About this site and its owner...
This site is for:
- those not sure if they have harmful eating behaviors (but suspect they do);
- for those not sure if they want to recover;
- for those not sure how to recover;
- for those trying to support a loved one;
- and for those professionals who are curious.
Documented prevalence of anorexia nervosa is estimated at 1%, bulimia nervosa at 0.8%, and EDNOS (eating disorder not otherwise specified) around 3.25%. However, the studies providing those data rigidly apply the diagnostic criteria set out in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Illness.
When restrictive eating behaviors are more broadly surveyed and analyzed, then the incidence rate rises to 27% [J. Jones et al., 2001]. 35% of all those who diet progress to pathological levels of dieting and a quarter of those pathological dieters develop clinical eating disorders [C.M. Shisslak and M. Crago, 1995]. Given that somewhere between 84 to 93% of all girls have dieted by the age of 14, then just shy of 1 in 3 girls are developing calorie restriction pathologies.
There are millions of people who need to figure out how to manage the chronicity of damaging eating behaviors that are robbing them of quality of life, health and longevity. These harmful eating behaviors can be successfully treated so that the person is completely asymptomatic (remission). And it can happen for them now, not when (or if) adequate research money is made available.
We need to pay more attention to harmful eating behaviors in a society that feeds anxiety loops rather than hearts, minds and souls. We are making everything worse: by ratcheting up the focus on image, and by depending on the unsatisfactory and largely counter-productive mantra of “eat less, exercise more.”
Gwyneth Olwyn. is the owner of Your Eatopia. She is a patient advocate and a member of the Alliance of Professional Health Advocates.
Patient advocacy is an area of lay specialization in health care concerned with patient education, how to obtain care, and how to navigate complex health care provision systems. Patient advocates do not offer health care services.
Gwyneth has not dealt with an eating disorder in her personal life and her interest in the area of restrictive eating disorders came about when researching information on recovery options for patients with the condition. Your Eatopia is the result of ongoing intensive research and synthesis (since 2009) on the topic of science-based options for recovery from restrictive eating disorders.
Gwyneth lives in Vancouver Canada with her family.
The video at right explains a bit more about patient advocacy. It was created several years ago (hence the reference to the site's former incarnation under my name which became Your Eatopia), but the content will help you understand a bit more about what I do and how that pertains to this site.