In the News

Eating Disorder Recovery Is Hard During The Holidays. Here’s How To Cope.

November 19, 2021 / HuffPost

If you’d like suggestions from professionals and people who “get it” during this process, think about trying a free support group. The Alliance for Eating Disorders Awareness hosts virtual groups on Mondays and Saturdays, as well as one for LGBTQIA+ individuals on Wednesdays. The only canceled session will be on Christmas Day. Additionally, ANAD offers virtual support groups that will continue through the holiday season for people of multiple identities.

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Thanksgiving Will Always Be Difficult For Me. Here’s How I Cope.

November 10, 2021 / HealthyWomen

It took me a long time to deal with binge-eating disorder. Because it’s not well understood by doctors — they just kept telling me to go on a diet, not recognizing how complicated that would be due to my history. Then about five years ago, I went to an intuitive-eating treatment center and learned to change my relationship with food, focusing on listening to what my body needs and practicing self-compassion. Since then, I’ve become a recovery coach and a volunteer with the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders.

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Using Social Media to Reinforce a Positive Body Image

October 11, 2021 / Scripps National News

Instagram is wreaking havoc on young girls — and knows it

September 16, 2021 / New York Post

Filters aside, images of willowy stars are impossible to avoid on social media. For Gwenyth Harrington, a member of the adolescent and teen support group run by the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD), pics of Gigi Hadid and Taylor Swift were some of the dangerous factors behind her eating disorder.

She was also negatively impacted by the platform’s “thinspiration” posts, which can often spark competition between young girls to look the skinniest of their peers.

The 17-year-old from upstate New York was twice admitted to the hospital where counseling helped her assess the damage caused by social media.

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Why I Banned Words Like “Guilt Free” and “Cheat Day” From My Vocabulary

June 10, 2021 / Good Housekeeping

Growing up Catholic and female, guilt was my secondary religion. As early as kindergarten, I learned to idolize the saints who starved themselves to get closer to God, their bodily emptiness leaving more room for the spirit to enter. My religion taught me that indulgence was sinful, and the magazines I read, commercials I saw on TV and the “diet foods” my mom bought once in a while all reinforced the same message, so it’s no wonder my teenage brain twisted denying myself food into something akin to a spiritual practice.

It took years (and a lot of therapy) for me to realize a higher power that wants me to deny the body it made is hardly worthy of my devotion, and that eating a salad instead of spaghetti is not a moral imperative. That instead, nourishing myself is an act of radical self love.

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Pandemic created ‘perfect storm’ for eating disorders in teens

May 24, 2021 / NBC News

It was barely a month into the pandemic when Dr. Tracy Richmond, the director of the Eating Disorder Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, knew something bad was happening in young people.

Richmond said her team was getting an unusual number of requests for help with eating disorders in mid-April 2020. “By summertime,” she said, “we were bursting at the seams.”

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Witness History: Anorexia nervosa

March 29, 2021 / BBC

The American singer, Karen Carpenter, died in 1983 of anorexia nervosa. She was one half of a world famous brother and sister duo called The Carpenters. She was aged just 32. Up until then anorexia nervosa had often been referred to in the media as the “slimmer’s disease.” Skinny celebrities were seen as both beautiful and successful and anorexia was somewhat glamorized. Claire Bowes has been speaking to Dr. Pat Santucci, a psychiatrist who helped set up the world’s first national organization dealing with eating disorders, the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Eating Disorders, known as ANAD. Dr. Santucci says wherever western culture has an influence, you will find anorexia nervosa.

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Suffering in Silence: Middle-Aged Women and Eating Disorders

February 25, 2021 / Healthywomen

When you think of eating disorders, you probably think of young, white, teenage girls. But women in midlife struggle with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder, too. In fact, 13% of women over 50 experience symptoms of an eating disorder. We recently spoke with Betsy Brenner, a mentor with the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) to find out more.

