Are you aware?…it’s “National Eating Disorders Awareness Week” (2/23 − 3/1/2014) — a week dedicated to raising awareness about the seriousness of eating disorders, as well as to helping foster greater understanding and knowledge amongst us all. “I Had No Idea” is this year’s theme by the National Eating Disorders Association [NEDA], which aims at addressing misconceptions that might be standing in the way of receiving help [or hope] for any & all affected and still suffering. The NEDA website, therefore, notes the following:
►Eating disorders are complex illnesses that arise from a combination of long-standing behavioral, emotional, psychological, interpersonal, biological and social factors.
►In the United States, 20 million women and 10 million men suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder at some time in their life, including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, or other specified feeding or eating disorder (OSFED).
►While eating disorders are serious, potentially life-threatening illnesses, help is available and recovery is possible. It is important for those affected, and their loved ones, to remember that they are not alone in their struggle. Others have recovered and are now living healthy fulfilling lives. NEDA has information and resources available via [NEDA] website and helpline. [NEDA Helpline: 800-931-2237].
It’s important to realize, too, that eating disorders incorporate a wide spectrum (continuum) of conditions, varying in degrees. Potential warning signs can be found at NEDA: nedawareness.org/about-eating-disorders or via other resources/sites as well, relating to both thoughts (including judgements/fears) and behaviors (including how & when to eat, purge, and/or exercise).
The NEDA site also offers a screening tool/quiz, based on the work of D.M. Garner, M.P. Olmsted, Y. Bohr, and P.E. Garfinkel, designed to help determine if it’s time to seek professional help; though, please note: “thisscreening is NOT an official diagnosis of an eating disorder. Please contact a treatment professional to receive an official diagnosis.”
Other websites/resources/screening tools are also available, of course; such as: F.E.A.S.T. (Families Empowered and Supporting Treatment of eating disorders); and ANAD (National Association of Anorexia Nervosa & Associated Disorders); please see caveat below.
Early detection and intervention by skilled practitioners recommended.
Help — and Hope — are available…
Learn to reach out today.
[CAVEAT: Be aware, any mention of such websites within The Way to Nourish for Life blog should not be considered an endorsement by this blog/RD; I have had no direct experiences thus far with NEDA, ANAD, &/or FEAST; and I, myself, do not specialize in eating disorders within my practice. Also refer to “About” The Way to Nourish for Life.]
Reference utilized: NEDA website [links provided above].
2014–The Way to Nourish for Life.