Eating Disorders Coalition (EDC) Press Release: Eating Disorders Eligible for Research Funding to Help Military Servicemembers and Families

Eating Disorders Eligible for Research Funding to Help Military Servicemembers and Families

Led by Senator Shelley Moore Capito, for the first time eating disorders are eligible for research funding to help our warriors and their families affected by this serious mental illness.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 30, 2017) — As we remember our fallen warriors this past weekend, Congress has taken another step forward to helping the men and women serving our country. After months of negotiations and two Continuing Resolutions, Congress reached an agreement to fund the federal government’s FY 2017 budget on May 5th. This budget package represents the first time that Congress permitted federal research funding to help our military members and their families affected by eating disorders. Led by Senator Shelley Moore Capito [R-WV] on the Appropriations Committee, along with support from Senator Amy Klobuchar [DMN] and former Senator Kelly Ayotte [R-NH] through a letter to the Committee, these Senators worked to ensure that eating disorders be included in the Department of Defense’s Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program’s (CDMRP) Peer-Reviewed Medical Research Program. The CDMRP supports research across the full range of science and medicine, with an underlying goal of enhancing the health and well-being of military servicemembers, veterans, retirees, and their family members. This will provide an average of $3-$5 million in new eating disorders research funding.

“Our servicemen and women devote their lives to keeping America safe and free, and it’s important that we do our part to make sure they are cared for as well,” Senator Capito said. “These funds will support important research to help military families and their loved ones who are struggling with eating disorders, and I’m thrilled we were able to secure them in the recent funding agreement. I will continue working to ensure all our servicemen and women have the care and support they need.”

Published on the Eating Disorders Coalition (EDC) website on 5.30.17

Rock The Boat

This month we feature the recovery story of Kristy, a collegiate athlete who learned that the eating disorder was keeping her life at bay. And while recovery isn’t always smooth sailing, she was able to cast off from the pattern of self-destruction and chart a course to a happier tomorrow.

While the rest of my boat loudly cheered and gave each other sweaty hugs, I found myself running to the stuffy, foul Porta-Potty to do what had become second nature at this point. You just won Pac-12s, I thought to myself as I was simultaneously trying to throw up without breathing in any of the Porta-Potty smells, what the hell is wrong with you? This is a question that both my parents and I would repeatedly ask a couple months out, but at that time, I was so deep into my eating disorder/cognitive disorder that I couldn’t be bothered thinking it through. So, instead, I did what I did best which was thoroughly wash my hands and run back to my teammates with a huge smile on my face and resume my position as the positive, bubbly leader everyone knew me to be. No more throwing up until after NCAAs, I promised myself. I tried to believe that I independently had full control and power over the mental illness that was wreaking havoc on my body but deep down I knew better. For once in my life, I couldn’t out-stubborn or out-work this problem.

Published on 5.26.17 as part of Cielo House’s #RecoveryRockstar campaign
Written by: EDRC volunteer Kristy Wentzel

Silicon Valley Teens: Less Sex, Drugs, and Violence, but Bored in School

SAN JOSE — Fewer high school students are drinking, having sex, doing drugs and resorting to violence, a large-scale survey of Santa Clara County public school students shows. At the same time, engagement in school has plunged, as has students’ optimism about their future.

This mixed picture of youth well-being emerges in Project Cornerstone’s Silicon Valley youth survey — the first in six years — of 43,000 youths at more than 180 elementary, middle and high schools in Santa Clara County. The survey was administered last fall, and the results were released this spring.

“There are a lot of positives, but kids are telling us they’re bored in school,” said Anne Ehresman, executive director of Project Cornerstone, about the high school results. “That breaks my heart.”

Published on The Mercury News website on 4.24.17
Written by: Sharon Noguchi

Why You NEED to Practice Self-Love

February 26th through March 4th represents National Eating Disorder Awareness week. During this week, the general public will likely see articles, tweets and maybe some Facebook posts that will cause them to think for a bit about those suffering from an eating disorder. For those who do suffer however, they’d give anything not to think about their eating disorder for a week. Not to think about calories, food or exercise. Because for those suffering from an eating disorder, this is not just a week but this is all consuming. It’s what keeps you up at night, regretting what you ate that day or how you can make tomorrow “better.” It’s what drives wedges between family members and ruins the notion of a happy family meal. Social lives will be impaired as impromptu happy hours and dinners out become the causes of stress, not stress-relievers. Your relationship with exercise? It’s not a means of keeping healthy but rather, simply a method of burning calories. Eating disorders affect every aspect of an individual’s life thus deeming it impossible not to constantly think about.

Written by: Kristin Wentzel

Lady Gaga Joins Fans in Slamming Body-Shamers for Criticizing her Super Bowl Belly

By pretty much every definition, Lady Gaga looked in supreme shape as she delivered her epic performance at the Super Bowl 51 half-time show. She vaulted off the roof of the NRG Stadium in Houston, then danced her you-know-what off during her 13-minute run through patriotic American classics and her own hit songs, including a burning-down-the-house rendition of “Bad Romance.”

But all some could focus on is what she exposed when she changed into a second Versace outfit that featured sparkly hot pants and a stomach-baring crop top that showed a softly toned abdomen that critics thought wasn’t toned enough. These critics — mostly men apparently — saw a slight belly roll that to them meant she wasn’t a desirably skinny as she should be.

