Bulimia, Anorexia and Obesity.
Nicotine, Cannabis, Alcohol, Gambling, Shopping, Sex and other Addictions

  • Welcome to my site. I am a specialized lacanian psychoanalyst with more than 25 years of experience in treating eating disorders, such as bulimia, anorexia and obesity, and substance dependence such as to nicotine , cannabis and alcohol. I have medical degrees from Oxford and Cambridge and for many years I was a Consultant Psychiatrist at the main psychiatric hospital of Paris, St Anne's.
  • I have a unique perspective on how to treat eating disorders that you will not find anywhere else. This site will explain in simple terms my approach.
  • Although I am specialised in these fields, I am also a general psychologist. I see all kinds of mental conditions.
  • I am based in Paris but I have for many years been treating patients all over the world, from New York to Oxford to Singapore.
  • In particular I have many patients in India and the UK, where I have deep connexions and offices. Until the covid pandemic, I visited both countries regularly.
  • There is no magic cure in psychological illnessess, but with some work you can be cured in most cases. On average, it takes 6-9 months to recover from the conditions I specialise in.
  • During the Covid-19 pandemic, the majority of my appointments are held via video or telephone, even in Paris.
  • I used to hold clinics in Calangute, Goa in India during November, February and August. However, this is not going to be possible for the coming year due to the current situation.
  • I also have an office in Trumpington in Cambridge, where I also used to visit several times a year.
  • No matter where in the world you are, I can arrange a time that suits the both of us.
  • I hold sessions in English, Hindi and French.
  • My usual fee is 100€ per session in France (150 $ in USA).
  • For Indian patients, my usual fee is 3000 - 4000 Rupees per session.
  • If you cancel at the last moment (less than 48 h) the consultation is owed.
  • Read on, or book mark this page and come back another time, when you have more time.
[Click on each section for more information.]
Introduction and about myself

I am an Indian born doctor who grew up in Delhi, Hyderabad, Pune, Bangalore and Calcutta. After my schooling at the Lawrence School Sanawar, in Simla, I went to boarding school in Yorkshire, near Leeds in England to do my High School diploma (Classes 11 and 12, A levels, Baccalaureat).

After my training in medicine (Oxford, Cambridge and one year at AIIMS in Delhi, India) I did residencies in London and at the American Hospital of Paris. To specialize, I trained in psychiatry (St. Anne’s Hospital) and psychoanalysis (with Jacques Lacan at the École Freudienne) in Paris. For many years I was a Consultant Psychiatrist at Saint Anne’s Hospital in Paris. For the last twenty years I have worked as a specialised psychotherapist and psychologist. I am a licensed member of the Association Internationale Lacanienne, the leading psychoanalytical society of France.

My office is in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, but I also work by video conference and email. Currently, I have patients in America, India and England, in addition to my patients in Paris. I have had patients from Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Goa in India and from Cambridge, Oxford and London in the UK. I have a house and an office in Calangute Goa, where I go several times a year and see my Indian patients.

I also have deep connexions with the UK, where I trained. I have an office in Trumpington, Cambridge.

In my 25 years of experience I have seen and treated various kinds of psychological conditions: lack of confidence, inhibitions, sexual difficulties, school problems...

My subjects of interest are bulimia, anorexia and obesity on the one hand and addictions to nicotine, cannabis, alcohol, tea, coffee and chocolate on the other.

During this Coronavirus pandemic, I am seeing many patients with depression, anxiety and marital strife.

Specialised in Bulimia and Smoking

In addition to my general psychological work, for the last 20 years I have specialised in the treatment of bulimia and smoking. (Bulimia is closely related to anorexia and similar mechanisms are at play in obesity. Similarly, smoking is related to cannabis and other addictions. Some other minor cravings such as to tea, coffee and chocolate also share the same mechanisms).

