2023 Eating Disorder Awareness Week Resources (2023)

February 1 to 8, 2023 is Eating Disorders Awareness Week. This week focuses on improving awareness of the impact of Eating Disorders, the dangerous stereotypes and myths, and the supports available for people living with or affected by them.

Eating Disorders affect people of all genders, sexual orientations, ages, socioeconomic class, abilities, races, and ethnic backgrounds. If you are a University of Guelph student and are concerned about eating disorders or disordered eating, Student Wellness Services can help. Contact us at 519-824-4120 x52131 to book a free appointment with Counselling Services, or connect with our for 1 on 1 appointments and group nutrition sessions.

You can also reach out to the National Eating Disorders Information Centre (NEDIC) and access their Helpline and online chat 7 days a week. Hours vary, so go to nedic.ca for more information.

Join us in writing positive affirmations and promoting self-love to yourself and others.

Date:Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023 from 1:30 - 3:30pm

Join us in decorating cookies and creating your own buttons to promote self-image and destigmatize talking about eating disorders.

Join us for a free panel discussion featuring individuals on the road to recovery from an eating disorder.

(Video) Why are eating disorders so hard to treat? - Anees Bahji

2023 Eating Disorder Awareness Week Resources (1)

What Are Eating Disorders?

Eating disorders are not just about food. They are complex mental health conditions that affect how one sees food and self-image. As a result, eating habits that have a negative impact on physical and mental well-being develop.

Anorexia Nervosa

It is a life-threatening mental illness characterized by behaviours that interfere with maintaining adequate weight.

Signs & Symptoms:

  • Irritability, insomnia, and intense preoccupation with food, all of which can be directly related to insufficient nutrition
  • Weight loss (or a lack of appropriate weight gain in children)
  • Abdominal pain or non-specific gastrointestinal concerns
  • Dizziness and/or fainting
  • Feeling cold all the time
  • Anaemia
  • Social withdrawal

Bulimia Nervosa

It is a life-threatening mental illness characterized by periods of food restriction followed by binge eating, with recurrent compensating behaviours such as purging or restriction.

Signs & Symptoms:

(Video) Non-profit aims to change treatment approach to eating disorders

  • Weight change, including weight loss or weight gain
  • Calluses or cuts on the hands and knuckles from purging
  • Bloating, dehydration
  • Purging, or evidence of purging behaviours like frequent trips to the washroom after meals
  • Restricting food intake
  • Guilt and anxiety surrounding food or eating
  • Concern with body weight or shape

Binge Eating Disorder

It is a condition of psychological distress leading to the frequent consumption of large amounts of food and lack of control over what and how much they are eating.

Signs & Symptoms:

  • Changes in body weight
  • Dresses in layers or clothing that disguises one’s body shape even when not appropriate for the weather
  • Evidence of binge eating, such as the disappearance of food or hoarding of food in secret
  • Guilt and anxiety surrounding eating or food


It is a condition in which the individual is overly obsessed with "clean eating" to the point that it damages their well-being.

Signs & Symptoms:

  • Spending a lot of time thinking about food and meal prepping
  • Being overly concerned about the origin and quality of food
  • Avoiding eating foods made by others and going to social events involving food for fear of being unable to comply with diet
  • Refusing to eat foods that are considered “unhealthy” (e.g. animal products, fats, sugar, food colouring, salt)
  • Being obsessed with supplements

Eating Disorder Resources in the Guelph Community

2023 Eating Disorder Awareness Week Resources (2)

The Dangers of Calorie Tracking

What are Calorie Tracking Apps?

Calorie-tracking apps work by using your weight to recommend a daily calorie intake. However, the mechanism the apps work on is over-simplified and fails to account for the unique body types, metabolism, and lifestyles of individual users.This can often create a severe discrepancy between the app’s recommended caloric intake and your body’s actual needs.

(Video) A Day in the Life of Anorexia Nervosa

Why are they harmful?

