Everything You Need To Know About World Eating Disorders Day
Lifestyle - News
This story contains discussions of eating disorders. If you are struggling with an eating disorder, or know someone who is, help is available. Visit the National Eating Disorders Association website or contact NEDA's Live Helpline at 1-800-931-2237. You can also receive 24/7 Crisis Support via text (send NEDA to 741-741).
Consider this staggering statistic: in 2007, at least 30 million people in the United States had an eating disorder, and almost 70% didn't plan to seek treatment because of the stigmas surrounding the illness. Solutions for eating disorders are not being pursued passionately enough, given they have the second-highest mortality rate of any psychiatric illness.
World Eating Disorders Day was held on June 2nd, and with those numbers, it is vital. It is a worldwide, grassroots movement where advocates and providers come together to raise awareness about eating disorders; this includes sharing information about the disease itself, as well as ways to support friends and family members who have an eating disorder.
Dr. Stacey Rosenfeld, psychologist and certified eating disorder specialist at Gatewell Therapy Center, explains the goal of the movement is to "advocate for early intervention and evidence-based treatment" and to "address the lack of access to affordable, culturally competent, and comprehensive care among underserved populations."
Eating disorder recovery is possible, but it takes patience, understanding, and support for both the person with the disorder and those caring for them. It is those people caring for people affected by eating disorders who are the focus this year; the theme for 2022's World Eating Disorders Day is "Caring for Carers," to put a spotlight on the carers.
Remember that the longer someone continues an unhealthy eating habit without getting help, the more ingrained their habit becomes and the more difficult it is to break. Changing the stigma about eating disorders is important; if you know someone who needs help, simply offer to find professional help, or talk to them about it.