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New Effort Seeks to Improve Care for LGBTQ+, People of Color with Eating Disorders

February 8, 2021 / Scripps National News

People of different races and in the LGBTQ+ communities may not be receiving the type of care they need for eating disorders. A new effort by the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) is working to change that.

To give you an idea of the problem, Black teenagers are 50% more likely than white teenagers to exhibit bulimic behavior. Gay men are seven times more likely to report binge-eating than heterosexual men, but they’re not always getting diagnosed.

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Chris and Marissa Open Up about Being in a Recovery Mentor/Mentee Relationship

February 1, 2021 / Eating Disorders: Navigating Recovery Podcast

In this episode, Catherine and Francis speak with Chris and Marissa about their participation in ANAD’s mentorship program. Chris (the mentor) shares her path through her eating disorder experience towards recovery, and reflects on how she has gained so much in her relationship with Marissa. Marissa (the mentee) offers a vulnerable and empowering reflection on her own path towards recovery, offering insight into the ups and downs of her eating disorder experience.

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Lynn Slawsky and Giva Ann Wilkerson Share How ANAD Helps Those Impacted by Eating Disorders

January 27, 2021 / Eating Disorders: Navigating Recovery Podcast

In this episode, Francis and Catherine are happy to welcome Lynn Slawsky, Executive Director, and Giva Ann Wilkerson, Program Director of ANAD (National Association of Anorexia and Associated Disorders). Lynn and Giva both describe their own experiences finding recovery from eating disorders, and they outline the many ways ANAD enhances treatment and facilitates recovery with programs like peer mentorship, support groups, and grocery buddies. The conversation concludes with Giva and Lynn’s advice for listeners trying to find recovery.

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Calls for Help with Eating Disorders Increase During Pandemic

January 12, 2021 / Scripps National News

Calls for help with eating disorders have been increasing during the pandemic among both adults and kids.

The latest numbers from the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, or ANAD, show calls to their helpline have almost quadrupled. They were seeing around 80 calls a month prior to the pandemic. Now, it’s around 230.

“The isolation that people were feeling at the beginning in some ways has become even more protracted just because of the duration of this pandemic and the continued stay-at-home measures and the social distancing precautions and things like that. Then, there’s the continued uncertainty about the future,” said Lynn Slawsky, Executive Director at ANAD.

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The Dangerous Dark Side of Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss

January 7, 2021 / New York Post

“Intermittent fasting was another excuse for me to get in-depth with controlling my body,” White said. “But it accelerated everything for me.”

Indeed, Lynn Slawsky, executive director of the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, said the trendy diet can lead to risky behaviors.

“Your body is being starved when intermittent fasting happens,” said Slawsky. “People may develop binge eating disorder or bulimia as a result, leading to all sorts of other physical and psychological problems.”

She added that it can be particularly triggering for vulnerable populations who are already susceptible to disordered eating — and for whom the diet serves as a cover.

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The Perfect Storm: Why Eating Disorders Thrive on College Campuses

December 17, 2020 / Kent Wired

Eating disorders on college campuses are often normalized as part of college living – skipping breakfast before an early class because you woke up late, forgoing meals before going out, or having “sleep for dinner.”

“You could say somebody might have food preoccupation, or negative body image, or an unhealthy relationship with food,” said Dr. Maria Rago, President of the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders. “You don’t have to have even a full blown eating disorder in order for eating and body image issues to greatly affect your quality of life.”

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Zoom Is Really Triggering My Eating Disorder

July 8, 2020 / SELF

Although mirror therapy can be intimidating, when done under the care of an expert, it can also help people with eating disorders learn to manage the emotions and impulses their reflections can cause. The actual mirror-gazing is typically done in short bursts of 20 minutes or so, Maria Rago, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and president of the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD), tells SELF, with preparation and debriefing on either end. It’s also typically done with support. In a therapist’s office, facing your body in a mirror is meant to help your brain make sense of your stomach as just a stomach and your chin as just a chin. Your therapist is always there, offering words of gentle encouragement.

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