Eating Disorder Awareness Week

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Eating disorders are often misunderstood both by people who have them and those around them. In fact, many stereotypes exist that rely on old ideas about who gets eating disorders and what they’re about. Eating Disorder Awareness Week takes place every year to help educate people about the realities of living with these challenging mental health disorders. Trellis Recovery Centers participates in this annual week to help raise awareness that eating disorders can happen to anyone. We provide multi-disciplinary treatment for several types of eating disorders in a comfortable residential setting. Our therapists help people struggling with an eating disorder become more aware of what caused it and how they can empower themselves to begin recovery. 

When is Eating Disorder Awareness Week? 

Each year it takes place during the final week of February. This year, it actually felt more like eating disorder month because it started on February 27 and extended to March 5. The same is true of next year, when it takes place from February 26 to March 2, 2024. Many treatment facilities, individual treatment professionals, advocacy groups, and volunteer resources look forward to creating awareness during this annual event.

What is Eating Disorder Awareness Week All About? 

Eating disorder awareness week can save livesEating Disorder Awareness Week is about promoting awareness of eating disorders to many audiences. They include those whose lives have been impacted by eating disorders, even if they are not yet aware that what’s going on qualifies as one. As well, it spreads awareness to people who might know someone who has an eating disorder or who may develop one down the line themselves. In addition, the focus of this week helps provide hope for people who have an eating disorder and their families. It’s vital to know that recovery is possible for anyone.

Participants can take part in an array of helpful ways. This includes giving speeches, particularly when the speaker has overcome their own eating disorder. Other helpful activities include doing Q&A sessions, providing local resources, offering screenings, and participating in walks. It proves quite helpful for high school and college campuses to form groups that help students who struggle with an eating disorder find peer support. 

Why is Awareness for Eating Disorders Important? 

Much advancement in the area of knowledge about eating disorders has taken place in the past several years. However, many stereotypes still exist, and people who need help go unrecognized. Eating Disorder Week provides an annual opportunity for people from all walks of life to come together and boost awareness of these mental illnesses. The goal is to help educate the general public and motivate those who are ill to get the help they deserve. The week-long activities include providing access to resources for getting a diagnosis and resources for treatment options. This includes individual therapy, group therapy, outpatient programs, and residential facilities. 

Participants in Eating Disorder Awareness Week include:

  • National Eating Disorders Association staff members
  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Psychologists
  • Mental health counselors
  • Social workers
  • Eating disorder professionals 
  • Individuals in recovery or recovered from eating disorders
  • Family members and other loved ones of those who have or had eating disorders

History of Eating Disorder Awareness Week 

Eating Disorder Awareness Week began 39 years ago and each week has a theme that all activities and messages are built around. People can participate in a variety of ways locally, nationally, and online. Many people plan for the annual event by blocking out time from the end of February through the beginning of March, creating a kind of eating disorder awareness month. It was created by the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA), which is a non-profit organization. Their annual campaign is widely credited with helping people understand how widespread these mental illnesses have become.

Forty years ago, very few people had a real grasp of what eating disorders were like and who developed them. A stereotype existed that they only happened to young white women and teenagers and had to do with vanity. In fact, most people had never heard of anorexia until the singer Karen Carpenter died from it in 1983. Through things like Eating Disorder Week, both the general population and many clinicians learned the truth about how these often deadly mental illnesses worked. 

Eating disorder awareness color lilac ribbonWhat is the Color of Eating Disorder Awareness?

The ribbon color associated with eating disorder awareness is lilac.

What is the Symbol for Eating Disorder Awareness?

The symbol that is known internationally to represent eating disorder awareness is a lilac colored ribbon.

Contact Our Los Angeles Eating Disorder Program at Trellis

Trellis Recovery Centers believes in providing people with the facts about eating disorders and who they can affect. We proudly participate in Eating Disorder Awareness Week each year to help raise awareness within our community. Do you have an eating disorder or know someone who does? We provide residential treatment that targets the specific needs of each person we treat. We offer a multitude of types of therapy to help men and women reframe their relationships with their bodies and food. 

For more information about how we can help you, visit our admissions page now. There’s no better time than now to start healing your body, mind, and spirit.