Vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, organic—everyone you talk to is extolling the virtues of eating a proper diet. Taking a step toward trading junk for more balanced, nutrient-packed meals is a good thing. But when taken to an extreme, danger ensues, often in the form of anxiety, nutrient imbalances and other health issues.
Earlier this month Dr. David Herzog, Director of the Harris Center for Education and Advocacy in Eating Disorders, wrote a compelling yet heartbreaking article for the Huffington Post (Herzog, 2012 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-david-herzog/anorexia_b_1424487.html) about the public perception of anorexia nervosa. This important blog highlights the stigma commonly associated with anorexia, a disease often viewed as self-inflicted and ‘acquired’; a way of seeking attention and becoming thin.
“Are you coming out tomorrow night with us?”
“I don’t think so, I have to go to the gym tomorrow night. Tomorrow is hams and quads”.
“Really? You’re ditching us again for a workout? We went to the gym this morning. You never come out anymore”.
Eating Disorders Awareness Week (EDAW) – a singular time of the year set aside to enhance public knowledge about eating disorders, dieting and body image problems.
In its public awareness campaign, the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC) establishes numerous objectives to pursue during this commemorative week. This invitation to promote awareness calls for some imagination and creativity along with a caveat to “do no harm” in our educational endeavours.