It’s always Prevention season and though we do not yet have vaccines for eating disorders, there is much we can do. Prioritizing self-care is a universal prevention and is powerful in the face of contagion.
While research on LBGTQ people with eating disorders is relatively limited, the findings that have emerged are concerning. It is clear that we need to do better in making the medical and psychological needs of the LGBTQ population a priority and ensure that our health providers are educated in the unique needs of this community.
Inclusive treatment environments – built on knowledge, respect, empathy and understanding for everyone – are imperative. Based on my work as an eating disorder specialist, and my own experience as a member of the LGBTQ community, I’d like to share a few tips for those working with the LGBTQ community.
Did you know that yoga can be a great complement to eating disorder treatment and as a helpful tool in eating disorder recovery? Adding in appropriate yoga practices (that are unique to each individual and where they are at in their recovery journey) can be a great way to help connect mind and body - a practice that can be more difficult for those who have experience with eating disorders.
Inclusive treatment environments for all communities, including the LGBTQ population, are imperative. Based on my work as an eating disorder specialist, and my own experience as a member of the LGBTQ community, here are a few tips for providers and friends/family.
Binge eating disorder is an often misunderstood disorder that flies under the radar, lacking proper awareness among those personally impacted, their loved ones and even the healthcare community. Here are some common myths around this complex condition.
Are you ready to take the next step in your eating disorder recovery journey? If you're looking into treatment options, here are some important questions to consider in choosing the right provider for you.
Despite having many differing characteristics, eating disorders and substance abuse share a complex connection with one common human requirement – the desire to avoid or numb negative emotions.
Regardless of the way in which mindfulness is practiced, it can be extremely beneficial. Here are a few of the many ways!
Just like eating disorders don’t discriminate based on race, age or socioeconomic status, they also do not discriminate based on gender identity or sexual orientation. Here are some recovery tips specific to the LGBT community.
Understanding what self-compassion is--and what it isn't--is a critical piece in gaining self-acceptance and boosting self-esteem.
The number on the scale does not necessarily paint a helpful picture for overall health. In thinking about physical movement for the mind and body, we need not measure our success in pounds, but how we feel and where we are in achieving the goals we've created for ourselves--not the goals that society tells us we should have.
I've learned a lot about eating disorder recovery in the last few years. One of the most important lesson that I've learned is that recovery is not linear. There is no "right" way to recover and certainly no "how-to" guide.
Whether down the road or hundreds of miles away, parents can remain invaluable advocates and support systems for their child struggling with an eating disorder while also transitioning to college.
We are so used to picking people apart, or judging people based on their external appearance, that body shaming has become a sort of white noise that is constantly playing in the backdrop of our lives.
Meet Heather Chenette, LICSW and Lead Clinician for Walden's Adult Partial Hospitalization Program and Adult Intensive Outpatient Program at our Waltham Clinic!
While some studies link weight loss and overall health improvements when following the Paleo Diet, many remain skeptical regarding its overall effectiveness. From a nutritional standpoint, adhering to certain parts of this diet can result in potentially damaging consequences.
While weight loss surgeries have proven to be effective and appropriate for many, what some candidates for weight loss surgery, and even the medical professionals working with them may fail to consider is the very real, and even common possibility of an underlying eating disorder.
Walden Behavioral Care’s new whitepaper, “Behind the Curtain: 4 Factors Contributing to the Alarming Rise in US Suicides,” dives into these areas in more detail – offering specific suggestions for health care providers, parents and loved ones to minimize the risk with each.
Eating disorders are complex, misunderstood and subject to a lot of “did he/she really just say that?!” types of statements. Trying to dodge these annoying comments can sometimes feel like trying to dodge rain drops without an umbrella.
Adequate rest is vital for mental health, learning and overall wellness. If we don’t make good sleep a priority, we risk a multitude of health issues, including the most common problems we see in individuals with eating disorders.
There are many different theories as to why Americans are consumed by weight loss and achieving the ideal body. One theory is that the American health care system judges the health of patients based on Body Mass Index (BMI), even though there is no direct correlation between the two. The media also portrays thinner people as happy, and we begin to think all our problems will be solved if we just look like that. If we just lose weight.
What does it mean to be “guilt-free”? To not feel that nagging sense that you’ve done something wrong, let someone down, or hurt someone? When you run an Internet image search of the term “guilt-free,” surprisingly, there are no images of people free from guilt because they are in content relationships being loyal to their partners.
