Educators: please stop promoting dieting and weight loss to children

Well-meaning educators can cause real harm by promoting dieting and weight loss at school. This includes making statements and putting up posters saying things like "eat less & move more," and "eat healthy foods." Such statements are problematic from a scientific, nutrition, health, eating disorder, and social justice standpoint. You may think you're being helpful, … Continue reading Educators: please stop promoting dieting and weight loss to children

What parents should know about the intersection of substance addiction and eating disorders, by Becca Owens, Foundations Recovery Network

No parent wants to see their children fight the battle of an eating disorder or substance addiction, but parents who spot one in their child may also see signs of the other because the two often co-occur. Recognizing ongoing struggles in your kids can hurt deeply, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you contemplate … Continue reading What parents should know about the intersection of substance addiction and eating disorders, by Becca Owens, Foundations Recovery Network

Afraid, angry, and tired. Parents are at risk of traumatic stress when a child has an eating disorder

Eating disorders are terrifying for parents for many reasons. Not only are they physically and emotionally harmful for the child, but they also carry tremendous stigma and misunderstanding for parents. Parents who have children who have eating disorders may feel angry, stressed, tired, and obsessed with their child's recovery. These are signs of traumatic stress … Continue reading Afraid, angry, and tired. Parents are at risk of traumatic stress when a child has an eating disorder

What diets do to children, and what to do instead of putting your child on a diet

Are you thinking that your child is getting chubby and needs to go on a diet? Or maybe your child has always been on the high end of the weight chart, and you've been desperately telling them to "eat less/move more" for years. Is your child begging you to support them in following a strict … Continue reading What diets do to children, and what to do instead of putting your child on a diet

New Study: 1 in 4 teenage girls engage in self-harming behavior, which frequently co-occurs with eating disorders

A new study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that nearly 1 in 4 teenage girls ages 14-18 in the United States engages in non-suicidal self-harming behavior. Self-harm or self-injury is the act of hurting oneself on purpose. The most common methods are cutting and burning. Self-harm is a behavior pattern that indicates … Continue reading New Study: 1 in 4 teenage girls engage in self-harming behavior, which frequently co-occurs with eating disorders

woman looks at herself in the mirror and worries she has gained weight after an eating disorder

When your child gains weight while in recovery from an eating disorder

When recovering from an eating disorder, it's quite common to gain weight. Whether your child begins recovery in a body that is underweight, of “average” weight, or “over” weight, recovery requires a loosening of the food restriction that underlies almost every eating disorder. While your child learns to eat intuitively and feed their body what it … Continue reading When your child gains weight while in recovery from an eating disorder

What to do when your teenager refuses to get treatment for their eating disorder

Teenagers are biologically driven to differentiate and individuate from their parents. This is the main reason why parenting a child from ages 10-20 can be especially tricky. Adolescent brains are working very hard to prune childhood neural connections while building powerful new adult connections that will stay with them for life. This work can fundamentally … Continue reading What to do when your teenager refuses to get treatment for their eating disorder

Yes, we can help prevent eating disorders! Recommendations for parents, educators and healthcare practitioners

By Laurie Dunham, MS, RD, LD, CEDRD I’d like to help empower all parents, educators and healthcare practitioners to take an active role in preventing eating disorders. Right now we are seeing an increase in eating disorders in certain younger age groups. I believe that with proper education of adults, we could help reverse this … Continue reading Yes, we can help prevent eating disorders! Recommendations for parents, educators and healthcare practitioners

5 phrases to never say at the dinner table to avoid eating disorders

The family dinner table can be a place of safety and love, a place at which everyone is nourished physically and emotionally. Surely this is our goal as parents when we gather our family at the table. And yet, even the kindest families sometimes trample through diet culture every time they sit down to eat. … Continue reading 5 phrases to never say at the dinner table to avoid eating disorders

Scary things your child may say while having an anxiety attack and how to handle it

Anxiety is one of the main underlying conditions that occur alongside eating disorders, which means that if you have a child who has an eating disorder, it's very helpful to learn about anxiety disorders and how loved ones can help someone through an anxiety attack. If you are a parent who has no experience with … Continue reading Scary things your child may say while having an anxiety attack and how to handle it