National Eating Disorder Awareness Week Is This Month

February 22-28 is National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, according to NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association). This organization helps raise awareness for eating disorders, serious mental illnesses that affect people regardless of their gender, race, ethnicity, shape, or size. Unfortunately, eating disorders have a reputation of being taboo to mention or appearing “trendy” to the media. Here's some quick information about eating disorders that might help you or someone you know, and a few ways to raise awareness during NEDA Week. Her Campus Media

What causes an ED (eating disorder)?

There's no singular answer as to why a person develops an ED. According to NEDA, “a growing consensus suggests that it is a range of biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors." The main types of EDs are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervous, binge eating disorder, and avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID).

Quick Stats (NEDA)

Anorexia nervosa

  • .3-.4% of women and .1% of men will suffer in their lifetime.
  • There is a 10x higher chance of death in young people suffering from anorexia than the average young person.

Bulimia nervosa

  • 1% of women and .1% of men will suffer in their lifetime.

Binge eating disorder

Things to not say around someone with an ED.

“Why can’t you just eat?”

“I wish I was disciplined like you!”

“Ugh, I feel so fat after eating that.”

“You look great lately!”

How to spread awareness/educate.

Normally, NEDA organizes fundraising walks each year for eating disorders. With the ongoing pandemic, 2021 NEDA Awareness events will be held virtually this April. In the meantime, the organization encourages people to use #NEDAwareness to share their stories and help educate others via social media. The slogan for this year is “Every Body Has a Seat at the Table," an effort to help people struggling with EDs who are underrepresented and have little access to recovery resources.

Seeking help.

If you or someone you know is struggling with an ED, visit NationalEatingDisorders.org or call/text (800) 931-2237.