What has kept me from sharing my road to recovery from everyone I meet? Part of it is the fear of being stigmatized for recovering from an Eating Disorder (E.D.) Ignorance can be bliss at times. I remember it like yesterday. The feeling of being crazy and hopeless, barely escapes me.
The feel-good energy surrounding the holiday season has begun as we prepare for Thanksgiving. While many of us look forward to seeing family, watching football and “binging” on turkey and stuffing, those who struggle with an eating disorder have probably been dreading this day for several months. I have found a few really helpful articles with tips and reminders for those who struggle, but have yet to find information on how to SUPPORT a loved one through the Thanksgiving holiday.
I took that leap. The leap of faith that got me through the day. I knew I was not alone, I couldn't be. I knew that this could not be an internal struggle inside myself anymore. Despite, all the thoughts I thought inside my head, I believed I was not alone. I hoped that sharing my story would help me and others too.
I reflect on my past, asking myself what I missed out on in life with an eating disorder (E.D.). This is what I reflected on. I missed out on reality. Life with love.
What I learned from fracturing a bone in my foot, it takes time to mend. However, healing emotional scars and wounds can take time to mend too.
As I reflect on my life at the age of thirty-five years old, I wonder how I have learned to love myself along the way. I ask myself, "how can one love themselves' when there is so much more to love in others?" Well, I've learned along the way, through the guidance of my parents, that it is important to love yourself first. It can be a hard concept to grasp for a selfless person, but as I walk in my own shadow, I trust and love myself for all of me.
Did you know that Oct. 4 -10 is Mental Health Awareness Week? That’s right, this awareness week began in 1990 when the U.S. Congress recognized the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) for all of their work to educate and increase awareness around mental illness. This year, to commemorate this event, NAMI created web and social media initiatives to help break down the facts and figures around mental illnesses.
Every year around this time memories flood in of back to school and specifically for me back to dance. Dance was (and still is) an integral part of my life and unfortunately so were eating disorders.
“During your cancer treatment, you have no control over your body — you give up your body to your doctor,” said Kathleen Emmets. “You are willing to do it because you want to live. Food restriction is the one thing that you can do to have some sense of control when everything is chaotic.”
It seems like eating disorders have become a popular topic lately. There have been countless news stories depicting eating disorders in teens, parents, athletes etc. Catch up on the most recent ones listed below.
When I read the headline, “Magazine puts a Plus Size Model on the Cover and Twitter Freaks out”, my first reaction was one of frustration. Why, I thought, is the world so irritated by larger bodies? What is it about plus size models that people react so strongly to? Why can’t plus size models be shown running on the cover of a runner’s magazine? Would a plus size male model have caused Twitter to “freak out”?
We try to protect our kids from danger and do our best to keep them shielded from things that could make them feel bad. We teach them not to speak to strangers, make sure that they put on their sunscreen and wear a helmet and we don't talk about "adult matters" while in their presence. We do this to keep them safe, and because we know that infancy and childhood are supposed to be times filled with nurture, exploration, play and discovery that should not be infringed upon by stress, jealousy, self-degradation and dare I say it, body image issues.
What if you are a student who is struggling with an eating disorder, but you don't want to admit it? To those students who are not struggling, it might seem obvious that they would reach out for help. There may however, be a plethora of reasons holding this person back from seeking help. If you are college student struggling with an eating disorder, hopefully after reading the common anxieties that often deter college students from seeking treatment, you will feel more encouraged to find yourself the help you deserve.
The often portrayed media image of eating disorders as something that effects only young, white, middle- and upper-class women continues to render many with eating disorders invisible. One such population is people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning (LGBTQ).
What is recovery and what does it look like? A big question with a multitude of answers. Back when I was with Ed, someone asked me that question and I responded by saying “I have no idea what recovery looks like, I’m not even sure it exists.”
The world was first introduced to Caitlyn Jenner (formally Bruce Jenner) several days ago, when a sneak peek from the Vanity Fair article chronicling her journey from Bruce to Caitlyn was published.
I know for years you've all known I've had an eating disorder. Even if you didn't understand it or know what an eating disorder was, you knew something was wrong. Confronting someone that has a problem is hard, let alone confronting your best friends, so I understand why you never wanted to bring it up. It's a sensitive subject, I get it.