This year, the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) brings eating disorder awareness to campuses and communities around the world during National Eating Disorder Awareness Week from Feb. 24 through March 2. The University of Nevada, Reno Student Health Center and University Counseling Services have partnered with the local Center for Hope of the Sierras for a week of awareness events on campus, part of a 26-year national effort.
"In the United States, as many as 20 million females and 10 million males suffer from a significant eating disorder, such as anorexia or bulimia, at some time in their life," said Becca Thompson, an eating disorders specialist and licensed counseling psychologist with University Counseling Services. "This week will focus on the ways we are all vulnerable to influence by the media, including social media, in its infiltration of our mental images of body and beauty, and how to counteract these influences and reduce the likelihood of the development of eating disorders."
Thompson also said that many individuals struggle with body dissatisfaction and express disordered attitudes and behaviors toward eating.
"It has been shown that 80 percent of American women are dissatisfied with their appearance," she said. "Because of the secretive nature of eating disorders, many cases go unreported. On college campuses alone, it has been reported that 91 percent of women attempted to control their weight through dieting."
Events scheduled for the week, which are all free and open to anyone to attend, include a screening of Someday Melissa, an eating disorder documentary, followed by a question and answer session with women in recovery; a T-shirt decorating party; and the first-ever NEDA Walk.
National Eating Disorder Association Week Events
Monday, Feb. 25
6-7 p.m., William Raggio Building, Room 2030
A presentation titled "Beauty Undressed" - Beauty. What is it? Who has it? Who decides? The University welcomes Shannon Cutts, founder of MentorCONNECT and author of Beating Ana: How to Outsmart Your Eating Disorder and Take Back Your Life.
Tuesday, Feb. 26
10-11 a.m., Joe Crowley Student Union, Fourth Floor
Cheryl Hug-English, medical director at the University's Student Health Center, Becca Thompson, a counselor with University Counseling Services, and Brenda Oberg, a registered dietician with the Center for Hope of the Sierras, present a session titled "Understanding the Culture of Eating Disorders." Participants are asked to pre-register.
Wednesday, Feb. 27
4-6 p.m., Joe Crowley Student Union Theatre, Third Floor
Showing of Someday Melissa, followed by panel discussion of women in recovery with Sarah Chipps, Briana Biller and Shayla Kranovich.
Thursday, Feb. 28
4-6 p.m., Joe Crowley Student Union Graduate Student Lounge, Third Floor
Reno NEDA Walk t-shirt decorating party, sponsored by Nevada Fine Arts and Papa John's Pizza.
Friday, March 1
Noon-2 p.m., Concrete walkways surround the Historic Quad
Chalking contest to promote positive body image. Best art receives a one-month yoga membership at the Studio.
Saturday, March 2
10 a.m.-noon, Historic Quad
First ever Reno NEDA Walk. The walk is dog friendly.