  • Calorie-tracking apps are external indicators.
    • Instead of listening to our natural hunger cues, apps like these push us away from listening to our bodies.
    • We eat not only for energy and nutrients but also for social purposes and pleasure. Calorie-counting apps reduce our food needs to solely energy purposes and take away from the enjoyment aspects of food.
  • Energy needs are not static.
    • The amount of food that feels good for you today may feel inadequate tomorrow.
    • That does not mean that you're doing something wrong. Energy needs vary. It's important to listen to your hunger cues because they reflect your body's needs.
  • They can lead to hyper-control.
    • The hyper-fixation of food that often results from using calorie-tracking apps can serve as a catalyst for disordered eating behaviours.
    • Many users report severe over-restriction, guilt, and anxiety associated with food when using these apps.
  • They use inaccurate formulas.
    • Calorie calculators use formulas designed to estimate basal metabolic needs, meaning the number of calories one needs to perform basic life-sustaining functions -- without considering body composition, diet history, medications, genetics, and medical history.
    • Eating just your basal metabolic needs will shortchange you nutritionally and likely lead to a suppressed metabolism as your body tries to conserve energy.

2023 Eating Disorder Awareness Week Resources (3)

Toxic Diet Culture Language

Diet culture influences how we perceive 'health'.Because we are often told that our bodies need to look a certain way to be 'healthy' and that foods are either 'good' or 'bad', many of us have developed guilt and anxiety related to food.

“Food is Fuel”Yes, food is energy -- it keeps your heart beating and brain active. But, food is so much more than fuel because our bodies are not machines.Food is a way to connect with family and friends, create memories, celebrate holidays and traditions, as well as relax and unwind. There are many reasons that we eat.

“I need a cleanse”You do not need to go on a restrictive juice cleanse, eliminate entire food groups, or buy detox supplements to cleanse your body. These are often unsustainable, unregulated, and expensive.Our bodies are naturally equipped with organs, like our kidneys, gut, and liver, that do all the detoxing our body needs.

“I binge-watched that TV show”The word binge is used so freely in conversation that binge eating disorder has become desensitized. For example, the term 'binge-watching' can be triggering and insensitive to some folks.Binge eating disorder is a mental illness, so we should be conscious of using 'binge' in casual conversation as it can minimize people's experiences.

“I need a cheat day”Using the word 'cheat day' perpetuates the 'good' and 'bad' food thinking of diet culture. Classifying foods in this way leads to guilt and shame around consuming 'bad' foods. If no foods are considered 'bad', then the power of a 'cheat day' is no longer there. Balanced eating entails consuming not only a wide variety of foods, but also holding a positive attitude towards food and hunger.

“I need to burn off that burger”Exercise is not a punishment for eating. Thinking of exercise as a punishment for something that you ate yesterday or drank over the weekend makes us think of food as a reward and fitness as punishment.It is much better to frame exercise as a celebration of what your body can do. Movement should be something that you enjoy.

(Video) Nutritionist Explains Diagnosis & Treatment of Eating Disorders|Megacast Interview, January 25, 2023

Eating Disorder Resources in the Guelph Community

2023 Eating Disorder Awareness Week Resources (4)

Supporting Yourself as a Caregiver

Why is Supporting Yourself as a Caregiver Important?

It can be difficult to be in a position of support for someone with an eating disorder. Whether you’re a parent, friend, or partner, knowing your loved one is dealing with an eating disorder can bring up a lot of upsetting and complicated emotions.

Self Care

As a caregiver, prioritizing your own self-care needs in addition to your loved ones can be difficult. Here are some ways you can focus on self-care...

  • Spend time with loved ones
  • Participate in activities you enjoy doing
  • Journal - or write down how you’re feeling
  • Create art
  • Take a mental health day to rest and renew
  • Hydrate and nourish your body with foods you enjoy

Setting Boundaries

Setting boundaries will look different depending on your caregiving role.For example, as a family member, this could include disclosing as much or as little information about the situation to extended family and friends.No matter what role you play, it is important to be clear and firm with your boundaries in order to leave space for your own needs.

