National Eating Disorders Association

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week is February 22nd to February 28th, and events will occur across the country to raise awareness about these devastating illnesses. Thanks to committed volunteers like Lana Stefanac and Paula Bruner, many famous buildings across America will be illuminated in green and blue during NEDAwareness Week in order to start conversations about eating disorders nationwide.

NEDA has long been involved in supporting patients with a range of eating disorders. However, one area that has received less attention in the past is Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.). B.E.D. affects an estimated 2.8 million US adults, based on a national survey, and is more prevalent than anorexia and bulimia combined. [1,2] *

In honor of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, NEDA will be joining with eating disorder organizations around the world to raise awareness and funds through the ‘Sock It to Eating Disorders’ campaign. Inspired by an international support network with Joan Riederer, the idea emerged among her many friends in honor of Joan’s daughter Erin who lost her life to anorexia. 

“Being a research subject may sound scary, or evoke images of being treated like a human guinea   pig, but it’s nothing like that at all.”  (Marty) 

While delegates to the 2010 International Conference on Eating Disorders in Salzburg were engrossed in discussing the conference theme of “Moving Forward Through Transdisciplinary Solutions”, news came of a young woman’s death from the effects of Anorexia Nervosa.

The death of this young woman, Erin Riederer, has given rise to a symbol of hope in the fight against eating disorders.

The days come and go like muffled and veiled figures

sent from a distant party—but they say nothing

and if we do not use the gifts they bring

they carry them as silently away.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~

After a busy holiday season of cooking, eating and football at my in-laws, I spent ten minutes writing about my victories/successes of the past year.  I felt ecstatic to pause and look at my accomplishments, a topic that certainly never came up during the holiday.  The write was a way of reclaiming a me deeper than the one laughing with family at the dinner table.  I like the me who joins in the laughter and I love the family and their good spirits, but I also need to keep in touch with that truer and more complex me.

 The holidays can be an especially tough time for people who are affected by eating disorders. But we in the eating disorders community can all act as resources for one another by sharing hope and support! That’s why we’re asking you to share short videos (no more than one minute long) about the unique challenges – and joys – that  are part of the holiday season for those working toward recovery. 

Need some ideas of what to talk about? How about posting…

In a story about the complex world of mental health and insurance, called “Denied,” 60 Minutes anchor, Scott Pelley interviewed Nancy West. Nancy, who is a friend of NEDA, shared the tragic story of her daughter Katherine’s death as a result of complications from an eating disorder.

NEDA has designated today, December 15th, as Donor Appreciation Day! 

Our work would not be possible without you and we are so grateful for your support.

Because of you…people are finding recovery and gaining their lives back. 

Please take a moment to watch!