In response to critics, Gaga took to Instagram late Tuesday to say: “I’m proud of my body.” She told fans they should never “cater to anyone or anything to succeed,” and added, “Be relentlessly you. Finally she thanked them for their support.

Read more…
Published on the Mercury News website on 2.7.17
Written by: Martha Ross

How Treatment Providers Can Undermine Access to Care for Binge Eating Disorder

Over the last several years, laws in the United States have expanded insurance coverage and made treatment more accessible to individuals with binge eating disorder. While true parity and access to care for marginalized populations remains unrealized, we have seen strides in our country. Providers have in many cases been vocal advocates and helped to push important legislation and change forward. Unfortunately, however, there are still many ways in which providers may inadvertently be working against the process. If you are invested in being one of these individuals, follow our how-to guide below.

  1. Failing to recognize how being underinsured may impact your patients.

While the Affordable Care Act has increased access to health insurance in the United States, over 31 million insured Americans continued to face underinsurance through 2014 (Commonwealth Fund, 2015). Even those with plans through their employer are increasingly likely to be underinsured. Being underinsured means that, despite having health insurance, an individual cannot adequately afford the deductibles or other out of pocket costs associated with the plan. The result of this is that even those with health insurance are not accessing care when they need it. We know that patients with binge eating disorder face a myriad of barriers to accessing care, such as lack of early identification and social stigma, and underinsurance is a very real and prevalent barrier as well. For those patients who do start treatment, recognize that underinsurance may play a role in early termination of care or refusal to seek higher levels of care even when needed. Perhaps most frustratingly, dropping out of treatment due to resource constraints like underinsurance further undermines patients’ confidence that treatment could eventually be feasible or effective.

Read more…

Written by: Cyndi Eddington, Ashley Solomon, Psy.D., and Angela Woods

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I Didn’t Believe I Had an Eating Disorder. But the Threat of Forced Feeding Saved my Life

My therapist told me I was running out of time. She had been recommending I sign myself into the hospital for several weeks. Each time, I said I was fine, that such drastic measures weren’t necessary, especially considering that I was acing all my college classes at my small liberal arts school in western Michigan. I didn’t think I needed to gain weight — in fact, I wasn’t even positive I had an eating disorder, despite weighing less than I had as a fourth-grader. I wrote off my falling-out hair and diminishing body temperature as mere coincidences to my steadily declining weight.

“If you don’t voluntarily sign yourself in, we might have to start thinking about forced commitment. You could die,” she said.

I tried not to laugh in her face. But as her words sunk in, I realized where any court would send me. I had heard stories about that psychiatric unit, and it frankly terrified me. I realized I would have far more control over my care if I signed myself in. So, two days after Christmas, at age 21, I did.

Published on the STAT website on 1.18.17
Written by: Carrie Arnold

Going Public about Eating Disorder Lifted a Great Weight for Penn State Kicker Joey Julius

Joey Julius called his mother. It was 2 a.m. on a day after a Penn State football victory, and his feelings of triumph were being gnawed by doubt.

He was that big guy everybody loved but nobody really knew. He was a video sensation, a giant kicker who made crushing tackles. But nobody understood his real fight.

“Mom, I feel like a fraud,” he said. “I feel like I’m not being true to myself.”

Joey Julius then hung up the phone, logged onto Facebook, and began to type.

“After a long consideration of not only myself, my family and my team, I have decided to go public about my absence from the team during spring ball of 2016 and thru out this summer,’’ he wrote. “I was admitted into the McCallum place on May 9th for eating disorders.”

Published on the Los Angeles Times website on 12.30.16
Written by: Bill Plaschke

EDRC Executive Director Janice Bremis Announced as Eating Disorder Recovery Support (EDRS) 2017 Inaugural Hall of Fame Honoree

From the EDRS website:

“We are excited to announce our 2017 Inaugural Hall of Fame Honorees. We hope you join us in celebrating and honoring their hard work, dedication and outstanding contribution to the eating disorder field at our upcoming Benefit Dinner on Friday, February 3, 2017 in San Rafael, CA.”

“~ Advocacy: Janice Bremis, B.A. ~

Janice Bremis is a founding member of the Eating Disorders Resource Center. This is a personal mission for Bremis, who was diagnosed with an eating disorder in 1975. Because she suffered from this illness, she is aware of the stigma that surrounds eating disorders, as well as the need for education and support services. She has worked throughout her career to raise awareness among both healthcare professionals and the general public about the seriousness of eating disorders. The Eating Disorders Resource Center is the first and one of the only locally based nonprofit organizations focused on eating disorders in Silicon Valley. Bremis relies heavily on her force of volunteers, who inspires her on a daily basis.

Janice considers herself a health advocate and activist, especially in the area of mental health. She works with dedicated volunteers to raise awareness, promote recovery, and advocate for equitable insurance coverage for eating disorders. She has made EDRC the “go-to” place for the South Baycommunity for those seeking treatment and information. She works closely with local eating disorder experts and non-profits serving those with mental illness to assure parity of health and support services.”

To learn more about the 2017 EDRS Benefit Dinner and the Inaugural Hall of Fame nominees, click here.