Creating a Support System

Being a caregiver can feel isolating and exhausting and it is important to accept help when it is available. You don't need to or deserve to go through this alone. Creating a support system could look like:

  • Asking friends/family is they can take on some of your workload
  • Asking your employer for adjustments to the way you work (i.e., workload, ability to take emergency calls, etc.)
  • Asking your professor for extensions to deadlines
  • Consider seeking mental health care for yourself - therapy can be useful as it is a dedicated time to focus on your own needs and feelings.
  • Connecting with a support group that specializes in eating disorders directed towards family, friends, and caregivers supporting a loved one.

Eating Disorder Resources in the Guelph Community:


When is neda week 2023? ›

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week – February 20-26, 2023. National Eating Disorders Awareness Week is observed during the last week in February to spotlight eating disorders. This year, it takes place from February 20 to 26.

How can we raise awareness about eating disorders? ›

7 Activities to Promote National Eating Disorders Awareness Month
  1. Attend a local event. ...
  2. Avoid commenting on appearance. ...
  3. Sponsor advocacy organizations. ...
  4. Promote body positivity. ...
  5. Share your own story. ...
  6. Check in with friends and family. ...
  7. Educate yourself about eating disorders.
Feb 20, 2019

Is Ed a coping mechanism? ›

Understanding that an eating disorder is a person's coping mechanism helps those around the person to realise how frightening and difficult it is for the person to let it go as they recover.

When is Neda Awareness week? ›

The ultimate goal of NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association) Week, celebrated in the last week of February each year, is to promote awareness of eating disorders and spread hope for those in recovery and their families. This year, it is observed from February 20 to 26.

When is University Mental Health Day 2023? ›

We can't wait for you to join us for this year's University Mental health Day on Thursday 2nd March 2023. Together with your university communities we can make mental health a university-wide priority and create ongoing year round change to the future of student mental health.

What does NEDA Week mean? ›

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (NEDAW) is an observance to bring awareness to the seriousness of eating disorders across the United States. It is estimated that over 28 million Americans will have an eating disorder in their lifetime.

What are 3 common reasons why people have eating disorders? ›

Certain factors may increase the risk of developing an eating disorder, including:
  • Family history. Eating disorders are significantly more likely to occur in people who have parents or siblings who've had an eating disorder.
  • Other mental health disorders. ...
  • Dieting and starvation. ...
  • Stress.
Feb 22, 2018

What 2 recommendations do you have to reduce the problem of eating disorders in our society? ›

Gently but firmly encourage the person to seek trained professional help. Be a model of healthy self-esteem and body image. Recognize that others pay attention and learn from the way you talk about yourself and your body.

How do you raise awareness for special needs? ›

5 Ways to Raise Disability Awareness
  1. Consider your resources.
  2. Model appropriate behavior.
  3. Identify heroes in your community.
  4. Move beyond awareness.
  5. Turn ideas into action.
Nov 29, 2021

Is ED more physical or mental? ›

Although most causes of erectile dysfunction are physical in nature, many cases of ED develop as a result of emotional or psychological issues. When erectile dysfunction is related to a psychological problem, it's referred to as psychological ED, or psychological impotence.

Is ED just mental? ›

Most cases of ED have a physical cause, such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Lifestyle choices like smoking and drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can also lead to ED. But for some men, psychological issues are the root of the problem.

Is ED just anxiety? ›

ED is often a symptom of an underlying condition. In some cases, stress and anxiety may increase your risk for ED but not cause it. Talk to your doctor if you have any other symptoms accompanying ED. They'll be able to help diagnose the cause and potentially treat it.

What are two red flags for anorexia? ›

What to look for – Anorexia Nervosa Red Flags:
  • Skipping meals.
  • Making excuses for not eating.
  • Eating only a few certain “safe” foods, usually those low in fat and calories.
  • Adopting rigid meal or eating rituals, such as cutting food into tiny pieces or spitting food out after chewing.
Jun 5, 2014

What color is associated with eating disorders? ›

On March 15th, the color of the ribbon is lilac, and every year it reminds us the high impact that eating disorders can have.

What are 7 signs of anorexia nervosa? ›

Here are 9 common signs and symptoms of anorexia.
  • Purging for Weight Control. Share on Pinterest. ...
  • Obsession With Food, Calories and Dieting. ...
  • Changes in Mood and Emotional State. ...
  • Distorted Body Image. ...
  • Excessive Exercise. ...
  • Denial of Hunger and Refusal to Eat. ...
  • Engaging in Food Rituals. ...
  • Alcohol or Drug Abuse.
Dec 4, 2019

What is the theme for mental health day 2023? ›

Mental health is not a destination, but a process.

