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National Eating Disorder Week

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Sycamore Health Center | 2/25/2015

Allegedly perfect people appear in every media source—with perfect hair, bodies, teeth, lives, friends, families, etc. This perception of “perfect” has an effect on how we see ourselves and on the development of eating disorders. Women and men can go for years denying that their eating habits are both unhealthy and harmful. Every meal can be a challenge, every mirror an enemy, and comments about your body tear can you apart.

How do you see yourself?
Are you preoccupied with counting calories, fat content, and do you always have a plan for burning the calories you consume? Is weight gain is a huge source of anxiety for you? Do you withdraw from friends and avoid mealtimes? Does food control your life and emotions? Maybe you eat too much at once and feel out of control, then vomit afterwards to prevent weight gain. Perhaps your self-esteem is driven by how you see your body. Are binging and purging part of your daily routine? If you answered yes to any of these questions, these could be signs of Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia.

Maybe this does not accurately describe you, but perhaps you still think something is wrong. Maybe you associate food with guilt, or you panic if you miss a workout. Maybe you have a bad relationship with food and a poor body image. Just because you do not fit in the box of a diagnosis does not mean you cannot receive help.

Eating disorders threaten your wellness, psychological health, and even your life. You may be 100 lbs or 300lbs and be trapped in the same self-destructive habits. The most important thing to understand is that you are not alone in your struggle, and there are ways to get help.

Steps you can take today:

  • Tell someone close to you, such as a relative, a friend or teacher. Reaching out is the hardest step.
  • Use this online tool to screen for the symptoms and signs of eating disorders and connect you to resources in your area: www.mybodyscreening.org
  • Call the National Eating Disorder Association Hotline: 800-931-2237
  • In Iowa City, contact the Sycamore Health Center: 319-337-9066

For more information on eating disorders, please visit: www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/general-information

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A faculty practice unit under College of Nursing Health Care, the Sycamore Health Center is a primary care and mental health services clinic operated entirely by nurse practitioners. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 319-337-9066, email conhealthcare@uiowa.edu or visit sycamorehealthcenter.com.

Posted On: 
Feb 26th, 2015