Groups focus on eating disorders

By Nancy Lo

With Eating Disorders Awareness Week approaching—it runs from February 27 to March 5—the Student Care Center (SCC), Student Counseling and Resource Service (SCRS), and the University of Chicago Hospital’s Eating Disorders Clinic are sponsoring a screening program, “Is your self-image self-destructive?” The program will take place in the Reynolds Club on Tuesday February 22nd from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Regenstein library on Wednesday February 23rd.

An eating disorder, as defined by the National Institute for Mental Health, is a serious disturbance in eating behavior such as extreme and unhealthy reduction of food intake or severe overeating, as well as feelings of distress or extreme concern about body shape or weight. Those with eating disorders can experience a wide range of health complications including serious heart conditions and kidney failure.

According to the National Eating Disorders Association, up to 10 million women and one million men in America struggle with eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia nervosa, and an additional 25 million individuals suffer from binge-eating disorders. These conditions frequently occur with other psychiatric maladies such as depression, substance abuse, and anxiety disorders. Kelley Carameli, health education specialist at the SCC, said that free five-minute questionnaires are available for students or anyone interested.

In addition to the screenings, Carameli said that representatives from the SCC and SCRS will be on hand to answer questions and to advise students as to how to address someone else with a potential problem. Questions may be directed to Carameli at (773) 834-5143.