What is the theme of Mental Health Awareness Month 2023? ›

'Live Your Life Well' encouraged people to take responsibility for the prevention of mental health issues during times of personal challenge and stress. Many mental health problems can be avoided by taking positive lifestyle choices in how we act and think before they can manifest.

What is the theme World Mental Health Day 2023? ›

The theme for Mental Health Awareness Week in 2023 is Anxiety.

What does FBT stand for in anorexia? ›

Family-based treatment for AN

FBT is a manualized outpatient therapy designed to restore adolescents to health with the support of their parents. 16 The treatment for AN consists of three phases. Phase 1 focuses on the rapid restoration of physical health, orchestrated by parents.

What does the NEDA tattoo mean? ›

NEDA Tattoo

The NEDA symbol is an acknowledgement to all those living with eating disorders.

Do eating disorder plans expire? ›

How to review and renew a plan. You must review treatment and management plans after every 10 psychological treatment services. Eating disorder plans expire after 12 months. You must renew a plan before your patient can access further psychological or dietetic treatment services.

What is the root of all eating disorders? ›

Interpersonal Factors

Smaller roots that make up this larger root may include certain family functioning styles, social or romantic concerns, identity concerns (e.g., LGBTQ individuals), having been teased, bullied, or abused, traumatic life events, and/or major life changes, such as moving or the death of a loved one.

What are the 2 main causes of anorexia? ›

  • Biological. Although it's not yet clear which genes are involved, there may be genetic changes that make some people at higher risk of developing anorexia. ...
  • Psychological. ...
  • Environmental.
Feb 20, 2018

What's the most serious eating disorder? ›

Anorexia Nervosa

Experts consider anorexia nervosa to be the most deadly of all mental illnesses because it has the highest mortality rate. For this reason, we can consider it to be the most severe of the 12 types of eating disorders.

What are 5 strategies or tips to help healthy eating habits? ›

Top tips
  • Eat a variety of food.
  • Cut back on salt.
  • Reduce use of certain fats and oil.
  • Limit sugar intake.
  • Avoid hazardous and harmful alcohol use.
Dec 26, 2019

What are 5 strategies or specific changes you could implement to improve your diet? ›

5 Big-Payoff Diet Changes
  • Load Up on Fruits and Veggies. You know fruits and vegetables are good for you, but did you know they should fill half your plate at every meal? ...
  • Choose Better Fats. ...
  • Drink Water, Not Lattes. ...
  • Eat More Fiber. ...
  • Keep Portions in Check.

What are 4 ways that you can improve your eating habits? ›

How to develop healthy eating habits
  • Eat lots of fruits and veggies. ...
  • Hydrate! ...
  • Avoid sugary drinks, which are a source of hidden calories. ...
  • Pick whole grains over refined carbs. ...
  • Know the difference between bad fats and good fats. ...
  • Consume salt in moderation. ...
  • Manage your portions.
Oct 1, 2022

What are two activities you could do to raise awareness of the issue? ›

10 Things You Can Do to Raise Awareness for a Cause
  • Wear It. Clothing and accessories such as t-shirts, caps, rubber or silicone wristbands, and button pins are among the most common items you can use to display your support for a cause. ...
  • Raise Funds. ...
  • Donate. ...
  • Volunteer and Participate. ...
  • Talk About It Online. ...
  • Research. ...
  • Recruit.

What can I do as a student to raise awareness? ›

Community-Based Actions to Raise Awareness
  • Insert flyers in food baskets at holiday time.
  • Add to grocery bags at checkout counters.
  • Display in bodegas.

What can I do as a student to raise social awareness? ›

Skills that develop social awareness include:
  • Identifying social cues (verbal, physical) to determine how others feel.
  • Taking others' perspectives.
  • Demonstrating empathy and compassion.
  • Showing concern for the feelings of others.
  • Understanding and expressing gratitude.
  • Recognizing strengths in others.

