How parents can help prevent eating disorders during coronavirus quarantine

We are all stuck inside, tensions are high, and fear is off the charts. Our kids already have the highest rates of anxiety and depression we have ever seen. And now it just got much, much worse. During this period, our kids are at higher risk of developing food and body issues, and even full-blown eating disorders.  Why? Because food …

Try this if your child is driving you crazy during coronavirus

Almost all parents say their children are driving them crazy during coronavirus and social distancing. We’re in closer contact with them, and anxieties are running high. It’s not easy parenting in these conditions. Spending more time with our kids during this massive quarantine event is hard. It’s even harder if our kids tend to experience higher levels of anxiety, depression, …

As coronavirus rises, so do eating disorders

As we face the coronavirus epidemic coupled with social distancing, we’re already hearing increases in eating disorders and other disordered behaviors. This makes perfect sense, since eating disorders are a coping mechanism, and if we have ever need to cope with something, this is it! Our teens are missing out on critical milestones, our college kids are back home and …

Parents are kids’ default body image educators

Whether we like it or not, parents are our kids’ default body image educators. This means that even if we never intentionally address body image with our kids, they’re still learning from us. It’s a little overwhelming to think about, but it’s also empowering. We can make a huge impact on how our kids feel about their bodies, and we …

Low self-worth and eating disorders: what parents need to know

by Beth Mayer, LICSW There is a high correlation between eating disorders and low self-worth. Because of this, when I’m working with clients who have eating disorders, I’m watching carefully for self-worth, self-compassion, and perfectionism. The more my clients build the first three and limit perfectionism, the greater their chance of entering recovery from their eating disorders.  What is self-worth? …

Intuitive Eating to prevent and treat eating disorders

It is possible to prevent and treat eating disorders. New research suggests that Intuitive Eating may help. A recent study found that teens who eat intuitively have better mental health outcomes and eating habits as adults. This is important, because most of our kids are not being raised with Intuitive Eating principles. As a culture, we largely embrace non-intuitive eating. …

Anorexia is just as serious at higher weights

Most people assume that low body weight is the greatest risk factor for anorexia. Almost everyone assumes that someone who has anorexia appears emaciated. It has always been believed that being underweight is the reason anorexia is so dangerous. However, research shows that low weight is not the greatest risk factor of anorexia. In fact, “atypical anorexia nervosa” is both …

Negotiating with your child who has an eating disorder

Negotiating with a child who has an eating disorder can feel like negotiating with a terrorist. And we all know that you shouldn’t negotiate with terrorists, right? When your child has an eating disorder, the negotiations often seem bizarre and infuriating. Most of the time, parents just want their child to eat. It just doesn’t seem like something that needs …

How to raise a child with better body image

By Alex Raymond, RD, LD, CEDRD Most parents hope their child will grow up with a positive sense of self and a positive body image. And most parents wish the best for their children and dread the day their children believe there is something “wrong” with their bodies. Or the day some kid at school makes fun of them for …

Opt out of school weight programs: don’t weigh my child at school

More and more schools are weighing kids, but you usually have the option to opt out of school weight programs. It’s an option worth considering regardless of your child’s individual weight status. School weigh-ins are upsetting and stressful for most kids. Parents should be asking hard questions about the practice of weighing kids at school. For example: Why should the …