A victory for eating disorders treatment in Missouri

Monday, June 22nd, 2015

Getting treatment for an eating disorder will soon be a little easier in Missouri. Gov. Jay Nixon has signed into law legislation requiring insurance companies to consider people’s mental health needs, not just their weight, when determining what treatment will be covered. According to state Sen. David Pearce, R-Warrensburg, this is important because “The patient going through eating disorders would be in a hospital or a residential treatment facility, and once they reach a certain, ideal weight then they were dismissed, or perhaps maybe their organs had started functioning at a certain level, then they were dismissed,” said Pearce.

Pearce says without mental health treatment, patients can relapse.

“We have seen patients who have declined, and some who have even died,” he said.

“What this does, it basically says they will be treated on the mental side. It also says these patients will receive treatment that’s recommended by the American Psychiatric Association, which does include almost all aspects of eating disorders,” Pearce told Missourinet.

Nixon said, “Like many mental health problems, a person suffering from an eating disorder may have no outward signs of their struggle. By requiring insurance companies to consider the comprehensive health needs of these individuals, and not just their weight, we can help Missourians struggling with these disorders receive the care they need to recover. I want to thank Sen. Pearce and Rep. Frederick for their work to bring this issue to the forefront and get this lifesaving legislation to my desk.”

This is encouraging news for everyone struggling with an eating disorder in Missouri. Next, Anna’s Law!

Shop with AmazonSmile to benefit ANAD

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015

amsmileANAD recently signed up with AmazonSmile, a division of Amazon that donates 0.5 percent of an item’s purchase price to nonprofit organizations. AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know: same products, prices and service. This is a simple, effective way to support ANAD’s programs and services! Click here to choose ANAD as your AmazonSmile charity, or search “National Assoc of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders Inc” based in Naperville, Ill. (not the ANAD in Oregon).


Anna Westin Act introduced at Lobby Day

Friday, May 15th, 2015

Erica Stocker of Washington, D.C.-based law firm McDermott Will&Emery attended the Eating Disorders Coalition Lobby Day May 13 on ANAD’s behalf. She sent back the following report.

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The group poses for a photo before meetings on Capitol Hill.

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EDC Board President Johanna Kandel addresses the crowd during the lunch briefing with Brittany Viola Gonzalez and Dr. Tyson looking on.

The morning began with message training, to discuss the talking points for the day and the overall messages to convey to the various members of Congress with whom we would be meeting.  The primary message for the day was to encourage each office to support the soon-to-be-introduced Anna Westin Act.  The legislation will be introduced by EDC champions, Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) in the near future.  The bill is named after Anna Westin, a young Minnesotan who committed suicide as a direct result of her battle with anorexia in February 2000.  Since that time, Anna’s family has turned their grief into something positive by founding the Anna Westin Foundation and working to ensure that tragedies such as Anna’s are prevented in the future. For more information on Anna Westin, visit the EDC website.

The legislation is a comprehensive eating disorders bill that will address the “Three T’s” – Training, Treatment and Truth in Advertising.  It will help those affected with eating disorders get the treatment they need and deserve.  Specifically:

  • Training – Using current HHS funds, the bill would help train health professionals, school personnel and the public on how to identify eating disorders, and how to help prevent the development of behaviors that may lead to eating disorders.
  • Treatment – The bill would clarify the mental health parity law to include residential treatment service coverage, affording the same protections as other illnesses.
  • Truth in Advertising – The legislation would require a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) report, studying whether regulation is needed for digitally altered images of humans in advertising, and if so, strategies to achieve such regulation.

Meetings were held with health staff from the offices of Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) and Sen. John Warner (D-VA).  During these meetings, advocates from Delaware and Virginia told their powerful, personal stories about overcoming an eating disorder, or helping a loved one who battled an eating disorder.  The staff in both offices were moved by the stories that were shared, and indicated an interest in the Anna Westin Act.

After morning meetings, the entire group reconvened for a lunch briefing.  Reps. Deutch and Ros-Lehtinen stopped by, and the EDC expressed its thanks for their strong support in crafting the Anna Westin Act, and for being champions of the EDC in general.  The briefing was focused on the Anna Westin Act, and the packed briefing room heard first from Anna’s mother, Kitty, who spoke of Anna and showed a short video about her daughter’s life and struggle.  The group then heard from Chase Bannister, an EDC board member who is the founder of an eating disorders treatment facility in North Carolina.  The group also heard from Olympic diver Brittany Viola Gonzalez, who battled an eating disorder and is now an advocate.  Finally, the group heard from eating disorders treatment and training expert Dr. Edward Tyson.

Overall, it was a successful day full of much enthusiasm among the many advocates who traveled to Washington, D.C.

Missouri House sends eating disorders bill to governor

Friday, May 15th, 2015

According to the Associated Press:

A measure that would require insurers to cover eating disorders by following medical guidelines is headed to Gov. Jay Nixon’s desk.

The Missouri House approved the measure Wednesday by a vote of 148-6. It marks a personal victory for former Rep. Rick Stream, whose daughter died of an eating disorder.

Stream, who left the House last year, returned to witness the passage of the measure that’s been years in the making.

The bill would require insurers to cover eating disorders beyond the point of a person getting back to a certain weight by specifying they must follow medical guidelines.

Coverage for mental health treatment and specific treatment centers would be required.

If Nixon signs the legislation, it would be a victory for eating disorders advocates who have worked tirelessly to ensure coverage is based on care as recommended by the American Psychiatric Association’s Standard of Care Guidelines.

