Veritas Blog

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Through advocacy work, community and professional events, and media outreach, Veritas is helping to bring cutting-edge research, best-practice care, and scientifically backed information into the national eating disorder conversation. Here in our blog you can learn about the work we and others are doing to advance the understanding and treatment of eating disorders. You’ll also find interesting articles and helpful insights that can support you or a loved one on the journey to lasting recovery.

Eating Disorders and COVID-19: How Families and Healthcare Providers Can Save Lives

By Anna Tanner, MD, FAAP, FSAHM, CEDS

The original article was posted on Eating Disorders Resource Catalogue, here

Every year, eating disorder treatment centers across the country experience a significant uptick in phone calls during summer vacation and following the holidays, from parents who are worried their child may be struggling with an eating disorder.

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Episode 28: Eating Disorder Treatment with Bronwen Clark

Episode description:

Bronwen Clark is a Los Angeles-based therapist and the author of Don’t Be Weird: A Memoir of Food and Feelings, a book that chronicles her journey through eating disorder treatment.

In this episode of Peace Meal, Bronwen reflects on the client experience of treatment, including its rewards, challenges, and lasting impact. She explores lessons learned, the difficulty of transitioning between treatment centers and across levels of care, and the search for an identity outside of a diagnosis. She concludes by offering advice for those considering treatment now.

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Episode 27: Eating Disorder Recovery Online with Lindsey Hall

Episode description:

In this episode of Peace Meal, writer Lindsey Hall reflects on the online recovery community, where she has shared the nitty-gritty details of eating disorder recovery for over six years. She describes how writing publicly about her experience has both protected and challenged her ongoing process of healing. To create a more compassionate, inclusive recovery community, Lindsey encourages us to practice vulnerability and grace when telling our stories and hearing those of others.

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Episode 26: Eating Disorders During Coronavirus with Thom Rutledge

Episode description:

Author and psychotherapist Thom Rutledge joins Peace Meal to discuss how people with eating disorders can prioritize recovery during the coronavirus pandemic. While “Ed”—the eating disorder—may try to co-opt the current cultural anxiety and changes in food, exercise, and environment for his purposes, Thom explains how we can intervene. With the support of others, we can reclaim our power and use the situation as an opportunity to strengthen our recovery efforts.

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Compassion: An Ingredient to Eating Disorder Recovery

Elisha Contner Wilkins, MS, LMFT, CEDS-S, Executive Director of Veritas Collaborative’s Child, Adolescent & Adult Center in Richmond, VA, contributed her thoughts on the benefits of compassion in eating disorder treatment and recovery in the book Hope for Recovery: Stories of Healing from Eating Disorders. Elisha delves deeper into the importance of practicing compassion when treating individuals with eating disorders.

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How to Talk to a Loved One About Their Eating Disorder

Family and friends can play an important role in identifying eating disorder behaviors and symptoms. Although it is not always easy to discuss eating disorders, expressing your concern is instrumental in getting your loved one the care they need.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when talking to a loved one.

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10 Recovery-Focused Activities

As our day to day life may look different for the next few weeks, we have compiled a list of recovery-focused activities.

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Episode 24: Eating Disorder Advocacy with Kitty Westin

Episode description:

Kitty Westin is an internationally known advocate for those with eating disorders. Since losing her daughter Anna to anorexia in 2000, she has worked tirelessly and tenaciously to improve access to eating disorder care.

In this episode Kitty reflects on two decades of advocacy, including her role in creating treatment centers, a non-profit organization, and the historic Anna Westin Act, the first eating disorders legislation passed into federal law. Honoring Anna’s spirit throughout, she encourages others to voice their own experiences to create change.

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Episode 22: Olivia’s Recovery Story

Episode description:

Peace Meal’s Recovery Series features stories of those in eating disorder recovery in hopes of starting conversations, breaking stigmas, and encouraging healing. In this episode, we talk to Olivia McNeil.

Olivia is a youth group leader from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She is passionate about helping and supporting others with their mental health journeys and spreading awareness about eating disorders.

Olivia reflects on her own experience with eating disorder illness and healing. She describes her process of seeking help and achieving full recovery, and how she continues to protect this recovery.

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Let Me Give It To You Straight

Hi, I’m Dad Versus Eating Disorder and I use a lot of metaphors.