What are the 3 types of ED? ›

The types of eating disorders included in these Guidelines are described in Table 16.
Although there are several types of ED, we have focused on three main types:
  • Anorexia nervosa.
  • Bulimia nervosa.
  • Binge eating disorder.

What is the fastest way to cure ED? ›

Ways to reverse ED
  1. Lifestyle changes. Adjusting the lifestyle can improve many issues that cause ED, such as diabetes and clogged arteries. ...
  2. Pelvic floor exercises. ...
  3. Counseling or couples' therapy. ...
  4. Herbal and alternative remedies. ...
  5. Medication. ...
  6. Medication changes. ...
  7. Mechanical devices. ...
  8. Surgery.

Can guilt cause ED? ›

Guilt. If unable to please a partner, if prior issues of infidelity, or other relationship issues are on the mind, than it's common for it to inhibit erections. This can contribute to an ongoing cycle of ED, much like performance anxiety. Guilt can weigh heavy, so when it's causing ED people can fall into a hole.

Can ED cure itself? ›

In summary. So erectile dysfunction can be cured, but it depends on the cause. Some causes of ED are easier to “cure” than others. But, with the right diagnosis, support, and treatment, it's possible for ED to go away without the need for ED medications like Viagra (sildenafil) or Cialis (Tadalafil).

Is ED part of PTSD? ›

Moderate to severe erectile dysfunction was present in 45% of the patients with PTSD and in only 13% of controls.

Can ED be in your head? ›

However, while erectile dysfunction can be a physical issue for many men—sometimes, this problem may be all in your head. Experts have recently discovered that there are types of anxiety that are linked directly to sex—conditions such as Sexual Performance Anxiety that can cause issues with erectile dysfunction.

When is Neda Week 2022? ›

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim February 21 through February 27, 2022, as National Eating Disorders Awareness Week.

When is stress awareness month 2022? ›

On 2 November 2022, Stress Awareness Day we will be highlighting the ways that stress can affect people and what you can do to manage your stress before it becomes a problem.

What is malnutrition week? ›

Malnutrition Awareness Week takes place from September 18 to 22 this year. It is an annual, multi-organizational campaign created by ASPEN (American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition) in 2012 to raise awareness about malnutrition.

Is February ED Awareness Month? ›

Eating Disorders Awareness Week (EDAW) is an annual campaign to educate the public about the realities of eating disorders and to provide hope, support, and visibility to individuals and families affected by eating disorders. Eating Disorders Awareness Week 2023 is taking place Monday, February 27 - Sunday, March 5 .

What percent of Americans have eating disorders? ›

General Eating Disorder Statistics

Eating disorders affect at least 9% of the population worldwide. 9% of the U.S. population, or 28.8 million Americans, will have an eating disorder in their lifetime. Less than 6% of people with eating disorders are medically diagnosed as “underweight.”

When is stress awareness day 2023? ›

National Stress Awareness Day – November 1, 2023.

When is important mental health in 2023? ›

Mental Health Awareness Week is taking place from 15 to 21 May 2023.

What is the number 1 stress? ›

Capital One released the results of a new CreditWise survey, in line with National Get Smart About Credit Day. Results uncovered that finances are the number-one cause of stress. If the state of your finances is stressing you out, you're far from alone.

What are the 4 types of malnutrition? ›

There are 4 broad sub-forms of undernutrition: wasting, stunting, underweight, and deficiencies in vitamins and minerals.

What are 4 signs of malnutrition? ›

Other symptoms of malnutrition include:
  • reduced appetite.
  • lack of interest in food and drink.
  • feeling tired all the time.
  • feeling weaker.
  • getting ill often and taking a long time to recover.
  • wounds taking a long time to heal.
  • poor concentration.
  • feeling cold most of the time.

What are the 2 signs of malnutrition? ›

Common signs of malnutrition include:
  • unintentional weight loss – losing 5% to 10% or more of weight over 3 to 6 months is one of the main signs of malnutrition.
  • a low body weight – people with a body mass index (BMI) under 18.5 are at risk of being malnourished (use the BMI calculator to work out your BMI)


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