National Eating Disorders Association

Every time a new piece of media hits the public regarding eating disorder representation, many of us are left to consider how the film and television industry can better portray the lives of those afflicted as well as convey the seriousness of these illnesses.

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From eighth to tenth grade, I struggled with anorexia, and eventually I began struggling with bulimia. A significant factor in the development of my eating disorder was a lack of exposure to the social world in the early stages of my life, while I was home schooled.

I longed to feel included and I would beg my mom to let me go to public school. Being home schooled is vastly different from being educated in the public school system. In eighth grade I was finally able to live the life I wanted, and I began public school. 

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On July 11, Serena Williams won her sixth Wimbledon championship. After 21 Grand Slams and this milestone, Serena has quite clearly made history as one of the greatest athletes of all time.

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At Proud2Bme, we're tired of narratives that portray young people with mental illness as helpless victims. We're tired of one-dimensional characters and after-school specials.

So when we heard about Gren Wells's directorial debut film, The Road Within, which comes out this Friday, we were immediately excited by this refreshing take on an issue we've seen mishandled time and time again.

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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.

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Body image. We all have one. We all have an idea in our heads of how we look, in other words, our own body image. We also have thoughts about how attractive or unattractive we perceive our body image to be. How do we come up with our body image? What standards of beauty do we compare our body images to? For our American society, the answers to those questions can be found in the media we consume on a daily basis. 

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Popular fashion retailer ModCloth has decided to take a stand against unrealistic fashion advertisements.  As the first company to sign the “Truth in Advertising Heroes Pledge,” they have made a voluntary vow to no longer use overly photoshopped models on their website or in their ads. The company is also pledging to use models of all sizes and ethnicities, sell clothes in a wide variety of sizes, and listen to feedback from its customers.

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In today’s society, there is a plethora of diets and health fads that take the media by storm. Some are short-lived like the Atkins Diet, while others stick around like gum on a telephone pole. But all-to-often the diets in the media focus on avoiding or restricting certain foods or engaging in behaviors that we cannot maintain long-term. Even more confusing, popular diets and trends can contradict one another, and we bounce around like ping pong balls trying one fad and then another.

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Weight-loss diet scams are “a crisis in consumer protection,” said Senator Claire McCaskill in a Congressional hearing this week on false advertising. The Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance, led by McCaskill, convened the hearing to “examine the deceptive advertising and marketing practices of weight-loss products and their effects on American consumers.”

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Once again, the Biggest Loser is drawing criticism after the announcement of season 15 winner, Rachel Frederickson. According to the show, Frederickson lost nearly 60% of her body weight over the course of the season. Now fans and critics alike are taking to the internet to sound the alarm that her extreme weight loss is a dangerous example of the show's unhealthy promotion of excessive weight loss and exercise.
 

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