Help your teen with an eating disorder get enough sleep

Help your teen with an eating disorder get enough sleep

If you have a teen who has an eating disorder, then you probably know that getting enough sleep is a key component of their care. But it can be hard to get any teenager to get enough sleep.  And when you add on the disruption created by an eating disorder, it can feel like just one more thing on your …

Parenting a teenager with an eating disorder

Parenting a teenager with an eating disorder

Parenting a teenager who has an eating disorder is not easy. Eating disorders are complex illnesses that must be treated comprehensively. Since most eating disorders begin during adolescence, parents are on the front lines of treatment and care. But few feel prepared to handle it. When an eating disorder shows up in your teenager, it’s important to know that it …

Food Myths That Get in the Way of Healthy Eating

Food myths that get in the way of healthy eating

by Lauren Dorman, RD CDE Our society is overflowing with food myths that interfere with healthy eating. Half-truths and outright misinformation about nutrition and health are everywhere. Too many of us believe in myths—faulty, inaccurate, and downright untrue things about the food we eat.   When working with families, I want them to understand that I am not going to “fix” …

Getting sad in recovery for an eating disorder

Feeling sad in recovery from an eating disorder

If your child in in recovery for an eating disorder, it’s very possible that they feel sad. And maybe this is making you sad, too. Most parents feel overwhelmed handling the eating disorder behavior, and don’t know what to do when sadness shows up. As parents, we want to protect our children from uncomfortable feelings, especially sadness and despair. Most …

Family meals can help prevent eating disorders

Family meals can help prevent eating disorders

There is evidence that family meals can help prevent eating disorders and disordered eating behavior. This is important because there are a lot of forces increasing the risk of eating disorders right now. And if there’s something parents can do to reduce the risk, it’s a huge opportunity. The science of eating together A study examined the association between family …

Influence of Culture & Media on Teen Body Image

Influence of Culture & Media on Teen Body Image

By Alejandra Sandomirskiy, high school sophomore How do peers, cultural messages, and the media impact a person’s body image? How do you think people should handle the impact of peers, cultural messages, and the media? As I scroll on social media, I often come across body shaming and misleading advice. While we may encounter judgement, becoming aware of the toxicity …

What to say to larger kids (from adults who’ve been there)

Are you wondering what you should say to bigger kids? Are you a parent, teacher, doctor, coach, aunt/uncle, grandparent, or other important adult to a child who has a larger body? Luckily, I have a lot of answers for you! A recent social media post collected hundreds of answers from adults who were self-identified “fat kids” and reported what they …

Helping a child feel feelings in eating disorder recovery

A common part of eating disorder recovery is learning to feel feelings. This may seem like a strange task, but it may be the most important thing we need to do to achieve full recovery. People who have an eating disorder typically become disconnected from their feelings. Rather than process feelings, someone with an eating disorder turns to food and …

3 things to stop doing when your child has an eating disorder

3 things to stop doing when your child has an eating disorder

When your child has an eating disorder, it’s time to critically evaluate what you do and what you need to stop doing. No parent is ever responsible for a child’s eating disorder. However, the disorder found life in the family ecosystem. Thus there is good reason to consider the environmental conditions that may have contributed to its development. Parents are …

Trying to get eating disorder care as a person of color

Trying to get eating disorder care as a person of color

People of color are less likely to get the care they need or deserve in the current eating disorder treatment paradigm. Research shows that eating disorders are likely equally prevalent across races, yet they are chronically under-diagnosed and under-treated in people of color. Racial bias is a serious issue that must be addressed to improve care to all communities, especially …

Understanding self-harm and eating disorders

Understanding self-harm and eating disorders

Self-harm and eating disorders often coexist, and both are on the rise. A recent study found that nearly 1 in 4 teenage girls ages 14-18 in the United States engages in non-suicidal self-harming behavior. (American Journal of Public Health) Self-harm is the act of hurting oneself on purpose. The most common methods are cutting and burning. Self-harm often co-occurs with eating …

Simple validations for kids who have eating disorders (1)

Simple validations for kids who have eating disorders

When parents learn how to validate their kids’ feelings, kids become less defiant and more pleasant to be around. And for kids who have an eating disorder, validation can support the recovery process. Validating a child’s feelings is incredibly simple, but it’s not natural for many of us. Most parents were raised in emotionally-distant households. Few of us experienced being …

5 reasons not to buy Gwyneth Paltrow’s latest diet, Intuitive Fasting (book)

This week, Gwyneth Paltrow is promoting “Intuitive Fasting,” the first book under her new publishing umbrella. The fact that this happens to be National Eating Disorders Awareness Week is not lost on those of us in the recovery community. To launch a diet book that actively promotes eating disorder behaviors while using a similar name to one of the books …

Eating disorders are driven by the diet industry and media

The diet industry and eating disorders

Eating disorders are complex mental health issues, but it’s impossible to view them without the diet industry. Almost all eating disorders are fueled by a basic distrust of the body and fear of weight gain. This distrust and fear is developed and nurtured by the $72 billion diet industry. Almost every diet program relies on eating disorder behavior to intentionally …

3 tips for parents who have a child with an eating disorder

3 tips for parents who have a child with an eating disorder

These tips for parents who have a child with an eating disorder are about what you do, not about what your child does. This is because parents can change their own behavior, but we have very little control over our child’s behavior. This becomes very apparent with an eating disorder diagnosis. Because no matter how much parents want a child …