On December 16, 2006, CBS News in Rome, Italy, reported that the death in November “of a 21-year-old model in Brazil helped spur [a] campaign against unhealthily rail-thin models on fashion show runways.” In conjuction with National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, which started on February 25 and runs through Friday, March 3, two seminars will take place focusing on this important issue.

“[Mothers] need to recognize that our own behaviors and attitudes can influence our children’s development,” says Yardley psychotherapist Nancy Logue, who, with Pennington nutrition therapist Jill Shaffer, hosts a workshop on Saturday, March 3, for mothers and daughters on how to prevent eating disorders. “Mother Daughter Talk: Preventing Eating Disorders, which includes a healthy lunch, will be held Saturday, March 3, at the Marriott Courtyard hotel in Ewing. Logue and Shaffer are each in private practice and specialize in treating eating problems.

According to Logue, negative body image and a wide spectrum of eating problems cause incalculable pain and sometimes serious health problems for many girls and women nationwide. Prevalence of the most severe eating disorders is frighteningly high: one out of every 200 girls and women in the United States struggles with anorexia and three out of every 100 suffer from bulimia. Type II diabetes and other complications of unhealthy eating patterns are at record levels.

The workshop focuses on these learning objectives:

— understanding the issues and factors that contribute to body dissatisfaction

— recognizing the risks of dieting

— empowering girls and women to live healthy and free of weight obsessions

— learning and practicing positive ways for mothers and daughters to communicate about these issues.

“Eating disorders prevention means helping girls and women feel good about themselves and comfortable in their bodies, no matter what they eat or what they weigh,” says Shaffer.

On Thursday, March 1, Elizabeth Frenkel, psychologist and senior clinician, and Kristen Sugarman, registered dietition and nutrition coordinater, both with the University Medical Center at Princeton’s Eating Disorders Program, will discuss the warning signs of eating disorders, risk factors for developing an eating disorder, and steps to take in seeking help, at a free event, “When Eating Concerns Become Eating Disorders.” The event will be held in the Ground Floor Conference Room at the University Medical Center at Princeton.

According to information provided by the hospital, in the United States as many as 10 million females and one million males struggle with the life-threatening effects of anorexia and bulimia. And another 25 million suffer from binge eating disorder. At a sub-clinical level, 80 percent of American women are dissatisfied with their bodies.

“When Eating Concerns Become Eating Disorders,” Thursday, March 1, 6:30 to 8 p.m., University Medical Center at Princeton, Ground Floor Conference Room, 253 Witherspoon Street. Presentation by Elizabeth Frenkel, psychologist, and Kristen Sugarman, dietician. To register call Cathy at 609-497-4000, extension 6078.

Also, “Mother Daughter Talk: Preventing Eating Disorders,” Saturday, March 3, 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Marriott Courtyard hotel in Ewing. The hotel is located just south of exit 3A off I-95. Presentation by psychotherapist Nancy Logue and nutritionist Jill Shaffer. To pre-register call Logue at 215-321-5695 or Shaffer at 609-818-0020.

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