The city of Grande Prairie has proclaimed February 1-7 Eating Disorder Awareness Week in our community.
Margot Lambert with Alberta Health Services says the group that started the campaign in Ontario is trying to take the movement national.
“It started off as a one awareness campaign, but the problem is a big problem with our youth. Between 10 and 15 per cent of young women hospitalized for the treatment of anorexia will be dead within 10 years, and that’s startling.”
Eating disorders are particularly concerning for Canada’s young female population, those who are most often affected by body image issues.
Lambert says the dialogue and treatment plans surrounding eating disorders needs to change.
“I think the main message on eating disorders is that it’s not about food. There’s something else behind eating disorders, and the treatment right now is about getting people to eat again. They’re not addressing core issues, and that is why there are so many deaths caused by eating disorders.”
Lambert says the campaign targets mainly women, and young women at that, but body image issues and eating disorders can affect anyone, male or female.