with eating disorders since 1994. He is the founder of Eating Disorder Recovery Services through which he facilitates an Intensive Out Patient Program, Individual/Family Therapy for eating disorders as well as Gastric Surgery Assessments, education and psychotherapy to those in need. Buck held positions as Administrator for the San Bernardino Mental Health Court Pegasus Program and the founding Director of the Remuda Ranch Adolescent Center in Wickenburg, AZ. Buck presents education and professional training sessions on a local, regional, national and international basis. He currently is the Chairperson for the Southern California IAEDP Chapter and he is credentialed as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in California as well as a Licensed Professional Counselor in Arizona.

Gregory Corbin, M.A., LMFT, Chief Operating Officer - Dual Diagnosis Programs, Director of Performance Improvement
Gregory Corbin has worked for the Center for Discovery since its inception in 1997. Mr. Corbin began his career in adolescent residential mental health in 1979. He has directed/administrated healthcare services and treatment programs for adults and adolescents in inpatient acute hospitals, partial hospitalization and structured outpatient programs and residential care for over 20 years. He has volunteered his services to at risk youth and their families, served as a Long Beach City Commissioner for the Commission for Youth and lead seminars and retreats focused on addiction recovery, family recovery and various areas of personal growth. He has a private psychotherapy practice in Long Beach, California.

Barbie Lucas, M.D. - Medical Director,Northern and Southern California
Barbie Lucas, M.D., is a pediatrician with special interests in eating disorders and clinical genetics. She completed her undergraduate training at Brigham Young University, her medical school training at the University of Arkansas, and her residency at the University of California at Irvine, Long Beach Memorial and Children's Hospital Orange County (CHOC). Follwing a chief residency at CHOC, Dr. Lucas completed a fellowship in clinical genetics at Cedar-Sinai Medical Center. Dr. Lucas has been a member of Center for Discovery's treatment team since 2001.

Brian Holt, M.D., M.P.H. - Psychiatrist, Southern California Psychiatrist Downey, Lakewood, La Habra, Long Beach, Whittier
Brian Holt M.D., M.P.H., began working with Discovery in 2004. He is a child and adolescent Psychiatrist with special interests in eating disorders. He did his undergraduate training at Maimi University of Ohio and has a graduate degree in public health from the University of Michigan. His medical school training was at St. Louis University and his residency was at University of California at Los Angeles including specialized training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Harbor UCLA Medical Center.

Jacqueline Henschke, MD – Psychiatrist, Northern California
Jacqueline Henschke MD is the psychiatrist at our Menlo Park facility. She is a Fellow in the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry program at Stanford Hospital. She received her medical degree from Tulane University and was a Pediatric resident at Miami Children’s Hospital and an adult psychiatric resident at George Washington University. She is a member of the American Psychiatric Association at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Dr. Henschke was awarded the Astra Zeneca Minority Fellowship Award by the American Psychiatric Association in 2006 and is fluent in Spanish.

Rachel Liger, M.S., R.D. - Director of Nutrition Services, Nutrition Therapist, Registered Dietician
Rachel Liger is a Registered Dietitian with a Masters Degree from California State University, Long Beach. During her Masters program, she conducted clinical research measuring the importance of the dietitian for weight loss when appetite suppressants are used. Rachel currently works as the Director of Nutrition Services at Center for Discovery and Adolescent change. She has held this position since the opening of the eating disorder program. She designed and developed the nutrition program and now oversees 4 eating disorder facilities and 2 dual diagnosis facilities. She manages and supervises 4 Registered Dietitians and has developed an extensive training program for dietetic interns. She lectures extensively in the community and at professional meetings for the purpose of raising awareness about the dangers of eating disorders.