Eating Disorders News

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Marcia Challenges Hollywood

How Hollywood can help reduce risk of eating disorders. Read More

Powerful Commentary

During the throws of my eating disorder I specifically poured over the stories of other women who had or were recovering from an eating disorder for the sole purpose of discovering their 'tricks'. This was before the days of the internet so it was much harder, but I was relentless.
As a therapist I can relate to the desire to encourage ourselves and those we seek to help, to focus on acknowledging the dangers of their addiction rather than glamorizing the details. When a group of recovering addicts get together they may begin telling 'sexy stories' of times in the past when they'd used and I would discourage this talk simply because of how seductive it can be. The same goes for eating disorders...even reading about a new diet can be enough of a trigger...that's why recovery from eating disorders is so insanely difficult (I'm taking the victim prize! haha) You don't need alcohol or cocaine to live...but you have to eat. Talking about how many days you starved yourself or how high you got only serves to reinforce the glamour of addiction. And on that note, I think Celebrity Rehab is an ethical nightmare.
There is nothing glamourous about feeding tubes...but even that image becomes desireable for someone seeking to play the victim. I think your article highlights the most difficult part of recovery...which is the stuff that no one see...our emotional recovery.

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Marcia Herrin, Ed.D., M.P.H., R.D., is the founder of Dartmouth College's nationally renowned nutrition programs. Currently, Dr. Herrin conducts a private practice in Lebanon, NH.

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