My thesis is that both these groups of conditions, of eating disorders and substance debendence, are first of all psychological disorders. To stop overeating and smoking the patient has to first make an inner psychological change. The primary lesion is in the unconscious psychology (software) of the subject and not in the neurochemistry (hardware) of the brain.

In both these conditions, there is an initial psychological dissatisfaction, an incompleteness, a weakness that is lodged inside the subject. This lack expresses itself from time to time as the need for food or a cigarette. There is a psychological disturbance that “gnaws at you” from inside, which is at the origin of the need to eat or smoke. And logically, this psychological dissatisfaction can be filled by a psychological treatment. Drugs play no useful role.

Please see in the relevant sections of this website a summary of my thoughts on these two subjects and the mechanisms at play.

The eating disorders (anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and the atypical eating disorders including binge eating disorder) affect mostly the female population and are thought to involve approximately 3% of women aged between 16-35 years in Western countries. Many of these women are involved in a battle with themselves to be slim. These disorders are especially common in certain professions - actresses, dancers, models, gymnasts, athletes,jockeys... who need to keep their weight down professionally. They are constantly on a diet, using their will power, which breaks down. They then binge, vomit and then start again. They are caught in a viscous circle. When there is no serious underlying psychological problem, with help, they can be fairly quickly cured. But unfortunately it is not always so simple and there is often a deeper psychological problem, including this urge to be slim.

A young girl who starts a diet can sink into anorexia. It is important to treat this quickly because this is a serious disorder. The same with bulimia. Early bulimia in a young person is more easily treated. Longstanding bulimia with vomiting takes longer to treat, because the symptom becomes a habit, an automatic behaviour, like cigarette smoking. But both these conditions are reversible, with some psychological work with a competent therapist.

If you are a smoker who wants to stop, I can help you too. You do not need drugs or willpower but you would have to do this psychological work on yourself over a few months.

The Talking Cure and the Writing Cure

This work on yourself is called the “talking cure”, which all therapists (psychiatrists, psychoanalysts, psychologists, psychotherapists) use in some form. Psychoanalysts have a special version of this method, first invented by Freud (free association). My research has led me to develop an improvement on this method, which you can call the “writing cure”. I write down word for word what the patient says and we read out this text before each new session. It is a prolongation of the talking cure. The rationale is that writing the patient's discourse and reading it out, erases the faulty text inside the patient's mind more completely than the talking cure alone. Take a look on this website. I am having considerable success in patients who continue treatment for a few months.

I am participating in research with my psychiatrist and psychologist colleagues on these subjects, in the eating disorder and smoking cessation departments of some hospitals in Paris and Oxford. I hope to publish my own results soon.

If you have any experience or ideas about the origin and nature of these eating disorders, I would be pleased to hear from you. If you have developed an unusual eating disorder or been cured of one quickly by any means, I would love to know.

I am a registered doctor in the French system. If you have insurance (a mutuelle) and French Social Security, the treatment is not expensive. It may be time to make that phone call or write that email you have been putting off for so long! Wherever you are in the world.

+ 33 1 47 07 55 28

Ex-consultant psychiatrist at St. Anne's Hospital Paris


65 rue Pascal - 75013 Paris
Bus: 47, 83, 91, 21, or 27
Métro: Gobelins line 7 - Glacière line 6

Phone: (+33) 1 47 07 55 28
Fax: (+33) 1 43 37 11 46


Dr. Harbans Nagpal, psychoanalyst, is based in the 13th arrondissement of Paris.

During this pandemic due to Covid-19, all of the appointments in my Doctolib calendar are for teleconsultations, only, not office consultations. The times given in the calendar are for the time zone of France, European Central Time. You can also email me for an appointment. I will confirm your appointment, taking into account the time difference between your city and Paris. I have patients in India and America, with no problems. We will start the teleconsultation by phone. I will come towards you first. We can then continue on Facetime, Whatsapp, Zoom or Skype. If you cancel at the last moment (less than 48h) the consultation will be owed. Doctor Nagpal.