Body Positive


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Body Positive at Wake Forest University

Diverse Body Promotion, Eating Disorder Prevention and Treatment at Wake Forest University

We were all born into bodies that differ in shape, size, color and appearance features. Cultural influences, family, life experiences and other factors often get in the way of embracing unique appearances, especially during college. We are here to support you in your relationship with your body. We want it to be a healthy, compassionate, and authentic relationship… and we understand that it’s much easier said than done. Wherever you are on your journey, let us help. Please check out the prevention and treatment resources at Wake Forest University and consider signing up for upcoming events and trainings as they come available. In addition, please take advantage of our resources list and linked websites for valuable information and tools.


The Illusionists  Documentary Screening and Discussion with filmmaker Elena Rossini

A documentary about the marketing of unattainable beauty around the world.

October 18th 2017 at 6:00 PM in Pugh Auditorium

Sex sells. What sells even more? Insecurity. Multi-billion dollar industries saturate our lives with images of unattainable beauty, exporting body hatred from New York to Beirut to Tokyo. Their target? Women, and increasingly men and children. The Illusionists turns the mirror on media, exposing the absurd, sometimes humorous, and shocking images that seek to enslave us.


The Body Project

The Body Project is a dissonance-based body-acceptance program designed to help high school girls and college-age women resist cultural pressures to conform to the appearance ideal standard of female beauty and reduce their pursuit of unrealistic bodies. The Body Project is supported by more research than any other body image program and has been found to reduce onset of eating disorders.

Wake Forest University is proud to help facilitate peer-led Body Project groups. If you are interested in The Body Project coming to talk with your group on-campus or in serving as a group facilitator, please email Emily Palmieri at palmieet@nullwfu.edu.


Eating Disorder Recovery Group

This weekly 90-minute group is dedicated to the support of students in the recovery process of eating disorders and disordered eating. Please email Emily Palmieri or Denisha Champion for information regarding this group.


EAT Team: Eating and Assessment Treatment Team

Wake Forest University offers a multidisciplinary treatment team for students struggling with eating disorders and supporting their recovery. We know that addressing eating concerns is a multifaceted process. The EAT team officers support for the physical healthy complications, nutritional deficits, and psychological barriers often present in eating disorders. The current members of the EAT team at Wake Forest University are listed below.


Health at Every Size

The EAT team, Student Health Services and the University Counseling Center strive to practice from a Health at Every Size perspective that does not equate health with weight. Living in a fat body can be very healthy and living in a thin body can be very unhealthy, contrary to many people’s understanding. (Yes, I just used the word fat. We are reclaiming that word as a descriptor not an identity. Just as you have fingernails, you are not fingernails).

Dr. Linda Bacon, a respected researcher with degrees in psychotherapy and exercise science, wrote the book Health at Every Size: The surprising truth about your weight and brought the objectivity of science into how we talk about body size. When healthcare providers focus on measurable indicators of assessing health (e.g. glucose levels and blood pressure) instead of weight, we have a more accurate understanding of your health and needs.  Well-being and healthy habits are more important than any number on the scale. Here are a few tips towards participating in a Health at Every Size mindset as recommended by Dr. Deah Schwartz from the National Eating Disorders Association website and adapted for our use:

  1. Trust yourself.We all have internal systems designed to keep us healthy — and at a healthy weight. Support your body in naturally finding its appropriate weight by honoring its signals of hunger, fullness, and appetite. If you struggle with identifying when you are hungry and when you are full, please connect with a professional for help in the process of reconnecting with your body’s cues.
  2. Develop and nurture connections with others and look for purpose and meaning in your life. Fulfilling your social, emotional, and spiritual needs restores food to its rightful place as a source of nourishment and pleasure.
  • Find the joy in moving your body and becoming more physically vital in your everyday life.
  • Eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full, and seek out pleasur­able and satisfying foods.
  1. Embrace size diversity.Humans come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Open to the beauty found across the spectrum and support others in recognizing their unique attractiveness. If you find this difficult, think about what beliefs or biases you hold that make it hard.
  2. Respect and appreciate the body you have. Your body is amazing in all that it does for you and works hard every second of every day to keep you going. Self-acceptance empowers you to move on and make positive changes.

 

Resources

Create an intentionally positive feed (pun intended) by tailoring those you follow to allow a flood of positivity, light, healing, and hope into your day. Here are a few starting points to follow:

  • Facebook: Body Politics with Dr. Maria Paredes
  • Instagram: three_birds_counseling, fuelingstrength, dlbefieldrdn, rebeccascritchfield
  • Twitter: Maria Paredes @threebirdscouns; Julie Duffy Dillon @foodpeacerdn; Anna Lutz @AnnaLutzRD; Anotonia Hartley, MPH @FeministRD