I mean, metaphors are great and all. Every writer should have a trunk full of them. I have a few trunks full. Along with a few closets and storage units.

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Episode 29: Eating Disorders in College Athletes with Cece Muskovac

Episode description:

In this episode of Peace Meal, we chat with a Division 1 soccer player, Cece Muskovac, about eating disorders in student athletes. Cece shares how sports have impacted her relationship with food and body, and how her eating disorder once held captive the personality traits that make her a strong athlete. She describes how she came to appreciate, fuel, and listen to her body and find recovery with the support of her coaches and teammates.

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Culinary Corner: Banana Bread

The transition back to the family table, social eating, and meal preparation can be a very challenging part of eating disorder recovery.  Our culinary groups provide a wonderful opportunity to engage in hands-on activities that support tolerating the sights, sounds, atmosphere, and experience of the kitchen in an approachable manner.

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Voices of Veritas: The First Step to Recovery is Knowledge—Is it an Eating Disorder or Something Else?

Anna Tanner, MD, FAAP, FSAHM, CEDS, Vice President of Medical Services

Our 2020 Voices of Veritas series features thought leaders and subject matter experts at Veritas Collaborative who are leading the conversation about eating disorders. These industry experts are continuing our vision to create a world in which all persons with eating disorders and their families have access to quality care and hope for a cure. 

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Episode 25: Eating Disorders and the Family with Chrissy Cahill

Episode description:

In this episode, author Chrissy Cahill recounts her daughter Alexandra’s battle with anorexia. Alex struggled with the eating disorder for 18 years and ultimately died from it at the age of 33. Following Alex’s death, Chrissy gained entry into her daughter’s private, painful world through Alex’s writings. Chrissy published these writings to educate others about life with an eating disorder, weaving them into a book called Fatal Reflection. Chrissy chronicles her experience of writing the book, describes the loving, strong person Alex was, and shares how the eating disorder affected the different members of her family.

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What To Do If Your Loved One Is Struggling With An Eating Disorder During The COVID-19 Pandemic

As we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and begin to define our “new normal”, it’s important to acknowledge the impact these times can have on individuals suffering from an untreated eating disorder, as well as those who are in recovery.

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Voices of Veritas: Creating a Can Eat Culture

Leah Graves, RD, LDN, CEDRD, FAED, Vice President of Nutrition & Culinary Services

Our 2020 Voices of Veritas series features thought leaders and subject matter experts at Veritas Collaborative who are driving the standard of care in eating disorder treatment to help fulfill our vision of a world in which all persons with eating disorders and their families have access to best-practice care and hold hope for a cure.

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Maintaining Eating Disorder Recovery During COVID-19

As our world navigates the impact of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, one thing is certain – we are in uncharted territory. This is an unprecedented time, and we may not know how to respond. We may feel worried because there is no way to anticipate what may be coming next. It is only human to feel anxious and scared! During uncertain times we may feel a loss of control, on edge, and more vulnerable to negative emotions.

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Episode 23: Raffaela’s Story

Episode description:

When an eating disorder affects a child or adolescent, it affects the child’s parents and caregivers as well. In this episode, Raffaela discusses the impact of her daughter’s eating disorder on her family. She describes how she continues to fight alongside her daughter, navigating treatment and the challenges associated with it. She addresses the confusion, isolation, frustration, and exhaustion commonly felt in this situation, and emphasizes the importance of patience, self-care, and a strong support system.

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Voices of Veritas: Breaking Down Barriers to Care

Nikki Hudson, MHA, Senior Director of Patient Access Services

In our Voices of Veritas series, we highlight the Veritas team members that help fulfill our vision of a world in which all persons with eating disorders have access to best-practice care and hold hope for a cure. These individuals ensure that patients, their families, and their communities of support receive the proper tools, resources, and education to support lasting recovery.

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Supporting Your Loved One’s Recovery During the Holiday Season

The holiday season is a wonderful and exciting time for families and friends to celebrate together. While many people look forward to the holiday season, this time of year can cause added stressors for individuals who are in recovery from an eating disorder.

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If you have questions about anything - eating disorders, our programs, specific needs or concerns - or you'd like to schedule an initial phone assessment or a comprehensive in-person medical assessment, please give us a call or complete our contact form. Our Master's-Level Clinicians are here to help.

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