Nine Truths About Eating Disorders

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

May 12, 2015 — The National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) releases “Nine Truths About Eating Disorders” to correct common misconceptions about eating disorders. Produced in collaboration with Dr. Cynthia Bulik, PhD, FAED, who serves as distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders in the School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, “Nine Truths” is based on Dr. Bulik’s 2014 “9 Eating Disorders Myths Busted” talk at the National Institute of Mental Health.

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ANAD worked closely with prominent organizations in the eating disorders field to craft the “Nine Truths” and provide a consistent message. The document includes key facts such as: many people with eating disorders look healthy, yet may be extremely ill; families are not to blame, and can be the patients’ and providers’ best allies in treatment; eating disorders are not choices, but serious biologically influenced illnesses; and full recovery from an eating disorder is possible. To read all “Nine Truths,” click here. A version in Spanish is available here.


ANAD will be distributing this document along with other major eating disorder organizations (Families Empowered and Supporting Treatment of Eating Disorders, Academy for Eating Disorders, National Eating Disorders Association, The International Association of Eating Disorders Professionals Foundation, Residential Eating Disorders Consortium, Eating Disorders Coalition for Research, Policy & Action, Multi-Service Eating Disorders Association, Binge Eating Disorder Association, Eating Disorder Parent Support Group, International Eating Disorder Action, Project HEAL, and Trans Folx Fighting Eating Disorders). ANAD encourages the wide dissemination of this document.


“Nine Truths About Eating Disorders” represents a united effort to raise public awareness. Released during National Mental Health Awareness Month, this document will be a powerful tool in breaking the stigma that still surrounds eating disorders. ANAD hopes it will also increase understanding of these devastating illnesses and lead to early intervention and treatment. According to Dr. Bulik, “The single best way to fight stigma is with truths. These consensus ‘Nine Truths’ are the new scaffold on which we will build our advocacy efforts for eating disorders. United around these principles, we can enlighten public understanding about eating disorders and advocate effectively for treatment access and resources.”

12th ANAD Candlelight Vigil at Linden Oaks

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

Linden Oaks at Edward has issued a press release for the 12th annual ANAD Candlelight Vigil. Join us May 18 for a program you won’t want to miss. Stand-up comedian and eating disorders advocate Stacey Prussman will be the keynote speaker. RSVP on Facebook.

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Aubrey’s Song Foundation conference set for May 1

Friday, March 20th, 2015

Aubrey’s Song Foundation 2015 Eating Disorders Conference, Beyond the Conventional: A Values-Based Approach to Eating Disorders, will be May 1 in Henderson, Ky. The conference will be from 9 a.m.-3:15 p.m. at Henderson Community College. Five CEUs are available for psychology, social work, professional counselors, marriage/family, drug addictions, and registered dietitians. Registration is $40 before April 15 and $50 after. Download a registration form here.

The conference is sponsored by ANAD, Linden Oaks at Edward Hospital, and RiverValley Behavioral Health.

Call for performers for second annual Bandstand Benefit

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

banstand performs 2015ANAD is looking for volunteer performers to showcase their talents with the theme Recovery Rocks for our second annual Bandstand Benefit. If you play an instrument, sing, dance, read poetry, do magic or have another talent, submit a video clip to be considered to deb.prinz@anad.org by May 15. Be sure to include your name and age. Performers will be notified if they have been selected by June 1.

The Bandstand Benefit will be from 7-11 p.m. July 25 at the Lincoln Tap Room, 3010 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago.

All proceeds will benefit ANAD’s mission of advocating for the development of healthy attitudes, bodies, and behaviors.

ANAD seeks Junior Board members

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

ANAD is seeking members for its volunteer Junior Board. ANAD’s Junior Board consists of individuals (age 18-35) who have graduated from high school and are committed to eating disorder advocacy, awareness, fundraising and outreach. Being on ANAD’s Junior Board gives you the opportunity to create professional relationships and network within the community.

Eating disorders are dangerous and further attentiveness is needed in our society. You can be a part of raising and encouraging recovery by becoming a member and sharing your thoughts, ideas, and beliefs.

Becoming a member of ANAD’s Junior Board not only encourages you to accept yourself… It inspires you to accept others.


  • 18-35 year of age and a high school graduate
  • Complete application and interview process
  • Membership fee $100 if employed/$50 for students
  • Attendance and participation of regularly scheduled meeting either in person or via telephone. Meetings are held every other month, however, committee meetings will be on as needed basis.
  • Preferably located in Chicago area but will consider applicants in other areas.
  • Desire to participate in the JB volunteer events and fundraisers and will actively encourage the support of family, friends and colleagues as well.
  • Commitment to serve on the board for one year.
  • As an ambassador for ANAD, will strive to positively represent the organization in the best possible ways.

In return, ANAD promises to:

  • Provide members the opportunity for meaningful and rewarding service to our mission and our community.
  • Provide members the opportunity for significant professional development and social networking.
  • Provide members with information and tools to help them be effective members.
  • Be diligent in making the best possible use of assets members make available to us, whether those assets be money, time or resources.


** ANAD strives to encourage the continued recovery of those who have suffered from an eating disorder and therefore asks that if you are in recovery, you have at least one year of recovery before joining the Junior Board.**


Download an application form here. For more information, e-mail anadhelp@anad.org or call 630-577-1330.

BEDA conference call for speakers

Monday, January 19th, 2015

BEDA is opening the call for speakers for the 2015 conference, to be held Nov. 5-7 in Hollywood, Fla. beda conferenceFor more information, go to bedaonline.com/conference.