Helping Loved Ones with Eating Disorders

Educate Yourself. Read as much material as you can to learn the difference between facts and myths about weight, nutrition and exercise. Knowing the facts can help you challenge inaccurate ideas that may be fueling their disordered eating. Educating yourself can also help with avoiding overly simplistic solutions. Being told “Just eat” or to “Just stop” isn’t helpful and can leave your loved one feeling frustrated, defensive, and misunderstood. Be Mindful. Be mindful of potential triggers to their eating disorder. Try to avoid any discussions about food, eating, or weight. Be aware of your own perspective or negative statements you may make


Different Yet Similar: Examining race and ethnicity in treatment-seeking adults with binge eating disorder

This week’s post examines a review of emerging evidence that seeks to understand how race and ethnicity play a role in how an individual with Binge Eating Disorder clinically presents and how treatment might look different. Limited research exists on how Black individuals may present with different eating disorder symptoms than White individuals. Because of this, researchers and practitioners cannot assume that these cultures will clinically present in identical ways. Lydecker and Grilo, (2016) discovered some key differences between Black and White participants who had been diagnosed with binge eating disorder (BED). They found that Black participants had higher body


Spring 2021 Update from the Lab

We’ve been busy this semester! The pandemic has brought new challenges, but our team has worked hard to examine a plethora of COVID-19 surveys and interviews in order to shed light on the unique challenges faced by persons struggling with disordered eating.   COVID-19 and Eating Disorders Study The Living FREE Lab is excited to collaborate with the UNC Center for Excellence in Eating Disorders ( to analyze how COVID-19 has impacted eating disorders. Researchers from Chapel Hill, Sweden, and the Netherlands have collected baseline, monthly, and 1-year follow-up qualitative data on persons who have self-reported eating disorders. Approximately 500


Clinical Lecture Series: Eating Disorders During COVID-19

In this webinar, Rachel W. Goode, Ph.D., Charlynn Small, Ph.D. & Mazella Fuller, Ph.D. present on Eating Disorder Risk and Strategies During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Some key points are highlighted in the below summary: Binge eating disorder is the most common eating disorder across racial and ethnic groups, impacting an estimated 2.8 million people in the United States. The experience of poverty may increase disordered eating; previous research highlights how experiencing food insecurity may significantly increase eating disorder pathology. Social isolation, media exposure, racism, trauma, and lack of emotional support are also observed to increase the risk for eating disorder


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