Eating Disorders News and Views: August 2011

Anorexics Lack Sense of Belonging, Study Finds

RECOVERING from anorexia nervosa is so difficult for many sufferers because the eating disorder satisfies an intense need to belong, an Australian researcher says.

Social anthropologist Megan Warin believes many anorexics might not seek treatment because they find the disorder incredibly seductive.

Based on her work with people who have the eating disorder, the Adelaide University professor has found that anorexics often lack a sense of belonging and feel disconnected from society.

By controlling their eating, they end up belonging to a group of people who are essentially successful at dieting.

"Anorexia is very empowering for people in the early stages of the illness," she told AAP.

"In fact, they don't see it as an illness, they see it as a lifestyle.

"It's unusual because it's an illness they want to have.
Read Lack Sense of Belonging in full

Lightlake Therapeutics Inc. Set to Begin Phase II Clinical Trials of Binge Eating Disorder Treatment
Market Watch

LONDON, ENGLAND, Aug 24, 2011 (Filing Services Canada via COMTEX) -- Lightlake Therapeutics Inc. (LLTP - OTCBB),("Lightlake" or "the "Company"), an early stage biopharmaceutical company currently developing a nasal spray for the treatment of overweight and obese patients with Binge Eating Disorder, today announced that its patient testing stage of the Phase II clinical trials will start August 26th, 2011

Dr. Roger Crystal, CEO of Lightlake commented, "We are excited to commence the definitive stage of testing of a product that we believe will be a solution to a disease thought to affect a significant proportion of obese and overweight patients today. We recently completed stability testing in an effort to ensure that our nasal spray adheres to internationally recognised safety standards in delivering an effective treatment. Moreover, we have an excellent control group in place, as we were able to select 138 patients from over 900 applicants wanting to participate in our trials in Helsinki. Dr. David Sinclair, our Chief Scientific Officer, revolutionized the way we treat alcoholism and drug addiction through his research into opioid antagonists, and we are confident that in working with him, we can develop an opioid antagonist derived nasal spray for the treatment of those with Binge Eating Disorder."
Read Clinical Trials in full

Study Links Obesity to Brain Disorder

IT seems an odd idea, but scientists believe giving obese people the same psychological counselling as those with anorexia nervosa could help their weight battle.

The Australian scientists came up with the theory after discovering that although obese people and anorexics weigh in at opposite ends of the scales, they share a similar condition affecting the brain.

Both groups have executive function disorders (EFD), which means they have problems organising their daily lives.

Previous studies have linked anorexia to EFD, with scientists pointing to the rigidity and tight control those with the eating disorder exert over not just food but their entire lives as evidence of the brain disorder.
Read Obesity/Brain Disorder in full

Psychiatrist Supports Controversial Diet Book for Kids
Fox News

Maggie Goes on a Diet, a new book by children's author Paul Michael Kramer, is drawing fire from those who believe it inappropriately focuses children on their weight and, by doing so, could lead to eating disorders. In the book, Maggie, a 14-year-old girl who is very overweight and has a negative self-image goes on a diet, works hard at it, loses weight and becomes a soccer star at school. She likes herself better, so the story ends happily-ever-after.

I support Kramer's book. With childhood obesity rates at 17 percent of all children and adolescents (per the Centers for Disease Control), a figure three times that one generation ago, it's time to start teaching kids to control their appetites. It's really that simple.

Nutritionists and child psychologists who charge that Kramer's book will cause eating disorders presume that telling children to eat healthily—even if that means eating less and exercising—will make them sick. This is akin to suggesting that if we advise them to abstain from, or simply even limit, sexual activity that they will become sexually repressed and suffer from a sexual disorder. I don't buy that—at all.
Read Psychiatrist Supports in full
Here's my post about Maggie Goes On A Diet

Sheppard Pratt Programs to Raise Eating Disorder Awareness
The Towerlight

In response to the growing number of Americans suffering from a diagnosable eating disorder, The Center for Eating Disorders at Sheppard Pratt will hold Expanded College Outreach Programs to raise awareness.

According to the American Psychological Association, at least five million Americans suffer from a diagnosable eating disorder. Studies from the APA Public Interest Government Relations Office found that women are more prone to eating disorders than men, particularly college-aged women.

Jennifer Moran, a staff psychologist at Sheppard Pratt’s Center for Eating Disorders, will serve as the college liaison for the college outreach programs. She said the need to raise eating disorder awareness is imperative.
Read Sheppard Pratt Programs in full

The Meaning Of Balance For Body Image
By Margarita Tartakovsky, MS

In April, I interviewed a researcher about attaining a work-life balance. Her first words to me were: There’s no such thing as balance.

And trying to reach a so-called balance is akin to reaching perfection. In other words, it’s not going to happen, and we’re going to drive ourselves insane along the way.

(Here’s the piece if you’re interested.)

Both Christie and Anna wrote thought-provoking posts also questioning the idea of balance. (By the way, I loved Ashley’s post on balance, too.)

But when people say balance, I think what they typically mean is a happy medium or not residing on either side of the spectrum. At least that’s the way I view balance.

With body image, I see a deeply negative body image at one end of the spectrum – where you hate your body, ignore its signals and rarely look after it – and an unrealistically positive body image at the other – where you shoo away every negative, yucky thought, deny your feelings and become the Pollyanna of body positivity.
Read Meaning Of Balance in full

Editor Slammed for Criticising 'Fat Models'
9 news

A prominent Australian fashion writer has been slammed for accusing Myer of using models who were "too fat" in its plus-size runway show.

Damien Woolnough, fashion editor at The Australian, published an article in which he argued: "Big can be beautiful but fat should not be in fashion."

Yesterday's Myer show featured women ranging from size 14 to size 22 and internationally renowned model Robin Lawley even sashayed down the catwalk.

Despite backlash from body image experts, Woolnough stood by his comments when interviewed by Nine News but said he never meant his comments to personally attack any of the models.

"I think the industry for a long time has copped criticism over models that are too skinny, and at yesterday's show we had models who were too fat," he said.
Read Editor Slammed in full

Eating Disorders Model Established in London
The London Free Press

A treatment program for adults with eating disorders - the first of its kind in Ontario - is to be based in London.

Its operating cost is $2.4 million and it will treat as many as 100 people a year in both a residential centre and as out-patients.

"What we need to do is establish continuity of care . . . across all phases of the illness" and with people of all ages, Health Minister Deb Matthews said Tuesday.

Psychiatrists, nurses, dietitians and nurse practitioners will together be part of the new adult program, to be set up through London Health Sciences Centre, where a publicly funded program already exists for children and teens with eating disorders.

"There's no place in the world like this that has the team approach," said Kelly Hall-Holland, who heads the London-based Eating Disorders Foundation of Canada. "It's a dream come true."

The location of the residential centre hasn't been decided.

Hall-Holland hopes the group can make use of the former Cuddy home in Strathroy, which sits on an estate owned by Fanshawe College and is used for the school's horticultural program.

The estate's serene, pastoral atmosphere would be ideal as a residential setting for people with eating disorders, Hall-Holland said.

"They need the most calming atmosphere possible."

Her daughter Michale died in 2009 at age 27 after a battle with anorexia. That struggle spanned more than a decade and included treatment at a private clinic in California because none was available in Ontario.
Read ED Model London in full