College campuses called to do more for eating disorders

empty plate
empty plate

empty plateIt’s National Eating Disorders Awareness Week and a recent survey shows that college campuses could be doing more to help those struggling with eating disorders.

The Collegiate Survey Project – which was approved by Pace University’s Institutional Review Board – has found that greater funding and resources are needed on college campuses to educate, screen and treat students struggling with eating disorders. The study was launched in response to the volume of requests the National Eating Disorders Association has received for information about eating disorder-related services on campuses. The rate of eating disorders among college students has risen to 10 to 20 percent of women and four to10 percent of men in recent years, according to NEDA. Athletes were identified as a particularly underserved population on campus.

“Eating disorders are potentially life-threatening and the steady increase of prevalence on our campuses is alarming,” commented Lynn Grefe, president and CEO of NEDA. “Colleges providing the resources and support necessary for students affected by eating disorders should be applauded. However, we have also learned that more can and should be done on many campuses to serve this population. We hope that many more colleges will step up to the plate and learn from this study sooner rather than later. Taking action about eating disorders on college campuses for early intervention and support could be key to a healthy future for many students.”