Nutrition is a fundamental organizer of mental functioning. In a newborn, it not only fulfills a biologic need but is also a vehicle for the infant’s relational interchanges with his or her mother. From a psychoanalytical perspective, the caregivers’ ability to attune with the child’s emotional needs and to provide the “emotional nourishment” required for building an inner world plays a key role. Thus, eating disorders are often linked to a lack of attunement and mutuality during breast- or bottle-feeding. They may also be understood as dysfunctional attempts to regulate intense and painful affect when it is not possible to give those affects an appropriate meaning and as a way of fostering a sense of personal agency. Clinical work with patients with eating disorders requires a deeper understanding of their feelings of loneliness, worthlessness, and shame. By engaging in a complex affective-relational process during therapeutic work, clinicians can help patients integrate their somatic and mental states in a more stable way. Furthermore, clinicians can convey a sense of interpersonal validation that allows patients to give meaning to their own feelings and personal history.