According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, “at least 30 million people of all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder in the U.S.”
Of course, many of these individuals (and their loved ones) can be found in the workplace. In honor of National Eating Disorder Awareness Week, consider discussing employee benefit options with your team members. Here are a few tips that can help you maintain awareness in the office.
In order to help your employees with eating disorder awareness, you must first know what eating disorders consist of. Knowing the facts and reading up on prevention, recovery and other news regarding the subject is the first step toward appropriately assisting your team. The National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA) is an informative resource that can provide you with up-to-date data, toolkits and guidance regarding eating disorders.
One easy and beneficial way to help your employees with eating disorders is to share useful information. NEDA offers a helpline, chat-to-talk and instant texting services for your employees to seek anonymous, free help from trained volunteers. Having internal resources within your company that can provide advice or direct employees to appropriate resources, such as your human resources team, can also help.
It’s a good idea to maintain a list of local professionals who specialize in eating disorders, and ensure it’s readily available. These experts can deliver one-on-one treatment to your workers who may not have the time or knowledge to seek out such information on their own.
Share Support Outlets
Within the workplace, you can develop support outlets that foster eating disorder awareness. You can host an eating disorder support group in the office or simply distribute information about a support group in the area. Screening tools are also available for employees that are trying to determine if they have an eating disorder and if they should seek professional assistance.
By sharing and fostering such outlets, your workplace can create a welcoming environment for employees suffering from eating disorders and for those who have loved ones that are suffering. Providing (or knowing of) locations where employees can go to discuss such issues is crucial for recovery and health.
Eating Disorder Awareness Week is the perfect time to consider ways you can include applicable benefits for your employees. Any action toward creating awareness about eating disorders can help develop a more positive and supportive workplace.